Policy Series Reports

The San Antonio Manufacturers Association (SAMA) convened members to support Alamo Colleges and the Alamo Academies in an innovative public-private partnership to close the skills gap. More than 50 area high schools partner with the Alamo Academies, a “Higher Education Dual-Credit Career Academies” model, to provide students an immersive experience in a manufacturing-related curriculum. The Academies provide a college pathway for high school juniors and seniors to attain industry and academic certificates, such as MSSC certifications, that lead to high-wage jobs or to further higher education while addressing critical workforce industry needs.

While in high school, students are dual enrolled at Alamo Colleges, where they engage in 2½ hours of instruction needed to complete a 1-year technical college program of studies as part of the A.A.S. degree pathway. During their junior and senior years of high school, students earn 31-34 college credits. Academies students complete an industry-paid internship in the summer between their junior and senior years, working full time for 8 weeks for a participating employer, earning approximately $3,000 for the summer. Upon graduation, students can either enter a high-demand, high-tech career or continue with their education. The internship also allows employers to test the students before employment.

Partners, including Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Toyota, CPS Energy, ITM, Rackspace, contribute over $2 million to support operating costs. The Alamo Colleges provide facilities, equipment, and instruction; school districts provide textbooks and round trip transportation; employers pay their interns’ salaries; and cities fund operating costs.

© 2019 Manufacturing Institute
733 10th St. NW, Washington, DC 20001