While the country's oil and gas boom continues to create jobs, the industry may soon find itself in a crunch for qualified employees.
About half of the experienced workforce is expected to retire, in the coming years, while the oil patch continues to grow.
Lone Star College is working to address that problem with a fast-track pilot program that will teach the core technical skills needed to work on a rig, in ten weeks.
The course is funded with a state grant and is free to the students selected to participate.
"Without this kind of training, there was no opportunity," says student Booker Clay, "I even went to the job fairs for oil and gas. They wouldn't even let you past the front gate. With this experience, I'm hoping to get right in and jump in with full force."
Because of demand, employment is all but guaranteed for those who complete the course.
Lone Star College will hold five more of these classes, over the coming year, with spots and scholarships still available.