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January Good News at TMCC

Student in the advanced manufacturing lab
Rebecca A. Eckland

ABE Program Named Finalist in National Challenge

TMCC’s Adult Basic Education (ABE) program was recently named a finalist in the Rethink Adult Ed Challenge, a national competition to advance pre-apprenticeships. This national competition, overseen by the U.S. Department of Education (DOE), aims to advance pre-apprenticeships, explores new learning and training experiences for adult learners. This year, the DOE received 203 submissions across a range of industries including manufacturing, healthcare and technology. Participating in this challenge gives the ABE program the opportunity to explore new learning and training experiences for adult learners through pre-apprenticeship opportunities. 
 
“We want to leverage our great internal resources by aligning our programming to Nevada’s Apprenticeship Project and Nevada Alliance for Youth Apprenticeship. Apprenticeships are a tried and true, ‘learn-while-you-earn’ model,” said ABE Program Director Cynthia Pierrott. Given that the ABE program typically serves working adults with families and financial responsibilities, putting jobs on hold to pursue high-wage careers is usually not an option for these students. 
 
“By developing pre-apprenticeship programming, we give adult basic education students the opportunity to prepare for apprenticeship programs where they can pursue their career goals without having to make the financial sacrifices,” said Pierrott. 
 
ABE’s proposed program for the Rethink Adult Ed Challenge outlines partnerships with the Nevada Alliance for Youth Apprenticeship and the Nevada Apprenticeship Project, as well as leveraged support from their employer partners to design a series of pre-apprenticeship programs in high-demand, high-wage careers. These include training and pre-apprenticeship opportunities in health, information technology, manufacturing and logistics, tourism and gaming. In addition to industry-specific training, these short-term intensive programs will incorporate the Department of Labor’s foundational knowledge and skill competencies in personal effectiveness (interpersonal skills, integrity and professionalism), academic (reading, writing, mathematics) and workplace (teamwork, customer focus, planning, organization, etc.) 
 
“Any ABE student would be eligible for a pre-apprenticeship program so the curriculum will be written specifically to the academic levels of the ABE student population. This project will focus on men of color to help them earn their certificate of high school equivalency while preparing for an apprenticeship program through co-enrollment,” said Pierrott.
 
Although apprenticeships serve as a pathway into careers across industries, many adult learners face barriers to accessing them. Pre-apprenticeships break down these barriers by equipping adult learners with the knowledge and skills they need to enter and succeed in apprenticeships—an opportunity that can lead to a rewarding career. 

As finalists, the ABE proposed program will advance to Stage 2 and compete for $750,000 in prizes. During the second stage, the program will have access to expert support and digital resources to help develop a detailed program proposal. 

English Faculty Lindsay Wilson Publishes Second Book

In the Fall of 2022 TMCC English Professor Lindsay Wilson’s second book, A Day Gives Us So Many Ways to Eat, will be released by WordTech Communications. This follows his first book, No Elegies, which was published in 2015. 

“This book contains the first things I wrote since my last book 2015 until this past summer. There are some poems that are fairly new, as well as a prose poem sequence that was published in the literary journal Fourth Genre,” Wilson said, who said the idea to write a book came to him after publishing his previous one in 2015. 

A Day Gives Us So Many Ways to Eat covers myriad subjects, including being in Nevada, gardening and consumption and violent masculinity, to name a few. “I felt like these were topics I wanted to explore,” Wilson said. “The book also hinged off of my mom’s death that I covered in my last book and it just feels right after the last one that mostly centered on her. The poems in this book are focused on image (like I normally am) but... are more like poem[s] as photography or painting.”

However, Wilson admits that writing during a pandemic and shelter-in-place has not been easy. “This summer I was just happy if I was writing. The previous summers, I was much more focused on writing the book,” said Wilson. Nonetheless, COVID-19 does makes an appearance in the collection; “False Positive, Spring 2020,” which was featured on Nevada Humanities Heart to Heart blog, is an example of a poem that tackles the difficult events of 2020, intertwining COVID-19, racial injustice with the domestic unfolding of gardening and robin’s nests.

Moving forward, Wilson said that he looks forward to beginning a new phase of his poetic work, and of course, of working with TMCC students in his English classes.