GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – Pitt Community College and the Pitt County Detention Center are partnering on a new educational program for inmates.
The goal? To help inmates get ready for jobs when they’re released and support themselves in a career.
“Working Smart” is available for inmates already involved in the detention center’s Heroin Addiction Recovery Program and the Women’s Empowerment and Recovery Initiative.
This plan now gives them a chance for more learning.
Kemardrick Sherod is working on his social development at Pitt County’s Detention Center.
“For me personally, I appreciate Pitt for even making this available,” he says.
The initiative is helping inmates focus on a different future and get them ready for productive jobs in the workforce.
“We’ve got businesses just here in Pitt County alone that are hurting for employees…but if we can get people qualified enough to get those jobs and to get employment then I think we will see the numbers lower of those who continue to come through that revolving door of recidivism,” says Pitt County Sheriff Paula Dance.
For inmate Ronnie Hoda, this training partnership is helping him plan his next steps.
“Well, I’m definitely going to do something different when I get out this time I’m going to move to a different state, I’m going to pursue my welding, receive my GED get my certification for my welding and just start a new life substance-free this time, definitely substance-free this time,” Hoda says.
Jerry Jones is the Director of Career Services and Workforce Development at PCC.
He explains, “it is a combination of different topics dealing with communication, team building, re-branding, employee expectations and so there are five modules about sixteen lessons.”
For some, it isn’t just a chance to learn, it’s a chance at a different life.
Sherod says, “Just speaking for myself a dramatic change in who I am and what I’m going to become I mean it’s astonishing, to be honest…I couldn’t be more proud of myself, I made a dramatic change.”
Sheriff Dance tells 9OYS she would like to see more inmates registering for “Working Smart.”
She is also looking for space for an actual classroom for those who take part.