Indiana Department of Correciton
The Department of Workforce Development awarded a U.S Dept. Labor (USDOL) Apprenticeship USA State Expansion Grant to PEN Industries, a division of the Indiana Department of Correction (IDOC). The $194,975 grant will be used to update PEN/IDOC’s Apprenticeship Programs with updated equipment, software and related training materials as well as enhance connections to Indiana businesses who will benefit by hiring trained released offenders.
The ApprenticeshipUSA State Expansion Grant is designed to help states develop and implement comprehensive strategies to support apprenticeship expansion. The grants are also intended to engage industry and workforce intermediaries, employers, and other partners to expand and market the apprenticeship model of training to new sectors and underserved populations.
“The grant will substantially improve our ability to increase the number of offenders who can obtain a USDOL Apprenticeship and prepare for reentry”, said Mike Herron, Director of PEN Industries. “We are committed to providing offenders with training and programs to achieve post-release employment and reduce recidivism”.
The grant will also help make connections with employers and ensure that the Indiana Department of Correction and PEN continues to lead the nation in the USDOL Apprenticeship Program.
PEN has operated industries programs at the Wabash Valley Correctional Facility (WVCF) in Carlisle for more than 19 years,including PEN print services, which served as the pilot for the USDOL (United States Department of Labor) apprenticeship program in 2006. The maximum-security facility has dramatically expanded apprenticeship programs, now offering 13 PEN, six facility and one in food service (ARAMARK).
“We are extremely proud to have our offenders enroll and complete such a viable training and education program. Through the commitment to this training by PEN, offenders will have a greater chance of finding employment after release,” states WVCF Superintendent Dick Brown.
Successful completion of an apprenticeship program earns a six month time cut in a participants sentence.
PEN provides job training, career development and apprenticeship programs to IDOC offenders. PEN is IDOC’s correctional industries division and was created through a state statue issued by the Indiana General Assembly in 1917 (Acts 1917, Chapter 83). PEN’s mission is “to equip offenders for successful reentry through meaningful work and career development while operating in a self-sustaining manner. PEN is an acronym for Prison Enterprises Network.
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News Writer: Lucy Pery PHONE: 317-527-4141