http://fonts.googleapis.com/css?family=PT+Sans Hinds CC touts benefits of new Career-Tech Building entrance

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Hinds CC touts benefits of new Career-Tech Building entrance
Posted by
21 November

Hinds CC touts benefits of new Career-Tech Building entrance

PEARL– Agencies who partnered with Hinds Community College to build a new entrance to the Rankin Campus’ Career-Technical Building heard thanks from one of the nearly 300 students who attend classes in the building during a ribbon-cutting and program Friday, Nov. 18.

Heather Long, a third-semester Associate Degree Nursing student at Hinds Community College, speaks during a ceremony Nov. 18 officially opening Community College Boulevard to the Career-Technical Building at Hiinds' Rankin Campus. (Hinds Community College/April Garon)

Heather Long, a third-semester Associate Degree Nursing student at Hinds Community College, speaks during a ceremony Nov. 18 officially opening Community College Boulevard to the Career-Technical Building at Hinds’ Rankin Campus. (Hinds Community College/April Garon)

“There’s a large amount of commercial traffic with the businesses on that road,” said Heather Long, a third-semester Associate Degree Nursing student at the Rankin Campus, during the brief program to officially unveil Community College Boulevard, off Greenfield Road. Long, also president of the Student Nursing Organization at the campus, referred to Commercial Park Drive, which is how students and instructors got to class previously.

“Forklifts and 18-wheelers use it daily, which causes a lot of wear and tear on the road itself,” Long said. “This made for a very bumpy ride for students traveling to and from campus every day. I’d like to thank all the agencies and partners that came together to make this boulevard a reality. This is definitely more attractive and much easier to maneuver.”

Hinds purchased the Career-Technical Building in December 2008 and began classes in 2009. At the time, it was the United Association of Plumbers and Pipefitters Gulf Coast Regional Training Center. Built in 2002, the two-story, 40,000 square-foot building sits on five acres about five miles from the main Rankin Campus off Highway 80.

“This entrance was something that was critically needed by students, faculty and people who visited,” Hinds President Dr. Clyde Muse said. “We have nearly 300 students in career and technical programs in that building.”

Muse also credited state Sen. Dean Kirby, of Pearl, with making the new boulevard a reality. The senator played an instrumental role during the 2008 Legislature to support a special appropriation to help the college purchase the building.

From left, Dr. Norman Session, vice presdient Hinds Community College Rankin Campus and Jackson Campus-Academic/Technical Center; Heather Long, third semester Associate Degree Nursing student; Jared Morrison, president of the Rankin County Board of Supervisors; Rankin County Chancery Clerk Larry Swales, also president of the Hinds Community College Alumni Association; Hinds Community College President Dr. Clyde Muse, Pearl Mayor Brad Rogers; and state Sen. Dean Kirby. (Hinds Community College/April Garon)

From left, Dr. Norman Session, vice president Hinds Community College Rankin Campus and Jackson Campus-Academic/Technical Center; Heather Long, third semester Associate Degree Nursing student; Jared Morrison, president of the Rankin County Board of Supervisors; Rankin County Chancery Clerk Larry Swales, also president of the Hinds Community College Alumni Association; Hinds Community College President Dr. Clyde Muse, Pearl Mayor Brad Rogers; and state Sen. Dean Kirby. (Hinds Community College/April Garon)

Officials at the event said another big key to building the road was local government and college working together to do so and still accommodate city and county infrastructure.

“Dr. Muse summed it up – that we all worked together,” said Jared Morrison, president of the Rankin County Board of Supervisors. “I think that’s what sets Rankin County apart, and why we’re growing the way we grow, is that everybody works together.”

“This is absolutely the best thing that could have happened,” Pearl Mayor Brad Rogers said. “It’s a great boulevard, beautiful entrance. And it’s nothing short of what Hinds Community College usually does, and that’s top-notch, A-1 work.”

The building houses classes for plumbing, electrical, welding, industrial maintenance, practical nursing and Associate Degree Nursing with nearly 300 students and 24 total employees. The building also houses Rankin County adult education classes and the Rankin Campus MI-BEST navigator and instructor.

