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Rosit Youssef is one of the youngest students in TSTC Cybersecurity. She boasts a perfecet 4.0 GPA and was recently invited to join Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society.

(ROSENBERG, Texas) - Rosit Youssef was only 13-years-old when her family moved from Egypt to the United States. She has struggled, but has persevered, and now at age 18, is one of the youngest students in Texas State Technical College’s Cybersecurity program.

“I struggled with being in a new country, but I knew we had to do this for better opportunities and so my sister and I could have a chance at an education and a better life,” she said. “But it was all still so scary.”

Yet, she overcame her biggest obstacle yet – learning English.

“I was already learning English before we left Egypt, so I understood the words, but it was speaking it that gave me problems,” said Youssef.

She quickly caught up to her classmates and ended up excelling in high school, graduating at only 16.

However, that year was unconventional in every aspect for Youssef because of the devastation Hurricane Harvey had brought to the area, her family included.

“We graduated, but without any type of honor roll because all records had been lost in the flooding, but it’s okay, I was just happy that my family and I were safe,” she said.   

The Youssef’s new home was a total loss after the flooding. But what Youssef said she finds miraculous is that they were able to weather the storm safely in that same home, with no food or water.

“It’s been a bumpy road, but we’ve made it and now I’m here at TSTC working toward a career I love,” she said.

It was in 10th grade, during a TSTC recruitment presentation that Youssef realized Cybersecurity was the path she needed to take.

“I loved the idea of cyber safety and using cyber processes to help companies and individuals stay safe,” said Youssef. “So early on I knew that TSTC was the college for me.”

Youssef’s entire family is in the healthcare field but that didn’t stop her from pursuing her own passion.

“I’ve always wanted to do my own thing and my family has always been supportive,” she said. “And that’s why I’ve been able to succeed.”

Not letting her age be a barrier or excuse, Youssef currently boasts a perfect 4.0 grade-point average, was recently invited to join Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society and expects to earn her associate degree in Spring 2020.

What Youssef said she loves about the college and what has made her experience positive is the focus on hands-on learning and the small class size for more one-on-one help. She said this has allowed her to find her niche in the field: Digital Forensics, where she said she’ll get to do good for this world.

“Even right now that I still have some time before graduating I already feel confident that I am ready to enter the workforce because of the practice and experience I’ve been able to get here at TSTC,” she said. “I could not have gotten this type of opportunity anywhere else.”

And as the only woman in her class, Youssef has also been able to take advantage of resources offered to non-traditional students in their field.

She has received some scholarships and has been able to use TSTC’s Lending Library, which has allowed her to borrow, instead of purchase, the books she needs.

“All of this has really saved me and my family money. I’ve only paid a minimal amount for my education,” she said. “I thank TSTC for helping their students in any way they can because now I am not in debt.”

Youssef said she hopes to finish her last semesters strong and help other women also enter the field of cybersecurity.

“This field needs more women and there’s plenty of room,” she said. “I want to encourage other women to pursue their passions without fear or intimidation because technology is advancing and we have to be a part of it.”

Cybersecurity is also offered at TSTC’s Harlingen, Marshall, North Texas, Waco and East Williamson County campuses.

For more information on TSTC Cybersecurity, visit

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TSTC, in partnership with the Central Fort Bend Chamber, hosted MFG Day 2019. Nearly 200 local high school students and 20 industry partners were in attendance.

(ROSENBERG, Texas) - Monica Raumaker, a senior at Cinco Ranch High School and Miller Career and Technology Center in Katy, was one of nearly 200 local high school juniors and seniors who attended Manufacturing (MFG) Day at Texas State Technical College on Friday.

The 17-year-old, said the event was an eye opener for her in regards to manufacturing in the 21st century.

“This event was a great opportunity for students like me,” she said. “I learned about so many different career paths that I can take within the industry and it was amazing to see that what I’m learning in class is all applicable to the real world.”

The Katy native added that she is excited to enter an industry with so much opportunity.

The community event hosted in partnership with the Central Fort Bend Chamber, is part of a national celebration that is launched annually on the first Friday of October.

