In the course of 18 months, the Westside Education and Training Center (WETC) in San Antonio emerged through a partnership between the community, the local school district, and the community college. “Driving all this was the need to address the long-term demographics of the West Side. There was a clear desire to find ways to improve the educational attainment of students in the Edgewood School District and in the West Side” (p.2). This paper reviews how the center was created and the reasons for its success in connecting people with jobs.
(Abstractor: Author and Website Staff)Full publication title: Westside Education & Training Center: Finding Creative Ways to Combine Residents’ Need for Good Jobs with Employers’ Need for Trained Workers
Major Findings & Recommendations
The success of the WETC was due to a variety of factors: • Rapid establishment of the center. • “The availability of a recently closed school. • “The willingness of a broad range of partners to work together without one organization controlling the process. • “The role that Making Connections San Antonio could play to catalyze and support the process. • “The existence of organized residents to make sure that the plans were kept in tune with residents’ needs. • “And the simple fact that WETC is addressing one of this area’s most pressing needs: training that can help residents acquire the skills they need to get jobs that pay enough to support families” (p.2). • Community set a vision for WETC • “Creating a seamless flow from education to workplace” (p.8). • “Placing workers into a variety of pipelines” (p.10). • “Overcoming barriers to student success” (p.12). • “A new conduit to higher education” (p.16). • The community plays a role in governance. (Abstractor: Author and Website Staff)