Education & Workforce Development – Committee Home

Mission Statement: Advocate for policies and partnerships that provide high-quality educational infrastructure and educational opportunities to achieve a prosperous and sustainable business community and workforce.

Committee Chair:

Dr. Zach Hodges—Houston Community College

Committee Vice Chair: 

Jon Polly—RBAP

Education & Workforce in 2060

We have just published our West Houston 2060 Plan and in it we tackle some of the challenges and opportunities the region may face when reaching the year 2060. Below is the committee’s event board which gives an overview of the plan section, but click the title above to view the entire committee section and for a complete version of the 2060 plan.

WHA Supports Houston community college bonds The Houston Community College (HCC) plays a role of growing importance in our education system.  In fact, it is indispensable to a growing number of Houstonians.HCC_District

Important as well to the West Houston Association, is that HCC is focusing significant attention on West Houston through expanded facilities and educational programs at its Northwest College campuses.

Their collaborative, bridge-building approach in higher education with the University of Houston and the University of Texas at Tyler brings significant benefit to both our business community and the public. These aggressive efforts by HCC are worthy of our continued support as they address critical areas of educational need within our community.

Alief Early College High School

HCC opened its Alief Early College High School in 2009—AECHS is one of five institutions providing a college experience, with credit up to an associate’s degree to those that would not normally have an opportunity to pursue a college degree

Improvements to Alief Hayes Road Campus

  • University of Texas at Tyler’s Houston Engineering Center will be located on the second floor offering mechanical and electrical engineering classes fall 2013
  • Investing $15 million to Alief Hayes Road Campus to complete build out of second floor
  • 20,000 square foot library, eight additional classrooms, four science labs
  • Alief Campus will support the enrollment of 6,500 to 7,500 students when complete
  • Moved instructional leaders and programs to the Alief Campus to guide our students to academic success

Improvements to Bissonnet Campus

  • This fall, HCC will offer Certified Nurses Aid (CNA) workforce program for Alief ISD
  • Exploring other programs such as HVAC and Construction technology programs with AISD and International Management District
  • HCC is respecting Alief ISD’s request for us to implement workforce programs in a timely manner and at the school district’s pace, not HCC’s pace

Additional Enhancements

  • Increased Dual Credit Class offerings from 4 to 19
  • HCC is building a campus on Eldridge to keep up with the significant growth in West Houston

Bonds To Be Supported by Tax Increase

  • HCC proposes $425 million in bonds
  • Total maximum expected tax increase is approximately 2 cents
  • Average annual impact for a $150,000 valued home is $30.92, based on current market rates
  • Adds $1 million to operating budget immediately and annually
  • HCC’s tax rate is 2x lower than San Jacinto College and 20% lower than Lone Star College

HCC & UT Tyler offer Four Year Engineering Degrees

In Greater West Houston, Houston Community College and UT Tyler announced October 23, 2012 that they have joined forces to offer upper division courses for associate degree graduates at the HCC Alief Campus in mechanical and electrical engineering.

HCC will provide facilities conducive for upper division engineering study for UT Tyler students. UT Tyler will provide upper division instruction, laboratory facilities and appropriate student and business office services for students enrolled in the UT Tyler completion programs.

Recognizing the need for skills in science, technology, engineering and math particularly in the rapidly growing Greater West Houston energy industry, the two higher-education institutions are developing a straightforward pathway to engineering and science baccalaureate degrees.  They will address this need by providing local employers with the trained and skilled workforce necessary to compete in today’s marketplace.

Dr. Zachary Hodges, President of HCC Northwest, said, “Offering students a clear pathway to a four-year engineering degree is a crucial advancement  in higher education.  HCC’s partnership with UT Tyler has the potential to lead to the creation of hundreds of engineers, and many of them will be able to find employment locally.”  UT Tyler’s Dean of the College of Engineering, Dr. James Nelson says, “With the associates degree offered by HCC and the upper division courses in engineering the UT Tyler will offer, students will have a much better opportunity to complete their four-year engineering degree.”


Greater West Houston is renowned for high quality primary and secondary education.  The best Independent School Systems in the country are found here.  Quality public education has traditionally been a major magnet for growth of our area.  The West Houston Association works to maintain this educational advantage even as we continue to add significant population.

Greater West Houston is becoming renown for quality healthcare with the addition of the world-class institutions from the Texas Medical Center:  Methodist Hospital and Texas Children’s Hospital. The Texas Medical Center West Campus at 170 acres is approximately the same size as its parent, the Texas Medical Center, and will offer “world-class medical care to a growing suburban population” of more than 1 million. The project includes nearly 1.2 million square feet of healthcare facilities.

Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus is the area’s only dedicated suburban pediatric hospital, as well as the only dedicated pediatric emergency service in Greater West Houston. The project includes a 294,000 square foot inpatient hospital and a five story, 221,000 square foot outpatient clinic.
The Methodist Hospital System’s Texas Medical Center West Campus first phase development includes a 478,500 square foot hospital with 193 patient beds, 15 operating suites and 26 labor and delivery suites, 28 emergency room beds, two radiation therapy facilities, and three cardiac catheterization labs. It also includes a six story, 221,000 square foot medical office building.

The Texas Medical Center West Campus and its current institutions are well located to serve Greater West Houston companies and the rapidly increasing population and employment growth in Greater West Houston and beyond.

For more information or to join this committee, please contact the Committee Chair. If you need assistance with this, please reach out to WHA Staff.