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Employee Development

The Point

Winter 2012

Center for Management Excellence

On the job with Rex Gatto (left) and Jeff Cermak.

Professionals and employees throughout Western Pennsylvania will have the opportunity to build their skills for success through a variety of learning opportunities presented by the newly established Center for Management Excellence (CME) at Point Park University.

"Our vision is to be Pittsburgh's premier provider of management-level business education," says Point Park University President Paul Hennigan, Ed.D. "With our presence in the heart of Downtown Pittsburgh, we believe that the new Center for Management Excellence will serve the University's mission, and our region's business community, extremely well."

By providing diverse education opportunities ranging from workshops, webinars, coaching and leadership assessment programs, "I believe that the Center is truly going to be a gateway between the University and the business community," says Karen McIntyre, Ph.D., senior vice president for academic and student affairs and dean of faculty.

The training opportunities provided through the Center can be custom designed to meet the needs of a particular business, including certificate programs, and may eventually provide a foundation for obtaining credit toward a degree, says McIntyre. The Center will tap into the expertise of faculty throughout Point Park's four schools, including the School of Business.

"The Center supports our sense of what it means to be a dynamic urban university by responding to the needs of the business community and making businesses familiar with the resources available at Point Park," according to McIntyre.

Customized Training

"The goal of the Center for Management Excellence is to support participant development and career plans in a customized approach of personal success," according to Rex P. Gatto, Ph.D., executive director of the Center.

Many employee development programs address leadership training at the executive level, he says, but the CME will serve employees at all stages of career development - from entry level to executive. "Our primary goal is to help people focus on their careers and give them the skill sets that will enable them to be successful," says Gatto.

The founder and president of Gatto Associates, LLC, he built a consulting practice "dedicated to helping people in the workplace to enhance productivity through a better understanding of themselves," Gatto explains. As a behavioral scientist and counselor, he has helped people at all levels of their careers, through training programs, one-on-one and group counseling.

As a consultant and lecturer, Gatto has worked with business people throughout the United States and Canada. He has presented for many professional organizations and received an outstanding speaker citation from the American Society of Training and Development. As a "change interventionist," he has written and presented for business teams and corporations with the aim of helping people to achieve an enriched and productive work life.

Gatto holds an undergraduate and master's degree in education from Duquesne University, a master's degree in counseling psychology from Norwich University, a Ph.D. from the University of Pittsburgh, and Pennsylvania certifications as an educator and supervisor of curriculum and instruction.

He is a member of the board of the Pittsburgh Human Resources Association (PHRA).

The CME also plans to sponsor a speaker series and will leverage YouTube and social media channels to reach out to area employees and employers, according to Jeff Cermak, manager of operations for the new Center.

Range of Resources

Both Gatto and Cermak say they are excited by the opportunity to build an outstanding employee development center in the heart of Downtown. "Through the Center for Management Excellence at Point Park, the University not only serves the region's professionals by providing excellent business education but also offers the full range of resources available through all of its four schools and many departments, including psychology, education, journalism and much more," says Gatto.

"This is a very exciting opportunity to innovate and to educate employees at all levels, from graduating students at the start of their careers to those in the executive suite."

Text by Cheryl Valyo

Photo by Martha Rial

The Point is a magazine for alumni and friends of Point Park University.