Among the relevant manufacturing programs offered on the Fort Bend County campus include Precision Machining Technology and Industrial Systems.

The halls at the TSTC Brazos Center were lined with nearly 20 industry partners who were ready to network with high school and college students, educators, and leaders and members of the community.

Central Fort Bend Chamber President and Chief Executive Officer Kristin Weiss said this is the first time the event has been put on by the Industrial Division of the Central Fort Bend Chamber.

“I am on cloud nine right now. The event was a great success,” said Weiss. “Seeing students excited, interacting with the companies and telling us that they’re learning so much makes me so happy. That is what this event was all about.”  

The event held from 9 a.m. to noon included campus tours, industry visits and a panel discussion with industry specialists and former career technology education students including TSTC Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) alumnus Brandon Felts.

Kellen Dorman from Gurecky Manufacturing in Rosenberg said there is a misperception about what manufacturing careers entail, and with an increase in demand for skilled technicians in the industry this has been a great event to educate and increase awareness about how the growing industry is vital to the economy and provides a number of career opportunities.

“Hosting this type of event was a great idea,” she said. “It’s so important to show our future generations that there are other options outside of a four-year university and how manufacturing is evolving.”

Dorman also added that she was excited to see so many young girls interested in pursuing careers in the manufacturing industry and she hopes that she was able to encourage them.

“We have two women at Gurecky, one of them is a machinist,” said Dorman. “That just goes to show that there is room for women in this industry, especially as the industry’s technology becomes more sophisticated.”

TSTC field development officer John Kennedy said the day was wildly successful for TSTC.

“To have so many students and potential employers in one place was fantastic,” said Kennedy. “The support we received from educators and the community regarding this event was overwhelming. I can already see this event grow annually.”

Kennedy and Weiss said they hope to continue working together to make MFG Day even bigger and better for years to come. 

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TSTC programs such as Precision Machining Technology (pictured), Robotics, Electrical Power and Controls and Industrial Systems Technology will be on hand during Manufacturing Day for tours and answer any questions.

(ROSENBERG, Texas) - National Manufacturing (MFG) Day is around the corner and Texas State Technical College,

in partnership with the Central Fort Bend Chamber, will be celebrating with a community event.

 MFG Day, traditionally held on the first Friday in October, will be hosted October 4, 2019, from 9 a.m. to noon at the TSTC Brazos Center.

 “This event gives our local students, local manufacturers, and our community an opportunity to

experience TSTC in a unique way as employers will be introduced to a segment of our future workforce,” said TSTC field development officer John Kennedy. “Events such as Manufacturing Day are great for TSTC because they highlight what we do - educate, train and prepare men and women for a great-paying career.”

 MFG Day is an annual event that allows manufacturing facilities and education institutions across the country to open their doors and open more minds to a growing industry that is vital to the economy and to show how 21st century manufacturers are solving tomorrow’s challenges today.

“With the growth that is anticipated in Fort Bend County within the next five to 10 years, we need to create awareness about the educational opportunities in our area for this industry,” said Kristin Weiss, president and chief executive officer for the Central Fort Bend County Chamber. “And TSTC plays an integral part in our community by helping us build our workforce and keep our workers local. So partnering with TSTC for this event was a no-brainer.”

According to a press release from the Manufacturing Institute and National Association of Manufacturers, last year there were nearly 3,000 MFG events held across North American with more than 80 percent of students saying they became more convinced that manufacturing provides interesting and rewarding careers after attending the events.

“Modern manufacturing environments are commonly thought of as dark, dangerous factories designed for low-skilled workers, but MFG Day addresses this misperception,” the MFG Day press release stated. “Over the next decade, manufacturers will need to fill 4.6 million jobs. These jobs offer long-term career opportunities, high pay and exposure to cutting-edge technology and innovations.”

Kennedy said the event will include TSTC campus tours, a panel of industry specialists and former career and technical education students, and exhibitor visits with 20 industry partners such as CenterPoint Energy, Englebrecht Manufacturing, Frito-Lay, FW Murphy Production Controls, I Build America and Gurecky Manufacturing Services.

