EricJonesEric JonesMUHLENBERG COUNTY, Ky. (6/20/14) — Eric Jones, who most recently served as center director of the Bamberg Job Corps Center in South Carolina for four years, is the new center director of the Muhlenberg Job Corps.

Jones has more than 13 years of Job Corps experience. Prior to becoming center director at Bamberg, Jones held various senior management positions within Job Corps, including career development service director at Miami Job Corps; career development/transition program manager at Flint/Genesee Job Corps; independent living manager at Earle C. Clements; and career counselor and leadership coordinator at Excelsior Springs.

He has a master's degree in Business Management focusing on Job Corps Executive Management Programming from Minot State University in North Dakota, and a bachelor's of science degree in psychology, focusing on special education and anti-violence studies from Pittsburg State University in southeast Kansas. Jones currently is pursuing his doctorate in educational psychology at Northcentral University.

Jones said his move to Muhlenberg was motivated by "growth and development. I had been looking for a bigger center, and had been looking for an opportunity to work with Horizons Youth Services (which operates Muhlenberg)." Muhlenberg, with its current OBS of 343, is twice the size of Bamberg Job Corps, with an OBS of 173."

Jones said his leadership style emphasizes open communication and staff ownership of the program. "I encourage people to be fully functioning leaders at every level." His philosophy for students and staff is the same. "It's about growth and development for everyone. I'm passionate about lifelong learning."

His first priority at Muhlenberg is to "get to know the staff, get to know the team. The center has a great history. It was very successful in the past. I'm coming to listen, to see how I can help the center regain its high center ranking."

Jones is an enthusiastic supporter of Job Corps, not only because it is his livelihood, but also because it is a program he deeply identifies with. He describes himself as "kind of like a Job Corps student."

Jones recalls growing up with a sister who had serious medical issues, and having a limited relationship with his father and a strained relationship with his stepfather. "I know what it's like to not have what you want, to be angry, to be lost. At a certain point, you have to focus on yourself, be what you never had, try not to make the same mistakes."

A high school dropout, he earned his GED at a local community college, and then began to see that education could change his life. His focus shifted from the negatives in his life to the possibilities of what education, determination and training could do.

Jones acknowledges that the last year has been a rough one for Job Corps, and that some in Congress question the effectiveness of the program. "But what's the alternative?" he asks. "In reality Job Corps is the most successful preparatory program in the nation. These students are becoming taxpaying citizens."

He said Job Corps needs to be marketed as the "premier vocational scholarship program" with a compelling story. "We need to champion student success."

Jones is married and has three adult sons.

Jones replaces Kenny Brown, who served as Muhlenberg center director since 2009. In announcing the change on management at the center, Horizons Youth Services President Pete Calvo said of Brown, "We say farewell to a gentleman, a friend ... and a true champion of Job Corps."

Calvo praised Brown, saying "Words cannot describe the ways in which he has contributed to the success of the Muhlenberg center and Horizons Youth Services. Kenny has helped to create and maintain a center culture seldom seen in the Job Corps community. He has maintained a supportive and caring environment, and will leave an indelible mark upon all of us."

Brown resigned to pursue other interests.

SurfKY News
Information provided by Karen Robinson

LIKE SurfKY on Facebook - Click here to LIKE us now.

© Copyright 2015 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story on social media.

Posted on 2/2/14
3/13 - 16
1 DOW 17,678.23
-40.31 (-0.23%)    
2 S&P 2,056.15
-4.90 (-0.24%)    
3 NASDAQ 4,863.36
-13.16 (-0.27%)    
3/13 - 16

Most Read This Week

March 18, 2015 9387

UPDATE: Hanson Man Located in Henderson, Taken to…

by Trooper Stu Recke
March 18, 2015 6719

UPDATE: Name of Pedestrian Killed on Western…

by Trooper Stu Recke
March 24, 2015 4798

One Dies, Another Injured in Mortons Gap Traffic…

by Deputy Heath Owens
March 25, 2015 4586

Grand Jury Finds No Criminal Wrongdoing in Bean…

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News
March 25, 2015 4561

Fazoli's, Roses Coming to Madisonville

by Amber Averitt, SurfKY News
March 24, 2015 3939

UPDATE: One Injured in Hopkinsville Road Accident

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News

Most Read This Month

February 25, 2015 13715

Multi-Agency Investigation Nets Large-Scale Meth…

by Trooper Stu Recke
March 09, 2015 12719

Multi-Agency Drug Bust Results in $1 Million Meth…

by KSP DESI

Stories Trending Today

March 25, 2015 4586

Grand Jury Finds No Criminal Wrongdoing in Bean…

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News
March 25, 2015 4561

Fazoli's, Roses Coming to Madisonville

by Amber Averitt, SurfKY News
March 25, 2015 3467

Madisonville Man's Living Room Leap Lands Him in…

by Madisonville Police Department / Hopkins County Detention Center
March 25, 2015 2862

Rep Brent Yonts' Letter to TVA concerning…

by Brent Yonts
March 25, 2015 2168

Alleged Speeding in School Zone Ends in DUI Arrest

by Madisonville Police Department / Hopkins County Detention Center
March 25, 2015 1514

Crime Stoppers Fugitive of the Week – March 25,…

by Hopkinsville – Christian County Crime Stoppers
March 25, 2015 1429

Greenville Man Charged with Theft of Vehicle

by Wes Miller
March 26, 2015 1188

‘Chasing Rainbow’ Heart Walk Raises Funds for AHA

by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News
March 25, 2015 1147

Madisonville Police Arrest Reports - March 25,…

by Madisonville Police Department
March 25, 2015 1097

Hopkins County Sheriff's Reports Released

by Hopkins County Sheriff's Office