Capital IDEA Blog

Graduate Spotlight: I Never Thought I Could Learn

By Jeff Sanchez | JUNE 1, 2022 You never know what you’re capable of until your back is against the wall. That’s what it took for Stephanie Berman to realize her full potential. In her thirties, Stephanie fled an abusive marriage with her life and her three children. Thrust into the role of sole provider, […]

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Job Posting: Grants Manager

MAY 31, 2022 We’re Hiring a Grants Manager! Capital IDEA is looking to hire an experienced Grants Manager (3+ years experience) to manage a portfolio of 20-25 public and private grants. At Capital IDEA, we aim to empower our income-eligible neighbors with training and education so that they can reach their full potential and fill […]

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Graduate Spotlight: The Resilience To Keep Going

Pictured left: Estrella Saldana; top right: Estrella and her parents; bottom right: Estrella and her Career Navigator, Tonia Gooden By Jeff Sanchez | MAY 19, 2022 One of Estrella Saldana’s earliest memories is of bringing in groceries from the car. Her mom would place one small item in a grocery bag and let her drag […]

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Graduate Spotlight: My Destiny Was Forever Changed

APRIL 8, 2022 Below is a transcript of Gabrielle’s Aurora Alworth Award acceptance speech at the 2022 Celebration of Achievements held virtually on March 1, 2022. Watch the slide presentation and listen to her speech here: YouTube Event Recording » Good afternoon, friends: My name is Gabrielle Michelle Shepherd, and I am a Registered Nurse […]

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Press Release: Executive Director Announcements

From Left: Alyssia Palacios-Woods, Eva Rios-Lleverino, and Steve Jackobs. MARCH 30, 2022 Contact: Amy Silvey, Director of Development and Communications 512-485-9353, asilvey@capitalidea.org Upcoming Transitions at Capital IDEA Capital IDEA announces Alyssia Palacios-Woods as its new Executive Director, effective July 1. Founding Executive Director, Steve Jackobs, is stepping down on March 31 to devote himself to […]

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Graduate Spotlight: There’s Always a Way

Hammurabi (left) sits down with Capital IDEA alum Heriberto Gonzales (right). By Jeff Sanchez | MARCH 15, 2022 Hammurabi Bueno doesn’t like sitting still. Landing a desk job was never a dream of his. “I’m a person that likes to be hands-on and build things.” Of the many careers sponsored by Capital IDEA, power technology […]

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Expanded Income Eligibility for Travis County & City of Austin

FEBRUARY 21, 2022 BIG NEWS — Residents of Travis County and/or City of Austin have until September 2022 to qualify under our NEW income guidelines and secure their seats in our Career Expressway program. The Career Expressway offers full tuition assistance, textbooks, and more. Residents who apply and get accepted during this temporary extension period […]

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Expanded Career List for Hays and Bastrop

JANUARY 28, 2022 BIG NEWS — Capital IDEA is excited to announce that we have temporarily expanded the number of careers available to applicants from Hays and Bastrop counties! This change will stay in effect through September 2022. This means residents who apply now can choose from the same full list of careers available to […]

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Press Release: Retiring After More Than 23 Years of Service

JANUARY 13, 2022 Contact: Amy Silvey, Director of Development and Communications 512-485-9353, asilvey@capitalidea.org Capital IDEA announces the retirement of founding Executive Director, Steve Jackobs AUSTIN, TEXAS – JANUARY 13, 2022 – After serving as Capital IDEA’s Executive Director since 1998, Steve Jackobs announced his plan to retire in August of this year. “After more than […]

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Graduate Spotlight: She’s Here To Help

“Capital IDEA makes individuals stronger so that they can do the work that makes our community stronger.” – Stephanie Mbulu By Jeff Sanchez | DECEMBER 7, 2021 From early on, Stephanie Mbulu had the heart to help others. “My mother would joke that I came out of the womb wanting to help people,” but it wasn’t until […]

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Graduate Spotlight: The Strength To Start Over

By Jeff Sanchez | NOVEMBER 3, 2021 It takes incredible strength to start over and build a new life. Khaibar Rahimy and his family emigrated from Afghanistan about four and a half years ago. In Afghanistan, he was a degreed professional, a civil engineer. His skills allowed him to work with the United States Army […]

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Support Spotlight: Career Placement

By Jeff Sanchez | OCTOBER 4, 2021 Support Spotlight Series In this final installment of the Support Spotlight Series, we feature the career placement services at Capital IDEA. Many of the adults who come through Capital IDEA have, at one point or another, had their doubts about getting a college education. It can feel risky […]

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Support Spotlight: Career Navigators

By Jeff Sanchez | SEPTEMBER 27, 2021 Support Spotlight Series For the second installment in our Support Spotlight Series, we are highlighting our Career Navigators. It is one of the most important and unique forms of support that a student receives in the Career Expressway program. Keep reading to learn more about the role the […]

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Support Spotlight: Childcare Assistance

By Jeff Sanchez | SEPTEMBER 17, 2021 Support Spotlight Series For over 20 years, Capital IDEA has supported thousands of students on their journey toward a college degree and a better job. Every student accepted into the Career Expressway program is supported financially and offered personal guidance because often, money isn’t the only obstacle keeping […]

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Graduate Spotlight: I Was Supported The Whole Way

By Jeff Sanchez | JULY 1, 2021 College isn’t for everybody, right? Some people should go, but others just aren’t cut out for it. That’s the conclusion Skyler Coffman arrived at when his first attempt at college didn’t pan out. But Skyler is now a college graduate with a great job. As a Senior Ops […]

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Published: 2020 Annual Report

JUNE 23, 2021 Viewing note: the video components may take a second to load. The digital format is mobile-friendly, but for the best experience, we recommend viewing full screen on your computer, laptop, or tablet. The wait is over– Capital IDEA’s 2020 Annual Report is here! And while you may be understandably hesitant to revisit […]

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Top 5 Advanced Manufacturing Companies

By Jeff Sanchez | JUNE 10, 2021 Is getting a degree in Advanced Manufacturing (AM) worth the next two years of your life? The short answer is YES! Capital IDEA has done the research. Every degree program we sponsor has to meet several criteria before we can add them to the Career Expressway and offer […]

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Graduate Spotlight: Be Your Own Hero

MAY 27, 2021 Alumnus, Jason Lopez, shared the following remarks with Capital IDEA’s long-time supporter, the Sooch Foundation, during a virtual site visit on April 28, 2021. Jason was also featured in an episode of KLRU Austin PBS’s docu-series American Graduate: Getting To Work that aired in November 2019. Click here to watch »  Hello, […]

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Graduate Spotlight: His Next Big Goal

By Jeff Sanchez | APRIL 8, 2021 Alpha Diallo’s life has been shaped by goals. Some he set for himself and others his parents set for the family. When he was 13, Alpha’s parents emigrated with him and his siblings from Guinea West Africa to France. Their primary goal was to escape dangerous circumstances and […]

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Partner Spotlight: Our Nurses Aren’t Just Tired — They’re Exhausted

By Jeff Sanchez | FEBRUARY 3, 2021 “There’s a real problem here. Why aren’t we solving it?” When she agreed to take on the project, research fellow Sherry Sybesma had no idea there was a problem at all. But after a year spent digging into the complex issues surrounding our region’s nursing shortage, she couldn’t […]

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