January 1, 2009
Letters To The Editor
Special birthday party:
I would like to thank everyone for all you did to make Granny Hollingsworth’s birthday special.
I know that Granny has not had a very easy life nor have many special things bee done for her. She was so excited about the reception and getting to see everyone. I think that she was surprised that the newspaper would do something so special for her.
The reception will be something that we will talk about in our family for many years to come. I am glad that we were all able to attend and be with her for her 90th birthday.
Granny is a very special lady. I am lucky that she has taken me into her family as if I were her own grandchild. She used to come and spend the weekends with David and me when she was able. We would have some grand times and of course, we would always make the paper the next week. Thank you again for everything.
Teresa S. Hollingsworth Palmetto
Cheer Group says thanks:
Please allow the Christmas Cheer Group to unveil the “real” Santa Claus.
The Christmas Cheer Group conducts a 12-month long drive, collecting clothing, food and toys for the elderly, homeless and less fortunate in our community. They select a day just before Christmas and give it all away. Their selected day for 2008 was December 20.
The spirits of those who received the gifts were much lifted! The group would like to reach a point where we could serve every senior citizen in the community.
The drive begins on January 1, every year. If anyone would like to contribute, please call George Zinn, 662-252-2017, or Delia Reed, 901-831-4552.
Many people and businesses said “yes” they would help -- they saw the need and stepped up!
In the minds of the recipients, they are the real Santa Claus. We are so fortunate to have these people in our community and surrounding area.
On behalf of the Christmas Cheer Group, “thank you!”
We wish you a happy and prosperous New Year and may God continue to bless you.
List of contributors:
Christmas Cheer Group members
George Zinn, chair; Delia Reed, co-chair, Queen Dean, Hubert Dean, Charles Reed, Robbie Zinn, Willie Mae Peel, Joyce Blackmon, John Mitchell, Bud and Mary Scruggs, Bobby Stewart, Linda Hunt, Helen Newsom, Vell C. Fitts, Willie C. Jones, Berline Sims and Vadis Lee
Weapon against recession:
The United States is in a recession, and Mississippi is not immune to the economic downturn. That is the bad news. The good news is that Mississippi has a powerful tool to help our state and its citizens make a faster and stronger economic recovery: our 15 two-year community colleges. Many people who have lost jobs or who fear losing jobs will take the “lemons” of the recession and turn them into “lemonade” by obtaining new job skills, more job security, and permanently higher paychecks by attending classes at the local community college.
One of the best kept secrets in our state is how many Mississippi lives are made better each year by our community colleges. In the 2007-2008 school year, approximately 94,000 people took classes for credit at a community college. Of those, nearly 73% took academic, university-track courses to prepare them for four-year degrees.
More than 27 percent of credit students take career and technical courses that lead directly into good paying jobs in fields like nursing, drafting and design, and information technology. Mississippi needs two thousand nurses. Our community college can train a registered nurse in two years, and that person can start work making $45,000 a year.
Besides those students taking credit courses, approximately 153,000 Mississippians participated in short-term workforce training provided by our community colleges last year. They learned specific skills in preparation for new or existing jobs. Mississippi needs two thousand welders right now, whether at Northrup Grumman Shipbuilding in Pascagoula, at Severstal Steel in Columbus, or at numerous other industries. Community colleges train industrial maintenance workers for companies such as Nissan and its suppliers in central Mississippi and the new Toyota plant and its suppliers in the northeast part of our state. We need industrial production workers training in the latest technology such as automation and robotics. Al these skills are taught by our community colleges.
Our community colleges also teach adult basic education courses, GED test preparation, and numerous other programs that help our citizens who have fallen behind the economic mainstream.
Did you know that we have 400,000 Mississippians over the age of 25 who have dropped out of high school and do not have a GED? A huge number of those people are unemployed and on welfare or in prison. We teach GED classes to thousands of adults each year, who can then transition into workforce training or credit classes at one of our colleges. Our community colleges give these Mississippians a “second bite” at the apple of the American dream.
Approximately 274,000 Mississippians were educated at one of our community colleges in the 2007-2008 school year. And what a value we are! The average cost for tuition and required fees for credit courses for a school year is only $1,766.
To put this in context, national figures reveal that on average a community college graduate makes $9,100 more per year than a high school graduate, and that is for the rest of your life. And workforce training classes cost students nothing at all!
So, if you are not satisfied with where you are in today’s economy in terms of income of job security, call your local community college. We can help make life better for you and your family!
Help with school project:
My name is Krista. I am a fifth grade student in Washington.
I am doing a report on the state of Mississippi.
We need to gather as much information as possible. It would be most appreciated if people could send me newspapers, used licenses plates, state facts, tourist brochures, and any other information to learn about the state of Mississippi.
Thank you for all your help.
Please send them to:
News: (662) 252-4261 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Questions, comments, corrections: email@example.com
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