Rowers 3 with updated logo

Expanding Economic Opportunity
in Florida's Gulf Coast Region


Building Strong Relationships
in Florida's Gulf Coast Region


Creating Employment Opportunities
in Florida's Gulf Coast Region


Expanding Career Opportunities
in Florida's Gulf Coast Region

Get to know CareerEdge

CareerEdge is dedicated to helping area employers meet the challenges of a fast-changing economy. One of the principal ways we do that is by filling the worker “skill gaps” that prevent leading employers from achieving stronger rates of revenue growth.

MISSION STATEMENT: Our mission is to provide an exceptional labor force to a region’s growing industries by leveraging community assets and forming high-performing workforce partnerships.

VISION STATEMENT: CareerEdge will be known as the region’s distinguished workforce development organization that promotes economic prosperity through strong employer-labor and community partnerships.

CareerEdge is the first Funders Collaborative designated as a National Fund for Workforce Solutions site in the Southeastern US. The collaborative uses donated funds to create a skilled labor pool in the Manatee-Sarasota region and helps local employers find the talent they need. Learn more about how we fulfill this vital mission and how you can help drive economic development in the Manatee-Sarasota region.

$6.3 Million

In Investments


Individuals Served


New Jobs Created


Certificates/Degrees Earned

$23.4 Million

New Wages & Raises

What’s New?

Charles & Margery Barancik Foundation help to expand the CareerEdge Internship Reimbursement Program

Through the generous support of the Charles and Margery Barancik Foundation CareerEdge Funders Collaborative will be expanding its innovative Internship Reimbursement Program for 2017. First piloted two years ago, the internship program incentivizes employers in high-demand industries to hire college interns in order for them to gain valuable work experience. Employees receive up to $1,500 if they hire an intern at a minimum of $10/hour. The program also exposes students to the workforce; while helping employers to develop talent in the growing sectors of Healthcare, Manufacturing, IT, Transportation, Financial Services and Construction Trades. CareerEdge also partners with local colleges to encourage them to embed internships in more of their programs. To read the story in the SRQ Magazine “Freshly Squeezed”: click here. To read the press release, click here.

CareerEdge Partners with Local Organizations to Improve College Access and Attainment

CareerEdge is a leader in the local initiative called Talent4Tomorrow (T4T). Backed by a network of local organizations, T4T aims to help students from Sarasota County pursue education and training beyond high school. The initiative will expand programs that help students and their families access federal and state financial aid, inform students of the local high-demand jobs, and help students that are traditionally underrepresented in higher education see college as an attainable goal. T4T will serve as Sarasota’s “Local College Access Network” or LCAN to increase college preparedness and career preparation. To learn more about Talent4Tomorrow click here.

2017 United Way ALICE Report for Florida Released

Across our region (Citrus, Desoto, Hernando, Hillsborough, Manatee, Pasco, Pinellas and Sarasota counties), nearly 431,000 households live above poverty but below the ALICE threshold, or the basic cost of living. Combined, ALICE and poverty households, account for 41% percent of households in the region. The ALICE – Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed – Report, places a spotlight on hardworking, and yet struggling residents who have little or no savings and are one emergency from falling into poverty. The ALICE Report update provides county-by-county, city-level data and analysis of how many households are struggling, including the obstacles ALICE households face on the road to financial independence. It also informs us of how economic conditions have changed for ALICE families over time, including the job market and the impact of the recession. To read the ALICE Report, click here.  Also visit the United Way Suncoast  to view a simulation of the difficult decisions ALICE makes every day.

CareerEdge Funders Collaborative Advocates for Pell Grants

CareerEdge Funders Collaborative, a workforce development non-profit and United Way Suncoast partner, is working to get more people access to higher education funding. Program Director, Deborah Chapman, recently traveled to D.C. to meet with Florida’s congressional legislators as part of the National Skills Coalition. The Coalition is made up of U.S. workforce development organizations and is focused on supporting middle skills jobs in high growth industries. These include those requiring more than a high school diploma but less than a 4-year degree. Chapman met with staff from Senator Rubio and Senator Nelson’s offices, as well as those of 11 House members, including local District Representatives Vern Buchanan, Charlie Crist, Gus Bilirakis and Kathy Castor. CareerEdge’s key advocacy focus is on expanding Pell Grant eligibility to include short-term certifications in high demand programs.  Currently, federal Pell Grants provide college students needs-based funding for certification and degree programs that are at least 600 instructional hours, or a minimum of 15 weeks in length. Read the full press release here.

