SFSC Lake Placid Center hosted the morning mixer of the Lake Placid Chamber of Commerce on Jan. 19, giving the college an opportunity to showcase its latest educational program.

Tina Gottus talks logistics with Michael Noel

Tina Gottus talks logistics with Michael Noel of Thrivent Financial Services.

After a networking breakfast, chamber members stepped onto the center’s loading dock for a firsthand look at its transformation to SFSC’s new Supply Chain Management training center.

The new forklifts, wooden pallets, and storage shelves on the dock were just the front piece for SFSC’s foray into training students for one of the state’s growth industries: supply chain management, or the logistics of getting material and products to distribution centers, businesses, and customers.

Tina Gottus, director of SFSC’s XCEL-IT Program, walked the center’s local business guests through a brief PowerPoint presentation touting the growth in trade and goods funneled into Florida from the recent expansion of the Panama Canal and the state’s ports.

Nelson Torres and Marie Wislon talk

Nelson Torres talks to Lake Placid High School’s Marie Wislon about career opportunities for her students.

Gottus said SFSC’s move into supply chain management education was a natural fit for a state with major ports in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Tampa, and Jacksonville—all of which are expanding rapidly from billions in investments. Inland, companies like Amazon, Walmart, and Autozone are some of the major corporations expanding their distribution centers in Florida.

The number of jobs in logistics is poised to grow 22 percent during the next decade. The center of Highlands County lies within 150 miles of 85 percent of Florida’s population, making the area an ideal location to site distribution centers.

SFSC offers a 24-month Associate in Science degree in supply chain management or a one-year logistics and transportation specialist college credit certificate. The programs include courses in warehouse management, transportation and distribution, and inventory management.

For more information, call Gottus at 863-784-7439, or email xcel-it@southflorida.edu. Or, follow these links: Supply Chain Management Associate in Science Degree  or Logistics and Transportation Specialist – College Credit Certificate