COCC launches Center for Business, Industry, and Professional Development

Shaun H. Ruff


BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) — Central Oregon Community College announced Monday the establishment of a new regional workforce resource, the Center for Business, Industry, and Professional Development.

Organized as a robust toolkit to support economic development, the new center will offer diverse skill-building courses, entrepreneurial assistance, licensing and certifications, customized trainings, COCC’s Leadership Lab and many other specialized employment and employer services, according to the school’s announcement, which continues in full below.

The Center for Business, Industry, and Professional Development, with offices based at COCC’s Chandler Lab in Bend (1027 NW Trenton Avenue), merges the college’s Small Business Development Center with other noncredit, industry-specific resources and professional instruction to provide an integrated educational focus.

Visit to explore the full range of services and course offerings.

“In addition to diverse, ongoing professional trainings in sectors like business and health care, the center’s services will include customizable, virtual skill-building in areas such as project management, computer software and business communication to best suit specific workplace needs,” said Ken Betschart, director of the Center for Business, Industry, and Professional Development.

The SBDC, a longstanding component of COCC that provides business tools, guidance and free consultations, will continue to operate its management trainings and classes as a distinct program under the framework of the new department.

“COCC is proud of our history as an essential resource for regional business owners and their employees, public sector organizations and emerging leaders,” said COCC President Dr. Laurie Chesley. “We’re intentionally expanding our workforce development programming, and by bringing these efforts together under one cohesive department, we can better serve our partners and the long-term economic development of Central Oregon.”

“COCC’s small business management program was hugely impactful for me as an owner,” said Michelle Alvarado, owner and director of Wahoo Films in Bend. “The program taught me how to work smarter, not harder. I’ve also had an employee take one of the college’s professional development courses. I have utilized so many of COCC’s important resources for local businesses, and I encourage others to do the same.”

For more information, contact Ken Betschart, director of the Center for Business, Industry, and Professional Development, at 541-383-7275 or [email protected].


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