 “We are very thankful for our industry partners who have decided to participate in this opportunity and we hope that the students who attend this event will be intrigued by what we offer and decide to continue their education at TSTC after they graduate from high school,” said Kennedy. “Our mantra is ‘Placing more Texans in great-paying jobs,’ and we hope to offer that opportunity when these students are ready.”

 More than 300 high school juniors and seniors from surrounding school districts, college students, their parents and educators are expected to attend.

They will not only gain knowledge in manufacturing careers, but also learn about the programs TSTC offers that can help them gain employment in the industry.

Attendees will take an in-depth look into programs such as TSTC’s Robotics, Electrical Power and Controls, Industrial Systems Technology and Precision Machining.

To register for the event, contact the Center Fort Bend Chamber at 281-342-5464 or visit,

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TSTC Electrical Lineworker Technology students practice climbing and wiring at the college's pole yard.

(ROSENBERG, Texas) - Electrical lineworker occupations are among the most physically demanding careers, but also one of the highest-paying in the nation.

That is why Texas State Technical College is training and preparing the future lineworkers of the industry.

“This profession is listed as a high-demand occupation by the Texas Workforce Investment Council,” said TSTC Electrical Lineworker Technology statewide department chair Eric Carithers. “The projected growth of electrical lineworkers between now and 2026 is about 8 percent.”

To get in on the action, it takes one year to receive a Certificate 1 and 20 months to receive an associate degree from TSTC to enter this high-demand industry.

In addition to a certificate or associate degree, electrical lineworker students can also earn additional certifications such as a Class A commercial driver’s license, a first aid and automated external defibrillator certificate, and an Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) 30-hour construction industry certification.

Carithers said each class and its curriculum are carefully planned by TSTC faculty and the program’s advisory board, which is composed of industry partners that employ Electrical Lineworker Technology graduates to ensure that they train and concentrate on the most relevant skill sets sought by employers.

Training in this program is focused on hands-on learning in skills such as climbing safety, distribution operations, transformer connections, live-line safety, distribution construction, rigging, flagging and road safety, and system troubleshooting.   

And as a graduate from a program with a 100 percent job placement rate, according to Carithers, positions as groundman, apprentice, electrical lineworker and power lineworker can be obtained.

In Fort Bend County, every electrical lineworker graduate has been hired by CenterPoint Energy, North Houston Pole Line, Jackson Electric Cooperative or Sendero Electric Cooperative.

Companies throughout the state such as American Electric Power (AEP) and ONCOR have also hired TSTC graduates.

“Wages can vary by region and company, but overall the return of investment for a graduate from our program is huge,” said Carithers. “Their skills are in demand and are well paid for them.”

In fact, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Texas is the state with the highest employment level of electrical lineworkers, with an annual mean wage of more than $53,000 year.

Additionally, the BLS states that the Houston metropolitan area is No. 3, and the Dallas-Fort Worth area is No. 5 in employing electrical lineworkers.

Electrical Lineworker Technology is offered at TSTC’s Waco and Marshall campuses.

For more information, visit  

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TSTC Environmental Technology students gather water samples for a class assignment.

(ROSENBERG, Texas) - Saving the planet is a top priority on the agendas of many, and the first step at being part of this green movement can be taken at Texas State Technical College.

Environmental Technology is one of the newest programs to be added at the college campus in Fort Bend County, with its first cohort graduating this December.

Environmental Technology instructor Yvette Vaughan said she is excited to be coming up on such a huge milestone knowing that there is a positive job outlook for the program’s graduates.

“There are over 600 environmental technician jobs available for our students to apply for within the Houston area,” she said. “Our program is fairly new and growing, and it is giving students the technical skills needed to make them marketable among employers.”

Environmental Technology is a 20-month or five-semester program, and students will graduate with an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Environmental Compliance - Specialization with additional certifications available.

