The Greater Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce is proud to announce a new partnership with the recently founded Jim Moran School of Entrepreneurship at Florida State University. The partnership will provide students “courtesy” Chamber memberships so they can connect more easily with local business leaders. Students will be paired with mentors, who will offer business advice and help secure internships in the Tallahassee workforce.
One of the key priorities in the Chamber’s strategic plan is “Growing Business” by focusing on talent and entrepreneurship. This new partnership with Florida State will add to the organization’s existing efforts to retain top talent in Tallahassee and boost local entrepreneurs.
The Jim Moran School of Entrepreneurship was founded in December 2015 with assistance from a $100 million gift from Jan Moran and The Jim Moran Foundation. Eighty students have been admitted to the School’s inaugural fall 2017 class and are pursuing degrees in entrepreneurship. The degree requires students to complete an internship, and that’s a vital factor behind the Chamber’s interest in forging this partnership.
“The importance of an internship to our students’ education cannot be understated,” said Susan Fiorito, Director of the Jim Moran School of Entrepreneurship. “Internships allow students to experience the work environment under a successful and caring mentor. We are very appreciative that the Greater Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce has taken such an interest in our entrepreneurship students by providing hands-on learning and business experience.”
Another guiding principle of the Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce is to create a talent-development system that supports the community’s workforce needs now and in the future. Chamber President and CEO Sue Dick said that this kind of talent pipeline and enhanced entrepreneurship efforts are primary goals for the organization.
“In order to grow the Tallahassee economy, we must be able to pair talented students from local schools with opportunities to learn, grow and thrive here,” Dick said. “Through this partnership, we will encourage entrepreneurially minded students to engage with the Tallahassee business community. The Jim Moran School is the perfect partner to develop a workforce infrastructure designed to retain top talent. We are incredibly excited to bring students and business mentors together to generate new and intentional relationships that can create great jobs and help our community grow.”
The new partnership was highlighted at the Chamber’s Annual Breakfast Meeting, which attracted more than 500 business leaders. Chamber Chair Heidi Otway recognized several students from the Jim Moran School at the meeting.
“We are committed to building a better future in Tallahassee by saying ‘yes’ to mentorships and internships for many talented and innovative students,” Otway said.
The partnership begins this fall. Students will receive updates on Chamber activities and be invited to networking events and forums that focus on important issues in Tallahassee. In 2018, students will start teaming up with mentors and accepting internship opportunities.