San Jose, CA (January 20) — Department of Labor Regional Director Brian Daher urged yesterday the entire Job Corps Center to take a couple of minutes at 3:30 p.m. to remember Robert Sargent Shriver in a moment of silence. Shriver, who died January 18, 2011 at the age of 95, is considered the “Father” of Job Corps.
In San Jose, Center Director Leslie Gilroy instructed yesterday all staff and students of the center to remember Shriver in a moment of silence at 3:30 p.m.
Shriver championed President Lyndon B. Johnson’s War on Poverty and in that role, he was responsible in founding Job Corps in 1964. To date, the country has a total of 122 Job Corps Centers and San Jose is one of them. Job Corps is a federal program under the Department of Labor giving at-risk youths ages 16 to 24, a chance to be a conributing member of society. The program offers GED cerficate program, high school diploma program, and various trade offerings needed by the students to be employable.
Looking back, Sargent Shriver said in 1999, during the dedication of a Job Corps Center in his honor (Shriver Job Corps Center in Devens, Massachussetts), “Our Job Corps graduates are proof that our original dream, our vision, was realistic. We proved that all of us could work together, sucessfully, to provide the necessary skills to thousands of young Americans who had neither job nor skills… Our combined efforts succeeded! The Job Corps has survived and prospered. It has served our nation well”.
In her memo, Job Corps National Director Edna Primrose said about Shriver, “… I hope that at Job Corps, we are inspired by the sense of honor and gratitude that led him to found our program. He believed that every young person in this country deserves the chance to see a brighter future. He believed that our society must teach young people the skills they need to succeed, both in life and at work…”.
Primrose recalled Shriver’s belief about Job Corps, “I believe in the Job Corps and its future… the Job Corps will tell us much about ourselves, our courage, our vision, our sense of equality, our trust in God and His providence, our future as one nation, under God, with liberty and justice for all. I repeat the words ‘for all’… because those words include all young Americans!”
Primprose has requested all centers, in tribute to Sargent Shriver, that all Job Corps centers fly their flags at half-mast for one week. “Through this small but powerful gesture, we will honor Sargent Shriver’s memory, his sense of duty to our young people and his legacy,” she said.
Shriver founded and became the first director of the Peace Corps who organized and developed voluntary activities in more than 50 countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.