STC awarded over $1 million in grants by TWC
STC was awarded a $1 million Skills Development Fund (SDF) grant and a $140,860 Self Sufficiency Fund (SSF) grant at a formal check signing ceremony Thursday Aug. 1.
Welcoming representatives from Texas Workforce Commission, a state legislator, and leaders in the business and healthcare communities, South Texas College held its ceremony for two sizeable grant awards Aug. 1.
TWC and DHR Health awarded STC with a $1 million Skills Development Fund (SDF) grant at a formal check signing on Thursday. The funds marked the 27th SDF grant awarded by TWC to the college, and the second grant in partnership with DHR.
STC was also awarded a Self Sufficiency Fund (SSF) grant by Workforce Solutions in the amount of $140,860 for workers in high demand occupations.
In attendance at the event was TWC Commissioner representing Labor Julian Alvarez; Sen. Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa, D-McAllen; DHR Chief Academic Officer Dr. R. Armour Forse; and Arcelia Sanchez, Workforce Solutions Strategy and Engagement Deputy Director.
" We really want to bring our workforce up and give them all the new tools they need to move forward and take care of those patients. How do we do this? Well it is through these grants, which we pursued with STC, which has been our educational partner because we want to be able to train these people while they’re in a job environment.”
STC Trustees in attendance included Chairman Paul R. Rodriguez, Gary Gurwitz, and Dr. Alejo Salinas.
“We truly are exceptional, and our students will be exceptional employees in our community,” said STC President Dr. Shirley A. Reed. “We can’t do this without partnerships. It’s not always easy but we learn from our experiences and we are getting better and better at it all the time.”
For more than two decades, the Skills Development Fund grant program has assisted employers with customized training needs. Through SDF in 2018 TWC awarded 50 Skills Development Fund grants totaling almost $24 million to 90 Texas businesses, supported the creation of 4,682 new jobs, and upgraded the skills of 11,494 workers in existing jobs.
The current SDF grant is intended to provide customized training through a variety of healthcare areas for an estimated 4,000 new and existing employees of DHR Health.
“In the healthcare industry, the whole business is changing every day,” said Dr. Forse. “We have to talk about different ways for billing, coding, and documenting on top of treating new diseases even when there are days when our hospital is over 130 percent occupied.
“At the same time, we really want to bring our workforce up and give them all the new tools they need to move forward and take care of those patients,” Forse said. “How do we do this? Well it is through these grants, which we pursued with STC, which has been our educational partner because we want to be able to train these people while they’re in a job environment.”
In addition to the $1 million grant, a Self Sufficiency Fund (SSF) grant was awarded to STC in partnership with Workforce Solutions in the amount of $140,860. It marked the eighth SSF grant the college has received to date.
The SSF grant is intended to provide training in high demand occupations for an estimated 70 participants in the areas of welding, phlebotomy, and EKG technician.
“The self sufficiency grant targets people who are on the verge of becoming dependent on government assistance,” said Olivia De La Rosa, Director of Professional And Workforce Education at STC. “Through the grant we are going to train people who will hopefully learn a skill and get them a job on the path to self sufficiency.”