• September 16, 2021
 El Paso Community College awarded $1.5M in Skills Grant

Photo courtesy NMSU

El Paso Community College awarded $1.5M in Skills Grant

El Paso Community College (EPCC) announced Friday that they will be awarded $1,500,000 through the Texas Reskilling Support Fund Grant Program. The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB) is awarding $18.1 million to 49 Texas higher education institutions as part of the first round of the program.

Reskilling grants will allow Texas public colleges, technical schools, and universities to provide financial assistance to Texas students to cover tuition and fees. The grants are designed to support displaced Texas workers who need to reskill or upskill to get back into the workforce, and to support students who have previously stopped out of higher education complete a postsecondary credential.

The program is supported by a portion of the $175 million allocation to the THECB from the Governor’s Emergency Educational Relief (GEER) Fund.

“These strategic investments, supported by Governor Abbott and our Texas legislative leadership, will play an important role in supporting Texas students and driving the recovery of the Texas economy. We can help students who have previously stopped out of higher education without completing a postsecondary credential as well as help displaced Texas workers who need to reskill and upskill and complete a higher education credential so they can rejoin the workforce and get back on their feet,” said Commissioner of Higher Education Harrison Keller. “Our Texas institutions are making significant commitments to create programs that keep more students on track to enter the workforce with the high-value credentials and education that tomorrow’s economy will demand.”

To further its commitment to workforce education, the Coordinating Board welcomed Tina Marie Jackson as its new assistant commissioner of workforce education. Dr. Jackson will work on all aspects of career and technical workforce initiatives and programs, including administration of the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act. Dr. Jackson’s previous roles include district director of developmental education at Collin College, statewide coordinator of community college programs at The University of Texas at Austin, and associate dean of science, technology, engineering, & math (STEM) at Dallas College. 

Dr. Jackson will oversee the THECB reskilling initiative as the agency launches its second-round request for applications (RFA) for the grant program. Applications open today and are due by January 15, 2021.

Texas public community colleges and universities are encouraged to apply, and institutions that received funding through the first round of grant funding are eligible to apply for round two funding.

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