OPWD INSIDER

Fall 2021 Quarterly Newsletter

During the last quarter, the Office of Professional and Workforce Development (OPWD) welcomed three new employees, two gators, one University initiative and countless opportunities for growth!

This newsletter’s goal is to showcase OPWD accomplishments over the past quarter and highlight future plans designed to uphold our mission.

“Coming together is a beginning; keeping together is progress; working together is success.” ― Edward Everett Hale

OPWD OVERALL UPDATES:


As part of the Artificial Intelligence (AI) Initiative, The University of Florida has united OPWD and several colleges throughout the university to create non-credit offerings for the working individual. The colleges have spent the summer developing course material and OPWD has been working diligently to coordinate course completion and develop web and marketing materials to make these courses a success. You can view the offerings here.

Strengthening the progress toward our Engage Florida and Beyond strategic initiative, OPWD built a mutually beneficial relationship with CareerSource North Central Florida (CSNCF). CareerSource has approved OPWD as an Eligible Training Provider, with six courses currently listed. They are also providing ten scholarships for the OPWD Culinary program, and we are currently partnering on two grants. Additionally, CSNCF has been utilizing our online Workforce Readiness courses for their clients, and we are in the process of developing six new online courses for their 16- to 24-year-old target audience.

OPWD, in partnership with the UF College of Design, Construction & Planning, Kiewit Corporation, Santa Fe College, and Charles Perry Partners, Inc (CPPI), is excited to announce the arrival of a Safety Yard at the Training, Research and Education for Environmental Occupations (TREEO) Center. The Safety Yard will train college students as well as individuals in the workforce on construction safety and health principles encountered in the workplace.

OPWD sent two employees to the Digital Summit Conference in Washington, D.C., supporting our strategic initiative to strengthen and expand professional portfolios.

Two very cute (and very small) alligators took up residence in the TREEO pond!

CAREER & WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT EDUCATION

https://cwde.aa.ufl.edu

Updates:

10 Counties/Districts have Articulation Agreements with Career & Workforce Development Education (CWDE) and Florida Gateway College (FGC)!

CWDE Coordinator Niki Brightstone is currently making site visits to High Schools throughout the districts to spread information about the program.

We successfully held the first informational webinar about our program, with more coming up!

CONFERENCES

https://conferences.aa.ufl.edu

Updates:

Hosted 5 Virtual Conferences

Hired two conference event planners!

Upcoming: 10 events scheduled from October to the end of November.

COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT

https://engage.aa.ufl.edu

Updates:

Hosted consistent monthly Workforce Development Committee meetings.

Over the last quarter, Custom Solutions had one program with Leadership Gainesville (48).

In the process of planning more custom programs for 2022 with Rayonier.

PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT HUB

https://hub.aa.ufl.edu

Updates:

Healthcare Credentialing and Privileging course went live at the end of July!

10 Coursera Enrollments from our Greater Gators program. The most popular courses being Google Data Analytics and Google Project Management.

ServSafe course will be live by the end of October.

Community Health Worker course coming end of 2021.

Online enrollments are steadily increasing.

TREEO OVERALL UPDATES

https://treeo.ufl.edu
Asbestos:

High enrollment numbers continue in asbestos initial courses.

The Confined Space course is almost complete and will be ready to launch by the end of 2021.

We are in the beginning stages of developing a Fall Protection course which will utilize the safety yard.

Backflow Prevention:

Held a total of 47 Backflow Tester, Repair & Recertification Courses between June and August.

Certified 196 Backflow Testers!

Registration for the 32nd Annual Cross Connection Control (CCC) Conference is open!

Water/Wastewater:

The Wastewater Treatment Plant Operator Class C/B was approved and launched in July!

Continuing development of Wastewater Lab & Sequencing Batch Reactors course.

We improved the Wastewater Class A Exam Review course and had 4 students from the September course pass the WWA Exam, which normally has an approximate 35% pass rate!

We are in the process of installing simulation technology (SimuWorks TM) to be used for advanced training.

Ron Trygar was nominated for the Harris F. Seidel Lifetime Achievement Award!

Solid and Hazardous Waste Management:

7 combined offerings/classes, 1 in person and 6 contracts.

127 Students in total – more than 75% increase from last quarter!

Held a scheduled course in Crestview for the first time in two years with 19 students!

Currently working on updates to the course materials and manuals in preparation for 2022.

Written by:
Courtney Hancock

Published:
October 5, 2021

Keep up with all things OPWD by reading our bi-monthly office updates.

The Office of Professional and Workforce Development (OPWD) supports the Office of Teaching and Technology and the University of Florida in offering non-credit education for adult learners across multiple modalities, e.g. online, face-to-face, and conferences.

Is there a topic under our umbrella that you would like to learn or see more about? Email Courtney Hancock at cehancock@mail.ufl.edu with your ideas.