STC Precision Machining Program Receives Scholarship Donation

The Gene Haas Foundation has provided a scholarship donation of $12,500 to support the work and training of the CNC Machinists at Suncoast Technical College.  The Gene Haas Foundation is dedicated to growing the machining industry with a skilled workforce. The scholarship will help apprentices attend the STC program to receive additional training and prepare them for the modern world of machining.  CareerEdge has been an advocate and supporter of the STC Precision Machining program since it began four years ago. The program has graduated 88 machinists and has produced 23% of all NIMS (National Institute for Metalworking Skills) credentials in the state of Florida. To view the full announcement, click here.

CareerEdge Partners with United Way to Offer Financial Services and Tax Assistance

CareerEdge is partnering with United Way Suncoast to provide employers with a valuable resource to help their employees increase financial stability.  Research shows that employee productivity is linked to personal financial problems.  Services such as tax assistance and budgeting can increase productivity, employee morale, and company loyalty, as well as decrease healthcare costs, absenteeism and turnover.  United Way Suncoast offers free tax assistance sites in Sarasota County and an online service at where employees making under $64k can have their income taxes prepared and filed for free. For VITA Sites and times, please click here.

CareerEdge Executive Director, Mireya Eavey, named SRQ Magazine’s Philanthropic Newsmaker of the Year

Mireya Eavey continues to lead an innovative approach to philanthropy.  Eavey believes that philanthropy should focus on a “community impact model.”  Through CareerEdge and United Way Suncoast, Mireya can lead programs that will not only create opportunities for people but will also improve their futures and lives. Eavey wants to empower low and middle income families to reach for opportunities that might not have been attainable before.  By offering more than just funds, Eavey is able to lead economic development in our community.  To read the full article featuring Mireya Eavey, click here: SRQ Magazine.

CareerEdge Graduates First CNA class from Booker Middle School Resource Center

Booker Middle School’s United Way Resource Center has recently graduated its first class of Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA). This pioneer class had a 100% completion rate, with all 12 students completing the course. The program, which was funded by CareerEdge Funders Collaborative and United Way Suncoast, was facilitated by the American Red Cross. At the completion of the program, all the students participated in the American Red Cross graduation ceremony at Booker Middle School. The graduates were pinned and received their certificates of completion from the American Red Cross and their certificates for the CareerEdge Bridges to Careers soft skills training program. Congratulations to all the graduates! Click here to read the Sarasota Herald Tribune article on the CNA graduation.

CareerEdge Exemplifies the “Billion Dollar Bet”

National consulting company Bridgespan group recently recommended career pathways as a “Billion Dollar Bet,” for philanthropists to invest in, stating that workforce development strategies have the potential to create significant economic impacts that can sum up to $1 billion regionally. They lauded the model employed by CareerEdge as one that will improve social mobility for low wage workers.  To read the full report, click here: Bridgespan Report

CareerEdge-Funded Research, Develop, and Manufacture LLC RDM Receives Accolades

Local startup RDM was recently profiled by the Huffington Post about its new Band.It product which protects camera lenses from damage. Domenic Aluise, CJ Cooper, Elezar Tonev, and Jacob Barrineau started RDM as seniors at Braden River High School in Bradenton Florida. Now as newly minted freshmen at University of Florida they are already on the path to entrepreneurial success. This past summer CareerEdge funded several RDM interns to assist with the launch of their new product, Band.It. RDM was also a finalist in the Gulf Coast Community Foundation’s BIG – Bright Ideas on the Gulf Coast competition.  The Huffington Post article can be viewed here.  The feature by University of Florida can be viewed here.

CareerEdge Profiled in National Report

The International Economic Development council recently released a report about the changing landscape of workforce “learning systems.” CareerEdge is 1 of 5 national workforce development organizations profiled in the document, titled Chutes & Ladders: The New Rules of the Game for Upskilling Workers. According to the report, CareerEdge’s success has been attributable in part to relationships with regional economic development organizations. The council also highlighted CareerEdge’s reliance on data to drive its workforce investments, stating that it shows a “proactive, demand-driven approach to workforce development that benefits both local employers and workers.”  The full report can be viewed at this link: Full Report

Labor Market Analysis Presentation by Dr. Chris Benner

October 19, CareerEdge hosted the fifth annual Jobs, Jobs, Jobs event.  Dr. Chris Benner of the University of California- Santa Cruz presented a labor market analysis for the Sarasota, Manatee, Hillsborough, and Pinellas county regions.  Dr. Benner focused on the workforce growth in our region and the industry sub-sectors of Construction, Information and Professional Technical Services, Manufacturing, and Healthcare.  The presentation can be viewed here. The presentation given by Dr. Jerry Parrish, Chief Economist for the Florida Chamber of Commerce, can be viewed here.

