HCC partners with Spring Branch ISD to train future electrical technicians
Nov 30, 2017
A combination of pride and nervousness could be felt on the evening of October 24 at the Guthrie Center, a workforce learning facility that is part of the Spring Branch Independent School District (SBISD). At the event, 54 high school students signed a commitment letter establishing their participation in an electrician apprenticeship program made possible by Trio Electric, SBISD and Houston Community College (HCC).
HCC Chancellor, Cesar Maldonado emphasized that a growing city like Houston is the perfect employment environment for future electricians.
“With our region’s need for new homes and new commercial development, employers are in desperate need of new workers able to safely hit the ground running,“ Maldonado said.
In the audience, parents like Felipa Aguilar could hardly contain their excitement. Felipa brought her family to the United States from San Luis Potosi, Mexico when her children were in diapers. On this day Felipa’s dream came true, as she watched her 16-year old son Erik take part in the ceremony.
“One always wants the best for their children. But there is a big difference between dreaming about it and seeing their achievements happen. The fact that Erik is taking part in this initiative makes me very proud.”
Dr. Scott Muri, SBISD’s superintendent, recalled how the program started with a casual conversation.
“I remembered the owner of an electrical company in the Spring Branch area who shared with me that he needed electricians but he could not find any,” Muri said.
That business owner was Beau Pollock, Chief Executive Officer of TRIO Electric, who conveyed an encouraging message to the students and their families.
“There are great work opportunities for you and they start with this program. You should be so proud of yourself for signing this document because you will have an opportunity to study, work and get paid,“ said Pollock.
Always a champion for collaboration in education, Eva Loredo, chair of the HCC Board of Trustees, described how teamwork helps students succeed.
“This apprenticeship program is an excellent example of how academic and industry partners working in collaboration with our students can generate life changing outcomes,” said Loredo.
The four-year apprenticeship program will be taught by credentialed SBISD instructors and by TRIO Electric personnel. Upon completion, the students will receive a Level 1 Electrical Technician certification from HCC.
The ceremony culminated with each student receiving a safety vest and hardhat, symbols that a promise made today, will become a profession for tomorrow.