[tweetable alt=””]New access road to Hinds CC Rankin Campus career-tech building is now open[/tweetable]

1 1432 21 November, 2016 News more
Hinds CC celebrates official opening of new Career-Tech Building entrance
Posted by
11 November

Hinds CC celebrates official opening of new Career-Tech Building entrance

Hinds Community College will celebrate a new entrance to the Rankin Campus’ Career-Technical Building with a ribbon-cutting and program at 2 p.m. on Nov. 18.greenfield_entrance_web

The Career-Technical building is off Greenfield Road. The new entrance is Community College Boulevard.

The brief program will begin at 2 p.m. with refreshments immediately following.

Hinds purchased the Career-Technical Building in December 2008 and began classes in 2009. At the time, it was the United Association of Plumbers and Pipefitters Gulf Coast Regional Training Center.

The building now houses classes for plumbing, electrical, welding, industrial maintenance, practical nursing and Associate Degree Nursing with about 200 students and 24 total employees. The building also houses Rankin County adult education classes and the Rankin Campus MI-BEST navigator and instructor.

Approximately five miles from the main Rankin Campus off Highway 80 in Pearl, the building was constructed in 2002 by the United Association of Plumbers and Pipefitters. Hinds Community College paid $3.2 million for the building with a special FY 09 state bond appropriation and additional capital funding support from Rankin County.

Community College Boulevard leads to the two-story 40,000-square-foot building, which sits on nearly five acres of land.

Directions to the Career-Technical Building (not on the main Rankin Campus): Take I-20 East to Exit 54. Turn right off Exit 54 onto Highway 18 East. Go straight through the first red light. Go to the second red light and turn right at Bob Boyte Honda dealership onto Greenfield Road. Travel about 7/10 of a mile, past Greenfield Village subdivision, to Community College Boulevard. 

As Mississippi’s largest community college, Hinds Community College is a comprehensive institution offering quality, affordable educational opportunities with academic programs of study leading to seamless university transfer and career and technical programs teaching job-ready skills. With six locations in central Mississippi, Hinds enrolled nearly 12,000 credit students in fall 2016. To learn more, visit www.hindscc.edu or call 1.800.HindsCC.

[tweetable alt=””]Hinds CC will celebrate a new entrance to the Rankin Campus’ Career-Technical Building on Nov. 18.[/tweetable]

2 855 11 November, 2016 News more
Hinds CC graduates academic, technical students
Posted by
13 May

Hinds CC graduates academic, technical students

James Proctor Sr. had seen the world in 20 years of service in the U.S. Navy, but hadn’t seen a classroom in about that long until he enrolled at Hinds Community College.

“It was a big adjustment coming back, plus I’ve been taking care of my own dad at home,” said Proctor, of Brandon, among more than 1,200 graduating from the college over three days of ceremonies.

Father and son James Proctor, Sr. and James Proctor II, of Brandon,  graduated from Hinds Community College with career certificates in Residential Carpentry  and Automotive Collision Repair. (April Garon/Hinds Community College)

Father and son James Proctor, Sr. and James Proctor II, of Brandon, graduated from Hinds Community College with career certificates in Residential Carpentry and Automotive Collision Repair. (April Garon/Hinds Community College)

His son, James Jr., fresh out of high school, fully expected to hit the books to make his own way. [tweetable alt=””]Father and son graduated together on Friday with other academic and technical students[/tweetable], James Sr. with a career certificate in Carpentry and James Jr. with one in Automotive Collision Repair.

“I just found something I enjoy to do,” James Jr. said. “Once you get the gist of it, you’re fine.”

Kennicia Collins gathered with family and friends with newly-earned credentials in hand and a chance to relax after a job well done.

From left, Marquis Allen, Makaiya Perrin, Kennicia Collins, Khadijah Clayton and Kiara Lane. Collins graduated from Hinds Community College on Friday with a career certificate in Early Childhood Education. (April Garon/Hinds Community College)

From left, Marquis Allen, Makaiya Perrin, Kennicia Collins, Khadijah Clayton and Kiara Lane. Collins graduated from Hinds Community College on Friday with a career certificate in Early Childhood Education. (April Garon/Hinds Community College)

“I want to go into social work and attend Jackson State University,” said Collins, of Jackson, holding her career certificate in Early Childhood Education and posing for photos.

Shemekia Champion, of Flora, found some time to reflect before Friday’s ceremony for academic and technical graduates, mainly on what she’ll enjoy most with her technical certificate in hospitality and culinary arts.

