Award-Winning Career Edge Program Goes Virtual with Record Attendance

Monday, March 01, 2021

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As the Greater Irvine Chamber’s award-winning Career Edge program adapted to Coronavirus safety measures, it was delivered virtually, with a record attendance of 62 students from 20 colleges, universities, high schools, and academies in Orange County and a larger part of California.

The digitally formatted February 2021 session, Successful Business Etiquette & Workplace Behaviors, received positive feedback. Out of 41 student survey respondents, 76% indicated they registered for the workshop because they wanted to learn more about the work world, and 80% indicated the session was interesting and kept their attention.

Survey respondents ranked the skills covered during the workshop in order of importance to them: 1.) How to behave in a general office setting, 2.) How to behave in a business meeting, 3.) How to communicate effectively with co-workers, followed by, 4.) How to handle difficult situations in the workplace.

Career Edge participants attend Irvine Valley College, Northwood High School, and University High School in Irvine; Anaheim High School, Cambridge Virtual Academy, North Orange Continuing Education, Loara High School, and Magnolia High School in Anaheim; Cypress High School, Huntington Beach High School, Katella High School, and Oxford Academy in North Orange County; Beckman High School in Tustin; as well as Cerritos College, Fresno City College, L.A. City College, Riverside City College, Santa Ana College, Ventura College, Victor Valley College, and UCLA.

“Programs like Career Edge help prepare students for early career success and provides employers with workers who have the needed soft skills that are often supplemental to what is taught in the classroom. It’s a win-win,” said Bryan Starr, president and CEO, Greater Irvine Chamber. “This program is made possible by Chamber member volunteers who give generously of their time and expertise.”

The session was taught by Brian Dozer, Ph.D., president of Vital Link, a nonprofit dedicated to preparing students for their future careers through experiential learning opportunities in career and technical fields. Dr. Dozer is an adjunct faculty member at Webster University, Irvine, teaching management, organizational behavior, and leadership courses. He previously served as the university’s executive director. He is the co-chair of the Greater Irvine Chamber Business & Workforce Development Committee and serves on the Irvine Forward Foundation Board of Directors.

Volunteers serving as mentors were:

Program partners were Orange County One Stop Center and Goodwill Orange County.

The next Career Edge workshop, Practical Critical Thinking & Problem Solving, will be held virtually on

Saturday, April 17, 9 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

For more information on Career Edge and to serve as a volunteer mentor, contact Pepper Russell.

Category: Education News, Greater Irvine Chamber, Workforce Development