In 20 months, students will learn the skills needed to comply with Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Transportation and Texas Commission on Environmental Quality regulations, which means that students will be able to generate, identify, transport, treat, remediate and dispose of hazardous waste properly.

In addition, students will also gain knowledge and skills in areas such as environmental sampling plans, storm water pollution prevention plans, sampling techniques, environment management systems, hazardous incident command systems, toxicological effects of chemicals, and pollution prevention.

“The skills our students learn prepare them to enter the workforce with a ‘leg up’ on the competition,” said Vaughan. “Employers are excited to hire our graduates because it reduces the cost of training for their company.”

The training in Environmental Technology is primarily hands-on, and to ensure that students master each skill, the program and its labs are equipped with industry-standard equipment.

Students use an array of sampling equipment and gear that they will see and use when they enter the workforce. They also complete mock hazardous material spill scenarios that allow them to wear personal protection equipment, and get to complete sampling surveys of groundwater wells that were recently donated and installed on campus by CRG Texas Environmental Services Inc.

“This recent donation and the equipment our students have access to equip our students with the skills needed to solve the environmental problems around us,” said Vaughan. “This provides our students with the best educational experience possible.”

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Texas is second in employing the highest number of environmental technicians, with a median wage of $47,000 a year.

This means graduates of the Environmental Technology program, according to Vaughan, have the opportunity to find work as environmental field technicians; environmental, health and safety specialists; environmental specialists, coordinators and managers; gas technicians; wastewater/water operators; and environmental consultants.

TSTC program faculty and staff are working closely with local companies that include CRG Texas Environmental Services Inc., NTG Environmental and NSSI to provide internships and entry-level positions for its students and graduates.

Environmental Technology is also offered at TSTC’s Waco campus.

For more information on the program, visit

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Fiber optics students practice fusion splicing, one of the many skills they learn during the Certified Fiber Optics course.

(ROSENBERG, Texas) - Texas State Technical College and the National Communications Training Center (NCTC) in Houston have partnered to provide a certified fiber optic technician training, the college’s first continuing education course to serve the area.

NCTC was formerly based in San Diego, California and operated for nearly two decades, training thousands from all over the world, from as far as Egypt.

The program is committed to training qualified technicians to meet the needs of a fast-growing, highly technical fiber optic field using a hands-on approach to support student success.

“There is a huge demand for fiber optics technicians and the numbers continues to increase,” said Kent Street, NCTC owner and school administrator. “And this industry isn’t going away any time soon.”

Street, came to Houston, after retiring in California, but when he realized the number of fiber optic cabling companies and the growth in the area, he approached TSTC with the idea of a partnership.

“There are hundreds, if not thousands, of cabling companies in the area,” said Street. “And after taking a look at TSTC and their hands-on teaching approach and job-placement focus I knew we would be great partners.”

TSTC Executive Director Workforce Training and Continuing Education Victor Blalack said after meeting with Street, speaking to him about his mission and the training he provides, he knew it would make a great addition to the technical college.

“We are similar in many ways. From our teaching approach to our focus on job placement, this was a perfect fit. A great addition to our technical college,” said Blalack. “We’ve developed a great relationship and we are excited to see it grow.”

TSTC and NCTC offer a three-week course designed to give students an intensive hands-on fiber optics training in installation and cabling to prepare them for certification and a fast-paced career in the industry.

Upon completing the program, graduates will receive a certification from the Fiber Optics Training Association and from Draka, the second largest fiber optic cable manufacturer in the world.

Graduates are also assisted with resume building and job placement and are provided a complete fiber optic and copper technician tool kit.

The first class began July 8 and the program as already seen a 100 percent job placement.

“This is a great start to the program,” said Blalack. “This means that every learning objective is being met and the program is working for our students and the community.”

Street said this course is open to anyone looking to improve a skill set or for a new career.

“In the last 20 years I have seen people from all walks of life come through our program and find success, and I know it won’t be any different in the Houston area,” said Street. “This is a very well-paying, rewarding career and it’s the need and use of faster internet speeds that are driving its progression.

