SBCC Wins Accolades for International Business Program

Santa Barbara City College’s International Business program earned Strong Workforce Stars recognition in the Global Trade and Logistics sector for its International Business program.

The honors were received because students participating in the program boosted their earnings by an average of 55 percent.

“That SBCC international business program graduates are achieving recognition for wage outcomes demonstrates the value of education that promotes global competence,” said Julie Samson, director of the SBCC Scheinfeld Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation.

“Workers in export-intensive industries generally earn more,” said Samson, who also is regional director for global trade through the Doing What Matters for Jobs and the Economy of the state chancellor’s office.

“SBCC is the only college in our region with an international business AA and certificate that is entirely online,” she said.

Strong Workforce Stars is a new, annual award for career education programs, also known as career technical education (CTE), within California’s 114 community colleges.

Award recipients must demonstrate that students show significant gains in factors key to advancing social mobility, such substantial increase in earnings, attainment of a living wage, and/or employment in a job closely matched with the student’s field of study.

“Career education programs benefit not only the student, but also the regional economies because they enable people to better their standard of living,” said Samson.

“Taking classes at SBCC is one of the most affordable and accessible ways for students to gain the knowledge and skills needed to get well-paying careers,” she said.

Career education programs can receive Strong Workforce Stars designation when meeting one or more of the following thresholds: 50 percent or more increase in student earnings; 70 percent or more of students attain a regional living wage; and/or 90 percent or more of the students report that their current job is close or very close to their field of study.

The wage data is determined by comparing students’ earnings one year before and one year after exiting the California Community Colleges system. This data is based on a match to the state’s wage file.

The recognition is based on students who were last enrolled in 2013-14 in career education areas.

“The SBCC International Business program is successful in increasing students’ earnings largely because we recruit faculty with industry experience and are well-connected with industry partners in the local community,” said Samson.

“The faculty also assist students with building their networks and mentorship, even after students graduate,” she said.

Strong Workforce Stars is made possible by accountability and data tool investments established under Doing What MATTERS for Jobs and Economy framework and Strong Workforce Program of the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office.

Starting in 2016, the state of California infused a recurring annual investment of $200 million to spur more and better career education across the 114 community colleges of California, the nation’s largest higher education system.

The Strong Workforce Program has a goal of creating one million more middle-skilled workers in California to fuel regional economies and advance social mobility, equipping them with certificates, degrees or credentials valued by the labor market.

Strong Workforce metrics are aligned with those of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act of 2014, a federal program designed to help job seekers access employment, education, training and support services.

Six SBCC International Business courses are offered this fall, including Trade Skills for the Global Business Professional, which starts Oct. 16.

This course provides a detailed overview of the skills required for a career as a global business professional and is a certified exam preparation course for the Certified Global Business Professional (CGBP) industry recognized credential.

The South Coast Center for International Trade Development hosted by the Scheinfeld Center has stipends cavailable for CGBP exam registration fees to businesses who enroll in the course and wish to start or expand business in global markets.

No-cost business consulting is also available through the Santa Barbara County Small Business Development Center. Register now and contact Samson for CGBP exam stipend and business consulting information:

Four of the Scheinfeld Center’s innovative entrepreneurship courses that prepare global entrepreneurs are offered this fall, including Enterprise Launch.

The Enterprise Launch course enables students to launch a simple product or service in a single semester with the support of business mentors. Students can bring their own business idea, or join a team with an idea.

Enrollment is now open, and offered to all SBCC students regardless of academic discipline. Students who are eligible for SBCC’s Promise can receive two years of no-cost tuition, required fees, books, and supplies.

To learn more about the SBCC Scheinfeld Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, visit or call 965-0581 ext. 3643.

— Hannah Rael/Juliana Minsky for Santa Barbara City College Scheinfeld Center.

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