When preparing for high-paying, in-demand careers, the greatest advantage we can give our students is the ability train on the most advanced equipment available. The Rio Grande Valley, thanks to nearly $2.7 million in Jobs and Education for Texans (JET) grants, has been able to provide this kind of opportunity for their students while giving them the self-assurance to say, “yes, I can do this,” as they confidently pursue life-changing careers.
In a ceremony attended by TWC Commissioner Representing Labor Julian Alvarez, eleven JET grants were awarded to local ISDs. The event, which took place at the McAllen convention center, was a celebration of how the JET grant program has provided high school students in the Rio Grande Valley access to the resources they need for career exploration and training. The equipment, purchased through the JET grant funding, has been used to give students a head start on pursuing professions that are eager for their skills, talent, and drive.
“What an event and what a way to celebrate local schools by developing programs that help their students get an early start toward rewarding careers,” said TWC Commissioner Representing Labor Julian Alvarez.
Who received these grants?
The grants were awarded to:
- Laredo ISD was awarded $266,906 to train students in welding.
- Pharr-San Juan-Alamo ISD was awarded $269,624 to train students in the automotive service industry.
- Rio Hondo ISD was awarded $227,269 for training for careers in health sciences.
- Rio Grande City CISD was awarded $285,049 to train students in welding.
- Raymondville ISD was awarded $171,855 for training for careers in nursing.
- Point Isabel ISD was awarded $280,954 for training for careers in nursing.
- La Joya ISD was awarded $247,126 to train students in welding.
- Weslaco ISD was awarded $235,570 for training for careers in Advanced Manufacturing Technology.
- La Feria ISD was awarded $238,545 to train students to become Patient Care Technicians.
- Mercedes ISD was awarded $192,833 to provide students with dual credit welding courses.
- San Benito CISD was awarded $218,491 to train students in welding.
The eleven JET grants have been used to help these districts purchase and install top-of-the-line equipment and provide training to over 1,000 local students for careers in high-demand professions. Read the press release for more information on the grants.
What are JET Grants?
JET grants make sure our workforce is trained to be ready and competitive in the Texas job market. The JET program exists to assist public community, state and technical colleges, and ISDs with purchasing and installing equipment necessary for the development of career and technical education courses or programs that lead to a license, certificate or postsecondary degree in a high-demand occupation.
How can someone apply for a JET grant?
Eligible educational institutions can apply for the next phase of JET funding through a competitive grant process. The Request for Applications solicitation provides information and instruction on how to submit a proposal packet. Go to the JET Grant Program webpage to access any active or open Request for Applications solicitation. Active and previous JET RFAs can be found on the Texas state comptroller’s Electronic State Business Daily Search http://www.txsmartbuy.com/esbd.
How can my student take advantage of these grants?
JET grants are distributed to ISDs and public community, state and technical colleges across the state. If this type of training interests you or your student, you should contact your school counselors to see if there are any local opportunities.
Information is the key to great careers
There is no wrong turn or incorrect path to success. We need to remind students that good jobs don’t only come to you by way of a 4-year college degree. Instead, we need to think outside the box and encourage young Texans to find the right fit for them because ALL degrees have merit. For some, perhaps it does make sense to pursue a classic, 4-year option, but for others maybe their goals are better accomplished through a certification or technical degree. Informing students of their options is what’s important. When people know the paths they can take, the routes available to them, life-changing careers are a decision away. JET grants are a key tool TWC uses to make sure all possibilities for future careers are available to students and Texans.
Read more about JET Grants at https://twc.texas.gov/partners/jobs-education-texans-jet-grant-program