Join Mississippi Scholars and Mississippi Scholars Tech Master at our annual Salute to Mississippi Scholars event, held on April 10 at the Jackson Convention Complex in conjunction with the Mississippi Economic Council's Annual Meeting.
The Mississippi Economic Council (MEC), along with an influential group of leaders from some of the state’s largest employers, have joined forces to create a program that will help Mississippi move forward to improve its workforce readiness.
The Mississippi Scholars Tech Master program will encourage and recognize students to pursue and meet specific standards in a tech-prep course of study. Their achievements will be recognized at graduation, just as the Mississippi Scholars program currently distinguishes those who pursue a college-bound study, with a particular emphasis on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).
"These jobs – like those at our shipyard – pay well," said Irwin F. Edenzon, President of Ingalls Shipbuilding and Corporate VP of Huntington Ingalls Industries. "In fact, many of our craftspeople earn beginning salaries higher than a starting salary of a four-year, liberal arts graduate. As the state’s largest manufacturing employer, we have made a real commitment to encourage students to pursue work as craftspeople."
Edenzon chairs a task force of Mississippi business leaders from some of the state’s largest employers who partnered with educational leaders in developing the Mississippi Scholars Tech Master curriculum.
Over the last two decades, Mississippi has evolved from a low-skill, low-wage job state to what is more commonly known as a middle-skill economy with well-paying jobs. These jobs require effective communication skills, solid basic math skills and the ability to think creatively and carry out multiple tasks in a progressive manner.
The Mississippi Scholars Tech Master program is managed by the Public Education Forum of Mississippi and will use the Mississippi Scholars distribution channel and network to quickly ramp up the program. In order to achieve this recognition, students must commit to meeting standards in curriculum, performance and citizenship. Becoming a Mississippi Scholars Tech Master graduate will help students qualify for college, military and good jobs with benefits in today’s competitive workplace.
This year, the program will pilot in seven counties – Bolivar, Jackson, Jones, Lincoln, Madison, Panola and Union. However, over the next five years, new counties will be added to the network.
Wade Jones, president of East Mississippi Development Corporation, along with Debbie Mathis, Manger of Operations at East Mississippi Business Development Corporation kicked off Mississippi Scholars in November. Lauderdale County and Meridian Public Schools are joining more than 80 districts in the state that are taking part in the Scholars program. The program utilized local business leaders to motivate students to successfully complete a rigorous course of study during high school.
The McComb Exchange club recently named South Pike High School senior Ravine Washington (pictured above) as student of the month for December. Washington holds a 3.9 GPA, is a Mississippi Scholar, dance team captain, president of the Freeman Scholars organization and a member of the Future Business Leaders of America. She has received scholarship offers from numerous colleges but is undecided on where she will continue her education, though she said she wants to major in biology. Congrats Ravine!
Thirteen High Schools Join the Mississippi Scholars Network
Mississippi Scholars welcomes three major schoool districts to its statewide network, with DeSoto County School District, Lauderdale School District and Meridian Public School District all joining the Scholars ranks in 2013. The addition of these new districts bring the total number of Mississippi Scholars school districts up to 88. These three school districts, along with the addition of Hinds Agricultural High School, will add 13 new schools to the Missisisppi Scholars network.
To date, the Mississippi Scholars program has recognized over 500 graduating seniors with the Mississippi Scholars distinction from the two pilot school districts, compared to 24 in 2004. It also has:
- Recruited 88 districts and more than 160 high schools to join the Mississippi Scholars network.
- Trained more than 1,500 volunteers to conduct State Scholars presentations.
- Recognized over 23,000 graduating seniors with medallions or cords for completing the Mississippi Scholars Course of Study.
- Delivered presentations and State Scholars materials to more than 25,000 students.
New Mississippi Scholars high schools listed by school district:
DeSoto County School District
- Center Hill High School
- DeSoto Central High School
- Hernando High School
- Lake Cormorant High School
- Lewisburg High School
- Olive Branch High School
- Southaven High School
Lauderdale School District
- Clarkdale Attendance Center
- Northeast Lauderdale High School
- Southeast Lauderdale High School
- West Lauderdale High School
Meridian Public School District
- Meridian High School
Hinds County Agricultural High School