City leaders in Houston recently honored students in TRIO Electric’s Pre-Apprenticeship Program, with Mayor Sylvester Turner telling them "we believe in people like you."
In proclaiming it "TRIO Pre-Apprenticeship Partnership Day," Mayor Turner recognized the company and their education partners, specifically the leadership of the Spring Branch Independent School District.
Turner also encouraged the 40 students in the program to do the best for themselves and their families. Mayor Turner told students that he had once served as an electrician’s apprentice where he learned skills that he uses to this day as the chief executive of the nation’s fourth largest city.
“Today is a great day in the City of Houston,” Mayor Turner said. "Beau Pollock of TRIO Electric has the vision, dedication and commitment to provide students with job skills,” he said. “You are trailblazers,” Turner told the students, “willing to work hard and learn work skills. In Houston, we invest in human infrastructure because we believe in people like you.”
Pollock, TRIO's President, thanked the students for performing well on the job and proving the program could be a success.
“I had a good idea to train students, yet you had to perform,” Pollock said. “You performed and proved this was a good idea.”
TRIO started their apprenticeship program in 2013, “to help meet a critical demand for electricians with technical and leadership skills. Nearly 200 workers have taken advantage of TAP. In 2017, TRIO started working with Spring Branch ISD and Houston Community College (HCC) to establish the TRIO Pre-Apprenticeship Program (TPAP) for high school students. By the fall 2018 semester, more than 150 high school students will be taking advantage of TPAP through Spring Branch ISD, Austin ISD and Grand Prairie ISD. TRIO Electric plans to expand TPAP to other areas of Texas and the U.S.”
Spring Branch superintendent Scott Muri told the students that it was the vision that created the apprenticeship program to solve a need for skilled workers. Houston Community College Associate Vice Chancellor Michael Webster said the skills learned in the apprenticeship program will last a lifetime.
The teachers in the program are former electricians and educators with electrical experience who have been collectively recruited and screened. The program teaches students how to be safe, productive and skilled electricians as well as teaches other employable and soft skills.
In addition to HCC and Spring Branch ISD, TRIO Pre-Apprenticeship Program partners include Spring Branch ISD SKY partners – KIPP and YES Prep, as well as the Greater Houston Partnership’s UpSkill Houston, United Way, Texas Gulf Coast Workforce Solutions, and the Department of Labor (DOL). The TRIO TAP and TPAP programs are DOL-approved.