(HARLINGEN, Texas) – Last year, Texas State Technical College deployed the Rapid Industry Skills and Employability (RISE) program to allow students to quickly learn the skills needed to help get them started on the path to a new career.
The courses were introduced to help combat the impact that the coronavirus has had on employment in Texas.
Hector Yanez, TSTC’s senior vice president of Student Learning, said that the first cohorts of the RISE program have seen success, and he expects to see additional interest from potential students as word spreads.
“The RISE cohorts have been doing well,” he said. “We have gathered data and continue to comb through it to get a better understanding of what is working great and what needs to be tweaked. In order to maintain rigor and quality, we inspect things very closely so that students can achieve success in their cohort.”
The courses are implemented in areas with high industry demand so that jobs can be readily available for students once they receive their Occupational Skills Award. However, Yanez said that he has noticed a surprising trend.
“An interesting thing that we observed immediately after the first cohort was that students wanted to continue their education and explore TSTC’s certificate programs and associate degrees,” he said. “Students enroll knowing that they could get even higher wages with just a few more courses.”
Yanez said that TSTC is currently in the process of adding 14 new Occupational Skills Award-eligible courses to the RISE program, which will double the opportunity for interested students.
“The RISE awards give the students the knowledge to work more efficiently, boost their confidence and make them a more valuable candidate for employers,” he said. “Businesses are always on the lookout for knowledgeable staff, and these RISE awards will offer the students the opportunity to attain these in-demand jobs.”
Limited scholarships are available for those interested in the RISE program.