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Fort Wayne Boys & Girls Club announce Career Pathway Center

Kelley Career Pathway Center
ELLA ABBOTT
/
WBOI
Tom Kelley of the Kelley Automotive Group (left) and Joe Jordan, president and CEO of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Fort Wayne (right), take the first hits at a wall inside the future Jim Kelley Career Pathway Center on Thursday, January 6, 2022.

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Fort Wayne announced their plans to open a career center to help youth transitioning into high school to begin to learn soft skills and trades.

Tom Kelley
ELLA ABBOTT
/
WBOI
Tom Kelley of the Kelley Automotive Group and son of Jim Kelley speaks during the announcement of the new Career Pathway Center on Thursday, January 6, 2022, which will be named after Kelley's father.

The Jim Kelley Career Pathway Center will be two buildings over from the main club building on Fairfield Avenue. The building was bought by Tom Kelley of the Kelley Automotive Group and donated to the club.

The building is named for Kelley’s father, who taught him the value of trade skills. Jim Kelley went to the GE apprentice school after graduating high school.

“My dad said, his whole life, he said that degree, that trade, that ability to be a toolmaker gave me the confidence and foundation to start my life and do other things.”

The center will partner with Fort Wayne Community Schools to get eighth graders into programs that teach them trade skills as well as soft skills, such as how to interview for jobs, how to dress and the importance of timeliness.

Joe Kelley Career Pathway Center

Ella Abbott is a multimedia reporter for 89.1 WBOI. She is a strong believer in the ways audio storytelling can engage an audience and create a sensory experience.