Round Rock Chamber identifies top 2018 priorities including increasing skilled labor and connecting entrepreneurs

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The Round Rock Chamber plans to COAST in 2018, according to Chamber President and CEO Mike Odom, who spoke at the Tuesday Round Rock Chamber Power Luncheon. Odom explained the chamber’s priority-driven acronym, COAST, or continue operating around strategic thoughtfulness, which lays the groundwork for the chamber in 2018.

At the luncheon, Odom announced four priorities to guide economic generation in the city over the next year. The chamber is aiming to bring a total of eight projects to Round Rock in 2018. Odom said the chamber had this same goal in 2017, and has succeeded in bringing that number of projects to the city.

The chamber is also going to focus on creating opportunities for the skilled labor force through apprenticeships. Odom said the federal government has made available a number of funding opportunities available for such purposes, so the chamber is going to work to leverage these resources accordingly.

Finally, Odom said the chamber will focus on providing more opportunities for entrepreneurs. One way the chamber plans to do this is by looking into how to provide funding opportunities. Odom said the chamber is in talks with Texas State University to research what has worked nationally and how that can be applied to Round Rock entrepreneurs.

In addition, Odom said the chamber plans to create an entrepreneurship catalog to identify all of the entrepreneurs in the city. Once the chamber does this, Odom said it can identify solutions for these entrepreneurs’ problems and thereby better help them flourish.

Following these four main priorities, the chamber will also focus on bringing businesses from four main target sectors to Round Rock: bioscience, pharmacy and health care; innovative manufacturing; IT and computer; and support services.

In addition, the chamber plans to form partnerships with Round Rock ISD to encourage interest in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) in female students beyond fifth grade.

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Emily Donaldson
Emily Donaldson is a recent transplant to the Austin area from Houston, Texas, where she started with Community Impact Newspaper in May 2016. Donaldson started covering public education in Cy-Fair ISD, the third largest school district in the state of Texas, and then she transitioned into her role as the company's legislative reporter, providing statehouse coverage for all 22 editions. Currently, she reports on the city of Round Rock and Round Rock ISD for the Round Rock, Pflugerville and Hutto edition. Donaldson graduated from the University of Missouri with bachelor's degrees in magazine journalism and political science.
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