The Plumber Pipeline Program
Educating the Future Austin Plumbing Workforce
Sam Dowdy of S & D Plumbing has seen the demand for skilled plumbing technicians. He believes that students should have an understanding of the salaries associated with careers that can come from applied training. Sam reached out to TSTC (Texas State Technical College) and the Taylor, Bartlett, Granger, Thrall, and Thorndale independent school districts to develop what would become the TSTC Tech-Connect Co-op.
Sam has been a supporter of advancing plumbing technology and vocational education in schools for a long time, and he proved to be the catalyst in bringing together five local school districts and Texas State Technical College (TSTC) in an effort to address both a current and future workforce need.
Mr. Dowdy communicated with these cooperative participants directly and became the driving force in getting the TSTC Tech-Connect Co-op organized and underway. He took his knowledge of the plumbing business and his own need for qualified employees to the stakeholders responsible for educating our future workforce, and has worked with them to bridge the gap between an aspiring student and a trained, qualified employee.
Beginning with the 2014-2015 school year, high school students enrolled in these districts will have the opportunity to participate in a cooperative training program with zero tuition costs. Supplies and textbooks are provided by the school districts. Students can receive up to 27 college credits, which also meets the high school Texas Education Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) and Texas career and workforce education requirements.
Who Can Enroll in the Plumber Pipeline Program?
Students can enroll in this program when they get to the 11th grade. The qualifications are: each student must be 16 years old and have a valid driver’s license. Starting their junior year, these students will spend approximately three hours per day, Monday through Friday with TSTC, learning hands-on skills through activities aligned with the plumbing trade.
Participants will also have the opportunity to work for S & D Plumbing so they may earn wages while they enhance their skills and advance their career goals. S & D intends to employ the top four to six students based on their grades and work performance. The students will make between $8.00 and $10.00 an hour.
Hours worked, both in the classroom and on the job, will be applied towards each student’s Tradesmen’s Plumbing License through the State Board of Plumbing Examiners. Upon their final certification by TSTC, students interning with S & D Plumbing will be eligible for scholarships through the Associated Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors of Texas (PHCC Texas) to continue their education.
If you’re interested in this program please follow the link below for more information: www.waco.tstc.edu/co-op/studentinfo
Learn more about our Austin plumbing company, including the services we offer and our career opportunities. Give us a call at (512) 648-4663 today!