Today I am fortunate to attend an event in Nampa, Idaho, with Congressman Walt Minnick to celebrate Secretary’s Vilsack’s announcement of a new green curriculum for the USDA Forest Service’s 28 Job Corps Civilian Conservation Centers, located in 18 states around the country. I will be able to see first-hand how USDA’s Job Corps Centers’ curriculum is preparing disadvantaged young people for careers that will be good for the environment, good for the economy, and good for them!
The USDA Forest Service has operated Job Corps Civilian Conservation Centers for 45 years, and I am eager to see how the new focus on green jobs training for today’s economy can work for our students. The new green curriculum offered at the Job Corps Civilian Conservation Centers provides training in growing trades such as:
Carpentry and construction: Students learn the principles of green construction, as well as how to build and retrofit buildings to achieve green building-certification.
Electrical: Students are learning to re-wire buildings and install smart meters, low-voltage thermostats, and energy-efficient appliances.
Culinary arts: Culinary students learn to incorporate fresh, organic, locally-grown produce into menus, decreasing the miles food has to travel and lowering carbon output.
Medical trades: Students learn the importance of nutrition and healthy, active lifestyles. Graduates will be part of a health care system that will help Americans live longer, healthier lives.
Natural resources: Jobs in natural resource trades will be key in forest restoration work that will ensure a healthy environment and clean, abundant water for communities throughout the nation.
Job Corps Centers provide free education and training and are located throughout the country. For eligible youth at least 16 years of age, Job Corps provides the all-around skills needed to succeed in a career and in life. To learn more visit our recruiting Website.
Check back soon for photos and stories from the event!
By Harris Sherman, Under Secretary for Natural Resources and the Environment