The Texas Workforce Commission has awarded Blinn College a grant worth $115,145 to provide safety and skills training for almost 200 employees at a new pipe mill located in Bryan.
Axis Pipe and Tube, Inc., which plans to open a 183-acre plant later this year to produce pipe and tubing for the oil and gas industry, is partnering with Blinn College to train 156 new employees and upgrade the skills of 33 existing employees using funds awarded through the grant. The $120 million facility will go into operation this fall and will eventually employ 285 people.
“The training identified in this project will provide the opportunity for Axis’s employees to improve their basic skills, learn and master new technological skills and provide opportunity for career advancement,” said Dr. Cynthia Griffith, vice president for instruction for technical and workforce education. “This training will allow Axis Pipe and Tube to successfully implement the new and advanced technology necessary to become efficient in its business model and manufacturing processes.”
Blinn will provide customized technical training for the manufacturing of pipe and tubing as well as safety training, including Occupational Safety and Health Administration regulations and the safe operation of forklifts, and will provide first aid, CPR and automated external defibrillator (AED) training.
The Prolamsa Group announced it was opening its Bryan facility in April 2013, to be operated under the newly-formed Axis Pipe and Tube, Inc. The company expects to produce approximately 300,000 tons of pipe and tubular products each year.
“We are happy to have a resource like Blinn in the community,” said Francisco Garza, vice president and general manager for Prolamsa. “Their commitment to education has reinforced to us the good decision we made in choosing Bryan, Texas for this major investment.”
The Skills Development Fund is the premier job-training program in Texas, providing training dollars for Texas businesses and their employees. Administered by the Texas Workforce Commission, success is achieved through collaboration among businesses, public community and technical colleges, local workforce development boards and economic development partners.
From Sept. 1, 2013 – Aug. 31, 2015, the Texas Workforce Commission has budgeted $48 million in Skills Development Funds to support high-quality, customized job training projects across the state.
“Blinn is excited about the opportunity to partner with more local businesses in applying for these funds,” said Rod Thomas, director of workforce and corporate partnerships. “The training provided through the Skill Development Fund produces better employees who in turn contribute to the community’s economic vitality.”
Businesses, consortiums and trade unions with more than 100 employees are encouraged to contact the College at 979-209-7205 to explore partnering with Blinn for Skill Development Fund training opportunities. Businesses with fewer than 100 employees may be eligible for Skills for Small Business grants, and are also encouraged to contact Blinn for more information.
Blinn’s Division of Workforce Education improves the local economy by helping job-seekers obtain the skills and credentials they need to succeed in the workplace, and by partnering with local businesses to offer training opportunities for incumbent and new employees. For more information on Blinn’s Workforce Education opportunities, including class schedules and registration information, visit www.blinn.edu/workforce.