The office of Partnerships and Outreach at the University of Alabama has announced a newly formed partnership program with Shelby County College and Career Center (CCC) to educate 12th-grade students on the basics of business, soft skills, and post-secondary education options.
“With UM having the wonderful resources a higher education institution brings to a community, this partnership just made sense,” says Julie Godfrey, Shelby County Schools Supervisor of Career Tech Education, College and Career Planning, and Community Partnerships.
Beginning in September and running through April 2017, faculty and staff volunteers from the University of Montevallo will visit the CCC campus one Friday per month to provide instruction on specific topics such as personal branding, networking, business math and other areas focused on helping students learn those much needed soft skills.
“We recognize soft skills are a weakness for most high school students,” stated Zachary McWhorter, Principal at the Shelby County College and Career Center. “We want to remain focused on the big picture for our CCC students, ensuring they have the soft skills and business knowledge to become career prepared and ultimately, better community citizens,” added McWhorter.
During the first session, held on September 23, students learned about the importance of how to present themselves in order to create their personal brand, as well as how to better understand and use their transferable skills to work in a variety of industries.
“It was interesting to learn about how your reputation is your brand whether you want it to be or not,” said Nyla Boothe, a CCC high school senior. “To know that my brand will impact where I go in life, definitely makes me want to ensure I’ve created the right brand for myself,” added Boothe.
The session Boothe attended was instructed by Gary Johnson, University of Montevallo Campaign Director and Marketing Adjunct Faculty Member in the UM Stephens College of Business. More than 15 UM faculty and staff have already signed up to participate in the fall semester of the program.
“The University of Montevallo employees harvest a culture of volunteerism and philanthropy,” stated Kelli J. Holmes, Director for the University of Montevallo Office of Partnerships and Outreach. “Our faculty and staff understand the positive impact they can have on our community, and they’re always open to new opportunities,” Holmes added.