Berkeley Summer Programs Can Be Serious Business

This summer, the ever-expanding Berkeley Summer Programs is diversifying its own portfolio by offering a series of seminars geared toward business-savvy students seeking insider information from some of Tampa Bay’s top business minds and entrepreneurs. This all-star list of business leaders reads like a who’s who of top executives whose insight is in high demand in any business circle.

Due to the popularity of its Fundamentals of Business seminar last summer, Berkeley has added three additional business seminars to its summer catalogue.  These week-long seminars will offer high school students intensive and dynamic exposure to a broad array of business topics taught by Tampa industry leaders, such as entrepreneurship, managerial strategies, raising capital, responsible money management, and understanding financial statements.  

“With so many kids going onto to college and majoring in business, or later in life pursuing an entrepreneurial endeavor, the demand is very high among our high school community for classes that will give kids a leg up in college and offer valuable instruction on matters of business and finance,” says Carlo DiNota, director of Berkeley Summer Programs. “The fact that so many business leaders are volunteering their precious time to teach these classes also underscores that they feel such offerings are needed at an early age.”  

Starting June 8-12, Berkeley will offer The Fundamentals of Business for graduating seniors and rising seniors interested in pursuing a career in business. This session will provide an intensive and dynamic exploration of basic business fundamentals with an emphasis on real-world application of academic concepts and business analytics to an actual publicly traded corporation. At the completion of the seminar, students will have a basic understanding of financial statements, corporate finance and capital markets, business valuation methods, and managerial and strategic concepts. The seminar will be taught by Paul Gabos who was most recently Chief Financial Officer of Lincare Holdings Inc., a NASDAQ-listed health care company with $2 billion in annual sales. He retired in December 2012, following the acquisition of Lincare by The Linde Group AG for $4.7 billion.

On June 15-19, the Berkeley Business Leaders Symposium will showcase some of the most successful and respected business leaders in Tampa who will impart valuable advice and share their wisdom and experiences with rising seniors and graduating seniors. Conceived by Bob Gries of Gries Investment Funds, this personable and dynamic seminar format will feature two speakers a day. At the end of this symposium, students will have engaged with 10 industry leaders on a broad range of topics, such as entrepreneurship and leadership.  

Starting June 22-26, Berkeley will offer the Fundamentals of Financial Literacy to rising sophomores through graduating seniors. The class will be taught by Michael Cozene and Julio Castro, founding partners of Evercore Wealth Management’s Southeastern U.S. office in Tampa, and formerly the managing directors at GenSpring Family Offices, one of the largest multi-family offices in the U.S. During their tenure, they were instrumental in developing GenSpring into a national practice serving at the peak 700 of the nation’s wealthiest families with $22 billion in assets under advisement. This class will focus upon personal money management (basics of banking, budgeting, and managing your finances), investing (understanding terms and nomenclature, the stock market, portfolios, income taxes, etc.), and asset protection (types of insurance, estate planning, identity theft, and reputation management).  With so many young adults graduating from college deep in debt and not knowing how to live within their means, it is absolutely essential that they get into the habit of responsible money management sooner rather than later.

How exactly do you go from a widget to a potential billion dollar market cap?  The Fundamentals of Entrepreneurship, which will run from June 22-June 26 for rising juniors through graduating seniors, will detail the mechanics of exactly how companies like Amazon, Google and Starbucks grew from an idea, to funding, to building, and to managing its growth and success. The seminar will discuss intellectual property, patentability and clearance; how to create a budget; the financial tools of notes and convertible debt; equity (common and preferred stock); and also touch upon capital markets, including derivatives. In short, the course will teach students how to create tangible value from something that originates between their ears. The course will be taught by Matt Miller who has been highly successful in capitalizing on business opportunities in the life science industry, from medical devices and disposables orthopedics, cardiovascular, thoracic and neurosurgical uses to early-stage pharmaceuticals. He has licensed technology from the NIH, Harvard, Massachusetts General Hospital, Stanford, John Hopkins, Emory, Georgia Tech, and the University of South Florida. He has also sat on the Business Advisory Counsel at John Hopkins University. He has individually founded three publicly held companies that have a combined market capitalization of over $7 billion.

All Berkeley summer offerings are open to the public, and DiNota expects many non-Berkeley students will sign up for these classes, as well.  “We constantly read about young entrepreneurs doing incredible things,” says DiNota. “And schools need to meet the needs of today’s kids, especially their intense curiosity with innovation and starting a company. It’s understandable that parents would want to ensure that their children have a basic literacy in matters of business and finance, and if Berkeley Summer Programs can be the venue whereby kids can get their first real exposure to concepts like entrepreneurship, that would be wonderful.”  

Registration for these classes is at
Founded in 1960, Berkeley is an independent, Episcopal, college-preparatory day school located in Tampa, FL, for boys and girls in grades Pre-Kindergarten through 12. Approximately 1,400 students gather here from the greater Tampa Bay area to form ONE Berkeley.