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Rio Grande Valley businesses participate in ISO 9000 program at UT Pan American
By Brig Lopez III, Informational Writer II
381-2741
Posted: 07/28/1999
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EDINBURG - Employees from more than 45 companies from across the Rio Grande Valley sharpened their business skills Monday (July 26) at a Smart Jobs training session held at The University of Texas-Pan American.

The training is being conducted under a $1.5 million Smart Jobs grant to UTPA from the Texas Department of Economic Development. The objective is to train workers for 675 new or existing jobs in the Rio Grande Valley.

"This training offers the skills needed in order for these companies to have a successful business," said Dora Vela, director for the Center for Manufacturing at UTPA.

The Smart Jobs Fund Grant was awarded to the Quality Improvement Training Consortium, a program under the Corporate Training Center of the university's Center for Continuing Education.

The program's goal is to provide ISO 9000 quality system training and implementation to 75 South Texas Companies with fewer than 100 employees with an expected outcome that the companies of the consortium will have higher skill employees and will generate more business.

ISO 9000 is an international quality standard. ISO is the International Organization for Standardization, whose 110 member countries create and revise quality and environmental standards for us throughout the world. The standards apply to a company's quality management system, not its product, and so can be applies to every company whether in manufacturing or service sector.

Several companies participating in the Smart Jobs training session held at The University of Texas-Pan American Center for Manufacturing are exchanging business ideas with certified ISO 9000 companies.

George King Sr., Gulf Coast Bearing and Supply representative, who is attending the training session, said his company does business in Mexico where ISO 9000 training is highly valued.

"ISO 9000 training means a lot to our clients," King said. This program will enhance the quality of our company guaranteeing peace of mind to our customers. The sooner we are ISO 9000 qualified, the better off we will be.

More than 80 countries, including the US, the European Union members and many of the Pacific Rim countries, have adopted ISO 9000 as a global quality standard. Companies demonstrate compliance to the standards by undergoing a certification process.

For more information on the program, contact Vela at 956/381-7011.

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