When I had come back from Mexico (the 2nd and final time) I was 21 years old and I had no idea what to do with my life. I thought of moving to the city next door and getting a job. My daughter was still an infant of course and I had just moved back in with my parents.
My mom and I kept seeing commercials for Job Corps and shes like “Jackie, I think you should do that”. At first I didnt like the idea AT ALL. I was like “Why? In high school you wouldnt let me go when I asked?” plus the idea of only seeing my infant daughter on the weekends freaked me out because I didnt want her thinking I wasnt her mother and I even got into an argument with my mom about it lol! But no she knew and I was home every weekend.
So yes, I finally decided to go. First I toured the Clearfield Job Corps, place was huge and had a ton of trades, but just wasnt for me. I like small and quiet. So I went and toured Weber Basin Job Corps and I loved it.
So I think around Sept 2003 was when I checked on going and around January 2004 is when I actually went. The trade I went in for was Business Technologies and didnt have to worry about getting a high school diploma because I already had one. I also was interested in Maintenance as you can do 2 trades but I didnt want to leave my daughter any longer.
What is Job Corps you maybe wondering?
“Job Corps is the nation’s largest career technical training and education program for young people ages 16 through 24.
Students can earn a high school diploma, a high school equivalency credential, or college credits through Job Corps.
We offer career technical training in more than 100 career areas. Students receive housing, meals, basic health care, a living allowance, training, and preparation for a career, all at no cost.
For up to 21 months after graduation, a career transition counselor will help your student make the transition from Job Corps into the real world.”
Visit JobCorps.gov for more info (more so for low income families as well)
Anyway, so I went. We had chores, which was great because we had allowance, a recreation room, gym, etc. I was put in Donner Dorm, the girls who helped with orientation I noticed put the more attractive, popular type girls in Apache, it didnt let it bother me because it was typical high school petty bullshit.
I loved the 2nd week there you are to work in the kitchen. I thought it was fun and you did with the group you went to orientation with. I still have that picture here somewhere.
My time there I mostly read, watched TV and ate Ramen and exercised. I LOVED how structured it was. At 6am I would get up in the morning and go to the cafeteria to have my daily coffee, never really ate breakfast and I dont think I did there neither.
I also first time playing basketball and I had so much fun. Always loved basketball after that.
People also made money mostly selling Ramen or Cigarettes. I chose to sell Ramen 50 cents to a dollar a pack. I was an Entrepreneur so that came naturally to me :p
Probably the 2nd or 3rd week there I became dorm room attendant or something I cant remember what its called. Anyway I was in charge of making sure our dorm room was taking care of and clean. It was nice. My last month I became Top 6. I love having the leadership and ran for Secretary but lost but understood WHY I lost, because I was never very social outside the dorm room. It was a lesson I learned and not very happy with.
I dated maybe one guy while I was there. Everyone was so into everyone’s drama and such, I just didn’t care for it. I just focused on Business Technologies and my own hobbies. My favorite were the dances. Always loved school dances, in high school or town and of course even Job Corps. It was the only place I felt great.
One time one weekend I went with a group and we stayed in a motel room, but we were hungry. I think it was downtown Salt Lake. I think we ate pizza. But none of us really had any money as it was and if I remember correctly the most we made at Job Corps was $40 a month.
Business Technologies was all administration stuff. Filing, computer work, Microsoft Office. I also earned my Microsoft Office 2004 Certificate. I was in it for appx 10 months. I was able to leave early and come back for graduation because I completed all of my work. It was also mandatory to get your Drivers License to graduate Job Corps and that is where I got mine since I failed the two previous times to get it. So that made things easier.
A funny part was when my instructor was helping me look for a job, I accidentally called a job but it was in a different state lol! I ended up actually getting a job as a temporary agent in a call center. Then began that Career.