In the early 1990’s, an acute skills mismatch emerged as San Antonio’s economic base began shifting from manufacturing to service- and technology-driven industries. While 14,000 manufacturing jobs had been lost, over 19,000 new jobs had been created. Many of these were good paying jobs, but they required skills and expertise that were in short supply among San Antonio’s low-income residents.
Project QUEST’s approach to training took shape through a process of grassroots community inquiry led by COPS (Communities Organized for Public Service) and Metro Alliance.
Today QUEST is a nationally recognized workforce strategy with a 26 year history of successfully planning and implementing training programs for professional, high-paying jobs that enhance the economic competitiveness of San Antonio. QUEST has served over 7,ooo participants. QUEST now boasts an 89% completion rate for its participants.
Organizations in Austin, the Rio Grande Valley, Dallas, Houston, El Paso, TX, Monroe, LA, Tucson, Phoenix, AZ, and Des Moines, IA have replicated the QUEST workforce development model to meet employment needs in their communities. QUEST has also been replicated in Birmingham, Nottingham, and London in the United Kingdom.
Some of Project QUEST’s Sister organizations are: Project VIDA, Capital Idea, Job Path, and Project ARRIBA.