Dallas County – A new advanced technical training center designed to create economic opportunity and expand education in an often overlooked area of Dallas County will open on October 20 with a celebration that will include local business officials, elected officials and E Smith communities, chaired by Hall of Fame, former Dallas Cowboy Emmitt Smith, whose partnership with Dallas College made the center possible.
Dallas College Executive Vice Chancellor Justin Lonon will join former running back Cowboy and others in officially opening the 30,000-square-foot facility. Smith, president of E Smith Communities, purchased the building in 2019 and began redeveloping it as a hub of mixed-use spaces.
?? It is a community where there is a huge need, ?? Dr Lonon said. There are people out there looking for opportunities, and this offers a second chance to find a new job. It’s part of Dallas College’s mission to go where we need them and to serve individuals and industries to bridge the gap between employment opportunities and placement.
The Dallas College Cedar Valley campus will use its allocated 7,000 square feet and a mobile training lab to provide high school equivalency education and vocational training, including in construction. The center will also provide soft skills training, job preparation and financial literacy with the goal of bringing long-term economic viability to South Dallas County.
“It is important that we work to establish a path and places for people and communities to access the possibilities of what they can do and what they can become in tangible ways,” said Smith.
My partner Tamela Thornton led the vision of how E Smith Communities could create a space that houses higher education, healthcare, small business and services in one place in a neighborhood that has traditionally been neglected. Thanks to Tamela, our partner Debbie La Franchi from ASREF (American South Real Estate Fund) and our dynamic tenants, this community now has a strong educational foothold at Dallas College in their backyard, ?? Smith said.
This center will make the underemployed and previously unemployable ready to join Dallas ?? skilled workforce, giving interns a real chance at success, said Gloria Smith, associate vice chancellor of career-related learning, workforce and advancement at Dallas College.
?? It’s about expanding opportunities, ??? Smith said. ?? This is Dallas College giving back and providing training that will lead to upward economic mobility. We want to show them [the community] that their options are limitless. We meet people where they are to get them where they want to be. ??
Dallas College partners who have helped this center include:
?? Regional Association of Black Entrepreneurs
?? Greater Dallas Workforce Solutions
?? United Way of Metropolitan Dallas (Women in Construction, partnership with Hilti North America)
?? CL3 National Coalition of Certification Centers
WHO: Dallas College
WHAT: Dallas College, Industry Partners Celebrate Opening of Innovation Center and Mobile Training Lab
WHEN: Oct 20, 4 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Guided tours, refreshments will be offered.
O: 4315 South Lancaster Road, Lancaster.
About Dallas College
Dallas College, formerly the Dallas County Community College District, was founded in 1965 and consists of seven campuses: Brookhaven, Cedar Valley, Eastfield, El Centro, Mountain View, North Lake, and Richland. Dallas College offers online learning and serves over 83,000 credits and 25,000 continuing education students during the fall and spring semesters. Dallas College also offers double credit to students at partner high schools and Dallas County first high schools. Dr Joe May, the College’s 7th Chancellor, created the Dallas College Higher Education Network in partnership with area school districts, colleges and universities, businesses, community organizations and others to support student success and college completion by removing barriers and providing services that help them graduate from college and begin professional care.