Hope on the horizon for job hunters

By Courtney Lane - bio | email
Posted by Ellen Krafve - email

TYLER, TX (KLTV) - For East Texans looking for a job, there is some hope on the horizon. President Obama has announced a $12 billion plan to help stimulate the growth of two-year college programs, which have been flooded with new enrollments. That's because these schools are an option you have to get job training for a new field.

Ca'mel Davis is one of countless East Texans struggling to make ends meet.

"I'm a mother of two and have a sister that lives with me that has cancer," said Davis.

She's been working part time and going back to school at Tyler Junior College. Vocational nursing students are training for a new career that offers more security.

"We've had so many major companies close down and a lot of people are having to go back to school and just totally change their whole career," said Davis.

President Obama says pumping $12 billion into community colleges will help Americans get new or higher skilled jobs. Fred Peters with TJC says they're thrilled.

"What's heartening is to hear the president of our nation to express how important community colleges can be in getting our economy back on track," said Peters.

He says East Texans have been enrolling at TJC at a record rate, so additional funding would be most welcome.

"Having the opportunity to expand our facilities [would be great]," said Peters. "I know at TJC, we're in need of an allied health and nursing building. We just have outgrown our present facility so the opportunity for us to apply and make application of these kinds of funds is very critical."

"I think it could really benefit students a lot 'cause we need all of the equipment," said Jason Alford, who is training for a new career. "We need the help. We need more expensive classrooms."

The Obama Administration hopes this will help some 5 million Americans earn degrees and certificates over the next 10 years. Under the plan, community colleges can apply for funding and competitive grants. TJC says details of that process have not yet been released as the plan was just unveiled, but they'll apply for as much as they can.

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