2009-10-01 / School

TYC Students Receive CSS Certification

Twelve students at the Texas Youth Commission (TYC) Giddings State School received certification as Customer Service Specialists (CSS) by the Electronic Technicians Association (ETA), International. All twelve students passed the comprehensive exam at the conclusion of the 3-month course. Customer Service Specialists are in high demand by businesses, from manufacturing to retails sales and service.

"I like the course because it helped me to learn how to deal with all kinds of different people with respect," said Christian J., one of the first twelve students to receive certification. Christian will be receiving his GED this coming Friday during graduation ceremonies at the state school. Next spring he will receive his high school diploma and plans to attend college and study to become a veterinarian.

This is the first time Giddings State School has offered CSS training. Career and Technology Education (CATE) instructor Gary Bailey offered the course because it prepares students for entry-level positions in a wide variety of industries. "I have thirty years of experience in Information Technology, using computers to meet business needs and solve problems in the area of Finance, Accounting, Manufacturing, Sales/Marketing/Service" said Bailey. "These are the skills employers are looking for in all of these industries."

Through the course, students learn how to provide "world class service" to both external and internal customers. Some of the units in the course cover business basics, becoming an active listener, managing customer relations, time management and record keeping, business ethics, team work and interpersonal relationships.

Bailey also teaches classes in Computer Service Technician, CompTIA's A+ Technician, and Business Entrepreneurship, which prepares students to start their own business. The Career and Technology Education Department at Giddings State School offers certification in Building Trades, Mill & Cabinet, Automotive Collision Repair, Automotive Tech, Welding, and Microsoft Office Specialist.

On Friday, the Giddings State School will hold graduation ceremonies for 24 students; with two students receiving high school diplomas and 22 others receiving GEDs. Graduation ceremonies are held twice a year at the state school which holds classes year-round. Education takes priority in the Texas Youth Commission, because research shows that educational skills help prevent delinquent youth from returning to the criminal justice system as adults.

The Giddings State School is a high restriction facility of the Texas Youth Commission and provides rehabilitation and education for more than 300 boys, ages 13 to 19 years old. The school is currently looking for volunteer mentors and tutors to meet with youth monthly. For more information, or to volunteer on campus please contact Andy Wier, Community Relations Coordinator at 979-542-4609 [ andy.wier@tyc.state.tx.us ].

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