The average starting salary for a certified fiber optics technician can range anywhere between $45,000 a year, and with experience can go up to $70,000 a year.

“The payoff for only three-weeks of intensive training is big. It’s a great-paying career,” said Blalack. “And we work diligently to bring continuing education programs that are tailored to the area so that they benefit our community, region and the state.”

The next certified fiber optic training course begins September 3. For more information, visit 

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TSTC Electrical Lineworker Technology students practice their skills in the pole yard built to train the program's students.

(ROSENBERG, Texas) - Texas State Technical College in Fort Bend County is the fastest growing campus statewide and with the Fall 2019 semester around the corner and 600 students already enrolled, growth is happening exponentially.

Campus Provost Randy Wooten said the campus has seen a 20-30 percent growth every semester since its inception into its own campus in Fall 2016.

“This is the community’s campus,” said Wooten. “There are a number of factors that have contributed to our significant growth and it all began with the support we received from the community when we arrived in the area.”

TSTC first began offering technical instruction in Fort Bend County in 2001 as a partnership with Wharton County Junior College, but with $40 million financial support and encouragement from the city of Rosenberg, city of Richmond, Fort Bend County, city of Sugarland, Sprint Waste Services, the George Foundation, the Henderson-Wessendorff Foundation and the Gulf Coast Medical Foundation, TSTC’s expanded into its own campus.

Wooten credits not only community support, but also the campus’ prime location, visibility and access along Southwest Expressway; the 80 acres the campus sits on with room for expansion; and the commitment from the college’s faculty and staff.

“I knew from the start that TSTC would have success in Fort Bend County. We had all of the ingredients to be successful,” said Wooten. “This is our fourth Fall Semester and we’re already looking into building expansions.”

With 10 high-demand programs offered on campus such as Cyber Security, Industrial Maintenance Technology, Electrical Power and Controls, Welding Technology, Electrical Lineworker Technology and Robotic Technology, enrollment sizes are increasing.

“All of the programs offered were selected based on need and wages,” said Wooten. “This is why were poised for great growth. A successful future is in a student’s grasp. We are Texas’ employment agency.”

Wooten added that he also can’t say enough about the faculty and staff who work really hard for every TSTC student’s future.

“We all do what is necessary. We don’t let job descriptions stop us from helping everyone who walks through our doors,” said Wooten. “Because TSTC is for everyone.”

Wooten encourages the community to visit the campus for tours and to take a closer look into TSTC’s programs.

“This campus belongs to everyone. We service traditional (straight out of high school) and non-traditional (older, returning from the workforce) students and many veterans,” he said. “We make the “American Dream’ possible.”

More than 500 students, to date, have graduated with either a certificate or associate degree from TSTC in Fort Bend County.

The campus is on track to serve more than 5,000 students from across the region in the coming years and there are master plans to expand the college into a sprawling six-to-eight building campus.

The deadline to register for Fall 2019 is August 23. The first day of classes is August 26.

To learn more about the programs offered at TSTC, visit   

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Cole Macek is a Nada, Texas native who graduated with a certificate in 2018 from TSTC's Electrical Lineworker Technology program and is now employed with Jackson Electric Cooperative.

(ROSENBERG, Texas) - Texas State Technical College Electrical Lineworker Technology alum Cole Macek climbed to great heights to gain a new career.

Macek graduated in 2018 with a certificate from the Electrical Lineworker Technology program and is now employed as a lineman apprentice with Jackson Electric Cooperative.

“I met individuals from Jackson Electric while I was in the program. We stayed in contact, and they hired me upon graduating,” he said. “It was a relief because when I got out of the military, I had no idea what I was going to do. And TSTC helped me find a new purpose.”

The 24-year-old served in the U.S. Army for four years. He was stationed at Fort Hood in Texas, and in Germany and Korea overseas.

“I joined the military straight out of high school,” said the Nada, Texas, native. “I enjoyed serving my country. But I was ready to settle down, and I knew my best bet was to gain skills in a trade.”

Although Macek said he would serve again in a heartbeat and at times he misses military life, he has no regrets and is glad he found TSTC.

