The Texas A&M University System, the Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service (TEEX) and Blinn College announced a Memorandum of Understanding today outlining their partnership to meet Brazos County’s growing demand for workforce training programs.
“The Texas A&M University System and TEEX are eager to work in conjunction with Blinn College to meet the needs of Brazos County,” Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp said. “In partnership, TEEX and Blinn College will offer the highest quality training programs, including some at the premiere facilities on the new RELLIS campus.”
Per the agreement, TEEX and Blinn will work together to provide training for the targeted occupations identified specifically by the Workforce Solutions Brazos Valley Board and as confirmed by each institution’s market research related to training needs in the Brazos Valley. Together, they will identify appropriate facilities at the RELLIS Campus to deliver training programs for carpenters, plumbers/pipefitters/steamfitters, and machinists, or other trades programs as identified, and collaborate on the delivery of welding and computer numeric control (CNC) tool operator training at RELLIS.
On a task-order basis, TEEX will provide telecommunications/line installers and repairers training, mobile-lab welding training using simulators, and CNC tool operators training using the Mobile Outreach Skills Training (M.O.S.T) facility. Blinn will pay TEEX full-cost recovery for these services.
Blinn will provide live welding capabilities as the final component of the mobile lab welding training, and will work with TEEX to identify Texas Workforce Commission Skills Development Grants appropriate for training delivery.
“There can be no doubt that when The Texas A&M University System, TEEX, and Blinn College come together to meet the needs of their stakeholders, the resulting initiative will strengthen our community,” said David Sommer, President of the Blinn College Board of Trustees. “As a Blinn trustee and an alumnus of both Blinn College and Texas A&M, I am excited for what today’s announcement means for Brazos County job seekers, and for the local businesses that require highly skilled employees to thrive in today’s competitive business environment.”
Dr. Mary Hensley, Blinn College District President/CEO, said, “Given Blinn’s existing partnership with TEEX in providing criminal justice and fire science training, and its partnership with The Texas A&M University System at RELLIS, this agreement was a natural extension of our commitment to work together to meet local, state, and national needs.”
In May, The Texas A&M University System invited Blinn to build a facility at the RELLIS Campus, formerly Riverside Campus. The new campus establishes a new educational community combining a major university system and a community college at a single physical location. This co-location will allow Blinn College students to transfer seamlessly to leading universities throughout The Texas A&M System in the years to come.
The site also creates opportunities for Blinn to partner with other organizations and institutions located on the RELLIS Campus, including high-end, innovative, private research and development companies, the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station (TEES), and TEEX.
Blinn expects to break ground at RELLIS in March 2017 and complete construction in time for the Fall 2018 semester.
Blinn’s workforce training job placement rate exceeds 90 percent over three years, and its state licensure exam pass rates were 89.74 percent for the most recent academic year. Blinn currently provides training for 28 of the 34 programs (83%) on the Workforce Solutions Brazos Valley Targeted Occupations List, including all seven Targeted Occupations with an hourly wage of $30 or more, and the 10 positions with the most job openings each year, totaling 550 annual positions. Of the 28 programs Blinn currently offers, 27 are located in Brazos County. Prior to today’s announcement, Blinn already had committed to providing training for 33 Targeted Occupations (97%) by the end of the academic year.
TEEX provides on-site and online resources for more than 168,000 people annually, representing every U.S. state and territory and 82 countries, in specialties from homeland security to economic development and workforce training.
The major TEEX programs include fire and rescue, infrastructure and safety, law enforcement, economic and workforce development, and homeland security. As a member of The Texas A&M University System, TEEX is unique in its ability to access a broad range of emerging research and technical expertise. Beginning with course design and development all the way through hands-on instruction and national certification testing, TEEX delivers comprehensive training through both classroom and hands-on instruction and online courses. Hosting services for online courses, technical assistance and technology validation, and bilingual training and translation services also are available.
By placing safety above all and by focusing on prevention and response, TEEX has become a comprehensive training provider through more than 80 years of extension training. Working with other agencies and encouraging involvement has led to better fire safety and emergency response, cleaner drinking water, better roads and infrastructure, improved homeland security, safer workplaces, heightened public safety and security, new therapeutics manufacturing, and the evolution of cyber security.
Through innovative programs and adaptive outreach, TEEX services are created to train the people who expand the security, occupational, and economic development of Texas and beyond.
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.
About Blinn College
With an enrollment of 19,422 students, Blinn ranks among the nation’s leaders in transferring students to leading four-year universities and has received national recognition for affordable educational excellence. For more information, visit www.blinn.edu.
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