Press Releases


August 27, 2012


Startup Quest Launch

FloridaWorks, University of Florida Office of Technology LIcsensing and Santa Fe College expand program to seven other Florida regions

WHAT: FloridaWorks and the University of Florida’s Office of Technology Licensing are hosting a media conference to announce the expansion of Startup Quest, an entrepreneurship training program for out-of-work, degree holding, professionals, at a program launch event at the Florida Innovation Hub in Gainesville, Florida. The media conference will be held during an afternoon at an invitation only program launch conference with an open reception afterwards.

FloridaWorks received an $11.95 million grant from the United States Department of Labor by establishing a consortium with seven other Regional Workforce Boards to form BASEC: the Business Advocacy and Self-Employment Consortium. This consortium represents almost 43% of Florida’s civilian labor force and 41% of the number of unemployed individuals.

Press is invited to attend:
– 3:00- 3:30pm Interviews with Kim Tesch-Vaught, Executive Director of FloridaWorks; Jane Muir, director of the Florida Innovation Hub at UF and EDA UF Tech Connect, and associate director of the Office of Technology Licensing; Angela Pate, President and CEO of Focused Management Solutions

– 4:40-5:40pm Attend a networking session where local partners from all eight regions meet with Startup Quest startups and other companies: that have obtained training funds from FloridaWorks. These firms will each have a table to present information about their products or services and their benefit from the local workforce investment system .

Press will also have an exclusive opportunity to learn more about the pilot program launched by the University of Florida to provide women with entrepreneurial training and skills, Empowering Women in Technology Startups (eWiTS). Visit for more information.

Photo ops will be available throughout the media conference and during the networking session at the conclusion of the program launch conference.

WHEN: Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 3:00-3:30pm, interviews available.
Networking Session between 4:40-5:40pm is optional.

WHERE: Florida Innovation Hub at the University of Florida (In the lobby)
747 Southwest 2nd Avenue
Gainesville, FL 32601

WHO: Media Conference Speakers:
Kim Tesch-Vaught, executive director of FloridaWorks
Jane Muir, director of the Florida Innovation Hub at UF and EDA UF Tech Connect, and associate director of the Office of Technology Licensing
Angela Pate, President and CEO Focused Management Solutions

BASEC is a consortium established between eight Local Workforce Investment Boards within the state of Florida. Those eight regions serve 17 counties: Alachua, Baker, Bradford, Brevard, Broward, Clay, Duval, Flagler, Gadsden, Hillsborough, Leon, Nassau, Pinellas, Putnam, St. Johns, Volusia, and Wakulla.
(Gainesville, Jacksonville, Daytona, Brevard, Ft Lauderdale, Tampa, St. Petersburg and Tallahassee)

The Startup Quest program combines technology from the university system, successful mentors who have already made millions of dollars by selling or going public, and teams formed of professional trainees in STEM, marketing, finance, operations. Each team competes to create the best business plan and startup pitch, as judged by a panel of investor judges. The first Startup Quest was formed though partnerships and collaboration between FloridaWorks, the University of Florida Office of Technology Licensing, the Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce, 14 entrepreneurs and 12 investors.


January 11, 2012 


$5 million Healthcare and Biomanufacturing training Grant awarded to floridaworks 

WHAT: Healthcare and Biomanufacturing Occupations Training (HBOT) Program

WHEN: January 11, 2012


 FloridaWorks One Stop Career Center
4800 SW 13th Street
Gainesville, FL 32608

WHO: Angela Pate, Executive Director, FloridaWorks

FloridaWorks is partnering with local businesses to provide on-the-job-training (OJT) opportunities through a new Healthcare and Biomanufacturing Occupations Training Program (HBOT). This program is made possible through a competitive grant, recently awarded to FloridaWorks, from the United States Department of Labor for approximately $5 million, which can be implemented over the next 4 years. Funding for this program comes from H1B visa fees collected from employers hiring foreign workers. HBOT encourages employers to hire and train the talent in our region for the employer’s specific needs. Employers are required to hire and train the unemployed adults and retain them in employment after the HBOT funded OJT period ends.  It is anticipated that this program will provide over 200 unemployed people in our region with new employment opportunities.

The HBOT program is specifically designed to assist the healthcare and biomanufacturing companies in Alachua and Bradford counties, by reimbursing them with up to 90% (depending on company size) salaries to train local workers on-the-job. FloridaWorks will accept applications from employers to hire workers under this program. Quarterly review and approvals of applications will be done by a committee comprised of FloridaWorks Board members and community partners. Information and applications can be found on the FloridaWorks website at the end of January.

FloridaWorks, the Alachua Bradford Regional Workforce Board, is a workforce investment board comprised of 37 local community leader board members. FloridaWorks and the Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce were jointly recognized by the US Chamber of Commerce Institute for Competitive Workforce as the 2009 National Region of Excellence for their Targeted Economic Achievement Machine (TEAM) collaboration in workforce and economic development.