(New Haven, CT) – Nestled at the base of West Rock State Park, the New Haven Job Corps Center the direction of the future hundreds of youth is formed. The Center recently invited local officials, neighbors, and graduates to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Job Corps program. The year-long celebration kicked off with a 50th Birthday Party celebration held Tuesday, August 26th the Recreation Center. Started in 1964 as part of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s War on Poverty, the program provides career technical training and education for low-income young people ages 16 through 24. Since opening the first of what would become 125 centers, the program has trained more than 2.7 million young people.

Celebration events at the New Haven Job Corps Center included Congressman Joe Courtney CT – (D), Second Congressional District, who toured the center, and buried a Time Capsule designed by the Facility Maintenance Department.

A Proclamation from the City of New Haven signed by Mayor Toni Harp was read, as well a Special Recognition from the Honorable Rosa DeLauro which was presented by Alison Dodge, Legislative Aid to Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro.

Charles Nixon, a 1974 Job Corps Graduate of Job Corps, owner of “Touched by the C”, a local landscaping company who recently became a Work- Based Learning site for the New Haven Job Corps Center, spoke to the students on the importance of perseverance and to “follow your passion”.

“The staff and students are all very excited to be able to show off the skills they have learned at Job Corps,” said Amelia A. Oliver, Center Director for the New Haven Job Corps Center. “It is also important that we provide an opportunity to show the community all the great things that are going on at our center.”

“I fought hard to ensure that Job Corps had funding”, stated Congressman Courtney. “This program is an important part of your future and ours.” Students from all across Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and even the Virgin Islands come to the New Haven Job Corps Center. Kayla Ricci, formerly of Massachusetts and now a New Haven resident, recently completed the Certified Nursing Assistant Program, received her state License, and is also a registered Emergency Medical Technician (EMT). Kayla lost her mother a year ago became homeless, and found herself bouncing from house to house, just trying to have a roof over her head. She came to Job Corps because she needed stability in her life. The New Haven Job Corps Center gave her the education, credentials and tools to find a great job as a live-in caregiver and was told by her employer that she is “the best employee and most reliable that they have. ” Kayla graduated this past fall and is currently working for Compassionate Care At Home in New Haven. Kayla stated, “everything that has happened to me in the past two years is because of the New Haven Job Corps Center, and now I have a future with a purpose.”

Job Corps provides hands-on training in areas at the New Haven Job Corps Center that include Carpentry, Facility Maintenance, Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), Clinical Medical Assistant, Certified Nursing Assistant, and Culinary Arts. The programs are aligned with industry credentials and include work-based learning. If you are an employer, and would like to hire, or become a work-based learning site for one of our six trades, simply call Renee Venturino, Business and Community Liaison at (203) 907-4355.

Job Corps is the nation’s largest and oldest federally funded career training and education program. It enrolls nearly 60,000 students annually at 125 Job Corps centers across the country. For more information about the program, and to tour the center, call (203) 397-3775.

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