Individuals looking to re-career or re-enter the workforce can receive assistance in reaching their goals through a College of the Mainland grant covering tuition and career services.

Students can choose from programs such as mechanical maintenance, CNC machinist, welding, process technology, drafting, project management or Lean Six Sigma courses.

The H-1B Gulf Coast Ready to Work Grant is for individuals with a high school diploma or GED who want to launch a career or advance in these industries. 

“The goal is to train new and current workers in the oil and gas industry as quickly as possible,” said Chris Hollman, COM H-1B Gulf Coast Ready to Work project coordinator.

Besides helping participants earn a degree or certificate, the program provides career placement services in the form of paid internships, job fairs and career support services.

“Once you gain the skills, it’s important to promote and sell your skills to an employer,” said Hollman. “Resume writing and mock interviewing are part of the career support services offered.”

The grant is designed to help those who lost jobs or found jobs not aligned with their skills during the recession. The petrochemical and manufacturing programs are funded by the H-1B Gulf Coast Ready to Work grant, awarded and implemented by the U.S. Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration.

The grant aims to meet the regional employment needs of the petrochemical and other manufacturing industries for middle and upper-level positions. The American Chemistry Council estimates over $55 billion in investment along the Gulf Coast between 2010 and 2020.

To meet the need for petrochemical and manufacturing employees, a consortium of four colleges including College of the Mainland are providing paid tuition for future and current employees. 

Individuals must complete an application and assessment to determine eligibility for the grant. 

Students may begin classes this fall or spring, depending on the program they select. Those interested may attend a tour of available COM programs. Tours are listed at

For more information, call 409-933-8643 or email