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Anaconda Job Corps celebrates new life after decision to close reversed

Posted at 3:27 PM, Jul 03, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-03 17:44:25-04

ANACONDA – The Anaconda Job Corps’ open house is an annual event, but this year was more special.

Last May, the career-training program was set to be closed. Some Job Corps participants heard the news before going off on training.

“We wound up hearing about how the center was closing before we left and we’re like,‘Ah, this is such a bummer,’” said Dylan Kurz, a Job Corps member.

Outcry from the community and work from U.S. Senators Steve Daines and Jon Tester helped reverse that decision, and the center will remain open. Participants celebrated the good news.

“It’s definitely a good program for people trying to find themselves in a way, you know, if college isn’t best for them or they want to get out and work and find new things about themselves, we’ve got trades here,” said Job Corps member Caleb Ocken.

Sen. Daines, R-MT, said a phone call to President Trump helped get the decision to close the center reversed and he’s delighted to see it remain open.

“It’s an emotional moment because there was so much at stake here. We’re talking about the lives of these young people and it’s giving them hope, it’s giving them second chances at life,” said Sen. Daines.

The young people involved in the Job Corps program say it’s not only taught them an important trade, it’s also changed them for the better.

“Before I got here I was not motivated at all, I did not know what I was going to do in my future or school-wise, and I wasn’t really that excited about the future, but Job Corps definitely has me excited,” said Jacob Matson of Butte.

Reporting by John Emeigh for MTN News