Just two weeks ago, our Clear Springs project saw its busiest day yet - one dozen volunteers took paintbrush, hammer, and wheelbarrow in hand to help restore the lakeside pavilion. What made it such a popular place? Teacher Gary Hurst heard about the Clear Springs volunteer opportunity and thought it would be a perfect fit for his students at Franklin County Career and Technology Center. Located in Meadville, MS, the school is all about preparing students for careers in specific topics, including construction, health sciences, transportation, and manufacturing fields. Eight students in Mr. Hurst's construction class spent an October afternoon learning about restoration of a historic site. Students and crew alike were thrilled to spend time on the project.

Here's what Franklin Career Tech wrote for their local paper, The Franklin Advocate:

On Thursday October 20, eight local career and technical students made a trip to Clear Springs to spend a day preserving a portion of our nation’s history located right here in Franklin County.  Carpentry students from Franklin Career Tech worked the day as volunteers on the historic pavilion and gazebo located on the Clear Springs campground.  Both structures were originally constructed by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) during the Great Depression of the 1930s and were in need of restoration.

The students worked under the direction of Superintendent Dennis and crew leader Natalie from HistoriCorps.  (www.historicorps.org)  Both construction professionals are specialists in preserving our national treasures for future generations.  The pros met the students at the bus and organized their day, starting with emphasis on working safely.  As a result of their studies at Franklin County Career Tech, all came to the job NCCER certified by Mr. Hurst in basic construction safety and the use of both hand tools and basic power tools.

These career and technical students were not on a tour.  They applied some lessons they had learned and learned some new things by doing.  As a result of their efforts the gazebo is now scraped and painted along with the railings around the pavilion.  Some of the students also had the opportunity for some hands-on experience repairing the masonry on the old stone fireplace.

The students did enjoy cooking and eating their burgers in the beautiful lake-side picnic area at Clear Springs.  At the end of the day Mr. Hurst conveyed thanks of Director Terry Moffett to our new HistoriCorps friends for allowing our construction/carpentry program to be a part of the project. Superintendent of Schools Chris Kent said, “I appreciate Mr. Hurst and the carpentry students volunteering their time and skills to help on the project at Clear Springs. This is a great example of how the Franklin County Career and Technical Center is teaching our students skills that can be applied to many different job settings.”

 

Thank you students, and best of luck in your future endeavors! HistoriCorps loves working with youth across the country and is honored to have such talented and devoted young people working by our side.

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