Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2010, $740,360)
The Second Chance Act Technology Careers Training Demonstration Projects for Incarcerated Adults and Juveniles is designed to provide resources to states, units of local government, and federally recognized tribes for career training in the area of technology for offenders. Grantees must identify a process for assessment and selection of a specific subset of the population of offenders incarcerated in a prison, jail, juvenile facility, juvenile camp, juvenile community-based program, or juvenile residential facility. Offenders must participate in Project activities during the three-year period prior to release into the community. This Program furthers the Department of Justice commitment to providing services and programs to help facilitate the successful integration of offenders as they return to their communities.
The Technology Career Trainings must include a curriculum that helps participants acquire and develop skills needed to build potentially successful careers in technology-related fields. The training curriculum must identify necessary skills and competencies, provide real-world work experience, teach transferable job skills and soft skills to help prepare for post-release reentry and employment, and provide resources to support training in technology areas. The specific type of technology-based job(s) incorporated into the training program is at the discretion of each grantee. However, the grantee must be able to justify the selected training as technology-related. Some examples of technology-based field include, but are not limited, to the following: computer assisted design in engineering; information technology; Braille transcription training and certification; wireless and broadband deployment; technician positions; computer hardware/software; and computer science and programming. Where applicable, the trainings should result in a recognized certificate, degree, or license that indicates a level of mastery and competence in the selected technology focus area. The technology career trainings must restrict access to the Internet by incarcerated persons, as appropriate, to ensure public safety.
The Florida Department of Corrections (FDC), will deliver a comprehensive model for technology career training and reentry services for 100 inmates returning to Palm Beach, Florida. The Teaching and Enhancing Careers in High-Technology (T.E.C.H.) Project will establish a technology career training program to prepare incarcerated adult males for a technology-based career during the 12-18 months prior to release from prison. It will identify needs, provide targeted evidence-based programs, and coordinate pre- and post-release services that will assist inmates transitioning from prison to the community. T.E.C.H. program representatives will work with the inmates to develop an individualized reentry plan using validated assessments. Based on identified needs and program availability, the participants will complete education, vocational technology training, job readiness training, substance abuse treatment and various life skills programming prior to release, including linkage to post-release employment opportunities.