The NAM Learning and Vocational Training Center (LVTC) is excited to again partner with the Texas Department of Education – among many other community partners – to offer training opportunities to NAM clients.
By the end of August, almost all vocational training classes reached max capacity, reflecting the high demand from clients seeking new job skills to be hired for gainful employment. In early 2023, NAM will offer a unique and high-tech learning experience in a class for the first time in the department’s history.
“The electrical pre-apprenticeship training will be a combination of e-learning and virtual reality technology. The class will run 5 days a week for 5 weeks,” said Elaina Albarez, Director of NAM’s Learning and Vocational Training Center. “Students must make that commitment - but once they complete the class, companies are seeking to employ students as soon as they are done.”
TRIO Education, the electrician company that is providing the training, is among those with job openings to fill; they will conduct interviews and make job offers to NAM students upon completion of the course, in addition to collaboration with other companies seeking to hire. Students will have the option to seek employment at any electric company of their choosing as well. Upon completion of the classes, students will have earned an OSHA 10 hour certification and a TDLR Electrical Apprenticeship License.
“The jobs offered will be entry-level; the company will work with the students to start their apprenticeship process,” said Elaina. “So that they can become a licensed electrician. The class here at NAM is starting the initial certification.”
NAM will receive several VR headsets to conduct training here at our offices. Students will divide their time between e-learning on computers, then practical application of that learning on VR headsets. All technology for the class will be provided by JP Morgan Chase & Co, a funding sponsor for the program.
“NAM was referred to this program by Mattress Mack’s team,” said Elaina. “They have this program there, so they reached out to me and let me know that this opportunity to offer classes with TRIO was available for our service area.”
Initially the cost per student exceeded NAM’s financial capacity. After several meetings with the people at TRIO Education, they offered the LVTC the opportunity for grant funding, to cover all costs of conducting the classes for NAM clients. They connected NAM to Memorial Assistance Ministries (MAM), who is the recipient of the funds. NAM’s LVTC is a co-recipient of the funds, with MAM providing the funding for 25 individuals to receive this training through NAM.
“Offering this class will provide NAM the opportunity to expand beyond industries in the medical field,” said Elaina, “and this occupation is in a high-skill, high-growth job field, so it is something people can make a very lucrative wage once they complete their Journeyman Certification.”
The starting wage for those who have earned the TDLR Electrical Apprenticeship License is well above minimum wage, with the opportunity to earn as much as $35 or more an hour once a Journeyman License has been acquired. Electricians in this industry can be on call based on weather conditions, power outage repairs, or natural disasters that result in power outages and powerline repairs being needed.
Interested applicants must meet all qualifications for the program. All of those applying must be able to pass a background check and drug test.