Jan 25, 2013 21:25 Business Briefs for Jan. 20, 2013 Business Briefs for Jan. 20, 2013 Advocate story Jan. 25, 2013 Comments Futurist to speakat LSU symposium LSU Executive Education will hold an Executive Excellence Symposium 2-6 p.m. March 15 in Business Education Complex auditorium at the E. J. Ourso College of Business. Michael Rogers, founder of the consultancy group Practical Futurist and columnist for MSNBC, will be the featured speaker. He will talk from 2 to 4 p.m. about the virtualization of America and how businesses and organizations must evolve to keep pace. A networking cocktail reception will follow in The Rotunda. The cost to attend the symposium is $325. For more information or to register for the symposium, visit http://executiveexcellence .lsu.edu. Group hosting social media awards event The Baton Rouge Social Media Association is hosting its second annual social media awards, The SoMes, 7-9 p.m. Feb. 7 at Boudreaux & Thibodeaux’s at 214 Third St. downtown. Ten awards will be given to Baton Rouge’s most innovative thinkers in categories such as “Helping Hand,” which honors a business that uses social media for customer service, or “Fire Extinguisher,” which recognizes an individual/organization that best used social media for crisis management. Tickets can be purchased online for $35 for members and $40 for non-members at http://brsocme.org/the-somes-buy-tickets. Tickets at the door are $40 for members and $45 for non-members. Contact Christi Domingue-Rangel at (225) 247-9974 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Panel to discuss journalism efforts A panel discussion titled “Bridging the Gap: How Media Educators and Professionals Connect to Prepare the Next Generation of Journalists” will be held at noon Wednesday at LSU’s Manship School of Mass Communication’s Holliday Forum. The Manship School is partnering with the Baton Rouge Area Association of Black Journalists to present the event for students, educators and professionals. Manship School Dean Jerry Ceppos recently suggested that universities make it easier to hire top professionals and that scholars ensure that their research is easy to understand. Topics of the conversation will include advisory boards for journalism and mass communication programs, internships, webinars/seminars and how best to strengthen ties between practitioners and academics. Panelists include Andrea Miller, associate dean of the Manship School; Mahmoud A.M. Braima, chairman of the mass communication department at Southern University; Yolanda Campbell, of Southern University; Carl Redman, executive editor of The Advocate; Ceppos; Chuck Bark, news director at WBRZ-TV; and Jolene Reilly, assistant news director at WAFB-TV. Kona Ice unveils shaved ice cart Kona Ice of Baton Rouge has acquired a Kona Mini, a smaller, cart version of the brand’s mobile gourmet shaved ice truck, that is designed for indoor and smaller outdoor venues. The local franchisee said the new format eliminates challenges from seasonal weather and space limitations, giving it access to school gymnasiums, ballfields, zoos, conference halls and shopping malls. EXP opens with office in Lafayette LAFAYETTE — EXP Engineering International has opened in Houston, with a satellite office in Lafayette. The firm offers engineering and project and construction management services for the oil and gas industry. Marketing seminar set for social media FRANKLINTON — The Louisiana Small Business Development Center at Southeastern Louisiana University and the Franklinton Chamber of Commerce will host “Social Media Marketing Made Simple,” a free seminar from 1 to 3 p.m. Jan. 30 at the Franklinton Town Hall on 11th St. Participants can learn how to turn social media sites like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter into business tools. Participants will learn about social media marketing and why to use it; how to evaluate what’s right for their business or organization; how small businesses are using low-cost tools to gain visibility, develop relationships and drive sales and response; how to create good content for social media marketing campaigns and time management; and how to balance social media marketing with email marketing and other marketing efforts. Wi-Fi will be available during the class, so participants can bring a fully charged laptop, tablet or smartphone. For more information or to register, contact LSBDC Southeastern at (985) 549-3831, email@example.com or go to www.lsbdc.org.