CREATE LIFT (Celebrating REtail, Accommodations, Tourism and Entertainment by Leading Innovation through WorkForce Training) is a workforce development certification focused on skills and information
for those working in retail, entertainment, accommodations, and/or tourism sectors.
These skills were identified as part of the CREATE BRIDGES (Celebrating REtail, Accommodations,
Tourism, and Entertainment by Building Rural Innovations and Developing Growth Economies) economic development program in Fulton, Howard, Izard, Little River, Sharp,
and Sevier counties. Business owners, managers, and employees were interviewed and
surveyed about current skills and desired skills for these four sectors. Once these
skills were identified, the CREATE BRIDGES team worked with area educational institutions and workforce development programs
to create these five modules.
The CREATE LIFT certificate takes less than 10 hours to complete. Once completed, participants will
receive a certificate that lists the skills and information that has been covered.
CREATE LIFT is currently available in English and will soon be available in Spanish.
To sign up, follow this link, create a login on UADA's Courses page, and search for
Sign Up Here for CREATE LIFT
The first of five modules, ESSENTIAL SKILLS, walks you through the difference between hard and soft skills, ethics in the workplace,
and how to bring together a team.
Module 1 requires about 2 hours to complete.
The four videos in this module are presented in English by Kendra Smith, Career Development
Specialist with Ozarka College.
The purpose of the CUSTOMER SERVICE module is to share how to best provide WOW Customer
Service, no matter the situation.
Module 2 requires about 1 hour and 21 minutes to complete.
This module is presented by Barbara Lacefield, Chair of Division of Professional Studies
at Cossatot Community College of the University of Arkansas.
The purpose of the HOSPITALITY module is to share how to best provide the best service
in hospitality roles, whether you are working with food directly or greeting guests.
Module 3 requires about 1 hour and 40 minutes to complete.
This module is presented in English by Dr. Amy Queret-Mitchell, Culinary Program Director
and Lead Faculty member at Ozarka College.
The purpose of the TECHNOLOGY AND MARKETING module is to share ways to take initiative
and engage customers through social media, photography, and branding.
Module 4 requires about 2 hours and 15 minutes to complete.
This module is presented by subject matter experts in southwest Arkansas. Each presentation
will also include a short bio of the presenter, along with ways to connect with their
The purpose of the TOURISM module is to demonstrate the uniqueness of your area and
help you provide visitors with helpful information to navigate around the area.
Module 5 requires about 30 minutes to complete.
Learn More about the Module Instructors:
Kendra Smith has served as Perkins Program Director at Ozarka College since July 1,
2020, and in various positions within the Perkins and Career Pathways Departments at Ozarka since 2010. Perkins is a federal grant program supporting Career and Technical
Education programs and students. Other than grant coordination, Smith’s duties include
academic and career advising activities such as: career exploration, student retention
efforts, and conducting career readiness workshops.
Kendra earned a Bachelors in Journalism with honors from Arkansas State University
in 1992, and has since earned a Master Advisor certificate from Missouri State University
and completed National Career Development Facilitator training. Smith’s greatest professional
joy is “seeing a brand new student transform through education and experience into
a confident, accomplished professional.”
Barbara Lacefield serves as the Division Chair for Professional Studies at UA Cossatot
with campuses in De Queen, Nashville, Ashdown and Lockesburg Arkansas. Programs within
the Division of Professional Studies include Agriculture, Business, Criminal Justice,
Communications and Digital Media and Marketing. Barbara teaches Economics and Management
courses for UA Cossatot and Texas A & M University Texarkana. She has worked for
UA Cossatot for 28 years. Many of those years were spent in Workforce Development
where she developed her love for working with business & industry to provide training
and development programs.
She holds a Bachelor of Applied Arts & Sciences degree in Business Administration
and a Master’s degree in Adult Education with a focus in Management. She has served
on numerous local, regional and state boards including the local Chamber of Commerce,
Regional and State Workforce Investment Boards and the Board of Examiners for the
Arkansas Institute for Performance Excellence.
She also owns two businesses. She is a founding partner of Southwest Arkansas Research
Associates and she is the owner of Gaga’s Greenhouse, LLC in De Queen.
She is married and has two grown children along with five grandchildren, which she
considers to be her greatest accomplishment. In her free time, she enjoys being outdoors
in her garden, outdoor activities, and enjoying time with her family, friends and
her dog, Gus.
