Central Texas teachers learning new skills through internship program

Updated: Jun. 22, 2021 at 12:27 PM CDT
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KILLEEN, Texas (KWTX) - Central Texas teachers are getting a chance to learn more about what it’s like working in other industries.

Workforce Solutions of Central Texas is teaming up with companies in the area to offer externships to teachers. For the next few days, teachers will be working with companies like Baylor Scott & White and Extraco bank.

Charley Ayres, director of industry and education partnerships for Workforce Solutions, said it gives teachers a chance to learn more about the industries and what’s required to work there. Then, teachers can take that information back to their students.

Ayres said teachers are often experts in their fields, but they also have the unique job of training the future workforce, so understanding what the workforce looks like outside of a textbook is important.

“It gives them a good opportunity to get on the front lines of what’s going on,” Ayres said. “Because many times, the speed of business moves so quickly, it’s hard for institutions to make those changes.”

Tayo Abudu teaches math at the Killeen Carrier Center. He said he always wants to make real-world connections for his students, and that’s why he’s participating in the program. Abudu is working with a company that makes interiors for buildings, and he hopes he’ll learn ways to show his students what they learn in the classroom is used in a job.

“Knowing the math, how to measure the interiors of buildings, how to calculate the areas of buildings, knowing the volume, you know, all of those things they learn in my class, will be very relevant in the industry I’m going to,” Abudu said.

Ayres said the program is a great opportunity to help connect teachers and students to the companies in the area. He said teachers and students aren’t often aware of available partnerships, or how to connect with companies.

Ayres said there are not enough employees for all the jobs being created in Central Texas, and students are a critical resource for filling those jobs.

“That’s the important thing about the program, for the teachers, employers to work together to better facilitate the training,” Ayres said.

This year, 23 teachers are participating, but Ayres said they hope to expand the program next year.

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