In December 2020, 11 young men from Oakridge Community Facility celebrated their graduation from the Manufacturing Academy (MA), a 12-week pre-apprenticeship for Juvenile Rehabilitation (JR) youth who reside in less restrictive community facilities.
In partnership with the Aerospace Joint Apprenticeship Committee and Pac-Mountain Workforce Development Council, MA provides young adults with the opportunity to earn seven certifications and prepares them for entry-level positions in the manufacturing industry.
With guidance from some of the best instructors in the industry, these youth can earn dual college and high school credits and gain soft/technical skills in applied math, assembly, machining, blueprint drafting and reading, welding, and much more.
This cohort also participated in approximately 375 hours of volunteer work, developing critical leadership and teamwork skills while simultaneously giving back to the community.
One MA graduate, Rylan, wouldn’t have had this opportunity if not for the passing of the JR to 25 legislation. During the graduation ceremony, Rylan shared his journey from the Department of Corrections (DOC) to JR and how it changed his trajectory.
“There’s a lot of talk about rehabilitation, recidivism, and transition throughout the justice system, but in JR they really walk the walk. Particularly in the community facilities and programs within them,” said Rylan. “I want to thank everybody in JR that has helped to get me here and for setting up and running these programs. It makes a big difference.”
The 2020 MA graduation ceremony was held virtually in December, with family and friends in attendance to cheer the happy graduates on.