Eric is the headmaster and executive director for Array School of Technology & Design in Cheyenne. The following is his testimonial.
“The Department of Workforce Services came into our picture when we were thinking about opening up Wyoming’s first private technology and design school. And one of the challenges that we knew we would face would be access to a private school like ours because we’re not accredited, we’re a private institution. Our schools are generally not a elegible for things like the Pell grant, or here in Wyoming, the Hathaway grant. And so the Department of Workforce Services had a program called the Pre-Hire grant that would allow us as a school to be able to help students who need to pay for tuition to attend Array. And so we looked into the Pre-Hire grant. We started working with the Department of Workforce Services about a year and a half ago trying to figure out how this awesome Pre-Hire program could benefit not only the school but primarily the prospective students of our school. We spent a long time looking at it. We applied for it and the whole process was seamless. You know, a lot of these grant things, there’s a lot of process to getting them approved. And so our representative from the Department of Workforce Services really helped us navigate those legal waters and how we could use this money to make the most of a great educational and transformational experience for our business and also for our students.
“This is the first time that we’d ever decided to apply for a grant before and that’s not an easy process. And so they were very patient with us in helping us explain exactly what each part of it worked and what we could and could not do with the grant funds. And so it was really great to have that person there to help us walk through this very big process in making sure that we did it accurately.
“I really felt that the Department of Workforce Services was an ally to us. They wanted us to be able to receive the grant as much as we wanted the grant. I didn’t feel that it was us working with DWS or vice versa but that it really was a team effort, making sure that we were following procedure and protocol. We all had the same ambition. We and the Department of Workforce Services wanted to see Wyoming’s first private technology and design school open. And so I really felt that it was a team effort. Teamwork. A collaboration that we’re working together to make something really important happen from the state of Wyoming.”