Seminars examine port's role in a community

LONG BEACH - The Center for International Trade and Transportation (CITT) at Cal State Long Beach is offering a three-part seminar series on "Working and Living in a Port City," which is designed to provide participants with a broader perspective of the role of a port within a community and the impact of international trade on local communities and the nation.The seminar series consists of three parts - Ports: Local Actors and Global Trade; Ports: Gateway to International Trade; and Careers: The Key to Success is an Educated and Skilled Workforce. The first course will be offered on Jan. 12, with the other two following on Jan. 18 and Jan. 19, respectively. All courses will be held from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. in the CITT offices at 1000 Studebaker Road in Long Beach. "The Ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles are gateways to a global marketplace," explained Marianne Venieris, CITT executive director who developed the seminar series. "Growth of international trade, the availability of logistics and trade-related jobs, and public policies related to port operations directly affect our communities, businesses and our regional and national economies." Venieris recommends the series for anyone interested in learning about the ports, maritime operations and international trade and for elected officials, government agencies, faculty and individuals interested in working in the trade and transportation industry. She also said the courses would be useful to public officials and their staff as well as members of community groups and neighborhood associations. "Attendees will learn about port operations and the role of the ports within the city and in international trade," she pointed out. "You will also learn about the complexities of key issues affecting the industry and the potential implications for surrounding communities. We also demonstrate the growing need for a skilled workforce pool for this dynamic industry." The first two courses will be taught by Thomas O'Brien, CITT's director of research and lead instructor for the Global Logistics Specialist (GLS) Professional Designation Program. Ports: Local Actors and Global Trade will provide an overview of the key decision-makers involved in ports and their operations. There will be a brief history of the development of port cities and international trade and then a look at the role of federal, state and local governments with regard to port development and their influence on port operations as well as the roles played by various functions involved in the day-to-day work at the docks. This includes the port authority as well as trucking, longshore labor and terminal operators. There also will be a discussion on the relationship between the ports and their surrounding communities. Finally, the course will look at the unique nature of Southern California, home to the largest port complex in the nation and fifth largest in the world. Ports: Gateway to International Trade will take a look at how freight enters the port complex, and the processes involved before the goods leave the terminal gates on the way to its point of consumption. There will be an overview of logistics, the supply chain and the various components and functions involved in getting goods from origin to the final customer. The course also looks at the role that information technology has played in changing the way international trade occurs. Finally, Careers: The Key to Success is an Educated and Skilled Workforce will explore career opportunities in and related to trade and transportation. It will be beneficial to those new to the industry, those who specialize in a specific area or support function, those who want to broaden their range of skills, or those who want to determine how they may bring value to an organization. This class will help show what it takes to start and/or build a successful career in the trade and transportation field. The instructors for this course will be Susan Shey Dvonch and Joan Rollins. Those interested may register for individual seminars at $75 each or attend all three seminars for $175. Customized and on-site training is available. For additional information, visit the website at; call 562/985-2872 or e-mail

********** Published: December 30, 2010 - Volume 9 - Issue 37