TWC Launches Veteran and Industry Partnership Skills training Initiative

AUSTIN, January 6, 2015 - The Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) today announced the launch of the Veteran and Industry Partnership (VIP), an initiative to create jobs for veterans and supply a skilled and ready workforce for some of the state’s most high-demand industries: petrochemical, advanced manufacturing and information technology. TWC has designated $4.3 million from the state’s Skills Development Fund to establish the initiative, which brings together industry associations, local Workforce Solutions partners and community colleges to develop training in key industry occupations for veterans.
“VIP recognizes the exceptional skills that veterans bring to the workforce and strives to connect them with jobs in expanding industries,” said TWC Chairman Andres Alcantar. “We are proud to partner with these community colleges and Texas employers to train and place our heroes in high-demand occupations.”

Local workforce development boards have partnered with industry leaders and 17 colleges throughout Texas to identify high-demand workforce needs in local areas and develop expedited training programs for veterans as part of the VIP initiative. Short-term certificate attainment and industry-recognized credentials will be included in all three industry training initiatives.

“The training developed by VIP will give veterans credit for their years of training and experience in the military, and emphasize the need for immediate job placement after completion,” said TWC Commissioner Representing Labor Ronny Congleton. “Texas veterans and service members have answered the call to serve our nation in large numbers, and providing a fast path to employment is one way we can thank them for that service.”

Among the benefits of hiring veterans, the Work Opportunity Tax Credit allows employers to receive up to a $9,600 tax credit on federal business income or payroll tax benefits when they hire a qualifying veteran.

“The availability of veterans who have the discipline, work ethic and capacity to learn new skills quickly, presents a favorable environment to respond to industry needs while enhancing the professional skills of veterans and providing further job opportunities in high-demand, high-wage industries,” said TWC Commissioner Representing Employers Hope Andrade.

All eligible U.S. veterans will have the opportunity to participate in VIP. Funds have been allocated to eligible colleges on a regional basis, based on veteran population and available industry jobs.

“The Texas Chemical Council is proud to collaborate with TWC and our workforce and education partners to help develop curricula to meet the workforce needs of Texas’ petrochemical employers and help our returning veterans transitioning into civilian life,” said Texas Chemical Council President and CEO Hector Rivero.

The Veterans and Industry Partnership Petrochemical Industry initiative will train veterans for high-demand occupations in the petrochemical industry. Colleges participating in this program include: Alvin Community College in Alvin, Del Mar College in Corpus Christi, Lee College in Baytown, Lone Star College in Houston, Houston Community College in Houston, San Jacinto College in Pasadena and Victoria College in Victoria.

“Texas’ growing manufacturing industry is the perfect place for many Texas military veterans to launch their civilian careers,” said Texas Association of Manufacturers President Tony Bennett. “The many technical skills, leadership and teamwork capabilities of Texas veterans is exactly what we need to keep Texas an industry-leader.”

The Veterans and Industry Partnership Advanced Manufacturing Industry initiative will train veterans for high-demand occupations in the fabrication industry. Colleges participating in this program include: Alamo Colleges in San Antonio, Collin College in Plano, Dallas County Community College District in Dallas, Navarro College in Corsicana, North Central Texas College in Gainesville and Tarrant County Community College District in Fort Worth.
The Veteran and Industry Partnership Information Technology initiative will train veterans in high-demand occupations in the computing industry. Colleges participating in this program include: Austin Community College in Austin, Central Texas College in Killeen, El Paso Community College in El Paso and Temple College in Temple.

For more information on this program, visit www.texasworkforce.org/skills. For more information about workforce programs available to veterans and their employers, visit www.texasworkforce.org/veterans.


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