Breckenridge Job Corps Training Center. | Southern Illinois University Special Collections Research Center
The operation and maintenance of the Job Corps Training Center was assumed by the University in January of 1965, for the federal Office of Economic Opportunity. The purpose of the Center was feeding, clothing, and educating young men from city and farm areas who have grown up in poverty and lacked educational and cultural advantages.
The program was operated on a contractual basis. An eighteen month contract, with an expiration date of July 1, 1966, was signed by President Morris on April 29, 1965. The program called for the enrollment of 166 trainees per month, who were to reach acceptable levels in reading, writing, arithmetic, and speech, followed by vocational training, during ten to twelve months in the Job Corps.
John S. Rendleman, Vice President for Business Affairs, was given the responsibility for financial details; R. Dean Isbell, Coordinator of Systems and Procedures, was made Director of Administrative Services; James D. Turner was appointed Camp Director; and Robert E. Lee was made camp Director of Student Development.
On January 21, 1966, the University and the Office of Economic Opportunity agreed not to renew the eighteen month contract. In July of 1966, the contract was terminated and the University became responsible only for supporting services and educational resources rather than for operation and maintenance.