“I love to cook, mainly stuffed pork chops – and some shrimp and grits,” Champion said.

Shemika Champion, of Flora, graduated from Hinds Community College as a triple major in Culinary Arts, Hospitality Managemnt and Tourism. (April Garon/Hinds Community College)

Shemika Champion, of Flora, graduated from Hinds Community College as a triple major in Culinary Arts, Hospitality Managemnt and Tourism. (April Garon/Hinds Community College)

This semester’s graduates will receive more than 1,500 certificates and degrees since some graduates will receive more than one credential.

Of the total number of graduates, 127 are graduating summa cum laude, which is a perfect 4.0 grade point average; 130 are graduating magna cum laude, which is a 3.60 to 3.99 grade point average and 238 are graduating cum laude, which is a 3.20 to 3.59 grade point average.

Hinds County Board of Supervisors President Darrel McQuirter was the speaker for the Friday ceremony. McQuirter represents District 2 on the county board.

The Clinton native received an Associate degree in management from Hinds Junior College in 1983 before earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Mississippi College in 1985.

“You are at a different step in your life right now,” McQuirter told the graduating class. “I want to encourage and remind you this is just another step in your future and in your career. It’s to prepare you for the next part of your life.

“Steps are not designed for you to live on, build a house on or stay there. Steps are there to move you to a different level. Rest if you must – but don’t you quit.”

On Sunday May 15, about 100 students will graduate at J.D. Boyd Gymnasium on the Utica Campus at a 2 p.m. ceremony. Jackson State University President Dr. Carolyn Meyers is the speaker.

0 1097 13 May, 2016 News more
Industrial Maintenance program at Hinds CC training tomorrow’s factory workers
Posted by
22 February

Industrial Maintenance program at Hinds CC training tomorrow’s factory workers

Programs like Hinds’ Industrial Maintenance program on the Raymond, Rankin, Vicksburg-Warren and Utica campuses are at the heart of workforce training efforts for Continental Tire, which plans a $1.45 billion plant in western Hinds County.

“Hinds’ specific role is to develop and deliver workforce training to individuals in our state who will ultimately fill jobs that Continental Tire will bring to our area,” said Dr. Chad Stocks, vice president for Workforce Development, about the project, two years in the making. “We’ve been working closely with the Mississippi Development Authority, the Mississippi Employment Security Commission and the Mississippi Community College Board to come up with the specific training needs for Continental Tire.”

The global company, in partnership with Gov. Phil Bryant, a Hinds graduate, and the Mississippi Development Authority announced on Feb. 8 the location of the facility on more than 900 acres off Norrell Road, off I-20 West in Hinds County. Construction of the facility is slated to begin in January 2018, with tire production to begin in 2019. The plant will employ 2,500, company officials have said. Gov. Bryant has mentioned Jackson, Bolton, Vicksburg and Edwards as areas that should benefit from jobs created by the plant.

“I really believe that this has the greatest possibility to revolutionize western Hinds County of anything I’ve seen since I’ve been here. It has that possibility,” said Hinds President Dr. Clyde Muse. “It’s an opportunity the college has got to show people we can be successful and really be a player. In the final analysis, they wouldn’t be here unless we could train the workforce.”

Hinds Community College students Reed Scoggins, left, of Brandon, and Christolein Simmons, of Yazoo City, are enrolled in the Industrial Maintenance program at the Raymond Campus. Recently added technology in the program lab combines functions in the electrical and mechanical disciplines to integrate training for modern-day factory jobs. (April Garon/Hinds Community College)

Hinds Community College students Reed Scoggins, left, of Richland, and Christolein Simmons, of Yazoo City, are enrolled in the Industrial Maintenance program at the Raymond Campus. Recently added technology in the program lab combines functions in the electrical and mechanical disciplines to integrate training for modern-day factory jobs. (April Garon/Hinds Community College)

Industrial Maintenance is among several other workforce training courses that offer career certificates that can enhance a resume’ and open educational doors for students who might not otherwise attend college.

Christolein Simmons, a Yazoo County native, was steered by his academic advisers to take introductory class in mechatronics, an emerging multidisciplinary field of engineering that combines mechanical, electrical, telecommunications, control and computer engineering. He works in a factory and attends school, though the training at Hinds could be a key to career advancement, Simmons said.

