GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - The Gulfport Job Corps is alive these days with the sounds of recovery.
"Just excited because we know we'll be able to help young people who need the help. And we'll have a first class facility to house them and train them in," said Center Director Alexander Alston.
Work is well underway on the male dormitory. The two-story building can house up to 150 students.
The next construction zone will be in front of the campus. The three Katrina-battered buildings will finally be coming down in the next few months. The Administration Building and classrooms will go up on the same spot. So will the cafeteria.
The gym, which faces 33rd Avenue, will move to the back of the campus. That will make room for new Vocational Building for hard hat trades, like welding and carpentry. A warehouse will sit next to it.
"The more progress on the work we see going here, the better we feel," said Alston. "We know things are coming back and we're all excited for that to happen."
Right now, the eight modular buildings can only accommodate 136-students. Many of them are considered at-risk or low-income.
"I dropped out in the eighth grade and even though I did take my GED where I was from. So I came here to start my life over again and get on the right track," said Martha Rogers.
"It's a program to help you do better for yourself," said Chris Newell.
"This is a place that teaches you how to act on the job, teach you skills for the real world, and teach you life skills. I do like the program. It's a good program," said Corneika Ambrose.
The new buildings mean enough room for 280-students who want to get their GEDs, a job skill, and a second chance.
The male dorms should be finished by mid-August. There's no word yet on when construction will start on the front buildings. The director says they could be ready as early as the summer of 2013.
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