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Every Monday -- News from GCP

The importance of strengthening the education continuum

In this “GCP Insight” interview, Greater Cleveland Partnership Senior Director of Advocacy Alesha Washington talks with Ohio House Minority Leader State Rep. Fred Strahorn (D-39) about the value and importance of education.

The discussion includes the impact education has on the lives of young people starting with early childhood through post-secondary studies. He also talks about the need for agility within educational systems to respond to changing needs.

Click to watch.

The ”GCP Insight” video series focuses on topics of interest to the Greater Cleveland business community. This week’s video is sponsored by:

GCP comments support County efforts to boost inclusion
on construction projects

The Greater Cleveland Partnership, through the Commission on Economic Inclusion, recently provided public comment on Cuyahoga County’s proposed legislation to increase opportunities for small and minority-owned firms to do more work with the County.

The legislation was introduced by County Executive Budish on February 9 and is a response to the most recent economic disparity study conducted by the County. The study found significant under-utilization of minority and female-owned firms for County construction projects.

Four pieces of legislation were introduced to create: (1) exclusive contracting opportunities or “set asides” for small businesses; (2) aspirational goals for minority and female-owned business participation on County contracts; (3) criteria to waive performance bond requirements on projects of a certain size, and; (4) a business economic inclusion program as an incentive for contractors to engage more minority and female-owned firms on projects.

The County Administration also introduced a resolution, passed by County Council last week, that would make the County an endorser of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for Community Benefit Agreements on major construction projects. The GCP played a key role with the City of Cleveland and other core partners on the development of the MOU in 2013. Cuyahoga County is one of the newest partners to endorse this initiative.

“Even with our best efforts, there is still much work to be done to ensure that Cuyahoga County and our region can be a competitive, inclusive place with shared prosperity for all,” says GCP President and CEO Joe Roman.

“We are grateful for the County’s endorsement of the MOU and look forward to working with them on the passage and implementation of the full package of legislation that we believe creates more opportunities for economic inclusion with our small, minority and female-owned firms.”

The GCP’s advocacy team, in partnership with the Commission on Economic Inclusion, will continue advocacy efforts on the legislation as it is heard in the Public Works, Procurement and Contracting Committee of County Council.

Public comment from the Commission can be read here. More information on the legislation as well as a copy of the disparity study can be found here.

12 Days of Tech

Tech Week 2016, with events running from April 13-24, connects, celebrates, promotes and supports the dynamic technology industry of Northeast Ohio.

Click to learn more about activities and programs that include:
  • Fifth Annual Pitch Night Presented by SIM, Monday, April 18 from 5 to 8 p.m. at LockKeepers, 8001 Rockside Road, in Valley View: Local tech companies will pitch their innovative products and services to an audience composed of local IT executives, tech entrepreneurs and others interested in the latest in tech.

    The event is hosted by the Society for Information Managers, NEO Chapter (SIM-NEO) and OHTec (formerly NEOSA).
  • Linking IT Talent to Opportunity, Wednesday, April 20 from 1 to 4:30 p.m. at the Independence Civic Center, 6363 Selig Blvd.: IT professionals, recent graduates and college students connect with leading Northeast Ohio companies to discuss career paths and job opportunities.

    The career fair and networking event is presented by the Greater Cleveland Partnership, NEOintern and OHTec. For more information, contact Truc Cao at or 216.592.2387.
  • Best Healthcare Tech Product: Hyland
  • Best IT Services Company: BlueBridge Networks; FIT Technologies
  • Best Website: JumpStart Inc.
  • Tech Company of the Year: Hyland
  • Tech Team of the Year: NASA Glenn Research Center; OEC

CMSD freshmen explore possible career paths

The Academies of Cleveland, a high school career academy initiative within the Cleveland Metropolitan School District (CMSD), in partnership with the Greater Cleveland Partnership (GCP) and the Cleveland Foundation, held the first Ninth Grade Career Experience Fair on Friday, March 18 at the CMSD East Professional Development Center.

