At a ceremony on November 13, seven teens with the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) received certificates for completing Georgia Tech’s Logistics Education And Pathways (LEAP) program. The LEAP program gives them the foundation for a brighter future.
“It’s about workforce development,” said LEAP Program Manager and Instructor Chuck Easley. “And with that these young people have something in front of them that says, ‘I’ve done this training, I’ve invested this, people are investing in me, and now I have a chance to do something different from what I may have been doing that caused me to be here in the first place.’”
This version of the LEAP program was the result of a partnership between the Georgia Tech Supply Chain and Logistics Institute (SCL) and DJJ to help students further their education and find employment. Four of the seven DJJ graduates received job offers, and the other three are scheduled for interviews, making the program a great success.
“From the start, there has been very active involvement and engagement from every level within DJJ, from the leadership to the instructors to the students,” said Carole Bennett, director of the LEAP program. “Everyone has been very committed to completing the program and making sure that everything that needed to happen did, which is what made this cohort so successful.”
The certification ceremony took place at Georgia Tech’s Savannah campus, and attendees included state officials, DJJ leadership, and retired Lt. Col. Reginald Martin, in addition to representatives from partnering organizations and neighboring school systems.
LEAP was originally created by SCL in 2015 for 16- to 24-year-olds and veterans in Metro Atlanta. It was made possible by a grant from JPMorgan Chase & Co. to promote workforce development and to “bridge the gap between the talent employers need and the qualifications of the local talent pipeline.” LEAP consists of eight stand-alone online courses in supply chain and logistics. The program also offers warehouse and campus tours, online supply chain gaming simulation, lectures, career advising, and career fair opportunities. Students earn continuing education units on an official GT Professional Education transcript. The program has graduated more than 615 participants since its inception.
To learn more about SCL’s LEAP program, visit https://www.scl.gatech.edu/LEAP.
H. Milton Stewart School of Industrial and Systems Engineering