University of South Florida

Muma College of Business

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image of the Bellini Center for Talent Development

Riley Education Foundation donates $500,000 to USF’s Bellini Center for Talent Development

TAMPA – The Riley Education Foundation is making a $500,000 gift to the University of South Florida’s Bellini Center for Talent Development to boost the center’s operational software. The generous gift is a long-term commitment to help ensure business students have a technological edge and innovative approach to landing coveted internships and preparing for job placement.

The center is part of the Muma College of Business and opened in March 2022 thanks to a $10.6 million gift from Arnold F. “Arnie” and Lauren Bellini. It features an innovative career development program where business students go through a credentialing program to prepare them for networking, interviewing, and other soft skills future employers are seeking.

The center was created with a strong partnership component with local business leaders.

“We are so thankful to the Riley Education Foundation and the Riley family. Through this gift, we will be able to invest in cutting-edge training technology to prepare our students to be ‘workplace ready’,” said GJ de Vreede, interim dean at the Muma College of Business. “This gift also reaffirms our commitment to engaging with local business leaders and giving them a stake in supporting student success.”

Scott Riley, founder of the Riley Education Foundation, said the foundation believes in the Bellini Center for Talent Development’s focus on helping business students prepare for the workforce through internships.

“Internships are one of the most valuable opportunities resulting from the educational system,” said Scott Riley, who also serves on the Executive Advisory Council of the Muma College of Business. “In the companies in which I have been involved, some of the most successful employee acquisitions came through internships.”

“An internship allows both the employer and the employee to decide if they are a good fit for each other with regard to future employment. That's why we believe so strongly in the Bellini center -- because it is all centered around internships,” he said.

image of riley family

Brian Riley, president of the family’s nonprofit foundation, echoed his father’s sentiments, adding that the foundation’s mission is to support educational initiatives within the community.  

“The Riley Education Foundation is excited to be involved with the USF Muma College of Business and the Bellini Center for Talent Development and we look forward to our partnership with them to further the opportunities provided to students,” he said.

Cyndy Sanberg, executive director of the Bellini Center for Talent Development, said the gift will have an immediate impact on business students.

"At the Bellini Center for Talent Development, we strive to create new career opportunities for USF business students through innovative tools and programing. A gift such as this makes our vision a reality,” Sanberg said.

The Bellini Center for Talent Development focuses on teaching professional development and career readiness skills exclusively to USF Muma College of Business undergraduate students. These skills are vital in preparing students for successful internships and ultimately, job placement after graduation, she said.

“We are most grateful for this gift from the Riley Education Foundation and are thankful they share in our vision.  These funds will directly support our Bellini Badging Program and the software platforms needed to drive the launch of the program and overall student success,” Sanberg said.

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