On Wednesday, October 18, Tarrant To & Through (T3) Partnership announced the launch of a new digital platform that will connect more students and families with pathways to career success. Created in partnership with the Fort Worth Mayor’s Council on Education and Workforce Development, JPMorgan Chase & Co., the platform, called Pathways to Careers (P2C), bridges the gap between student pathway selection and available career opportunities.
The Tarrant To & Through (T3) Partnership was launched in 2020 after several community leaders in Tarrant County embarked on a national learning tour to find best practices in boosting postsecondary outcomes for students. This effort was initially funded with a multimillion-dollar gift from the Rainwater Foundation and led by Mattie Parker prior to her election as Mayor of Fort Worth. The work has continued under new leadership with Executive Director, Natalie Young Williams, and a robust Board of Directors, with continued funding from Rainwater and a blend of philanthropic and public investment from K-12 and Higher Education partners.
This partnership of school districts, colleges, universities, chambers, employers and community organizations is anchored by a dedicated staff focused on serving students and families. Beginning in middle school through degree attainment (6th-16th), T3 offers students and their families support services, skills development and tuition-free scholarship opportunities. This is achieved by providing enhanced college and career counseling, collaborative partnership and supportive programming aimed at engaging the community. T3 has a mission to ensure more students in Tarrant County excel to and through the education pipeline, reach career goals and improve workforce and educational outcomes. To accomplish this mission, T3 has implemented a strategically aligned combination of program components designed to address key gaps facing students and families in the educational system.
The debut of P2C was celebrated during a reception Wednesday evening at the Tarrant County College Trinity River Campus. Guest speakers included Fort Worth Mayor Mattie Parker, Tarrant County College Chancellor Dr. Elva LeBlanc, T3 Executive Director Natalie Young Williams, Hillwood President Mike Berry and Executive Vice President Tom Harris, and JPMorgan Chase Market Executive Phillip Wiginton, who addressed a room of 300-plus business, education, workforce, community and city leaders.
“At our core, T3 aims to ensure more Tarrant County students obtain a postsecondary credential and that each student has the training and skills they need to thrive in today’s workforce. Seeing the impact our program model has made in school districts across Tarrant County, we wanted to expand our reach so every student has equal access to identifying their best-fit pathway. We are thrilled to introduce our new platform, T3 Pathways to Careers,” said Natalie Young Williams, Executive Director of T3 Partnership.
Designed to create clear career pathways and bright futures for Tarrant County students, P2C provides a tailored experience for Tarrant County students to discover their skills and learn what they need to do each step of the way to obtain the certifications and degrees needed for their future careers.
“The Mayor’s Council is committed to advancing initiatives that support a vibrant workforce through education. The future of Fort Worth and our region depends on building a workforce and talent pipeline to support our growing economy. These two focus areas are deeply intertwined. The same goal that sparked the formation of the T3 Partnership lives on today: to ensure more Tarrant County students have the credentials and training needed to thrive in today’s workforce. We have stayed true to our commitment, and now celebrate a foundational steppingstone to delivering the T3 mission to more students and families across our region,” said Fort Worth Mayor Mattie Parker.
Pathways to Careers was made possible through support from JPMorgan Chase and its Force for Good team, a group of JPMorgan Chase software engineers who gave their time to help develop the P2C platform, including a return-on-investment calculator function. Having provided an initial, transformational $3 million to support the founding of T3 and its mission, JPMorgan Chase announced an additional $750,000 investment to implement additional features to expand the platform’s accessibility, including enhanced navigation and bi-lingual content in Spanish.
Of the funding announcement, Phillip Wiginton, Market Executive at JPMorgan Chase, said, “At JPMorgan Chase, our commitment to advancing jobs and skills goes far beyond monetary support. We deploy our resources, like the Force for Good team, to advance projects that directly contribute to the success of our growing region. We’re proud of the work our Force for Good team has accomplished and are excited to continue our support of T3 as they create a strong workforce pipeline for the future.”
For every student who graduates with a credential, they can expect to earn an average of $1 million in lifetime earnings, which is an additional $400 thousand more than those who do not obtain a credential.
Mike Berry, President of Hillwood, said, “T3 Pathways to Careers is a groundbreaking approach to scaling the workforce pipeline. It is contributing to an educational ecosystem that is informed by immediate workforce needs and connecting qualified graduates who are eager to work for our region’s employers. We must prepare for the future workforce demand today. Hillwood is pleased to stand alongside T3, the Mayor’s Council, JPMorgan Chase and all three Fort Worth Chambers as we lead the charge to meet this workforce demand.”
Using P2C, students and families can imagine their future and chart a tailored pathway to get there. The intuitive navigation experience explores a scholar’s passions, skills, life goals and financial needs, and identifies best-fit careers, providing an interactive look at the postsecondary requirements and commitments that will ensure they graduate with immediately employable experience.
“Since 2021, the T3 Partnership has supported nearly 2,300 scholars enrolling at Tarrant County College. T3 scholars are retained semester to semester and persist to graduation at higher rates than the overall TCC student population,” said Dr. Elva LeBlanc, Chancellor of Tarrant County College. “By working together, we can better inform the curriculum offered to our students, open the doors to new career opportunities and support them at every step of their journey through college and into the workforce.”
P2C not only ensures Tarrant County students understand the diverse career options available to them and the training they need to get there, but also that the local business community realizes the wealth of qualified talent in their own backyard.
“This platform would not have been possible without our partners who we consider friends. A sincere thank you to the Fort Worth Mayor’s Council on Education and Workforce Development and JPMorgan Chase for joining forces with us to launch this first-of-its kind initiative, and to our foundational partners, including the Rainwater Foundation, for your continued support. We are building clear pathways and bright futures for students, families and employers across our region,” added Young Williams.
source: press release