ANAMOSA, Iowa (April 9, 2019)-Anamosa State Penitentiary (ASP) and Kirkwood Community College will honor high school and apprenticeship graduates at a special ceremony beginning at 1:15 p.m. on April 24, 2019, in the visiting room at the prison located at 406 North High Street, Anamosa, Iowa.
Eighteen students have earned their high school education by either completing their high school diploma or passing all five of the HiSET finals. Seven incarcerated individuals are graduating from the ASP Apprenticeship Program, completing all requirements. There is also one student who is receiving a BA in Liberal Arts specializing in Natural Sciences from Simpson College. Each graduate is permitted to invite two individuals from their approved visitor list to attend the ceremony.
The HiSET (High School Equivalency Test) includes exams in Math, Writing, Science, Reading and Social Studies. Kirkwood Community College provides state-certified teachers and administers the tests within the walls of the maximum security prison, which houses approximately 999 men.
The Registered Apprenticeship Program is certified by the US Department of Labor Office of Apprenticeship. This was a collaborative effort by ASP, Iowa Prison Industries, and Kirkwood Community College. A registered apprenticeship program is on the job training and a high level of curriculum. A typical program includes instructional material with 4000-8000 hours of on-the-job work skills.
Currently at the prison, 17 certified programs have been developed and certified including computer operator, cabinet maker, welding, cook, electrician, refrigeration, maintenance repairer, plumber, metal fabricator-assembler, electrostatic powder coating, baker, housekeeper-commercial/residential/industrial, painter, screen printer, upholsterer, carpenter, and landscaping technician.
For incarcerated individuals, one of the key components to a successful return to society is finding gainful employment. The Registered Apprenticeship Program is an excellent re-entry program and has proven to help returning citizen’s find the gainful employment they need to be successful.