Whitney M. Young Job Corps Success Story
Rachel Gray was born in Memphis, TN and raised in Marion, Arkansas. She is a graduate and alumni of the Whitney M. Young Job Corps Center in Simpsonville, Kentucky.
At the age of 9, when Rachel was just a little girl her mother died. She never had a relationship with her biological father therefore, after the tragic loss of her mother; she was moved from family member to family member until she was 18.
Unfortunately, at the age of 15, Rachel started hanging out with the wrong crowd and it lead to her having truancy and being expelled from school in her senior year. After she was dismissed from school, her aunt Dee spoke with her about job corps and the military. She researched her career path options, but felt that Job Corps would be more beneficial to her.
She spoke with an outreach admissions counselor and because of her interest in Health Occupation her admission counselor referred her to the Whitney M. Young Center. She always desired to work in the medical field and when the door of opportunity opened for her to receive a full scholarship at the Whitney M. Young Job Corps Center, she gladly accepted the offer.
Ms. Gray states, “The Whitney M. Young Job Corps Center staff never gave up on me. They pushed me to reach higher levels than I would ever dream or imagine. There were a few people that went above and beyond the call of duty and kept encouraging me to keep pushing: Susan Badour, Mentor and HR Staff Training Specialist, Sandra Marshall, MOS Instructor, and Eric Hicks, Career Counselor.”
Badour said, “Rachel has been my mentee since shortly after her arrival at Whitney Young. I have witnessed her overcome many obstacles that could have held her back from the success she is experiencing now, especially in the areas of personal growth, spiritual growth, and goal setting. Because of her determination and hard work, she quickly obtained her high school diploma and trade certification, which has enabled her to be on the fast-track towards a promising career and further educational opportunities. I couldn’t be more proud of her, and she is an inspiration to her peers.”
While enrolled at the Whitney M. Young Job Corps Center, Ms. Gray studied and earned her Medical Office Support certification and received her High School Diploma from the Eminence Independent High School on-site program. In addition, she served as a dorm leader and she volunteered at two hospitals as an intern working many hours through the center’s work-based learning program.
Immediately following her internship, she was highly recommended by her immediate Supervisor, Ms. Jane Cox to apply for a full-time position at Norton’s Orthopedic Specialists.
Rachel is now employed with Norton’s Hospital-Brownsboro as a Medical Records Clerk and is currently residing in Louisville, KY. She is so thankful to all those who played a big part of her success! Ms. Gray states, “I would recommend anyone to the Job Corps program, especially if they are ready and willing to get their education and/or a career technical trade.”
She said, “I believe that if you always think negative, negative will come, but if you always think positive, positive will come. While at Job Corps, I had to stay focus and positive while I worked to achieve all my set goals and it was hard, but I did it!”
Tax dollars provide funding for the Job Corps program that is administered through the U.S. Department of Labor. Since 1964, Job Corps has helped over 2 million Americans realize their hopes.