Job Corps close to reaching student enrollment goal

The entrance sign to the Wind River Job Corps Center on Airport Road in Riverton. WyoToday photo by Ernie Over

Four years in, the Wind River Job Corps Center is two weeks away from filling its dormitories. That was the word from Center Director James Whitmire Tuesday in a presentation before Riverton Rotarians.

“We were designed for 300 students, 260 residential an 40 non-residential, or local, and in two weeks when the new class comes in, we’ll have full dormitories,” he said.

Whitmire said the center’s goal now is to build up non-residental, or local students. He said the center has on average of 8 to 10 local students, so there is room for some 30 more.

He said most of the students at the center come from Wyoming and Colorado, but have students from other states, including Montana, Utah and others, some from as far away as Maine, Louisiana and Texas.

He said the addition of medical and hospitality trades added has resulted in the number of female students doubling at the center.

A point of pride is the overall success of the center, as indicated by the center’s placement ranking, that is the number of students working in the field they trained in after six to 12 months. “We’re in the top 10 to 15 of all 124 centers in the country in that measure,” he said. “Overall the center’s ranking has increased to from 97th to 56th among all job corps centers. To be the newest center and achieving that high ranking after only four years is something we feel good about.”

The job corps center employs 110 direct employees with another 40 or so indirect jobs tied to the center.