TWC extends grant for qualified displaced workers to take tuition-free courses

The Kilgore College Workforce Development Department has received an extension from the Texas Workforce Commission Investment Council to help displaced workers take advantage of tuition-free training in one of three areas.

The $500,000 grant awarded to KC last year by the Wagner-Peyser 7(b) Grant Program will be extended through February of 2018.

Candidates who apply and meet certain qualifications through KC Workforce Development can take tuition-free courses at KC in advanced welding, transportation (CDL) and industrial electrical technology.

To qualify for the tuition-free courses, individuals must be “displaced” from their last full-time position.  This means qualified candidates must have been laid off because their employer closed a plant or division; moved or abolished their position; or simply had insufficient work for them.  Also, service members who leave the military or displaced homemakers may qualify.

“This grant continues to provide displaced workers a tuition-free opportunity to obtain cutting-edge technology skills potentially leading to exciting career opportunities that produce living-wage compensation,” said Dr. Brenda Kays, KC president.

Classes in advanced welding will include advanced structural steel, advanced pipe welding, advanced pipe fitting and pressure vessel layout.  Courses in commercial driving will include CDL Class A, Fast Track CDL and CDL with Fluid Services.  The industrial electrical technology courses will help students become an industrial electrical apprentice.

The next commercial driving courses begin Sept. 1 and industrial electrical technology courses begin Sept. 5.  Welding courses are scheduled as needed.

Wagner-Peyser 7(b) grants, according to the TWC website, are federal funds allocated to each state’s office of the governor each year to fund workforce training and job placement services.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, more than 7 million American workers have been displaced from long-term jobs since 2008.

For more information on the grant, or to apply for one of the student positions, call Eva McClellan at 903-988-7426 or visit