A&M-San Antonio receives grant to boost training and job placement for women preparing for IT and cybersecurity careers

By University Communications

Thursday, 07 08 2021

SAN ANTONIO – Texas A&M University-San Antonio will receive $255,000 in grant funding for its innovative Texas Two-Step for Increasing Women in Technology program. The program – facilitated by A&M-San Antonio’s Mays Center for Experiential Learning and Community Engagement – is one of only 18 workforce skills training and job placement programs from across the state selected as part of $5.5 million in Texas Talent Connection grants awarded by the Texas Workforce Investment Council in Governor Abbott’s Economic Development and Tourism division.   

As its name suggests, the aim of the Texas Two-Step program is twofold: 

  1. Provide participants with tools to help them focus on career development and financial wellness.  

  2. Offer technical training through online modules in the areas of asset security, communication and network security, identity and access management, and security engineering and operations – as well as preparation for certifications. 

    Throughout the Two-Step program, participants will engage in numerous experiential learning opportunities. According to Mays Center Associate Vice President and Executive Director Dr. Edwin Blanton, upon completion of the program, participants will be ready to either enter the workforce through a local employer or enroll at A&M-San Antonio to pursue a degree in computer science, information technology, or cybersecurity while receiving specialized wraparound career and academic services. 

    “A big thank you goes to Workforce Solutions Alamo for its support of this program proposal,” said Blanton. The Two-Step program, which will serve women across Atascosa, Bandera, Bexar, Comal, Frio, Gillespie, Guadalupe, Karnes, Kendall, Kerr, McMullen, Medina, and Wilson counties, will provide in-demand skills training leading to higher-paying jobs and career advancement. The program is projected to launch later this year, with four cohorts (two each in fall and spring) of 25 participants on average per cohort. 

    The Texas Workforce Investment Council assists the Governor and the Legislature with strategic planning for and evaluation of the Texas workforce system to promote the development of a well-educated, highly skilled workforce for Texas. Council members represent workforce system partners and stakeholders, including business and industry, organized labor, education, and community-based organizations. The Texas Workforce Commission will administer, manage, and monitor the project contract for the Wagner-Peyser 7(b) program, which will require certain performance standards and outcomes from grant recipients.
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Texas A&M University-San Antonio 

Established as a stand-alone university in 2009, Texas A&M University-San Antonio is a comprehensive four-year public university that reflects the culturally diverse, heritage-rich community it serves. Situated on nearly 700 acres in south San Antonio, A&M-San Antonio is a Military Embracing™ institution offering 30 undergraduate degrees and 14 graduate degrees to nearly 6,800 students. The University is home to the Henry G. Cisneros Institute for Emerging Leaders and the Cyber Engineering Technology/Cyber Security Research Center. A&M-San Antonio holds the Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI) designation. Military Times ranks the University No. 35 in the nation for “Best for Vets: Colleges.” Visit tamusa.edu for more information. #onamission