Governor Abbott Announces More Than $5.9 Million In Texas Talent Connection Grants

July 7, 2022 | Austin, Texas | Press Release

Governor Greg Abbott today announced more than $5.9 million in Texas Talent Connection grants to 18 innovative workforce skills training and job placement programs in communities across the state. These competitive grant awards are administered by the Texas Workforce Investment Council in the Governor’s Office of Economic Development and Tourism. The grants support innovative education and workforce skills training programs that lead to successful job placements, increased wages, and improved job retention, as well as serve workforce populations with special needs.

"Texas continues to lead the nation as the best state for business thanks to our young, growing, skilled, and diverse workforce," said Governor Abbott. "Meeting the changing needs of Texas businesses by providing a continuing pipeline of workers with in-demand skills is paramount to ensure expanding economic opportunity in communities across the state. With more than $5.9 million in Texas Talent Connection grants, we are again connecting more employers to work-ready skilled Texans and more Texans to in-demand skills training for higher-paying jobs and career advancement — creating a more prosperous Texas for all."

The $5,927,532 in Texas Talent Connection grant awards announced today include:

Alvin Community College: $350,000 for year two of the New Beginnings re-entry program serving Brazoria County. The grant provides recently released offenders with job placement assistance and workforce training to reduce recidivism. 

American YouthWorks: $319,823 for year two of the YouthBuild Manufacturing Pre-Apprenticeship program in Bastrop, Blanco, Burnet, Caldwell, Comal, Hays, Travis, and Williamson counties. The grant provides secondary education, job skills, and job placement through paid training and certifications in manufacturing for unemployed or underemployed opportunity youth ages 16-24.

The Bay Area Houston Advanced Technology Consortium: $332,324 for year two of the Aerospace/Space/Aviation Technician Readiness Program serving Harris, Austin, Brazoria, Chambers, Fort Bend, Galveston, Liberty, Montgomery, and Waller counties. The grant provides unemployed high school graduates, displaced workers, and other unemployed participants with job training and job placement as certified electrical and composite technicians in the aerospace, space, and aviation industries.

Community Learning Centers, Inc.: $300,000 for year two of the Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning program in Johnson, Parker, and Tarrant counties. The grant provides job training and job placement in entry-level residential mechanic and technician positions in the construction industry for veterans, unemployed, underemployed, and those with low-income, low-skill backgrounds.

Houston’s Capital IDEA: $300,000 for year three of the Capital IDEA and Career My Way program in Harris and Fort Bend counties. The grant provides community college education or short-term vocational training in the healthcare, energy, or professional trades industries for unemployed or underemployed low-income adults ages 18-24.

Lone Star College: $324,792 for the Strategic Engagement for Student Career Planning Initiative serving Harris and Montgomery counties. The grant will provide workforce and job readiness planning to first generation students in the areas of manufacturing, automotive, information technology, business, visual communications, and healthcare.

North Central Texas College: $345,452 for year two of the Business and Industry Leadership Team to Supply Chain and Logistics Education program serving North Central Texas College students in Denton, Cooke, Montague, and Young counties. The grant provides fast-track, accelerated training in supply chain logistics.

NPower: $350,000 for year two of the Tech Fundamentals program serving unemployed and underemployed veterans, veteran spouses, and reservists in Dallas, Tarrant, Wise, Denton, Collin, Kaufman, Ellis, Hunt, Smith, Grayson, Rockwell, and Johnson counties. The grant provides tuition-free job training, credentialing, and job placement in industry-relevant digital careers.

Project ARRIBA: $350,000 for year two of the Equitable Opportunities through Post-Secondary Access program in El Paso County. The grant provides post-secondary education, job training, certification, and job placement in the healthcare industry for low-income, unemployed, or underemployed adults.

Skillpoint Alliance: $250,000 for year three of the Filling the Skill Gap: Expanding Rapid Skill Building in Advanced Manufacturing program in Bastrop, Blanco, Burnet, Caldwell, Fayette, Hays, Lee, Llano, Travis, and Williamson counties. This grant replicates an evidence-based program that focuses on rapid skill-building and placement for low-income and unemployed or underemployed.

South Texas College: $254,167 for the Maintenance and Repair Program for Automated Technologies serving Hidalgo and Starr counties. The grant will provide training and the opportunity to earn a series of Fuji Automatic Numerical Control credentials for high school students and unemployed workers.

The Tarrant County Workforce Development Board: $350,000 for year two of the 21st Century – Customers Embracing New Technology Upon Release program serving Tarrant County and surrounding areas. The grant provides reentering citizens with technology-based training focused on digital literacy to aid in job search, job placement, and financial management.

Texas State Technical College: $350,000 for the Professional Driving Academy Commercial Driver’s License – Abilene program serving Callahan, Coleman, Jones, Nolan, and Taylor counties. The grant will provide Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act eligible trainees aged 18 or older with driver training to earn a Texas Class A commercial license.

Texas Tech University: $350,000 for year three of the Critical Infrastructure Security Training for Industry, University, and High School program serving Bailey, Cochran, Crosby, Dickens, Floyd, Garza, Hale, Hockley, King, Lamb, Lubbock, Lynn, Motely, Terry, and Yoakum counties. The grant provides focused training tied to occupational skill acquisition, job placement, and career enhancement in the utilities and energy industries for enrolled students and those already employed.

The University of Houston – Downtown: $349,772 for the University of Houston ─ Downtown Cultivating Cyber Security Supporting Skilled Workforce Initiative serving Harris County and the thirteen counties comprising the Greater Houston Metropolitan Area. The grant will provide underrepresented STEM students with career training in software development, software quality assurance, biotechnical, cybersecurity, and food security.

The Valley Initiative for Development and Advancement (VIDA): $350,000 for year two of the Rio Grande Valley Industry Specialized Training and Workforce Innovation program serving residents in Cameron, Hidalgo, Starr, and Willacy counties. The grant provides training and certifications for allied health, aerospace, and liquid natural gas industry entry-level positions to individuals who are 18 years or older, unemployed, or living under the federal poverty guidelines.

Volunteers of America: $350,000 for year three of the Bridges to Career Opportunities program serving Houston and the Harris County area. The grant provides a workforce pipeline for low-income and unemployed or underemployed participants in high-growth, high-wage industries.

Workforce Solutions of Southeast Texas: $351,202 for year two of the Southeast Texas Internship and Externship Training Initiative serving Hardin, Jefferson, and Orange counties. The grant provides opportunity youth, ages 18─24, with eight-week paid internships in their field of study.

The Texas Workforce Investment Council assists the Governor and the Legislature with strategic planning for and evaluation of the Texas workforce system to promote the development of a well-educated, highly skilled workforce for Texas. The Council’s appointed members represent workforce system partners and stakeholders, including business and industry, organized labor, education, and community-based organizations. Ex officio members include the Texas Workforce Commission, Texas Education Agency, Texas Health and Human Services Commission, Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board, and the Governor’s Office of Economic Development and Tourism. The more than $5.9 million in Texas Talent Connection grants awarded this year by Governor Abbott are Wagner-Peyser 7(b) grant funds allocated to the Office of the Governor by the U.S. Department of Labor to encourage innovation in workforce training and job placement services.

Read more about the Texas Talent Connection grant program.