“I just love working with my hands,” he said. “And every day, it brings something new. We’re learning to troubleshoot and just doing the framework before we get hands-on. I think I can go on to a four-year college, enhance myself, then go on to work somewhere and continue to go to school.”

Reid Scoggins, of Richland, is also a student in his first course in Industrial Maintenance. His family has run an industrial equipment business for decades, but his father encouraged him to further his education.

“He said it never hurts to have a degree,” Scoggins said. “And with this degree, you can make good money. I’ve liked machines and working on things with my hands. When I got into the program, they showed us all the machines they’d work on and the things we’d learn to do. It piqued my interest.”

Visits to the state’s two-year colleges by company officials cemented the role they’ll play in supplying the workforce.

“It was key for the program for them to see what Hinds Community College and other community colleges offer,” said David Creel, district director of Manufacturing Training. “The programs here at Hinds will complement the processes that Continental will have.”

Stocks had the responsibility of showing the college had the expertise and capacity to train the workers needed.

“[tweetable alt=””]What attracted Continental was our college being a 100-year-old institution with a proven track record of training [/tweetable]and flexibility plus availability of the consortium,” Stocks said. “We were able to demonstrate all that.”

Paul Williams, executive vice president for Continental Commercial Vehicle Tires in the Americas, said after the formal announcement a lot of locations were toured but the capacity for growing skilled workers was a key factor. “We toured the schools; we toured the technical colleges. Our greatest asset is always our people. It’s the skill level, the technical capability of the population.”

Students in the Industrial Maintenance program begin with safety courses, then move on to more involved electrical and mechanical maintenance courses that involve the latest technology that can simulate a factory setting. Completion of advanced coursework in mechatronics can earn a student an Associate of Applied Science degree.

 

0 1523 22 February, 2016 News more
Culinary Arts program at Hinds CC Utica Campus trains for food careers
Posted by
17 December

Culinary Arts program at Hinds CC Utica Campus trains for food careers

The kitchen is a diverse, popular place these days, particularly in television and social media. But there’s plenty of room at the tables served in the economy.

Careers in food can lead students to several diverse lines of work, from restaurants to food management. In the case of Hinds Community College Utica Campus student James Chapman, it’s a way to keep his options as versatile and varied as his interests. Although he left the farm to attend college, farming is still close to his heart.

“My grandmother and mom both grew up cooking,” said Chapman, a first-year student from Carthage. “They grew crops and lived off the land, lots of greens, different vegetables and fresh food. Even with meat, they had pigs, cows and such.

“At first, I wanted to do weapons engineering for the military,” he said. “But I had talked to a recruiter for the military who told me how much they love cooking because they need an escape. I found out about the culinary program here, and I’m glad I joined it.”

Chapman was among a dozen students in instructor Durnitra Weeks’ class in the Culinary Arts program at the Utica Campus in the fall 2015 semester. The Utica Campus, formerly Utica Junior College, retains its HBCU (Historically Black College and University) status. The campus is home to 14 career-technical programs including Weeks’ class.

James Chapman, left foreground, and Durnitra Weeks, instructor in the Culinary Arts program at Hinds Community College's Utica Campus, stand in the kitchen with seven others enrolled in the program this past semester. (April Garon/Hinds Community College)

First-year culinary student James Chapman, left foreground, and Durnitra Weeks, center foreground, instructor in the Culinary Arts program at Hinds Community College’s Utica Campus, stand in the kitchen with eight others enrolled in the program this past semester. (April Garon/Hinds Community College)

“The Hinds Utica Campus Career-Technical Division is proud of the growth we’ve seen in the past year,” said Kenisha Shelton, dean of career-tech programs at the Utica Campus. “Our instructors have been working extremely hard this past year to recruit and retain students and to obtain certification for themselves to stay relevant and connected with industry. The Career and Technical division at Hinds Community College – Utica Campus is definitely turning vision into reality.”

Registration for spring 2016 is ongoing; classes begin on Jan. 11. For information about enrolling in the culinary arts program, go to the Hinds website at www.hindscc.edu or call Weeks at 601.885.7114.

“We start out covering the basics – how to boil water and the correct temperature in which to cook certain foods,” Weeks said. “Then, comes the sanitary part, which is cleaning the kitchen according to health standards. Later, we cover seasoning and flavoring techniques with meat and other things like that.”

