The Blackwell Job Corps Civilian Conservation Center is holding an open house August 15 at the facility in Laona to celebrate the program's 50th anniversary year.
Blackwell was launched in 1965 as part of the Equal Opportunity Employment Act. Blackwell emerged from the C.C.C. camps. The program has since become a part of the U.S. Forest Service, serving 160 students. Job Corps offers career development services to at-risk young women and men, ages 16 to 24. The Forest Service operates 28 Job Corps centers in 18 states.
Blackwell guidance counselor Lorie Almazan says the mission is to provide young people with a clear career...
".....they get to finish up their high school diploma if they weren't able to do that in a traditional setting. And they are also able to choose a career path, a technical training path..."
Among the careers are construction, nursing assistant, carpentry, masonry, welding, and through the Forest Service can train to be firefighters.
The keynote speaker is Stedman Graham, who owns a management and marketing firm and is a motivational speaker. He is also the longtime partner of Oprah Winfrey. Other federal, state and local officials have been invited to attend. Almazan says students interested in technical training are especially welcome to attend...
"....we just want everyone to come and see what we're all about. Probably the Northwoods best kept secret and it's an opportunity for people to change their lives...."
The facility will offer free tours tours from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00. Lunch will be provided. Almazan says Google the Blackwell Job Corps website to find out more information or call the center in Laona for more information.