ABLE Program Coordinator, Lafayette County Literacy Council. Pictured with Dickie Scruggs and The Rev. Chris Diggs
"Being an adult education instructor is rewarding, inspiring, life changing, exasperating and heartbreaking. It's wonderful to see the light bulb turn on when a learner realizes that they are capable of succeeding. It’s heartbreaking when that learner prepares to the best of their abilities, but falls short on their goals. I’m living my purpose. I truly want the best for every learner who walks through our door because adult education changes lives. It enables people to have self confidence, to obtain a better paying job or maybe even attend college. There is not a month that goes by that I don't hear from a former student. They tell me they remember what I tried to impart on them. I am so proud of the services that programs like 2nd Chance MS, Lafayette County Literacy Council and Oxford First United Methodist Church provide our community."
Mississippi Delta Community College
"I never got a fair shot the 1st time around. My brother and I had to drop out of school to get jobs to make ends meet because our mother was sick. I decided to claim my 2nd chance when I was 34 years old even though I was scared to death. I enrolled in adult basic education classes at Mississippi Delta Community College. I hoped and prayed no one would find out because I was ashamed, like I was less of a person. But, everyone at MDCC took care of me like I was family. They gave me everything I needed and didn’t give up on me. I passed the test and now I’m a proud to say I got my GED! I'm now working on an office systems certification and next year my dream is to get my certification in medical coding. I love helping other people get their 2nd chance because I’ve been given mine!"
"Over the past several years we have discovered that Mississippi’s biggest barrier to prosperity and growth is its lack of an educated and skilled workforce."
Mississippi, like every other State in the South, has many challenges. Over the past several years we have discovered that Mississippi’s biggest barrier to prosperity and growth is its lack of an educated and skilled workforce. Mississippi ranks second to last in the Nation in workforce participation, meaning that only 55% of adult Mississippians are either employed or are looking for work. Mississippi also ranks last in high school dropouts, with over 400,000 adults (20% of the adult population) lacking a high school diploma. This is unacceptable to us and the overwhelming majority of Mississippians. We believe that the lack of an educated and skilled workforce in Mississippi is the root cause of every other crisis we Mississippians face, whether it be poverty, racism, childhood education and literacy, dependence on government assistance, obesity, crime, and teen pregnancy.
Fortunately, Mississippi ranks first in two categories that will enable us to successfully combat both our lack of an educated and skilled workforce as well as all the other challenges we face. Mississippi is consistently ranked as the most chartable state in the Nation. We take care of each other. Mississippi also has the best Community College system in the Unites States. Mississippi’s fifteen (15) Community Colleges have the legislative mandate to educate and train adults for both their High School Equivalency (“HSE”) and for in demand work skills. Mississippi’s Community Colleges do an excellent job, but need more students, funding, support, and awareness to be able to successfully execute their mission.
That is where we come in. Our mission at 2nd Chance MS is to raise awareness and funds for adult education and works skills training. We are actively developing programs and initiatives that will significantly increase the number of Mississippi adults that have both the education and training to obtain and keep a good paying job. We believe that that support for adult education and work skills training is a relatively inexpensive silver bullet that will led to numerous other positive collateral consequences that will benefit all Mississippians. We welcome and appreciate any help that you can provide us in our mission. We can’t do it without you.
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