621 Crosstrails Road,De Queen, AR 71832
Southwest Arkansas Research Associates
Southwest Arkansas Research Associates provides economic research and analysis for
the banking industry and other businesses and industries and publishes the Main Street Market Analysis twice a year.
Owners: Ashley Dougherty & Barbara Lacefield
Address: 621 Crosstrails Road, De Queen, AR 71832
Phones: Ashley Dougherty: 903-824-4614; Barbara Lacefield: 870-784-2862
Dr. Amy Lynn Querét-Mitchell, Ph.D., CCE, CDM
Director of Programs in Culinary Arts at Ozarka College.
Amy Lynn began her teaching career in culinary arts in 1999 for a community college
in Illinois where she promoted to a Director of Culinary Arts. In 2005, She took a
new position at Vincennes University (VU) in Indiana where she developed and implemented
several programs, which included the Culinary Academy on the Jasper campus, Project
Excel, a dual credit program, and a certificate program for Vincennes University’s
main campus. At this time, while on the community development committee in Lawrence
County Illinois, she was instrumental in the planning, development and implementation
of the VOTECH that opened. Taking on the Director of Admissions, she helped recruit,
advise and enroll students into the program.
In 2010 after completing her BGS with a minor in Nutrition from USI in Dec. 2009,
Amy Lynn moved to Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where she enrolled in Louisiana State University. She
completed her Master’s Degree in Human Resource Education and Workforce Development in
2012 and enrolled in the Doctoral Program. On May 11, 2018, Amy Lynn graduated with
a Doctoral degree. Her dissertation topic discussed the impact that education has
on the attitudes and beliefs about whole grain foods of high school students.
Which brings us to where she is today. Taking the Director of Programs at Ozarka College.
Along with teaching hospitality and culinary courses, she manages the Ozarka Café,
and oversees the recruiting, advising and retention of students within the program
as well as provide leadership to the full-time and adjunct instructors in the program.
Marketing & Technology (Branding Your Business)
Marketing & Technology (Marking Facebook Work for Your Business and Smart Phone Photography for your Business)
Keisha Pittman McKinney is a community advocate, blogger, website developer, small business consultant, social media influencer, and digital
media diva. Working on a college campus in the early 2000s poised her for unique placement
as social media platforms began rolling out. In the early days those were professionally
used for college recruiting that transitioned into alumni and donor engagement. Following
12 years on a college campus, she transitioned into the national nonprofit scene and
used those same skills for volunteer recruitment, donor engagement, and fundraising
campaigns. At the American Cancer Society, she was part of the initial Fundraising
Task Force, working through creative online solutions and social media platform integration.
In more recent years she led a digital team at a large church in Northwest Arkansas
(10k + membership) and grew the followership 400 percent over four years and engagement
by 200 percent.
In 2018 she launched McKinney Media Solutions, a business that partners with clients for website solutions, content strategy, social
media consulting and website maintenance support. Her volunteer work continues with
the American Cancer Society. As a 13-year cancer survivor, it’s rewarding to have
the opportunity to use her professional skill set with the organization that saved
her life. She currently serves on the Nationwide Volunteer Community Development Team
as the Digital Media Strategy Lead and is a member of the CREATE Bridges 3C’s Regional
Spanish Language Instructor and Intrepreter
Erika Buenrrostro was born in Mexico City, Mexico and has resided in De Queen Arkansas
since 1989. Working for UA Cossatot in De Queen Arkansas as a college recruiter and
Coordinator of the Center for Student Success for the past 6 years. She received her
Associates of Arts degree in 2006 at UA Cossatot, Bachelor’s degree in Human Resources
Development in 2008 and Masters of Education from U of A Fayetteville in 2016. She
has also completed 18 Graduate level credits towards a second Masters in Romance Language
from the University of New Orleans allowing her to also serve as adjunct while teaching
Spanish for UA Cossatot.
Erika is an exceptional, highly motivated, dedicated person who carries the attitude
and compassion for the community she serves. Because Erika has developed a strong
sense of devotion for Higher Ed, community organization and change she helps lead
several Latino initiatives which have helped UA Cossatot reach its diverse population.
In addition to her service and education Erika is a board member for CADC and sits
on various committees around her community. Erika is a prime example of “If you can
believe it, you can achieve it”. In her spare time she loves to spend time with her
kids, her parents, friends and enjoys salsa dancing with her husband.