exterior of Richland College Garland Campus

Richland College Garland Campus Kicks off 2020 with Partnership Awards, Texas Workforce Commission Grant and More

Richland College Garland Campus has already had a busy 2020. Staff hit the ground running in the new year, honoring local organizations with 2019 Corporate Services’ Partnership Awards and receiving a $434,328 grant from the Texas Workforce Commission. The grant makes it possible train 272 employees at local businesses, setting the stage for a productive year of training workers through corporate training and workforce development.

“In 2019, Richland College Corporate Services proved again to be a great choice for professional training,” said Konley Kelley, director of community engagement, outreach and recruitment at Richland College Garland Campus. “Based at the Garland Campus, Richland’s Corporate Services team served clients throughout North Dallas. Utilizing grant funding from the Texas Workforce Commission, hundreds of employees working in manufacturing in Garland, IT in Richardson and healthcare in Irving received essential job training on-site at their companies. Corporate Services also provided training for employees of the cities of Richardson, Plano and Garland for Dallas County.”

Richland College Garland Campus recognizes the support of local organizations with its Partnership Awards, presented each year at the Garland Chamber of Commerce’s annual banquet.

The Dallas County Manufacturers’ Association Partnership Award was awarded to II-VI Marlow, and the Community Partnership Award was awarded to Workforce Solutions Greater Dallas.

The DCMA Partnership Award recognizes clients who are part of the DCMA and have met and exceeded performance goals as a partner in a Skills Development Grant from the Texas Workforce Commission. II-VI Marlow won for its active participation in a Richland College Garland Campus Skills Development Fund consortium grant, providing training to 44 employees in 2019. The employees received training in classes such as Electrical Basics and Troubleshooting; Geometric Dimension and Tolerancing; MSSC Certification; Programmable Logic Controller Fundamentals; SolidWorks Advanced; Excel I, II and III; Principles of Lean Manufacturing; CPR and Leadership Training.

Debbie Winkle, human resources manager, and Pamela Jennett, vice-president of integration and compliance, accepted the award on behalf of II-VI Marlow.

“Receiving this award was a very nice surprise,” said Winkle. “Partnering with the TWC on such things as this recent grant shows that Richland is committed not only to the community, but also to employers. They are exploring options on how to work with employers to help employees get the training they need to be successful. Employees are our number one asset, and engaged, successful employees lead to successful business.”

Kimberly Wilkins, associate dean of workforce development at Richland College Garland Campus, added, “II-VI Marlow has been a great corporate client of ours since 2011. They have participated in several Skills Development Fund grants, during which their employees have received advanced, industry-specific, customized training. Most recently, they received training in Geometric Dimensioning and Tolerancing and Manufacturing Skill Standards Council certifications in safety, quality, production processes and maintenance awareness. Courses like these have helped increase current skills and wages for their employees.”

The Community Partnership Award recognizes clients who have actively worked with the college in areas such as contract or company-sponsored training, apprenticeship programs and the hiring of students from the workforce training programs at Garland Campus. As a valued partner with a longstanding record of supporting training and economic growth in the community, Workforce Solutions Greater Dallas was the award recipient for its support in funding more than $5 million through the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, designed to assist job hunters in securing employment, education, training and resources necessary to succeed; and adult literacy and education grants. Through this funding, thousands of employees and job seekers were trained in workplace communication skills.

Workforce Solutions Greater Dallas has also supported Richland College and its partner companies in the development of Skills Development Fund grants, resulting in thousands of training hours for new and incumbent workers at area businesses, and it maintains a Garland location to assist with hiring, job fairs, unemployment services, career counseling and childcare services.

Steven Bridges, account executive, and Demetria Robinson, vice-president, accepted this award on behalf of Workforce Solutions Greater Dallas.

