11 Jul 2019

Press Release

PFLUGERVILLE, Texas (July 11, 2019) — The Pflugerville Community Development Corporation (PCDC) and the Workforce Solutions Capital Area Board (WFSCA) presented ceremonial checks representing nearly $300,000 in equipment and training supplies that will be provided to expand an existing emergency medical technician (EMT) training program at the Pflugerville Independent School District during PCDC’s quarterly breakfast at Typhoon Texas Conference Center on July 11.

The High Demand Job Training (HDJT) grant, funded by the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC), focuses on training for specific occupations that are needed in a region. To be eligible for the grant, a local economic development corporation must match the state funding. The PCDC provided the $150,000 matching grant approved by the PCDC Board and City Council on May 28, allowing the WFSCA board to receive and administer the TWC funding at the local level.

“The PCDC has been working on finding the right partnerships to meet the requirements and receive this grant since 2014. Sometimes it just takes a village – in this case, a Pfluger-village - to make things happen,” PCDC Executive Director Amy Madison said. “In the end, our efforts brought together five different government agencies to benefit a workforce program that serves our local emergency medical employers, and ultimately will help save lives in our community.”

Partnering with WFSCA, Pflugerville ISD and the Travis County Emergency Services District No. 2 who provides instruction for the program, the PCDC was able to identify the EMT program as a prime candidate for the grant funding. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of EMTs and paramedics is expected to grow by 33 percent between 2010-2020 – higher than average for other occupations.

“We are excited to work together with the PCDC to build up our region’s skilled workforce. Pflugerville high school seniors will have the opportunity to launch their health care careers as EMT’s, and we connect our emerging workforce with an in-demand occupation that helps to keep Pflugerville safe,” Workforce Solutions Capital Area CEO Tamara Atkinson said. “Public/private partnerships like this one are integral to the success of the Austin Metro Area Master Community Workforce Plan, and we expect this program to be the first of many innovative partnerships with the PCDC.”

In 2018, the program had 27 students enrolled with a 95 percent graduation rate. The EMT training program curriculum at Hendrickson High School, now completing its second year, delivers instruction in life-saving techniques, pharmacology, and other medical courses as well as provides hands-on training in ambulance, clinical and hospital settings.

The year-long program meets multiple times a week and on certain Saturdays. Upon graduation, students are eligible for an EMT-B certification by the National Registry of EMTs and by the Texas Department of State Health Services, making them eligible to work for various EMT and ambulance agencies across the state, as well as providing a foundation for future medical education.

“Enrollment in the EMT Academy has tripled over the last two years, and with the expansion of this program, students from all four PfISD high school Health Science programs now have an opportunity to train for a career as an EMT,” Pflugerville Superintendent Dr. Doug Killian said. “We are proud of the new partnerships with the Texas Workforce Commission, Capital Area Workforce Solutions Board, the Pflugerville Community Development Corporation, and continue a strong partnership with the Travis County Emergency Services District #2, Pflugerville Fire Department.”

The High Demand Job Training program, enacted under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, allows for local workforce boards and economic development corporations to partner to provide funding for programs that address skill gaps and ensures a talent pipeline for jobs and professions that are in critical need of fulfillment. As of July 1, 2018, the WFSCA has identified 54 in-demand occupations.

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