The first ten inmates graduated from the Indiana Department of Correction’s new Certified Welder training program Monday.
The women from Madison Correctional Facility underwent 80 hours of hands-on training to obtain an American Welding Society certification through the program.
Jessica Brackett is one of the graduates. She already has a job lined up for when she starts work release in two weeks. Brackett hopes, as a single mother of three, the training will allow her to provide for her kids.
“I just want them to have a nice home to live in, good schools to go to, be able to put nice clothes on their backs,” she says.
Brackett’s children attended the graduation, where inmates received a special video message from Governor Eric Holcomb. Workforce development is one of Holcomb’s priorities for 2018.
“Having the proper education means everything when entering the workforce, especially for folks who’ve been convicted of a crime,” Holcomb said in the message. “And here in Indiana we have a great business climate waiting and plenty of available jobs, but we need qualified individuals to keep building our workforce.”
Holcomb announced earlier this month another training effort that will teach prisoners to code.