Bridge Academy – Special Episode

Southaven Chamber of Commerce

Southaven Business Beat
Southaven Business Beat
Bridge Academy - Special Episode

Host: Aaron Cozort

Guest: Debbie King, April Armstrong, Andrew Bartolotta

YouTube player


Join us on an insightful podcast interview featuring April Armstrong, Debbie King, and Andrew Bartolotta from the Community Foundation, as they delve into the impactful initiatives of the Southaven Chamber Foundation in Mississippi. This engaging conversation highlights the foundation’s unwavering commitment to education, showcasing its efforts in providing scholarships, small business grants, and educational programs for both residents and businesses in the region.

At the heart of their endeavors is the Bridge Academy, the foundation’s flagship program dedicated to offering comprehensive training and leadership development for individuals at all career levels. Developed in collaboration with local educators, the academy’s curriculum is carefully crafted to address the specific needs of businesses in the area. April Armstrong, a seasoned hospitality expert, leads the academy, offering courses that focus on customer service and leadership.

The Bridge Academy goes beyond traditional training by providing mentoring opportunities for students from DeSoto County schools, aiming to foster leadership and soft skills development. With a keen focus on addressing workplace challenges, the academy ensures a productive learning environment with limited seating exclusively available for Southaven residents or employees. Sponsorship or enrollment is subject to meeting specific criteria.

The program doesn’t stop there; the Bridge Academy actively empowers local youth through internship and apprenticeship opportunities, granting them valuable insights into business basics and exclusive access to city government and community relations. The initiative has garnered praise and support from the Southaven Chamber, community leaders, sponsors, and businesses alike.

In addition to the Bridge Academy, the Southaven Chamber of Commerce is launching a comprehensive program to further support business leaders and employees in their skill and ability development. This initiative will provide networking opportunities, leadership development, and exclusive access to insider information.

Individuals and organizations interested in getting involved can express their interest and offer support through funding, donations, time, talent, or resources. Sponsored by Pure Focus Media and the Southaven Chamber of Commerce, this program aims to bridge the gap between business leaders and the next generation, fostering growth and connectivity in Southaven. Tune in to our podcast for an in-depth exploration of these impactful initiatives and the vision behind them.


The Southaven Chamber Foundation is a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting education in Southaven, Mississippi.

They offer scholarships, small business grants, and educational programs for residents and businesses in the area.

The foundation’s flagship program, the Bridge Academy, provides training and leadership development for employees at all levels of their careers.


Southaven Chamber Foundation Launches Bridge Academy to Enhance Business Leadership Skills (00:00 – 07:01)

Developing Leaders for Success: The Curriculum of the Bridge Academy in Southaven (07:01 – 13:58)

The Bridge Academy: Empowering Youth and Building a Connected Community in Southaven (14:00 – 20:29)

Opportunities for Leadership Development and Community Impact in Southaven, Mississippi (20:29 – 25:30)

SPONSOR LIST – Wisdom Integrators – The Follow App – Pure Focus Media – Southaven Chamber of Commerce