July 6, 2023 by HCDE Communications
Students in HCDE’s Adult Education program got a tech and language boost last week thanks to partnerships with MAREK Construction, the Harris County Public Library, and T-Mobile.
At a staff appreciation event, MAREK Construction handed out more than 35 Google Chromebooks and T-Mobile hotspots to employees also enrolled in HCDEs Adult Education English as a Second Language courses. The technology, valued at more than $15,000, was donated to the Adult Education program by the Harris County Public Library and T-Mobile earlier this year in an effort to support adults with literacy and workforce training.
MAREK employees on the receiving end of the technology said the ESL classes have been critical to their continued success at work and in the community.
“We work ten-hour days sometimes, and we go home tired, but I know these classes are worth the effort,” said Victor Pimentel, a MAREK employee who completed intermediate ESL classes. “I’ve grown and can better communicate with my partners and supervisors at work. Even at home, I’m talking more with my daughters, and they are proud of my English.”
As part of its partnership with HCDE, MAREK refers employees to the 15-week contextualized curriculum that improves their English reading, writing, and pronunciation skills while examining the company’s safety rules and procedures. Additionally, students enhance their social skills, learn to identify and address workplace challenges and discuss career advancement opportunities.
“One challenge we faced within this class was digital literacy,” Adult Education Project Manager Michael Chevalier said. “With this donation, we hope to empower our students with the technology needed to complete our advanced classes and continue their dedication to learning English.”
For Pimentel, this represents a pathway to success. He plans to utilize his new Chromebook and hotspot in the fall to continue his education as he participates in HCDE’s advanced ESL program.
To learn more about HCDE’s Adult Education programs, visit hcde-texas.org/adult-education.