Bastrop EDC wins international economic development award

The Bastrop Economic Development Corporation was awarded a 2017 Silver Excellence in Economic Development Award last week at the International Economic Development Council in Canada for its Bastrop Youth Career Day program.

The youth career program connects students at Bastrop and Cedar Creek high schools as well as at Colorado River Collegiate Academy with potential future employers and provides them the opportunity to hear from local businesses and public safety professionals in panels and information booths. The half-day event also taught students the dos and don’ts of interviewing for a job.

The BEDC won the award in the category of Human Capital for a city with a population of less than 25,000, and was announced at an awards ceremony Sept. 19 during the IEDC annual conference held in Toronto, Ontario.

The awards recognize the world’s best economic development programs and partnerships, and spotlights organizations and individuals that create positive change in urban, suburban and rural communities, according to the international council.

“We are truly honored to receive this international award recognizing the creativity and hard work of our staff and community partners,” Bastrop EDC Executive Director Shawn Kirkpatrick said. “It underscores the importance of connecting our future graduates with employers, and our schools to industry and workforce needs in a collaborative way.”

The BEDC has included in its mission the bridging of gaps between education and sustainable employment through workforce development. Bastrop Youth Career Day is one of its key community initiatives to advance high school graduates’ workforce readiness while enhancing economic development, the corporation said. The annual event for juniors and seniors couples formal presentations by business professionals with a career fair featuring…

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