Wabash Valley Correctional Facility
CARLISLE – Recently, the Indiana Department of Correction (IDOC) and Ivy Tech Community College Terre Haute celebrated the graduation of male non-violent offenders from Ivy Tech welding and Computer Numerical Control (CNC) programs.
This workforce training partnership between the IDOC and Ivy Tech Community College was established in 2018 as part of Governor Eric Holcomb’s Next Level Agenda to provide offenders with high-wage, high-demand jobs, upon release. Employers who hire ex-offenders are eligible for up to a $10,000 federal Work Opportunity Tax Credit per new hire.
Ten offenders earned their American Welding Society (AWS) and Flux Core Arc Welding (FCAW) qualifications, as well as their Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) certifications. Seven offenders earned their National Institute of Metalworking Skills (NIMS) certifications through the Ivy Tech Workplace Computerized Numerical Control (CNC) training program.
The welding class ran five days a week for three weeks. At the graduation Capt. M. Voigtschild spoke on behalf of Wabash Valley Correctional Facility (WVCF). He encouraged the graduates to pursue a better future through the new doors that are now open to them.
When asked about the program and how it was received by the offenders, Ivy Tech Welding Instructor Aaron McCollum said the graduates were very dedicated, hardworking and employable. graduate Chris Fox said he turned down the opportunity to be released on house arrest in order to complete the training program. He continued that he knows the certifications will help him going forward and thus allow him to be more a part of his loved ones’ lives.
The CNC class ran five days a week for seven weeks. At the graduation Warden D. Brown spoke on behalf of Wabash Valley Correctional Facility (WVCF). He shared with each graduate that their initiative and dedication had brought them to this day and going forward they should continue to find success if they show the same initiative.
When asked about the graduates Ivy Tech CNC Instructor Marquis Songer said each graduate passed all three required exams on the first attempt. He said, “All of these men are very intelligent and capable of doing great things with their future.”
Fox, from the Welding Cohort, had an interview with a welding company on June 28, as did graduate Negovan. The company informed the Wabash Valley Correctional Facility of their intent to hire both individuals upon release, provided they pass the remaining requirements.
Upon hearing this very welcome news Warden Brown commented, “We appreciate businesses willing to step up to help change the future of not only the graduates, but also the communities to which they are returning.”
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News Writer: Lucy Pery PHONE: 317-527-4141