Upcoming Merced customer service academy workshops

Merced College is once again working with the Greater Merced Chamber of Commerce to offer professional development training through its Customer Service Academy. The workshops will be held at the college’s Business Resource Center at 630 W. 19th St. in downtown Merced.

The center features comfortable training rooms with state-of-the-art technology. Workshops will run from 8 a.m. to noon and will repeat from 1 to 5 p.m. the last two Thursdays of each month. Topics include customer service, communication, attitude, team building, conflict management, stress management, time management, values and ethics, decision making and problem solving and managing change, according to a Merced College news release.

The first workshop is “Communication in the Workplace.” Topics will include how to be a better communicator and better listener on a team. Nonverbal communication will be covered as well as barriers to good communication. The workshop will be held Jan. 23 and 30. The cost is $23; participants earn a half-unit of college credit.

Merced College has offered its Customer Service Academy for 14 years with hundreds of employees from throughout the county participating, the release said.

“The feedback we continue to receive from participants is extremely positive,” said business and management professor Jonae Pistoresi. “They feel that the workshops equip them with skills to better interact with their co-workers and to be able to deliver better internal and external customer service.”

The program has won multiple awards, including a national award as an economic development best practice. More than 70 California community colleges offer the Customer Service Academy to businesses and organizations throughout the state, training thousands of employees each year.

Statewide participants include the San Diego Chargers, San Diego Zoo and Wild Animal Park, Beringer Wine Group, Wyn-River Casino, Frances Ford Coppola Presents, Hilton Hotels and Westfield Malls.

To register, or for more information, call the Merced College Workplace Learning Resource Center at (209) 386-6733 or visit