Left to right: Julian Alvarez III, Commissioner Representing Labor of the Texas Workforce Commiss... Left to right: Julian Alvarez III, Commissioner Representing Labor of the Texas Workforce Commission; Bryan Daniel, Chairman and Commissioner Representing the Public for the Texas Workforce Commission; DeDe Griffith, Temple College Vice President for Workforce Development; Julie Escamilla, Temple College Director of Workforce Development, Business and Continuing Education; James Skinner, Temple College Director of Adult Education and Literacy; and Ed Serna, Executive Director of the Texas Workforce Commission.

The Texas Workforce Commission, the state agency that oversees and provides workforce development services to employers and job seekers of Texas, honored Temple College with its 2022 Texas All-Star College Award.

The All-Star College Award celebrates a community college, technical college or Texas engineering extension service whose efforts and partnership improve the Texas workforce system and local community by identifying, creating and contributing to skills enhancement and training to best support business needs. This award recognizes an organization that focuses on skills gaps and uses innovative approaches to best support the mission of the Texas workforce system to remain competitive.

“It was an honor to be nominated by Workforce Solutions of Central Texas, who are valuable partners in this important work. This award highlights all of the new programs available at Temple College and the incredible effort underway in the region to provide workforce training and economic development,” said DeDe Griffith, Temple College’s Vice President for Workforce Development. “At Temple College, the staff and faculty never stop seeking strategic opportunities and strong workforce partnerships that help us offer programs to the communities we serve.”

Griffith and members of the Temple College workforce development staff were in Dallas Thursday attending the Texas Workforce Commission Conference, where they were presented the award.

Dr. Christy Ponce, Temple College President, said that the award is the result of the College’s strong collaboration with the Workforce Solutions of Central Texas, who connects individuals to employment.

“While Temple College has the privilege of training individuals and equipping them with industry-recognized credentials and college degrees, this award would not be possible without our partners at Workforce Solutions of Central Texas. Susan Kamas and Dr. Linda Angel have been instrumental in helping us build programs and bring education and training opportunities to the region,” Ponce said. “Over the years, we’ve made incredible strides to equip students of all ages with the hands-on skills and training they need to compete for 21st century careers designed with 4.0 technology and beyond.”

Temple College competed against 28 Texas Workforce Boards nominees for the statewide award.

Some of the highlighted Temple College programs included the “Go to Work” program that combines workforce and community partner resources to provide students with short-term training and an industry-recognized credential leading to employment in just one week, as well as the Texas Upskilling and Reskilling grant program that helps students return to college to finish what they started.

Other programs included were the Temple College Circle of Support, which provides non-academic resources; the Adult Education and Literacy program, which provides Direct Your Destiny scholarships for GED students to attend workforce training classes; and the Skills Development Fund employer partnerships.

“It’s such a gift that we are able to provide adult education and literary training along with GED and workforce credentials free to students thanks to the generous support of the Texas Workforce Commission. Things like this require a team, and we have a tremendous team at Temple College,” said James Skinner, Director of Adult Education and Literacy.

One of the most notable employer partnerships is with Baylor Scott and White Health. In September, Commissioner Julian Alvarez III was at Temple College to celebrate the Texas Workforce Commission’s awarding of a $408,584 Skills Development Fund Grant in partnership with Baylor Scott and White Health. The funds were used to train employees in various courses, including clinical medical assistant, patient care technician, medical terminology, and customer service for healthcare professionals.

“We are ready to work with every employer to help them create a talent pipeline,” said Julie Escamilla, Director of Workforce Development, Business and Continuing Education. “We are changing lives in the community by equipping individuals for careers in our community,” Escamilla said.


Temple College is a dynamic and growing community college that equips thousands of students throughout Central Texas and beyond with the knowledge and skills for 21st-century success. Temple College offers more than 75 degree and certificate programs to students who seek to earn credits for transfer, graduate with an associate degree, or complete a certificate for fast entry into the workforce.

Founded in 1926, Temple College has enjoyed an excellent academic reputation for more than 96 years. It is nationally recognized for excellence in its programs, from visual and performing arts to competitive athletics. The College has become one of the state’s premiere institutions for healthcare providers’ education and training, advanced manufacturing, and workforce development programs. The faculty and staff are committed to providing exceptional quality instruction.