Dr. Andrea Mayfield, Executive Director of the Mississippi Community College Board spoke at the Rotary Club of Jackson
Monday, February 26, 2018
Brooks Buchanan, Rotary president and assistant general council, C Spire, called the meeting to order and welcomed everyone.  The invocation was given, the pledge of allegiance and four-way test were recited, and guests and visiting Rotarians were welcomed.

New member Mr. Jace Ferraez, attorney with Bond, Botes & Woods, was introduced by Dean Jim Rosenblatt, Mississippi College School of Law and warmly welcomed by Buchanan and all members in attendance.

Mark Fields, District 6820 Foundation Chair, recognized on stage Paul Harris Fellows Kirby Boteler, Bill Cook, Mark Saxon and Brooks Buchanan who had each given $1,000 per year to the Paul Harris Foundation at Rotary International to become Paul Harris Society Members. 
He also recognized Tom Johnson as a Major Donor who had given $10,000 or more in the ten years he has been a Rotarian and has become a member of the Paul Harris Bequest Society.  Fields gave a sincere thank you to all individuals and presented them with appropriate pins.

Volunteers are needed for Rise Against Hunger (formerly Stop Hunger Now) which will be held March 3 from 9:00 to Noon at the Ag Museum, where we always meet, to pack at least 30,000 meals.  We will be joined by the North Jackson Rotary Club. Bring family, friends, school groups, scouts and others.  For more information email Keith Ferguson at keith@LogoStoreUSA.com or text or call him at 601-924-5355.

The Rotary District 6820 annual conference will be held June 7 – 10 in Biloxi and will be quite informative. For more information go to http://rotary6820.org/page/rotary-district-conference-2018.

Lee Bush, chair of the Mississippi Community College Board, introduced Dr. Andrea Mayfield, the fifth Executive Director of that board. The MCCB oversees Mississippi’s fifteen community and junior colleges. She showed photos from each of these campuses from across the state.  These colleges are retooling and retraining the workforce.  Jobs are changing every day, making changes in education necessary as well.  They work with businesses and industries all across the state.  Jobs evolve very quickly as technology evolves, requiring an ever-evolving work force. 

They help provide enough people for the workforce needed by businesses and industries.  They address these needs in several ways.  One is by offering adult education for those who have previously dropped  out of school, with successful programs such as My Best which allows students to work on their high school equivalency degree and at the same time work on their career and technical education. They also offer Smart Start that teaches essential workplace skills such as managing time, dressing appropriately, and ethics like showing up for work. 

Another successful program is career and technical education which, after completion, allows some to start jobs making a $50,000 salary at 21 years of age.  They are incorporating apprenticeships with work-based learning.  This helps students get their foot in the door and prove themselves.  Academic rigor helps some who need help reading, writing and learning habits of the mind.

They have educational programs for short-term workforce training providing quick training and quick skills to many who are already employed and need a particular skill.  They are partnering with Innovate Mississippi to have a coding academy.  Mississippi has made incredible strides in workforce training.  The quality of life of our citizens depends on this. Our economy depends on this. 

For more information go to http://www.mccb.edu/workforceEdu/divDefault.aspx.