About

Workforce Industry Training

 
NPI’s Workforce Industry Training (WIT) program is for high school students who are interested in expanding their knowledge and understanding of careers in STEM. More specifically, the purpose of WIT is to mentor, encourage, and prepare students for STEM-rich programs at universities, two-year technical colleges, and technician certificate programs. By participating in WIT, students gain exposure to higher education and career opportunities through a series of six funded field trips per year while building the confidence to consider further STEM education. This confidence comes from the knowledge and familiarity students gain from their WIT experiences.  During the 2019-2020 academic year, the WIT program grew from availability in 18 to 30 Texas high schools – reaching over 1,900 students. Next year, our goal is to grow into more schools and reach more Texas students.

 

How do I join WIT?

The WIT program is open to junior and senior Texas high school students at least 14 years old with a minimum GPA of 2.5. They must formally submit an application for membership.

 

What do WIT participants do?

  • Enjoy mentoring activities by industry professionals
  • Visit local industry partners
  • Participate in industry job shadowing
  • Take part in professional development activities
  • Visit universities and community colleges
  • Participate in community service
  • Hear from and meet guest speakers
  • Have scholarship opportunities
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Achieving Together with Optimistic Mentoring (ATOM)

ATOM is a WIT-supported program with a year-long commitment between WIT member mentors and ATOM mentees. The ATOM group provides WIT members an opportunity to give back by interacting and mentoring young elementary and middle school students – engaging them in academic activities that impassion these students to stay focused on a strong STEM path. The intent of the ATOM program is to create a “spark” that ignites a uniquely collaborative and nurturing relationship between older and younger students interested in pursuing STEM. During the 2019-2020 school year, our WIT members mentored over 900 elementary and middle school students.

ATOM Mentor Program Goals 
 
  • Increase students' sense of self-worth 
  • Improve students' perspective toward STEM education 
  • Help students develop and define their short-term and long-term goals 
  • Encourage social awareness through community service projects 
  • Build positive relationships and support networks with adults and peers 

The WIT Bracelet
The WIT bracelet is made of leather and stainless steel. Being that WIT is designed to train for the workforce, it is important that these two materials are outlined as they apply to WIT and moving forward in the future. Leather has been in use for thousands of years. It was once used primarily for clothing and was also incorporated into different types of tools. It was used in different types of old-fashioned industries such as in saddles for horses or the reins for an ox pulling a plow. Leather is used for gloves and boots as a means of modern protection. Leather represents something that is durable, but also incredibly adaptable. Leather is something that has stood the test of time. The Egyptians were using leather in 5000 B.C. and here we are today, it is still a vital part of our culture. When you see the leather of the WIT bracelet, it is important to remember that we, as individuals, must be durable and flexible. While circumstances in life might not go as planned, we can be durable and flexible and like the leather of the WTI band, you can get through it. Steel is a combination of the elements iron and carbon and contains small amounts of other elements. This mixture has also withstood the test of time. It revolutionized our country as we transitioned from primarily wood to steel in the early 1800s as we began the industrial revolution. It was used to build the railroad, improve our shipping vessels, build bridges, and to build structures like the skyscrapers we see today. Steel is designed to be tough, yet moldable and adaptable. Made up of elements that by themselves are weak, when put together, they are strong. When you see the steel of the WIT bracelet and that is inscribed with your WIT high school, remember that WIT members are moldable and that sometimes alone may falter, but together, with others, we can be strong. 
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