TAMPA. Fla. (Aug. 9, 2021) – The University of South Florida (USF) and Skanska, a multinational construction and development company, today announced they are partnering to introduce a new mentorship program that aims to assist small and diverse businesses in the Tampa Bay region. Facilitated through USF’s Office of Supplier Diversity, the Construction Management Building Blocks (CMBB) mentor-protégé program will provide subcontractors with training, development and partnership opportunities to help the companies grow and become more successful with competitive bidding processes.
“We are so pleased to join with Skanska to provide this new program, which is incredibly important to the University of South Florida,” said Terrie Daniel, USF Office of Supplier Diversity assistant vice president. “I think it will increase opportunities for participating firms and have a significant impact on those businesses and on the economics of our entire business community.”
Leveraging business expertise from USF faculty and staff, along with Skanska and other industry professionals, participants will take part in an eight-week program that provides guidance on a variety of subjects, such as environmental health and safety, field management, as well as marketing and business development. Companies will learn, at no cost to them, how to become more successful on USF/Skanska Tampa Bay-based projects and within the construction industry in general.
Diverse firms will be selected for the CMBB program based on recommendations from community partners, which include the Hillsborough County NAACP, The St. Petersburg Collective and the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council. In order to qualify, companies must be in the construction industry and in business for at least one year.
“This initiative not only continues our ongoing work and partnership with USF, but also lives up to our purpose, ‘Building for a Better Society,’” said Tracy Hunt, senior vice president for Skanska’s greater Tampa Bay area operations. “The Construction Management Building Blocks mentor-protégé program will prepare these subcontractors with fundamental skills to operate successful companies and seek opportunities in Tampa’s growing construction industry.”
The program’s first cohort kicks off in late August. Upon completion, participants will receive a construction mentor from Skanska and a graduate student mentor from USF’s Muma College of Business (COB) for up to six months to assist in streamlining administrative responsibilities. Participants will also be provided scholarships for a financial management program led by the Muma COB Small Business Development Center.
About the University of South Florida
The University of South Florida is a high-impact global research university dedicated to student success. Over the past 10 years, no other public university in the country has risen faster in U.S. News and World Report’s national university rankings than USF. Serving more than 50,000 students on campuses in Tampa, St. Petersburg and Sarasota-Manatee, USF is designated as a Preeminent State Research University by the Florida Board of Governors, placing it in the most elite category among the state’s 12 public universities. USF has earned widespread national recognition for its success graduating under-represented minority and limited-income students at rates equal to or higher than white and higher income students. USF is a member of the American Athletic Conference. Learn more at www.usf.edu.
Skanska is one of the world’s leading construction and development companies. Skanska’s core operations in the U.S. include building construction, civil infrastructure and developing self-financed commercial properties. In 2020, construction in the U.S. generated $6.5 billion in revenue, and as a developer in the U.S., Skanska has invested a total of $2.8 billion in commercial and multi-family projects. With U.S. headquarters in New York City, Skanska has 29 offices with 7,600 employees nationwide. An industry-leading innovator in both safety and project execution, Skanska offers competitive solutions for traditional and complex assignments that build a more sustainable future for our customers and communities. Global revenue of parent company Skanska AB, headquartered in Stockholm and listed on the Stockholm Stock Exchange, totaled approximately $17.2 billion in 2020. Learn more at usa.skanska.com.