Stony Brook University and NY Workforce Investment Boards Recognized for Success of Certificate and Training Programs
Professional credentialing programs have helped hundreds of displaced workers gain necessary tools to find new employment
STONY BROOK, N.Y., November 24, 2010 – Stony Brook’s Corporate Education and Training(CET) group and its partners have been recognized once again for the success of their professional certificate and training programs that have helped hundreds of displaced workers return to productive professional jobs.
To date in 2010, the program and its partners have been honored with:
– 2010 PMI Continuing Professional Education Provider of the Year award from The Project Management Institute – The award was given to CET’s Training Partner, Total Systems Education, Ltd., for the CET Displaced Professional Program during the PMI Global Congress 2010 – North America on Oct. 9.
– The University Professional Continuing Education Mid-Atlantic Region Industry Partner Program of the Year – The Stony Brook University program was honored at a Tailgate Party and Awards Celebration at the UPCEA Mid-Atlantic Region Annual Conference on Sept. 29.
– The National Association of Counties (NACO) Green Jobs Training Program of the Year –The award was presented to CET partner Suffolk County Workforce Investment Board. The award was presented at NACO’s 2010 Annual Conference on July 18 to the Workforce Investment Board for its retraining program for the Project Management Professional Credential for Green Careers.
“The Corporate Education and Training group at Stony Brook University stepped up early as the economic crisis unfolded in 2008 creating a jobs program with demonstrated success, assisting more than 220 displaced professionals back into productive professional jobs,” said Patricia Malone, executive director of the program.
CET has trained more than 500 people using American Recovering and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) and some National Emergency Grant funding for professional level training, Ms. Malone said, through an unprecedented collaboration with Nassau and Suffolk Counties Workforce Investment Boards and partners and business associates such as the Project Management Institute (PMI), International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA), the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) and National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and the University Career Development Office. “Together, CET and its partners navigated unchartered territory in a crisis providing world class training and connectivity to new and emerging venues in green jobs and healthcare.”
Ms. Malone said the program participants changed as the recession rippled through the economy. “In the beginning they were heavily from the financial industry but the outwash has really trickled down to all the industries. The people we have in the program need credentials and certification.”
Program participants have been people in high-end support and middle management positions including IT professionals at banks and brokerages; accountants, sales staff and administrative professionals from areas such as human relations and training – all among those caught in the first waves of job cuts.
Many of the unemployed professionals had advanced degrees – MBAs, MAs, etc. – and may have held global management positions. But when they became unemployed as a result of the economic downturn, they could not find a job. Many industries were now requiring professional certification for the very same jobs these professionals had held.
“Unless you had the required credentials it didn’t matter if you had 12 advanced degrees,” Ms. Malone said. “In such a competitive market the screening criteria became much more stringent. These credentials show a specific applied knowledge and demonstrated skills in a specialized area of expertise. The academic degree may give you the theory around project management, but not the nuts and bolts skills needed to be employed.”
The need for the new credentials was driven by the employers themselves, and the CET program responded to each new wave of unemployed professionals from various industries and to the shifting requirements of those industries for management professionals.
Project Management/Business Analysis certification was a natural choice. CET had been offering this training to corporations in its community, including Estee Lauder Co., which sponsored over 300 employees in seven countries.
“The growing demand for certified Project Management Professionals (PMPs) across many industry sectors made this training relevant for those in transition,” Ms. Malone said. “Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) training was another natural choice given the demand for ‘green’ initiatives.”
While certificate programs can give the unemployed a competitive edge, these individuals needed much more. CET, as part of a leading research university with deep connections in the region, was uniquely positioned to offer a valuable educational experience. Its new program added to that by providing a break from isolation, along with hope and opportunity by including connectivity to university resources.
Certificate programs were re-designed to include career transition workshops, specialized communication training and connection to a network of local industry leaders such as Telephonics, Brookhaven National Labs and Motorola acting as a Round Table Advisory Board. As part of this, the critical core partnership established with the SBU Career Center to run workshops also saw joint creation of an Internet portal for professional employment called ZebraNet, which currently houses over 1,000 job openings.
Part of the State University of New York system, Stony Brook University encompasses 200 buildings on 1,450 acres. In the 53 years since its founding, the University has grown tremendously, now with nearly 25,000 students and 2,200 faculty and is recognized as one of the nation’s important centers of learning and scholarship. It is a member of the prestigious Association of American Universities, and ranks among the top 100 national universities in America and among the top 50 public national universities in the country according to the 2010 U.S. News & World Report survey. Stony Brook University co-manages Brookhaven National Laboratory, joining an elite group of universities, including Berkeley, University of Chicago, Cornell, MIT, and Princeton that run federal research and development laboratories. SBU is a driving force of the Long Island economy, with an annual economic impact of $4.65 billion, generating nearly 60,000 jobs, and accounts for nearly 4% of all economic activity in Nassau and Suffolk counties, and roughly 7.5 percent of total jobs in Suffolk County.