“Workforce Solutions Greater Dallas is honored to receive this Community Partnership Award,” said Bridges. “We value our relationship with Richland College and the Dallas County Community College District. Richland College Garland Campus has been vital to the surrounding business community. The effort the college has placed on ensuring our workforce is equipped with trained workers has been invaluable to the local economy. Workforce Solutions Greater Dallas and Richland College Garland Campus have a long-standing partnership serving the Garland community through workforce and training initiatives. We appreciate the support of these collaborative efforts and look forward to continued partnerships serving the community.”

Celes Oppedahl, dean of student success at Richland College Garland Campus, added, “Richland College and the Garland Campus have been working with Workforce Solutions Greater Dallas for more than 35 years, providing high-demand training and services to individuals. The partnership has allowed thousands of non-traditional students to gain the knowledge they need to be employed in new careers. The economic impact of this training has added value to the city of Garland and to Dallas County, preparing the future workforce and filling the skilled workplace shortage. Training is developed to meet the demands and requirements of the local business.”

In late January, Richland College Garland Campus announced a Skills Development Fund Manufacturing Consortium grant at a check-signing ceremony. TWC Commissioner Representing Employers Aaron S. Demerson presented the $434,328 check to the Richland College Garland Campus and the DCMA on Jan. 29.

“We have gathered to acknowledge our appreciation for the important industry training impact that this $434,328 Texas Workforce Commission Skills Development Fund Grant is making possible through Richland College Garland Campus and its dynamic tri-partnership with the Garland Chamber of Commerce and the Dallas County Manufacturers’ Association,” said Kathryn K. Eggleston, president of Richland College, during the opening remarks. “This grant enables this triad to advance and expand technical and non-technical training to employees at seven Garland and regional area manufacturing companies, continuing to leverage our capability to grow the economic base of Garland’s manufacturing sector businesses, while also contributing to a skilled Texas workforce.”

This grant provides funding for Richland College to train 272 employees, contributing to more than 7,373 training hours of anticipated positive operational and productivity impact. The companies included in the grant are Ecolab; RHE Hatco, Inc.; Interceramic; Kirchhoff Automotive; Mapei; II VI Marlow; and Sanden Vendo of America. Training sessions under the grant include: Electrical Basics and Troubleshooting, Geometric Dimensioning and Tolerancing, Forklift Certification, Project Management Fundamentals, Lean Manufacturing, Six Sigma Green Belt, CPR/First Aid/AED, Project Management, Microsoft Office and Leadership.

“Today, we warmly welcome representatives from these seven grant business partners and applaud each company for its commitment to enhancing the skills of its respective workforce, which, in turn, contributes to the business strength of our Garland community, the north Texas region and the state of Texas,” Eggleston added at the event. “We truly appreciate each of you for joining us today to celebrate this economic advancement opportunity made possible through the Texas Workforce Commission. Richland College appreciates the exceptional confidence that the Texas Workforce Commission and area manufacturers place in us as a proven, high-quality, results-focused training provider.”

Demerson said, “Economic development, education and workforce are the secret sauce in Texas. On behalf of Governor Abbott’s office, congratulations to the employers, Dr. Eggleston and everyone involved in this training. We stand ready to help in any way that we can.”

Paul Mayer, CEO of the Garland Chamber of Commerce, added, “I define economic development as the ability for individuals to have the life they want. This training is economic development—people developing people. Thanks to every one of you.”

Upon completion of this training, Richland College Garland Campus hopes to continue working with the Texas Workforce Commission to receive additional Skills Development Fund grants to offer training opportunities to other north Texas businesses.

“Having celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2019, Garland Campus is looking forward to many more years training individuals for good-paying jobs in multiple fields,” said Kelley. “The campus is also intent on providing training and resources to help companies invest in their existing workforce. ‘Train the ones you have’ is just as important in this tight economy and time of low unemployment. Retaining skilled, motivated employees and expanding their skillsets is far easier than recruiting and filling open positions. Richland College is here to provide training and resources to our business community. We value our partners, and together we can offer resources such as job-ready workers and grant-funded training to keep our workforce strong, skilled and engaged.”