Andres Alcantar signs grant check.
The Texas Workforce Commission recently awarded Brookhaven College a grant of more than $200,000 to provide training to employees of a national company.
The Skills Development Fund Grant, amounting to $280,161, will allow Brookhaven College to train employees at Essilor of America, Inc., the leading manufacturer and wholesale distributor of optical lenses in the United States. Andres Alcantar, commissioner representing the public for the TWC, presented the check to the college at a special ceremony Nov. 4.
“We are proud to be partners with community colleges throughout the state, because they have consistently delivered for us in providing the training that can make our businesses prosperous,” Alcantar said.
The grant will provide almost 30,000 hours of skills training for 1,265 existing employees and 100 projected new employees in positions including accountants, business analysts, sales representatives, engineers and managers in the ophthalmic industry. It will allow Essilor employees to increase their potential for promotions and career growth by earning professional certifications.
WCE employees accept the TWC grant.
Vernon Hawkins, associate vice president for workforce training and continuing education at Brookhaven College, said this grant will positively affect more than just Essilor employees.
“The skills development fund builds and fosters relationships between business and industry constituents, enhancing the community through job creation and development and maintaining our regional workforce through employee skill development,” Hawkins said. “In this instance, the relationship between the college and Essilor will benefit nearly 1,400 employees who will receive this training. Yet, beyond these employees, this partnership will impact and positively affect families in our community.”
Since the Skills Development Fund’s inception in 1996, Brookhaven College has received 14 grants in partnership with a variety of businesses throughout the area, including a $218,999 grant in 2009 to provide training for Air System Components, Inc., and a $272,196 grant in 2007 in partnership with Source, Inc.