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Eight Pulaski County inmates graduate Workforce Re-entry Program

Published: Sep. 30, 2021 at 9:40 PM EDT
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SOMERSET, Ky. (WYMT) - For eight Pulaski County inmates, Thursday marked a day of celebration and gratitude.

“This has been the most exciting day for me in many many years,” Workforce Solutions Vice President Alesa Johnson said.

Each inmate graduated from Somerset Community College’s Workforce Re-entry program, receiving welder’s helper certificates.

“This is something as a college and as a community that we’ve talked about extensively for years about what we can do to help transform lives, reduce recidivism, and also help the needs of our employers,” Johnson said.

Mark Madden said that this is a moment he has patiently waited for since 2019.

“It’s relieving,” Mark Madden said. “This whole thing has been a life-changing opportunity.”

Madden hopes to be an inspiration and role model to other inmates across the Commonwealth.

“That’s the hope. Hopefully it doesn’t stop here with just the eight of us,” Madden said. “Hopefully it spreads throughout the jail and other counties surrounding.”

Set to enter the workforce upon his release, Madden said that he is preparing for a drastic life change.

“It’s going to be amazing, it’s an amazing pay increase,” Madden said. “There’s no other way to describe it other than it’s going to be life-changing.”

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