Beginning Stages of Allied Health Prep Program at WETC

The new Westside Education & Training Center (WETC), for the first time in a long time, will welcome NVC students taking science classes starting this fall.

Students will have three biology classes to choose from for the fall, including Biology for nonmajors, Anatomy & Physiology I, and General Biology for Science majors, said Dr. Eric Madrid, associate professor and chair of NVC’s Natural and Physical Sciences department.

Eric said that they will offer at least the same number of Biology classes (if not more) in the spring,  and are also prepared to begin adding chemistry classes.

The other good news is that two of the new science classes at WETC are already full (24 students each). Eric said NVC provided the funding to equip the labs at WETC. Courses like Introductory Biology and Anatomy & Physiology are often taken by science majors and those students intending to pursue careers in allied health fields. 

This past spring, NVC and Alamo Colleges celebrated the grand opening of a new WETC building at the same location. The original WETC building opened in 2006, with an enrollment of 1,347 students. In 2017, Bexar County voters approved a $450 million capital improvement bond for the Alamo Colleges, with $23 million allocated for the WETC, which doubled the size of the previous building. 

“The lab staff for Natural & Physical Sciences have been hard at work over the summer to prepare this space for students this fall,” said Eric. “The (NVC) funding we were granted was extremely helpful, but it also corresponds with dozens of orders from vendors, numerous deliveries to WETC and the main campus, and dozens of boxes that need to be opened, sorted, checked for accuracy, and then physically carried by our staff to their proper location in the building – all of which had to be done through these crazy temperatures we have had this summer.  Every piece of glassware, every microscope slide, and every anatomical model our students will use this semester had to be hand-delivered by our lab staff.”

Dr. Russ Frohardt, dean for Academic Success at NVC, said that this semester NVC faculty will teach close to 20 classes at WETC, which includes NVC’s existing career and technical education programs, including the Community Health Worker program. 

“Enrollment looks pretty good for our WETC science courses, and we think this can be the beginning of making a natural hub for allied health preparation on the West Side,” Russ added.

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