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New life, new career: Former inmates graduate alongside TCC students

New life, new career: Former inmates graduate alongside TCC students
Posted at 11:21 PM, May 13, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-13 23:22:35-04

NORFOLK, Va. - Former inmates are getting a shot at a new life and a new career thanks to a local car dealership.

Fourteen former Norfolk City Jail inmates graduated alongside hundreds of other Tidewater Community College students Monday night.

They completed a two-year, certified automotive repair training program created and funded by Priority Automotive.

The program, which launched in 2018, is designed to help non-violent offenders study, train and transition to a career path once they are released.

Related: Inmates find second chance in Chesapeake Jail’s new job programs

"A guy in my situation, normally, when I'm reentering back into society, my opportunities are few, so this right here is a golden opportunity to have a viable career, so it really gets no better than that," said Damion Britt, who was one of the program's 14 graduates.

Under the program, the new graduates will now be hired on as full-time priority technicians at one of 14 priority dealerships across hampton roads.