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Davis Journal

Centerville company donates more than 800 books to Davis County schools

Apr 22, 2021 02:05PM ● By Becky Ginos

CENTERVILLE—School children throughout the county are enjoying new books thanks to a local company. Management and Training Corporation (MTC) employees collected more than 800 books as part of a company-wide effort to promote literacy. The books were delivered to Valley View and Centerville Elementaries and to 27 junior highs and high schools last week.

MTC, with headquarters in Centerville, was founded 40 years ago by Dr. Robert Marquardt who had a desire to help the disadvantaged and underserved, said Issa Arnita, Director of Corporate Communications. “His passion was to help people improve their lives through education and training.”

The company has grown over those 40 years and has contracts with the U.S. Department of Labor to operate Job Corps Centers across the country including the Clearfield Job Corps Center. “We’ve had the great opportunity to train thousands of kids over the years,” Arnita said. “We took the knowledge from those programs in job training and also started serving men and women who are incarcerated. Today we operate in 21 correctional facilities throughout the country and in Australia and England.”

Arnita said their government partners asked them to look at ways to reduce recidivism and help inmates become BIONIC. “It stands for ‘believe it or not I care.’ Not only do we care about our employees but we care deeply about those we serve.”

To celebrate the company’s 40th anniversary, they created a plan to do four service projects. “My team decided on a literacy project,” said David Doty, Vice President, Engaged Learning. “We have academic programs in reading, math and career technical training. We thought this would be a great effort to host a company-wide book drive.”

Doty said they left it up to individual facilities to determine the school or organization that would be the best recipients in their local communities. “We collected 22,000 books across the country and 800 for Davis County Schools. I talked to Jodi Lunt (Director of the Davis Education Foundation) and the first idea was that since we were getting started in January and that is Black History month we should get books on those topics.”

All of the secondary schools submitted a list of 10 books each they wanted on that topic for their school libraries, he said. “For the elementaries each teacher selected a book for the class and asked that we get one for every child so they could read it together.”

It’s been great to see how supportive employees have been of the project in the office and across the company, said Doty. “At a couple of correctional facilities the inmates made bookshelves but most did some sort of a book drive.”

The project fit well with the company’s mission to have a social impact and improve the lives of the people they serve, he said. “Thousands of students come to us pretty behind academically and in other skills. We try to help them become literate so they can progress in life.”

It’s very rewarding work, Doty said. “It’s something we’re actively engaged in every day that benefits the local communities and our local partners.”

Doty said it was great to work with the Foundation. “It was fun to see the teachers’ and kids’ excitement as we delivered the books. Everybody likes to get a new book.”