More than 95% of the world’s consumers live outside of the United States. Over 11 million Americans are in jobs supported by exports. Small Businesses and Entrepreneurs provide more than half of all U.S. jobs. These statistics make it evident that trade and entrepreneurship play a critical role in the growth of our economy. As a way to help bring that point across to local educators, the San Diego CITD, Deputy Sector Navigator (DSN) for Global Trade & Logistics – San Diego and Imperial Region, and Grossmont College’s High School/CTE Partnership Program organized a tour of the Port of San Diego and a workshop to discuss how aspects of global trade and entrepreneurship can be taught to their students.

The event, attended by more than 24 participants, including 18 high school social science and business teachers from around the county, was held at Humphreys Half Moon Inn and Suites and began with welcome remarks by Jewyl Clarke, a teacher at Eastlake High School, who helped frame the goals for the day and get the educators thinking about ways to integrate trade and entrepreneurship into their current curriculum.  This was followed by an overview of the San Diego CITD, the role of the DSN as a workforce system integrator, and the CITD’s Youth Entrepreneurship Program (YEP) by Victor Castillo, San Diego CITD Director/DSN for Global Trade and Logistics, and Gabriel Reyes, YEP Coordinator. Before the event participants boarded a bus to tour the Port of San Diego’s marine terminals, Marguerite Elicone, Marketing and Public Relations Representative with thePort of San Diego, provided an overview of the Port’s maritime business, which generates more than $7.6 billion in economic impact to the San Diego region, including 42,000 jobs.

The first stop on the tour was the 10th Avenue marine terminal where the Port’s Manager of Maritime Trade, Miguel Reyes, boarded the bus and provided an overview of the terminal’s operations, including the types and quantities of cargo that flow through the terminal each year. The next stop was the National City terminal, which is operated by Pasha Automotive Services and is the primary port of entry for one out of every eight cars imported into the United States. The tour of these facilities provided the teachers an opportunity to see trade-related activity first hand and gain a better understanding of the global marketplace.

After the tour, participants were shuttled back to Humphreys, where the event concluded with a presentation on Junior Achievement’s Company Program and a discussion on best practices for teaching students global trade and entrepreneurship concepts. Some of the recommendations that came out of this discussion included developing case studies, field trips, incorporating internships, and providing immersive learning experiences, such as student run businesses.

The CITD/DSN-GTL and Grossmont’s High School/CTE Partnership Program will take these recommendations and work with the Port of San Diego and local companies and organizations involved in trade to develop curriculum modules and other learning opportunties for high school students to increase awarness of a careers in this industry.

See additional photos from the event here.