Legacy Youth Workforce Development Program graduates its first cohort

The Ben Johnson Educational Center in partnership with the Coordinations and Development Corporation held a Meet, Greet, and Learn event on Sept. 13.

Board Member Ed Ward thanked everyone for attending for helping the Center be a stepping stone and an improvement to society at large.

The main event was the graduation of the Legacy Youth Workforce Development Program’s first cohort: Christian Anderson, Phoenix Pichon, and Jamarcus Jackson.S

President of the Ben Johnson Foundation Claire Prymus said she is excited about the Legacy Youth Workforce Development Program and collaborating with the Workforce Development Center Center.

The Legacy Café is a part of the Ben D. Johnson Education Center and functions as the hands-on training environment for the Legacy Youth Workforce Development Program. The fresh, made-from-scratch menu offers breakfast and lunch Monday through Friday, 7AM to 2PM. All proceeds from the Café supports the Legacy Youth Workforce Development Program.

Director of Workforce Development Angie Rymer said that people come from all different walks of life and some need more work skills than others. The Ben Johnson Educational Center covers the training and Workforce Development handles the financial part to get students where they need to be.

The Legacy Youth Workforce Development Program serves young people ages 17 – 24, who are out of work and out of school. The program offers job readiness and culinary training; and provides support to help students overcome their barriers to getting and keeping a job. In addition, participants receive a stipend and get breakfast and lunch daily.

In June, the BDJ Center was approved by the Louisiana Board of Regents and is now a Licensed Proprietary School. The responsibility of a proprietary school is to prepare individuals for gainful employment.

This allows the BDJ Center to build a strong working relationship with the Workforce Commission and ultimately help young people in the community enter and remain in the workforce and have more self-sufficient lives.

Keynote Speaker Ava Dejoie, Secretary of the LA Workforce Commission said the work being done at the Ben Johnson Educational Center in Natchitoches is truly planting seeds and building a legacy.

“Dream big,” she said. “The sky’s the limit. There’s no one pathway.”

You can get involved with the Legacy Youth Workforce Development Program in more than one way.

Donate to the program at the Center’s website http://www.BDJCenter.org

Like the Center’s Facebook pages BDJCenter and 400MLK

Patronize the Café located 400 MLK Drive, Suite J or make an online order for delivery at http://www.ezstreetdelivery.com

Use the Café for your office lunches, plant events and private parties

Become a Partner – hire students upon graduation

Volunteer at the center

Refer potential participant

For additional information call 318-460-7460.


5 thoughts on “Legacy Youth Workforce Development Program graduates its first cohort

  1. Mr Johnson was my friend and I am happy to see Claire Prymus continue the work he started! I’m committed to do what I can to help! The work Claire is doing is an investment in our community’s future!

  2. Ms. Claire Prymus has been working behind the scenes for years trying to promote opportunities via economic development, such as a much-needed business incubator here in Natchitoches, and her other programs. Congratulations to these graduates and a special thanks to Ms. Prymus for making it all happen.

    By the way, you owe it to yourself to dine at the Legacy Café, great food, wonderful atmosphere. Haven’t tried their breakfast menu yet, but I will!

  3. Sounds like a great program. It would be great if there were apprentice programs in other industries to train out of work, out of school individuals. Plumbers, mechanics, building trades, electricians, etc. And transportation to help young people get to their workplace. State legislators, there’s a thought for you. Our rural communities need this. i.e. CAMPTI.

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