“The military-to-civilian transition was quite a challenge,” said Macek. “But TSTC’s Veterans Center, staff and instructors were helpful and great resources of information that eased the transition.”

Macek said his first career choice was diesel mechanics because he had experience with it while in the Army, but after learning about the Electrical Lineworker program while touring TSTC, that changed.

“I love working with my hands, being challenged and climbing high,” he said. “Those reasons are why I changed my mind. I always knew a traditional college experience wasn’t for me, and this was going to be anything but traditional.”

He said his experience in the program was excellent. From the hands-on training to his instructors, the program was a guiding force toward his successful career.

“Our instructors always made sure we understood all of the basic foundations and safety concepts of the industry,” said Macek. “It was the hands-on training, though, that made all of the difference for me and really prepared me to enter the workforce.”

Macek added that he has always been a shy person, and it was TSTC that set him on the right track and gave him confidence in his skills and himself to enter the workforce.

Now Macek can be found climbing high in rain or shine, heat or cold, repairing and rebuilding electrical poles and setting up or exchanging electrical wiring.

“In this field there is no break, but it is so rewarding,” he said. “I can see myself doing this for at least the next three decades -- although it would be interesting to see if I could still climb a pole at 70.”

The TSTC alumnus said he is going to keep working hard, making money and gaining experience to someday become a team leader or manager, or open his own company.

And now, with what Macek calls a great starting salary and benefits package, he can achieve his first goal: purchasing his first home.

“My goal when I left the military and returned to school was to find a job and financial security, and I found it,” he said. “I’m officially ready to settle down and buy a house I can call my home.”

Electrical Lineworker Technology is also offered at TSTC’s Marshall and Waco campuses.

TSTC is diligently working to produce highly skilled power line installers and repairers, the need for which, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, will grow eight percent by 2026, with an estimated 18,000 positions to be filled.

For more information on Electrical Lineworker Technology, visit

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TSTC Environmental Technology received two water wells from CRG Texas to use for training. They were installed on the north side of the campus.

(ROSENBERG, Texas) - Students in Environmental Technology at Texas State Technical College now have a new way of sampling, assessing and testing groundwater with two new water wells donated by CRG Texas Environmental Services, Inc. in Rosenberg.

Kevin Casler, co-owner and vice president of CRG Texas said the donation, valued at $20,000, was their way of contributing to the future workforce of the region and the state.

“This donation is beneficial to the community we serve,” said Casler. “These are the kinds of things students will see when they enter the workforce and it’s important to provide that hands-on training.”

These industry-standard water wells were recently installed by CRG Texas and their partners, Evirotech Drilling Services, Xenco Laboratories and AJAX Environmental & Safety Supply on the north side of the Industrial Technology Center on campus.

“I don’t know where to begin in expressing my gratitude for this donation,” said Environmental Technology instructor Yvette Vaughan. “This is going to help give our students the skills needed to solve the environmental problems around us.”

Vaughan said the water wells will allow students to learn the physical skill of retrieving and sampling groundwater, water calculations and water purging and refilling for the most accurate sample.

She added that the video footage taken during the water wells’ installation will also be used for teaching purposes. “This is a

wonderful partnership and opportunity for our students and TSTC,” said Vaughan. “This is going to provide a better educational experience for our students. It’s a wonderful gift that has been bestowed on us.”

Environmental Technology student Vladimir Hidrovo, who expects to graduate in Fall 2020, said he is excited for the new semester because his class will be one of the first to use the water wells for assignments and projects.

“This is something you cannot learn in a book,” he said. “This program is heading in the right direction with this donation and it allows us to connect the dots and better understand what we read.”

He added that he was fortunate enough to see the water well drilling and installation firsthand.

“The installation process puts things into perspective for us,” said Hidrovo. “It was a wonderful experience to see industry professionals at work and to be able to network with them and ask them questions. This exposes us to real-world skills  and makes me even more excited to be pursuing this program.”

Both Casler and Vaughan said they look forward to growing this partnership and working together to produce well-trained and highly skilled graduates to enter the workforce.

