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Jacob Creek Job Corps begins phased reopening in Bristol

LAKEWOOD, Colo. — The Jacobs Creek Job Corps Civilian Conservation (CCC) in
Bristol, Tenn., welcomed back its first cohort of nine Job Corps students on January 12,
under a policy of phased readmission on January 12.
The resumption of center operations was carefully planned with close adherence to COVID-19 safety guidance from the Department of Labor, the Forest Service, and local health officials to minimize the risk to students and staff.
Jacobs Creek staff are eagerly expecting its second cohort of additional nine students on January 26.
Since Jacobs Creek Job Corps closed in mid-March 2020, to ensure the health and safety of its
students, teachers were forced to pivot to Distance Learning during the pandemic.
Jacobs Creek staff are ecstatic to have their students back on campus.
“What I miss the most with my students being off-center is the face-to-face interaction,” said Jacobs Creek Job Corps graduate and International Union of Operating Engineers Heavy Equipment Instructor Anthony Driver.
“When I can work with them one-on-one in-person, I can see them actually learning. They are happy.
They are excited. It is the look of success.”
On-center and off, Jacobs Creek Job Corps staff are heavily invested in the health and welfare of students and staff made sure that even after students left the center, they had access to a social service support network.
All of the students returned to their home of record with the exception of Dyshon Simmons. After evaluating his family situation, Jacobs Creek staff determined that the best option for Simmons was for him to remain on-center.
“I’m just glad to be back to welding,” stated Simmons when asked if he was looking forward to seeing other students.
Simmons spent the past ten months assisting with a remodel of the welding shop by hanging welding curtains, installing kickplates and baseboards created with brushed aluminum, cleaning and remodeling the welding instructor’s office and building a frame for the shop’s track torch.
Simmons’ number one goal for the year 2021 is to complete Job Corps.
Jacobs Creek Job Corps staff are committed to ensuring a safe, healthy environment for both students and staff. Safe reopening in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic has required a reconfiguration of the Jacobs Creek campus and all aspect of the daily lives of Job Corps students, along with how center staff carry out their mission of educating and training students.
The lives of the students, how they eat, sleep, learn, and recreate, have been adjusted to incorporate wearing masks, social distancing, frequent handwashing and use of personal protective equipment to ensure the campus remains safe.
Students enrolled at the Jacobs Creek Job Corps Center because they made a choice to move their lives in a new direction.
Staff are grateful for the opportunity to return to the mission of transforming these young people’s lives through career development and natural resource and conservation training.
The USDA Forest Service operates 24 Job Corps Civilian Conservation Centers with a capacity to serve over 4,000 students.
For more information, on the unique conservation mission of the Forest Service Job Corps Centers, please visit: https://www.fs.usda.gov/working-with-us/opportunities-for-young-people/forest-service-job-corps.
The mission of the USDA Forest Service is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of the Nation’s forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations.
The Agency manages 193 million acres of public land, provides assistance to State and private landowners, and maintains the largest forestry research organization in the world.
If you or someone you know is interested in joining Job Corps, please call (800) 733-JOBS or (800) 733-5627
or you can also explore Job Corps training opportunities by visiting http://recruiting.jobcorps.gov/.