Preparations are under way for the second annual Minority and Small Business Expo on Nov. 19.
The event, which drew more than 300 buyers and sellers last year, will be held from 8 a.m.–2 p.m. in the Grand Hall on the fifth floor of the Tate Student Center.
Organized by the Procurement Office in conjunction with the Office of Institutional Diversity, the expo is an opportunity for campus department buyers to connect with small and minority-owned service and product suppliers, many of whom are from the local and surrounding areas.
“As I said last year, this is really one-stop shopping,” said Tim Burgess, senior vice president for finance and administration. “Departmental buyers can make valuable contacts under one roof, without ever having to travel off campus. It’s an ideal opportunity to expand your knowledge of potential vendors and perhaps lead to cost savings and improved quality in the future.”
Last year, more than 200 vendors met with representatives from nearly 100 campus units and community agencies. In the expo format, participating campus units set up their own booths, and then the vendors, who have been advised of the types of goods and services used by each unit, visit the relevant booths to pitch their products and services.
“We definitely had a good experience last year and have already signed up to participate again this year,” said Brooke Rooks, administrative financial director at the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication. “It was so easy for us to do. We just brought our Grady banner and a few things to give out—like information on the college and our degree programs, some pens and our business cards—and waited for vendors to come and talk with us. At the end of the day, we had connected with about 30 potential new suppliers.”
In addition to networking opportunities, the Procurement Office will offer two sessions on purchasing how-tos for vendors.
There is no charge to participate in the expo, but departmental representatives must be registered to set up booths.
Register by sending an e-mail to email@example.com. Contact Jessica Beri or Sarah Williamson at (706) 542-2361 with any questions.