Texas Schools Awarded Grants for Trucking Vocations

A Windham School District student works on brakes
A Windham School District student works on brakes as part of his automotive training. (Windham School District)

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Educational grants for careers as truck drivers and diesel mechanics are among $54 million in awards by the Texas Workforce Commission to schools to buy equipment and expand job options for students.

“Texas continues to cultivate a highly skilled, diverse workforce through major investments in career and technical education training programs for our students,” Gov. Greg Abbott said Dec. 28 when announcing Jobs and Education for Texans grants enabling students to earn a license, certificate or post-secondary degree.

The grants are to help schools offset start-up costs to develop career and technical education programs for public community, state and technical colleges, school districts and open enrollment charter schools. Equipment funded through JET grants must be used to train students for jobs in high-demand occupations.

Borger-based Frank Phillips College will receive $212,515 to help purchase and install equipment to train 50 students for careers as mechanics for trucks/buses and diesel engine specialists.

Starting with 126 students, Lamar State College-Orange will use its $159,780 for training equipment to help prepare students for jobs in transportation and moving materials.


Hosts Seth Clevenger and Mike Freeze mark 100 episodes of RoadSigns, which started off four years ago asking,  "Autonomous: Who's Behind the Wheel of Tomorrow?" Now, see where trucking was in 2018 and where it's going in 2023. Hear a snippet, above, and get the full program by going to RoadSigns.TTNews.com

Laredo College was awarded a $336,300 grant to buy and install equipment to initially serve 200 students to become heavy-truck drivers.

“It’s important to identify high-demand jobs, but it’s critical to proactively commit resources to ensure Texans are ready to meet those workforce needs,” said Bryan Daniel, chairman of the Texas Workforce Commission.

He noted that the grants are an important investment to train for high-demand jobs now and in the future.

Grants also were given to school districts and open-enrollment charter schools. The Laredo Independent School District will have $712,500 to buy and install equipment to start training 130 students to be truck mechanics and diesel engine specialists.

Weatherford Independent School District plans to use its $151,813 grant to buy and install equipment to initially teach 225 teen students to start careers as truck mechanics and servicing diesel engines.

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Windham School District is receiving over $544,000 for two training programs. The district operates schools on 89 sites for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice to provide educational programs for eligible incarcerated students to reduce recidivism by helping them be productive and have career training.

A $265,810 grant will enable the district to buy equipment to train at least 30 students to be drivers of heavy trucks and tractor-trailers. Another grant, for $278,854, will be used to train 36 students to become industrial truck and tractor operators.