$116K grant to aid adult learners lacking HS diploma or GED
Rio-South Texas Education and Community Development Foundation supports STC students with pathway to life-changing careers for adult learners
Adam Gonzalez, Senior Vice President for Business Development with RSTF joined STC Trustees at their regular meeting Sept. 28 to present more than $116,000 towards supporting adult learners who currently lack a high school diploma or GED
The Rio-South Texas Education and Community Development Foundation (RSTF) has joined South Texas College in its mission to ensure students acquire skills and knowledge to enable them to pursue meaningful careers.
Joining STC trustees at their regular meeting Sept. 28, representatives with RSTF provided a grant for $116,330.08 to the college that will be used to support 72 local individuals who currently lack a high school diploma or GED.
Juan Carlos Aguirre, Special Assistant to the President for Continuing Education, addressed the board on the programs that aim to be supported by the grant. He was joined by Adam Gonzalez, Senior Vice President for Business Development with RSTF, who then presented the check to South Texas College to symbolically recognize this generous donation.
“We are very appreciative for the contribution made by RSTF,” Aguirre said. “This foundation along with three others have joined the college in an effort to assist a total of 1,000 Starr and Hidalgo country residents who don’t have a high school diploma or GED.
“Of the 600,000 Starr and Hidalgo residents 18 years and older, 150,000 ages 18 to 65 don’t have a high school diploma or its equivalent,” he said. “Last year, only 305 individuals in both counties earned GEDs. This problem merits attention, and South Texas College is taking the lead to address it with the assistance of public and private funders.
“I want to extend an invitation to our local and county leaders to join us in helping this sector of the population get their GEDs, enroll in college, and thrive in their communities,” Aguirre said.
Upon recruitment into the grant-funded program, the adult learners will be co-enrolled in a GED program and one of six technical skills training programs, ranging from healthcare, information technology, or industrial technology.
Students will be provided with ongoing support as they pursue not only their GED, but also a higher education credential in their chosen technical skill field.
The goal is to open new pathways to high-skill, high-wage careers and additional workforce training when students are ready to continue, according to RSTF leadership present at the meeting with the board.
The mission of the Rio-South Texas Education and Community Development Foundation is to ensure residents acquire skills and knowledge and have access to economic opportunities to enable them to pursue meaningful careers and live prosperous lives in Rio South Texas.
“On behalf of the Foundation I would like to thank South Texas College for once again collaborating with our foundation for career pathways,” Gonzalez said. “We are happy, glad, and excited to continue this collaboration and we hope that we can continue to help students of South Texas in future years as well.”