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A bureau within the U.S. Department of Commerce


Press Release

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $1 million to Support Workforce Development in Texas

WASHINGTON - U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker today announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $1 million grant to the Lee College District in Baytown, Texas. The investment supports the creation of a workforce development training center that will help meet an increasing demand for skilled workers in the petroleum industry due to recent growth in the area.

“President Obama and I are committed to supporting a talented and skilled workforce for today’s 21st century jobs,” said Secretary Pritzker. “The EDA investment announced today will help create a workforce development training center.”

According to the grantee, the Greater Houston region is on the brink of unprecedented growth, and employers are concerned that the region does not have the talent it needs to fuel this expansion. EDA’s investment will support the construction of a new 50,000-square-foot facility to meet the training needs resulting from increased economic activity in the petroleum industry. The McNair Training Center will house welding and pipefitting training programs, which are currently running at capacity on Lee College’s main campus. The Gulf Coast Workforce Board indicates these are in-demand fields and projects annual openings of 830 welders, 520 pipefitters and 175 pipefitter assistants in the region through 2020.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.