COLLEGE STATION, Texas — As part of a forward-looking effort to strengthen the area’s workforce, officials from Texas A&M University System and Blinn College have engaged the Parthenon-EY practice of Ernst & Young LLP (EY) to provide a report on industries’ needs and labor conditions in the eight-county region centered around Brazos County.
Chancellor John Sharp and other Texas A&M University System officials – along with Blinn College administrators – said Tuesday that they will use the data, findings and recommendations in EY’s report to make decisions about forming future academic and workforce training offerings. Chancellor Sharp envisions that many of the training opportunities will be available at the 2,000-acre RELLIS Campus, which was announced in May 2016.
“Our local businesses won’t have to look far for workers with vital skill sets,” Chancellor Sharp said. “The RELLIS Campus again will prove its value by being a major contributor to making sure we have a highly trained regional workforce.”
The eight counties to be studied include Brazos, Robertson, Leon, Grimes, Milam, Washington, Burleson and Madison counties.
“Blinn College is proud to partner with The Texas A&M System to provide unparalleled workforce training for the Brazos Valley,” Dr. Mary Hensley, Blinn College District President/CEO, said. “By obtaining accurate information regarding the community’s workforce needs, we will be well-positioned to ensure that our workforce training programs fuel the Brazos Valley’s continued economic growth and development.”
Dr. James Hallmark, Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at The Texas A&M System, said the report will provide information regarding the specific skills and education needed by regional industry.
“Today we have information about employment needs in broad industry sectors, but not about the specific training and education needed by employers,” Dr. Hallmark said. Hallmark further said the study will provide an indication about current wage scales for jobs requiring the skill sets in the eight-county region compared with the state average and with different parts of the state such as Dallas, Austin, San Antonio and Houston, as well as the anticipated annual hiring projections for 2017, 2020 and 2022 and a summary of marketing methods used by regional industries to attract workers.
Dr. James Nelson, Assistant Vice Chancellor and Director of Special Academic Initiatives at the A&M System, added: “Our goal at RELLIS is to provide the training and education programs needed by regional industries and to attract new industry to the region. This study should help us identify, develop, and offer the necessary training and education.”
Collaborating on this study is part of The Texas A&M System’s and Blinn’s continued commitment to identifying and providing the needed training and education required by industry.
The final report is expected in May.
About The Texas A&M University System
The Texas A&M University System is one of the largest systems of higher education in the nation, with a budget of $4.2 billion. Through a statewide network of 11 universities and seven state agencies, the Texas A&M System educates more than 140,000 students and makes more than 22 million additional educational contacts through service and outreach programs each year. System-wide, research and development expenditures exceeded $946 million in FY 2015 and helped drive the state’s economy.
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