WorkReadyU program continues to grow

Mykel Hilliard, Editor-in-Chief

As access to COVID-19 vaccines increases and businesses reopen, the state has seen an upward trend in employment. According to the Texas Workforce Commission, the state has added over 681,000 jobs since August 2020.

To assist people in getting back into the workforce, each Dallas College campus offers WorkReadyU, an adult education program that helps participants succeed in college and learn skills to advance their careers.

Shanese Alexander, WorkReadyU program director, said: “I’ve noticed that we’ve been having an increase in interest. The audience has shifted. Students who are applying to get their High School Equivalency (GED) are a bit younger. So they have been more comfortable with online learning.”

In October, WorkReadyU announced they would be teaming up with Generation USA, a national nonprofit organization to offer free online training programs in web development and cloud management.

To be eligible for the program participants must be 16 or older, have a valid photo ID and be a Dallas County resident with no bachelor’s or advanced degrees.

Program participants can choose from a wide range of career training programs in fields such as early childhood development, culinary arts and hospitality, EMT, welding and more.

 The program features a High School Equivalency (HSE) preparation program which helps individuals develop skills to increase their knowledge in five key areas – reading, writing, math, science and social studies. 

With help from Generation USA, individuals will be able to earn certificates such as Amazon Web Services Cloud certification or JavaScript certification.

Anabeyde Lopez, a former WorkReadyU student, said she initially struggled to pass the math portion of her HSE test but persisted and attended math sessions at WorkReadyU. Lopez said the inspiration behind working toward her HSE was her children. “How could I encourage them if I didn’t finish mine,” she said.

Christina Percy, a former student, said the skills she learned in the Cloud Support Program in WorkReadyU put her in a better position to be hired. “I am grateful for not only the connections I’ve made but what I’ve learned about the cloud, networking, Linux, programming, presenting myself and so much more,” Percy said.