Central Texas Workforce Board Awarded Funding for Career and Education Outreach Specialist Pilot Program

 In Central Texas

The Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) has recently awarded $790,010 in funding to the Central Texas Workforce Board for a new Workforce Career and Education Outreach Specialist Pilot Program. The SOAR (Student Occupational Awareness and Recognition) program will provide career services to students at public middle and high schools, grades six through twelve, to direct students towards High Growth High Demand Occupations. Students will receive in-depth education and direction on career choices as well as access to the up-to-date labor market and career data.

“With this pilot program, the Texas Workforce Commission is actively working to ensure the next generation of Texans are equipped with the skills and knowledge necessary to be successful,” said TWC Chairman and Commissioner Representing the Public Bryan Daniel. “This program is essential to providing Texas students with the necessary information required to make informed career choices.”

This program will support the achievement of Texas’ goals outlined in the November 2016 Tri-Agency Report. The funding establishes at least four full-time Workforce Specialists to travel within designated independent school districts in Central Texas to deliver career guidance and workforce information to students, including underrepresented populations such as youth in foster care. The program will use TWC resources to organize training workshops, expose students to a variety of career pathways and coordinate with local and state services to provide pre-apprenticeship opportunities.

“Most of our future job growth will be in middle-skill occupations, yet many students and parents are largely unaware of these jobs and the education required to attain them. This pilot program provides early guidance to future generations of our workforce,” said TWC Commissioner Representing Labor Julian Alvarez. “Through this funding, the TWC ensures that every student in Central Texas has a viable career path after graduation.”

“By supporting our local workforce boards, this program ensures Texas remains a competitive place for businesses,” said TWC Commissioner Representing Employers Aaron Demerson. “Through this funding, we are investing early in our future talent-pipeline and helping build a workforce that will continue to strengthen our Central Texas employers.”

Program participants will provide support to over 5 different independent school districts engaging approximately 13,000 students in its inaugural year. For more information on how the program can benefit your school district contact: Charley Ayres, Director, Industry/Education Partnerships at charleya@workforcelink.com.