Go from “Find Your Job” to “Create Your Job”

The entrepreneurial spirit drives today’s workforce. Workers want to create their own workplace by starting their own company or lead launching new innovations at existing businesses. They want to be involved in making the world a better place. They don’t want to climb the corporate ladder. They want to build their own. We want to help you build yours.

Training for the Gig Economy

The gig economy is growing. More and more career seekers are taking their skills to the marketplace as contractors, freelancers, and gig workers. Since 2011, we have recognized the power of those individuals to create the future they want and have trained more than 1800 Floridians to harness that power.

At CareerSource North Central Florida, we provide workshops and training opportunities for individuals interested in pursuing their future in the gig economy. Our workshops and training curriculums take a holistic approach at educating aspiring entrepreneurs and have successfully assisted over 300 residents since July 2016. We:

  • Teach career seekers the basics of the gig economy.
  • Assist career seekers in how to identify what sellable skills they have and how to market them through digital marketplaces.
  • Guide career seekers on how to structure a business.
  • Educate career seekers on the startup life cycle in accelerate bootcamps and training curriculums.
  • Provide access to existing resources such as mentors, business accelerators, and business incubators.

Training for Any Background

Different backgrounds bring different strengths to the gig economy. That’s why we work with our training and business collaborators across Alachua and Bradford counties to tailor our training for each population’s needs. Past and current entrepreneurial training programs include:

Tech Quest: Training Youth and Young Adults in Entrepreneurship and Tech

Trains eligible youth ages 16-24 years old in the basics of business formation and startups. Program is provided on-demand in collaboration with Santa Fe College.

Opportunity Quest: Empowering the Unemployed with Entrepreneurship Skills

Run initially as a successful pilot in 2011 to train unemployed individuals, Opportunity Quest returns to Alachua and Bradford counties funded by a $4 million U.S. Department of Labor grant. Rolling out in 2017, Opportunity Quest will pair eligible unmployed individuals with childcare resources and entrepreneurial training for technology occupations.

Startup Quest®: Helping Professionals Create Their Job

Startup Quest® was launched in 2011 based on a simple observation: the recession was reducing jobs, the economy was changing, and Americans weren’t ready for it. Startup Quest® pairs unemployed individuals with college and professional degrees with advisors, capital investors, and patentable products to teach participants the process of starting a business. The program is provided on-demand to workforce boards. Startup Quest was created in Gainesville, Florida and has since expanded across the nation as a model for workforce development.

A Network of Support

Our gig economy training programs aren’t just focused on the classroom. Our programs help participants develop mentor networks. These networks help our participants gain:

  • One-on-One Guidance: Our programs connect participants with experienced executive mentors with successful track records in the private sector.
  • Peer Support: With bootcamp and classroom style training, participants gain common experiences and a network of peers who often refer new opportunities to each other.
  • Support to Scale: Some programs connect participants to executive leadership at technology licensing agencies. This gives participants the unique opportunity to explore technologies to commercialize, gain access to investors for funding, and gain access to advisors eager to support business formation.

Ready to get Started?

Visit us at an Event

We are frequently out in the community. Follow us on Facebook to see where we’ll be next.

Visit Us at a Career Center

Our Gainesville and Starke career centers are open Monday-Wednesday 8 AM – 5 PM, Thursdays 10 AM – 5 PM, and Fridays 8 AM – 5 PM.

Career seekers do not need an appointment to access the Resource Room or use our self-guided services. Services are first-come, first-served excluding veterans. Veterans may receive priority of service.

If you would like to meet one-on-one with a staffing specialist, please contact us to schedule an appointment.