CareerEdge Funders Collaborative “Pathway to Prosperity”

A major challenge for employers regionally – and nationally – is finding skilled workers who not only perform their jobs at a high level, but also possess the people skills and work ethic essential for every workplace.  For six years, CareerEdge Funders Collaborative has been providing those skilled workers through its workforce development programs.  In the process, CareerEdge is helping to create vibrant, productive communities in a region that stretches through Hillsborough, Pinellas, Manatee, Sarasota and Charlotte counties.  Click here to read more.

Manufacturing Skills Gap Study

CareerEdge recently commissioned Kempton Research to conduct an updated 2016 Manufacturing Skills Gap Study.  This qualitative analysis represents a follow up to a 2012 study, which led to the development of the Precision Machining program at Suncoast Technical College, the manufacturing Community-Wide Plan and other programs which have raised awareness about the manufacturing sector in the Sarasota/Manatee region.  Click here to read more.

CareerEdge Funders Collaborative Mid-Year Report Released

CareerEdge recently released a mid-year report highlighting its work in the first half of 2016.  We continue to impact change in regional workforce development this year through actions such as providing direct training grants to employers in order to upskill workers in targeted sectors and funding certification programs for job seekers in high demand occupations.  So far, 266 incumbant workers and 197 job seekers have been trained, and 70 internships have been funded for a total of 533 individuals served. Click here to see the full report.

CareerEdge Partners with STC to Offer Free Plumbing Program

CareerEdge has partnered with Suncoast Technical College to offer a tuition-free Plumbing Technology certification program beginning this fall. The 8-month class begins September 8th and will be held Monday through Friday, 7:45AM – 2:15PM, with both classroom and on-the-job training. Graduates of the plumbing program are highly sought after by local employers given the shortage of workers in this trade.

The College is hosting a Job Fair on August 8th from 5:00 – 7:00 PM for potential students to learn more about this TUITION-FREE college program. Click here for more information.

CareerEdge 2015 Evaluator Report Released

Chicago-based evaluation company, Smarter People Planning, released it’s assessment of CareerEdge’s key metrics for 2015.  Evaluator Stacy Boyle, PhD, gathered data directly from funded employers, conducted an analysis of the outcomes and provided an executive summary of cumulative results since CareerEdge’s inception 5 years ago.  Click here to see the full report.

CareerEdge Puts Spotlight on Young Adult Unemployment

CareerEdge recently convened a roundtable of community partners to address the unique needs of out-of-work, out-of-school 18 – 25 year olds.  Participants included representatives from youth serving organizations, the school district and higher education institutions, the housing authority, Sarasota Chamber and philanthropic foundations.  Kate O’Sullivan, a D.C.-based consultant with the National Fund for Workforce Solutions, presented startling statistics about the “Opportunity Youth” crisis, and shared best practice strategies aimed at addressing the issue.  Click here to see Kate’s presentation and resource links.

CareerEdge Provides Internship Reimbursement Dollars

CareerEdge will reimburse up to $1,500 per intern to employers paying a minimum of $10.00/hour to participating students. This program will helps students obtain the necessary skills required to succeed in today’s work environment, while also providing financial incentives for local employers who utilize interns in high demand industries.


2015 Evaluator Report on Outcomes and Impacts

 $6.3 Million in Investments
 3,142 Individuals Served
 1,212 Jobs Created
 6,074 Certificates/Degrees Earned
 $23.4 Million in New Wages and Raises

CareerEdge Funders Collaborative and St. Petersburg College (SPC) have partnered to provide training to strengthen the region’s growing transportation, distribution and logistics (TDL) workforce. The partnership, TDL Tampa Bay, is funded through a grant CareerEdge received from Jobs for the Future. CareerEdge has been awarded $220,000 to train 300 individuals over the next two years and provide them support and job placement services. The projects will connect underrepresented populations to the industry, with each site committing to serve at least 25 percent female participants.

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