“It’s been great working with TSTC and we hope to return to present to the Environmental Technology classes and share our experiences,” said Casler. “And when we have the opportunity to hire we will look to TSTC’s program for qualified candidates.”

Vaughan said she feels fortunate being able to grow this type of partnership for TSTC and her students because its companies like CRG Texas and their partners that expose students to career opportunities and invaluable knowledge.

“There are not enough words to describe how I feel about this donation and industry relationship,” said Vaughan. “I thank them from the bottom of my heart and we look forward to having them back on campus and continuing our work together.”


Environmental Technology is also offered at TSTC’s Breckenridge and Waco campus.

For more information or to register for Fall 2019, visit

The deadline to register for Fall 2019 is August 23 and the first day of class is August 26.

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Jacob Mathis graduated Thursday night from TSTC with an associate degree in Electrical Power and Controls during the college's commencement ceremony at the Stafford Centre. Mathis has already accepted a job offer with Savor Power.

Jacob Mathis hit a homerun with the associate degree in Electrical Power and Controls he earned Thursday night during Texas State Technical College’s commencement ceremony at the Stafford Centre.

With a job on the horizon, he said he does not regret hanging up his cleats at Southern Arkansas University and transferring to Texas State Technical College.

“Baseball is my life, but there’s more to life than baseball; like a great-paying career,” said Mathis. “And as a business major I witnessed the struggle many of my classmates had finding jobs and I didn’t want to deal with that struggle especially with the amount of debt I was incurring at the university.”

So only after a year in Arkansas, the Sweny native moved back home and started his journey at TSTC.

Mathis heard about TSTC from his father who works as a project manager at Chevron Phillips 66 and is in charge of hiring technical college graduates such as electricians, welders and pipefitters, which is part of the skilled workforce TSTC provides the state.

“Coming into TSTC I had no idea what I wanted to do,” said Mathis. “But the college has great options, something for everyone, and it was Electrical Power and Controls that caught my eye.”

What the 21-year-old found appealing about the program and TSTC was the affordability and the job security a degree from his program could offer.

“I was already in major debt from my one year in Arkansas with no promise of a job after graduation,” he said. “So to come to TSTC and have that offered to me was a breath of fresh air. I knew I had made the right decision.”

Although the first day of class was intimidating for Mathis, he said his passion quickly grew for the field and the more knowledge he gained, the more he wanted to learn.

“There is no secret to what this field entails anymore,” he said. “Because of my instructors and the hands-on, real-world training I’ve received I am more than prepared for what I will face out in the workforce. No other school offers this type of learning experience.”

Mathis, who already has a position lined up with Savor Power in Houston as a field technician, credits TSTC for making the job search process easier and giving him the skills and confidence to do it.

“I know if I had stayed in Arkansas I would not have this success right now,” said Mathis. “I would be broke, and scrabbling and struggling to find a job, but instead I’m starting my career with great pay and a benefits package.”

And although Mathis misses playing baseball, he said nothing can replace the relief of knowing he has a career waiting for him. He has no regrets.

He still finds time to occasionally play on city softball leagues, and to pay his way through school, he also served as an umpire for city and school leagues.

He even worked at a welding shop, as a TSTC student ambassador and landscaper during his time at TSTC.

“College is an investment, no matter where you go, but it’s a great investment,” he said. “I never minded doing what I had to do to secure a future for myself, but TSTC even helped me with the financial burden.”

Mathis received a $3,000 Texan Success Scholarship from TSTC, which helped him pay tuition, limit some of the jobs he was working and purchase the equipment he needed for class and for the workforce.

“This was a huge load off my shoulders and I want to thank TSTC for that,” he said. “They’ve helped me achieve my goals in more ways than one.”

Mathis celebrated the night with his family and his baseball friends from Arkansas and said he can’t wait to see where this milestone takes him because his field is full of future possibilities.

For more information on TSTC’s Electrical Power and Controls program, visit

The deadline to register for Fall 2019 is August 23. The first day of class is August 26.