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Milking every opportunity for successful reentry

Inmates Learn Farming Skills at FCI El Reno

Milking every opportunity for successful reentry

(BOP) - Dairy farming is not typically associated with prison life. But for many inmates at the FCI El Reno Satellite Camp, milking cows, bottle feeding newborn calves and tending to the herd are part of a daily routine that helps prepare them for viable job opportunities upon reentry into their communities.

Inmates working at the FCI El Reno dairy learn skills from Federal Prison Industries staff, all of whom have farming backgrounds. Dairy Farmer Foreman George Wylie enjoys teaching inmates the skills he learned working on family farms and for major farming companies. Inmate Christopher Prado hopes to turn this experience into a job working on one of the many dairy farms near his home; an opportunity he passed up as a child, while his grandfather owned a beef cattle operation. Another inmate, Stefan James, has obtained a Commercial Driver License during incarceration and currently delivers milk to 18 institutions in the South Central Region. He plans to continue working as a truck driver when he is released.

The dairy operation at El Reno includes 490 dairy cows and produces approximately 3,100 gallons of milk each day.