WITC Superior Hosts 7th Welding Bootcamp for Wisconsin Prisoners
Three Week Program Teaches Inmates Professional Welding Skills
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Instructors at the Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College Superior campus have spent the last three weeks teaming with the Department of Corrections to teach inmates valuable job skills.
Friday marked the conclusion of the seventh welding boot camp at the Superior campus.
The most recent boot camp was made up of 14 individuals who are either currently incarcerated or on probation or parole.
WITC-Superior welding instructor John Palmer reported that everyone who started this years program made it through the entire process.
Palmer noted the program has been very successful since it’s inception five years ago.
“We’ve placed about 54% of the graduates from our boot camps into employment,” Palmer said Friday afternoon.
He added that he receives a sense of personal fulfillment from participating in the program, “As instructors, we’re happy that we’ve made a difference in peoples lives. Helped them into a new career.”
Jesse Paddock participated in the program and enjoyed it so much he plans on enrolling in the WITC welding program full-time next May.
Everyone who completes the welding boot camp receives three college credit hours from WITC.
The state of Wisconsin is slightly more generous.
According to Palmer everyone who completes the program receives all the basic tools they will need for a career as a welder, including their own welding hood.