Skills development training available for small businesses

Coastal Bend College supports the South Texas small businesses by partnering with Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) to provide customized training for employees.  TWC responds to the training needs of Texas businesses that have fewer than 100 employees with the Skills for Small Businesses Program and Skills Development Fund program.

The emphasis of the Small Business Program is on training for newly-hired and incumbent employees for the purpose of increasing business competitiveness, upgrading employees’ skills and preparing new employees for job requirements.

Tuition for training provided through CBC may be covered in part or entirely with grant funding through the Skills Development Fund for Small Business program. Training is focused in six industry clusters identified by Governor Rick Perry: aerospace and defense; advanced technologies and manufacturing; biotech and life sciences; energy; petroleum refining and chemical products; and information and computer technology. Businesses may apply to TWC for a grant for $1450 per year for new employees and $750 per year for incumbent employees.

In 2009, the fund disbursed $23 million to 170 Texas businesses, upgrading the skills of almost 16,000 workers. Under the Skills Development Fund program, businesses gain a more highly trained workforce and the Texas economy is strengthened.

“Large businesses have had access to training dollars, but this year the Texas Workforce Commission is putting their training dollars into small businesses which are the true engines of rural Texas economic development and now Coastal Bend College and TWC are here to help small businesses train their employees to be more efficient and effective.” said Glynis Holm Strause, CBC Director of CCE.

 CBC Customized and Continuing Education can design classes to meet specific needs of small business to enhance the skills of new and incumbent employees. The application for the grant may be accessed at www.twc.state.tx.us/svcs/funds/ssb.html and CBC CCE staff can provide assistance in completing it. Businesses in the same industry cluster are encouraged to join together to customize and share classes with common career objectives.  To learn more, contact Coastal Bend College Continuing Education at (361) 362-2633 or www.coastalbend.edu.

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