(The following is a press release originally published by Texas State Technical College.)
(WACO, Texas) – Texas State Technical College, the leader in technical education, and the
Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners (TSBPE) have joined forces to provide a greater and
more efficient method of administering exams for Texas plumbers.
Last February’s winter storm had devastating consequences for tens of thousands of Texans
across the state. Many lost power, access to clean water, and had frozen and ruptured water
pipes as the state experienced historically low temperatures. The crippling storm underscored
the value of plumbers and exacerbated the shortage of these skilled craftsmen in a state that’s
“From my first meeting with Chancellor Reeser, it was clear to both of us, our goals and
objectives are the same,” said Frank S. Denton, TSBPE board chair. “Increase the number of
licensed plumbers in the state to meet the robust demand of the Texas economy.”
TSTC and TSBPE have partnered, as two state agencies, to streamline and refine TSTC’s
existing plumbing curriculum. Together, they will develop a TSBPE Board-approved program
that will be available to any educational institution that would like to implement it.
The program includes both intense and focused classroom and hands-on lab training. Upon
successful program completion, the student will become eligible to sit in for the Tradesman
Plumber-Limited License Exam.
“TSTC is the only statewide public college in Texas, so it makes sense that we partner with the
Plumbing Board to provide resources across the state that fulfill the growing demand for
professional plumbers,” said TSTC Chancellor & CEO Mike Reeser. “TSTC has already
invested substantial funds in this new joint effort, and thanks to the extraordinary and innovative
partnership with the Board, will dedicate still more to solve this statewide workforce shortage
during the years ahead.”
In addition, TSTC in Waco is building out a new high-tech practical examination center that will
provide qualified statewide applicants the opportunity to sit for the plumbing exam, which will be
administered by TSBPE personnel. Construction on the new testing center is projected to be
completed in January 2022.
Another testing center will break ground soon on TSTC’s Harlingen campus as well.
“These new testing centers will double and eventually triple TSBPE’s ability to test applicants
wishing to obtain a plumbing license,” said Denton. “This is something that could have not been
done without the cooperation and assistance of TSTC.”
In Texas, plumbers, pipefitters and steamfitters can earn more than $50,000 annually, according
to onetonline.org. Job growth is projected to be around 17% by 2028.
TSTC in Waco offers a certificate of completion in Plumbing and Pipefitting Technology, as well
as an occupational skills award in Basic Plumbing. “As a result of this new partnership, TSTC
intends to expand its plumbing training to other campuses across the state,” Reeser said.
For more than 55 years, TSTC has been focused on advancing the economic development of
the state with an emphasis on placing more Texans in great-paying jobs. By offering hands-on
training, TSTC ensures Texas has a pipeline for skilled technicians to enter the workforce in
high-demand industries like plumbing.
For more information about the Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners, visit
tsbpe.texas.gov. For more information about TSTC, visit tstc.edu.