Homestead Job Corps celebrates 50 years of excellence

Many South Florida businessmen came together to help Job Corps Center celebrate 50 years. The group visited the Homestead Air Reserve Base.

Many South Florida businessmen came together to help Job Corps Center celebrate 50 years. The group visited the Homestead Air Reserve Base.

HOMESTEAD, FL (May 19, 2014) – The youth of America are this nation’s future and Job Corps has spent the past 50 years improving their quality of life and teaching them technical skills to help them be  employable, resourceful and independent. Job Corps boasts many supporters and kicked off its 50-year celebration at the Homestead Job Corps location.

Over 60 southern Florida employers, including members of the Economic Development Council (EDC) of South Miami-Dade, were in attendance during the two-week celebration. Homestead Job Corps staff, security trade students and all six members of the Student Government Association Executive Board helped EDC coordinate a luncheon.

Homestead Job Corps Center Director Luis Cerezo receives a proclamation from Frank Balzebre, aide to Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez.

Homestead Job Corps Center Director Luis Cerezo receives a proclamation from Frank Balzebre, aide to Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez.

Homestead Job Corps Center Director Luis Cerezo highlighted the influence the Job Corps program has nationwide.

“I am extremely proud of what HJCC has accomplished,” Mr. Cerezo said. “This year, Job Corps enters its 50th year of helping millions of young people learn the skills they need to become contributors to the workforce, their communities and the tax base. With the support of so many of you today, HJCC is able to serve approximately 900 youth each year assisting them reach their potential.”

The mayor’s office presented Mr. Cerezo with a Proclamation that named March 13, 2014 as Job Corps 50th Anniversary Day. Miami-Dade County School Board Vice Chair Dr. Larry Feldman also presented a Ceremonial Proclamation to Homestead Job Corp Student Government Association President Leondra Edwards. Mr. Feldman credits Ms. Edwards with leading students to positive outcomes and she was awarded the Exemplary Medal of Honor.

“Earning the medal made me want to rise to even greater heights and raise expectations of myself,” Ms. Edwards said.  “As the luncheon proceeded, there was a moment I realized the tremendous bond between Homestead Job Corps and the community.”

The Homestead Job Corp Center Community Relations Council took guests on the “VIP Triple Play Tour” of Chapman Partnership, Homestead Air Reserve Base and the Homestead Job Corps Center. Two students, Jasmine Austin and Kristofer Calaman, were selected to represent the student body.

“Jasmine and Kristofer are great examples of what it takes to be successful,” Business and Community Liaison Lesly Diaz said. “Their perseverance to complete their Job Corps training and possibly go on to Job Corps’ Advanced Training inspires other students. I knew they’d leave a lasting impression on the community members and they are two great examples of our remarkable student body here at HJCC.”

Job Corps locations across the country will have their own 50 year anniversary celebrations. Celebrations will focus on the unique bond between Job Corps and the community.

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Author: Josephine Lee