On October 23, 1946 ten men from training and personnel backgrounds met to organize an association for trainers. It was decided that the group would meet on a quarterly basis, and the first regular meeting was held in Columbia (at the Jefferson Hotel) on December 14, 1946. A committee was appointed to draw up a proposed constitution.In the original constitution the name “Carolina Industrial Trainers Association” was approved because of membership of individuals from both North and South Carolina. Later the name was changed to the “Carolinas Trainers Association (CTA)” to also draw membership from trade and commerce.
Although the American Society of Training Directors (later changed to American Society for Training and Development) was organized in 1944, its membership remained relatively small during World War II. By the end of 1947, seven CTA members had become members of ASTD. In May 1949 CTA passed a resolution requesting ASTD affiliation. Affiliation was confirmed in early 1950 for the “Carolinas Society for Training and Development (CSTD).”During the 60’s and 70’s CSTD became an active influence in ASTD.
Meetings, Lags & Conferences
The original constitution called for quarterly, one-day meetings. Member companies invited the association to hold meetings in various parts of the Carolinas. The Society held its first two-day conference, the Industrial Economics Conference, at Clemson College in 1949. The conference was so successful that it became an annual practice, first at the YMCA in Clemson and then the Clemson House.
In 1952 the Society began meeting twice a year. The two-day Industrial Economics Conference was considered the spring meeting, and the fall meeting was held in October or November in various South Carolina cities. In 1989, the Society began sponsoring quarterly Local Area Group (LAG) meetings in the Upstate (Greenville) area. Additional LAGs were formed in the Midlands (Columbia) and Western North Carolina (Asheville) areas in 1990 as membership increased in these areas. Quarterly LAG meetings began in the Pee Dee (Florence) area in 1992. Other small LAGs were started in the Low Country (Charleston) and Eastern North Carolina (Wilmington/Lumberton) in the mid 1990’s.
CSTD offered its first Training Institute at Clemson University in 1989. This week-long program focused on the basics of effective training. An Advance Institute was added in 1991 for Institute graduates and those with extensive training and development experience.
The Local Area Group structure of CSTD continued into the early 2000’s at which time the only existing LAGs remaining were those in the Midlands and Upstate of South Carolina.
In 2006 the remaining LAGS decided to form two distinct ASTD chapters: A Greenville-based chapter to serve the SC Upstate and a Columbia-based chapter to serve the Midlands and PeeDee areas. By forming two distinct ASTD chapters, both groups now maintain local direction and control most suited for their respective members.
With its new identity, the Upstate South Carolina Chapter of the American Society for Training and Development meets at least six times a year to offer professional development learning and networking opportunities to training leaders in the Upstate. We have received National recognition for some of our activities and in May 2010 we had the honor of being selected as chapter of the month.