On the Job (Corps) Training Helps a Community Succeed
Low income youth at the Barrio Station community center in San Diego, Calif., can do their homework online in a safe environment thanks to the computer maintenance efforts of the local Job Corps Center’s staff and students. For the past eight years, San Diego Job Corps Center IT instructor Peter Schurek and his computer tech students have serviced and maintained for free scores of computers at Barrio Station, allowing youth ages 6 to 18 to pursue academic enrichment and avoid outside peer pressure from gangs and drugs. Schurek estimates more than 300 Job Corps students have donated thousands of hours to the cause, which also provides on-the-job training for the students to become nationally certified service technicians. Schurek says it is a win-win situation for all involved. Some of his students have gone on to work in IT for national companies such as Cox Communications and Time Warner, he said, while local youth “are being helped to secure their future.”
Paid Internship Propels Vermont Grad to Full Time Job
University of Vermont graduate Rebecca Cohen (left) is on the way to her dream job – working for a socially responsible company – thanks to an internship program funded by the U.S. Labor Department. Cohen, 23, was a paid intern at AllEarth Renewables, a Vermont renewable energy systems company, which eventually hired her full-time. Cohen’s internship is part of a Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility program funded through a Workforce Education and Training grant. In three years, almost 100 students have been placed in internships paying $10-$15 an hour, said program official Tara Pfeiffer-Norrell (right). In noting that finding a paid internship was “something almost unheard of,” Cohen said the program “gave me valuable work skills” and “important networking experiences” in the local business community.