SAN ANTONIO – San Antonio nonprofit Restore Education held their second annual policy forum Wednesday morning. The virtual event focused on the community needs for education and workforce development.
Major corporations, businesses, and educational institutions came together to focus on ways to reduce poverty and create equal opportunities for underserved populations in the community.
Dr. John Friedman, Professor of Economics, International and Public Affairs at Brown University said with the right tools, success is possible.
“Really giving people the training and education they need so they can get up and develop through a career path that is going to lead to economic security,” he said.
Other panelists agreed.
Romanita Marra-Barrera, Executive Director of SA Works said job readiness is key.
“We want our San Antonio residents to be prepared to take on those jobs,” she said.
Restore Education was established in 2008 to help people be college and career ready.
Many of their students are low income or have no income, while other are first generation college students.
Priscilla Ybarra dropped out of high school when she became pregnant with her first child. She is now a mother of three and had to put her dreams on hold.
She said she worked different jobs just to get by.
“That’s all I could get. I could never go any further than that,” she said.
However, she began to realize there was more she could do for their lives. She learned about the nonprofit when she began to have trouble finding a job.
With the support of children, she was able to finish what she started.
“I knew that it was my time to come back,” Ybarra said.
Last year, Ybarra received her GED, but she plans to continue. She is now working to get her phlebotomy license.
“You’re never too old to learn. Your’e never too old to go back to school. Anybody can do it,” said Ybarra.
To learn more about Restore Education, click here.