The Fair provided an opportunity for all Academies of Cleveland high school freshmen to explore a breadth of career areas to help them make informed decisions about a future career path. The approximately 700 students who attended first completed career exploration research at school in preparation for the event and were responsible for interviewing exhibitors and participating in exhibitor activities.

Approximately 19 business exhibitors attended (see below) representing various industries such as engineering, horticulture, healthcare, information technology, public safety, manufacturing, higher education and construction. The exhibitors provided unique, hands-on learning activities by showing demonstrations, bringing specific equipment and having engaging conversations with students about their industry.

The GCP and the Academies of Cleveland appreciate the generosity of our business partners in donating their time and expertise. Our continued partnerships will ensure the success and lasting impact of the Career Exploration Fair.

The second Career Experience Fair will be held this fall for the 2016-2017 school year. If you would like to be put on a list to receive communications about the Fair, please contact Angela Finding at

Many thanks to our career experience exhibitors:
  • Adult Parole Authority; Adventures in Automation and ArcelorMittal
  • Bryant & Stratton College-Cleveland Downtown; CHAMPS Healthcare; and Cleveland Clinic
  • Cleveland Department of Safety—Division of Fire, Cleveland EMS; and Cleveland Police Department K9 Unit
  • CMSD Safety and Security; Cuyahoga Community College; and Cuyahoga County Sherriff’s Department K9 Unit
  • Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland; Ohio CAT; and Ozanne Construction Company
  • Quality Construction Partnership; The Illuminating Company; Western Reserve Land Conservancy; and Woodmere Village Fire Department
About the Academies of Cleveland

The Academies of Cleveland is a new approach to college and career readiness for students in five Cleveland Metropolitan School District high schools. The Academies high schools are: Garrett Morgan; Jane Addams Business Careers Center; Max S. Hayes; Martin Luther King, Jr.; and Washington Park Environmental Studies.

The Academies of Cleveland schools work to ensure that young people are prepared to learn for a lifetime, thrive in tomorrow’s dynamic workplaces, and contribute to Cleveland’s economic and civic prosperity.

Port of Cleveland 2016 season starts early, should continue growth

The Port of Cleveland’s shipping season will begin early in 2016, benefiting from a mild winter, the lack of ice on the Great Lakes, and The St. Lawrence Seaway’s opening two weeks sooner than usual on March 21st.

The Port and its shipping clients will benefit from the accelerated timeline, leveraging the cost efficiencies of shipping directly from Cleveland via water—the most effective method to connect goods to global markets.

That global access comes via the Cleveland Europe Express (CEE) liner service between the Midwest, Europe, and connecting points worldwide. Operated by Spliethoff Transport BV, the CEE has established Cleveland as North America’s inland-most hub for trade with Europe, creating regular maritime commerce between the two regions for the first time in over 40 years.

“In 2015, the service increased tonnage by 500% over 2014,” said Port Vice President of Maritime & Logistics Dave Gutheil.

The CEE will once again increase the frequency of its calls at the Port, and will be in Cleveland Harbor more than twice every month. The service has also expanded its reach to India through new strategic partnerships.

The March opening of the Seaway also gives the Port early international access for non-CEE freighters exporting steel and machinery and critical imports that support local businesses. Inter-lake shipping also begun in late February—again , earlier than usual due to the lack of ice on the water.

“The Port of Cleveland is excited for the early launch of the 2016 shipping season, which we expect to be another strong year of growth,” said Will Friedman, Port president and CEO.

“With our continued development of the Cleveland-Europe Express, the Port provides the region and its businesses with a critical competitive advantage in the global economy.”

The season’s first international ship is scheduled to arrive in Cleveland Harbor on Wednesday, March 30.

To learn more about using the Cleveland-Europe Express or the Port’s maritime services please contact Dave Gutheil, vice president, maritime & logistics, at or 216.377.1363.