Return to Headlines

Global Logistics Program at Cooper River CAS opens doors to a multitude of careers

Cooper River CAS LogisticsThe Cooper River Center for Advanced Studies (CRCAS) is unique because it offers programs that traditionally were not available in high schools. The CRCAS is a college and career training center that offers programs that set students on a promising path.

One example is the Global Logistics and Supply Chain Management course taught by Mike Phelan.

Senior Asia Williams didn’t have a full comprehension of what logistics was when she first signed up for the class. She wasn’t sure if it would benefit her future, but she quickly learned otherwise.

Williams and her classmates learned about retail distribution from the actual purchase to the actual delivery.

“I was interested in learning about supply chain management, which affects all industries,” said Williams.

CRCAS uses a Project-Based Learning (PBL) instructional curriculum designed by the Southern Regional Education Board (SREB). Through PBL, students engage in design, problem-solving, decision-making, or investigative activities that give them the opportunity to direct their own learning and result in a product or presentation. 

The program is taught in partnership with local industry leaders such as Navy Yard Charleston, Main Ocean, Preferred Home Services, Southeastern Freight Lines, the Maritime Association of South Carolina, South Carolina State Ports Authority, Happeg Lloyd, and SC Competes. These business partners also make up the Business Advisory Committee, which meets formally twice a year to review curriculum, instructor pacing guides, training equipment, provide internship opportunities for students, and to provide guidance to the instructor and administration on current changes in the industry.

These partners give lectures, offer in-person and virtual tours of their facilities and operations, and help grade and provide feedback on presentations from the students.

“They can also see the impact they are having on the students,” said Phelan.

Trekewan Mitchell said he took the class because he knows the world revolves around logistics.

“My family is in the trucking industry so I have some knowledge of logistics,” said Mitchell. “There are everyday things that we take for granted that involve in-depth logistics, such as Amazon.”

Joseph Campbell, Warehouse and Logistics Manager for Preferred Home Services explained that Charleston is one of the biggest cities that operate highly on supply chain and logistics procedures.

“The more students know how much Logistics and Supply Chain affect the flow of business, the more I think they may become more interested in that field,” explained Campbell.

“There is a growing demand to learn more about logistics and the exciting jobs and careers that are out there,” said Phelan.

Phelan added that the business partners provide interested students in internships, which can will open doors to potential careers for them

“These companies are not wasting manpower training new employees,” said Phelan. “They are training interns who will eventually return as a full-time employee.”

“This will help our company have another outlet to choose from for future candidates,” Campbell explained. ”I am a warehouse and logistics manager at

Preferred Home Services and my company handles HVAC, plumbing, and electrical for residential and commercial businesses.

Cooper River CASStudents in the class were recently required to research and present a sales pitch to potential companies seeking a distribution center.

“By doing this research, I learned that logistics is not just warehousing items, but getting those items into the system, directing them to their destination and the actual delivery,” said Williams. “There is so much to it.”

Williams is excelling at Cooper River. She is a program completer in Health Science, and is already employable in the health field. Through the Global Logistics and Supply Chain Management Program, she is also certified in OSHA’s 10-hour requirement and certified to operate a forklift.

Principal Vanessa Brown has set high expectations and standards for students completing not only the Global Logistics Program at the Cooper River CAS, but all programs. First, students are required to complete the class with an OSHA 10-Hour certificate within the first nine weeks of the program. Secondly, students are required to acquire an industry-level certification during their second nine weeks so they become certified to operate a forklift using a classroom simulator. As students progress through the program, they are encouraged to continue to earn industry certifications at each level to prepare them for an external internship or apprenticeship experience.

“It’s eye-opening for these students because they can learn about what is out there as far as there career is concerned,” said Phelan. “Career exploration is like a test run to see if they may like it, or if they are even cut out for it.”

“People don’t realize that logistics are in every industry,” said Phelan. “It does take a mathematical, analytical mind, but there is something for almost anyone. It’s recession-proof and important in any career field.”

Mitchell said he learned a lot more than he thought he would in the course and enjoyed the hands-on aspect of it.

“From 3D printing to wood carving to virtual field trips, it was all very interesting,” said Mitchell. “It’s very important to know about logistics. It runs the world.”

For more information, contact Principal Brown at (843) 856-6790.