Female Offenders Graduate from First-of-its-Kind Prison Program
FOLSOM – February 10, 2021 (written by Michele Kane)
Eighteen female offenders with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) graduated from the California Prison Industry Authority’s (CALPIA) Autodesk Authorized Training Center Program in Folsom.
The women from the Folsom Women’s Facility participated in CALPIA’s Career Technical Education (CTE) program, which provides training in AutoCAD or Computer-Aided Design, Autodesk Revit, and Autodesk Inventor. This CTE program is the only authorized Autodesk Training Center housed at a correctional institution.
“The certifications the women receive in this program will help them get jobs in architectural, mechanical and/or engineering fields,” said Charles Pattillo, General Manager of CALPIA. “We want offenders to get jobs and be successful when they leave prison, we don’t want them to return.”
The average offender costs California taxpayers approximately $63,000 a year in state prison. CALPIA’s CTE programs are some of CDCR’s most successful vocational training programs with a cumulative recidivism rate of 7.13%.
“The impact that this program has is tremendous, not only changing lives and helping offenders stay on a positive path, but also helping the state save long-term costs and making communities safer for us all,” said CDCR Secretary and Prison Industry Board Chair, Jeff Beard.
This CTE program is made possible through a contract with CDCR along with funding from the Prison Industry Board. CALPIA launched the Computer-Aided Design (CAD) program last year, and has expanded to include Inventor and Revit produced by software company, Autodesk.
Course participants are required to have some computer experience, math skills, and a general education (GED) certificate at minimum. AutoCAD and Inventor are a combined curriculum that takes approximately 6 months to complete. Autodesk Revit includes a longer curriculum which takes 6 months on its own.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration, there is a 10 percent increase in job growth for Mechanical Drafters with CAD certification in California, and the annual average salary in this state for this occupation is $52,200.
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