Phil Whatley has always known that the Alys Stephens Center places a priority on meeting the university’s 10 percent goal of spending supply dollars with minority- and women-owned businesses.

Now, thanks to a recent internal training seminar, Whatley knows of additional available resources that will enable the ASC to spend more with minority- and women-owned businesses.

The purpose of the seminar, sponsored by the Office of Minority Business Affairs, was to help connect buyers with suppliers and assist departments who may sometimes experience challenges in achieving the university’s annual targeted goal of 10 percent spending.

Whatley says he was excited to find out about the assets available from the Office of Minority Business Affairs, especially everything available on the group’s Web site.

“I didn’t realize there’s a Web site available and that on that Web site are vendors for whatever you need — carpentry, welding, whatever,” Whatley says. “I didn’t know there was a place like that on campus I could go to get that information.

“Now, we can really begin to look for even more women- and minority-owned businesses.”

The Procurement office works closely with the Minority Business Affairs office to help departments achieve the 10 percent spending goal. Rosalind Young, Buyer of the Year in the Procurement office for four years in a row, says the seminar enabled the Minority Business Affairs office to inform all of the departments on campus what it can do to help.

“Some departments didn’t know we have a minority business affairs office,” Young says. “The seminar allowed those that attended a chance to express how they think the Minority Business Affairs office can be better utilized on campus.”

Young says the Web site really impressed those in attendance because it enables visitors to find useful tools to help them reach their goals. “The Web site is very user-friendly and full of information,” Young says. “Having one place to go to find a list of minority- and women-owned vendors that we have used here on campus is a big plus.”  

For more information on the UAB Office of Minority Affairs, visit its Web site or contact Scottie McClaney at 934-2835.