Weeks, a Bolivar County native and former executive chef and dietary manager in the healthcare industry, herself chose a cooking career over healthcare since it was second nature from an early age.

“I’m from a family of four cooks,” she said. “So, the passion came from watching them and for the enjoyment on their faces.”

Students enrolled in culinary programs at all of Hinds’ locations also learn about the connection of the program to hospitality and tourism. The college’s Hospitality and Tourism Management Technology degree program includes culinary, hotel, travel and tourism concentrations.

Part of the Culinary Arts program at Hinds Community College's Utica Campus includes proper knife work with common food items, such as potatoes. (April Garon/Hinds Community College)

Part of the Culinary Arts program at Hinds Community College’s Utica Campus includes instruction on proper knife work with common food items, such as potatoes. (April Garon/Hinds Community College)

“In the Culinary Arts program on the Utica Campus, students receive hands-on training by an experienced chef,” District Director of Enrollment Kathryn Cole said. “Skills are built from the ground up – from simple boiling techniques all the way to working with specialized equipment and ingredients.”

Chapman is keeping his career options open, but both are straight out of the kitchen.

“I have two paths right now. One of them leads to be a culinary specialist in the Navy, and another is finding an apprenticeship for a restaurant, catering or food safety. With that, I’d like to stay in Mississippi.”

0 2041 17 December, 2015 News more
Hinds CC career-tech options shine at Vicksburg career fair
Posted by
26 October

Hinds CC career-tech options shine at Vicksburg career fair

Tevin Sylvester doesn’t read books when it comes to electrical circuitry. He chooses to stare it down – and get the information he needs.

“I can’t learn anything about mechanics by reading a manual,” Sylvester said, studying the ins and outs of a three-way switch and other lighting systems with Electrical Technology Instructor Timothy White at Thursday’s Career Exploration Day at the Vicksburg Convention Center.

Hinds Community College Electrical Technology Instructor Timothy White speaks with Tevin Sylvester, a Vicksburg High School senior. High school students from the Vicksburg area visit a Career Expo at the Vicksburg Convention Center on Thursday, October 22, 2015. )Hinds Community College/April Garon)

Hinds Community College Electrical Technology Instructor Timothy White speaks with Tevin Sylvester, a Vicksburg High School senior, as high school students from the Vicksburg area visited a Career Expo at the Vicksburg Convention Center on Thursday, Oct. 22, 2015. (Hinds Community College/April Garon)

“I need to take it apart and see how it works,” the Vicksburg High School senior said. “A few months ago, I took apart my xBox 360 and a PlayStation 3 and put them back together again.”

Sylvester and about 1,200 fellow seniors and juniors in the Vicksburg Warren School District who attended the event got to read, touch and, in some cases, work the controls with instructors from about 40 career and technical programs available across Hinds’ six campuses. Supplementing that were exhibits from private employers and local government.

“The whole purpose is for them to explore careers,” District Director of Enrollment Services Kathryn Cole said. “We feel strongly about making kids aware of career opportunities and the education it takes to get them there.

“They can get some hands-on experience so they can really figure out what these careers are all about and make some informed decisions.”

VHS senior Darius Tucker wants to parlay his love for helping people into a career in physical therapy or the medical field, but he got to move some dirt on Thursday, thanks to a simulator courtesy of Stribling Equipment LLC.

Darius Tucker, a Vicksburg High School senior, completes the excavator simulation at the Stribling Equipment LLC booth at Career Exploration Day at Vicksburg Convention Center on Thursday, Oct. 22, 2015. From left to right: Todd Martin, Stribling training manager; Tamya Hackett, Vicksburg High School senior; Tucker; William Cohen, Vicksburg High School senior; and Gary Broadwater, Stribling Corporate Inventory Control Manager. (Hinds Community College/April Garon)

Darius Tucker, a Vicksburg High School senior, completes the excavator simulation at the Stribling Equipment LLC booth at Career Exploration Day at Vicksburg Convention Center on Thursday, Oct. 22, 2015. From left to right: Todd Martin, Stribling training manager; Tamya Hackett, Vicksburg High School senior; Tucker; William Cohen, Vicksburg High School senior; and Gary Broadwater, Stribling Corporate Inventory Control Manager. (Hinds Community College/April Garon)

The machine allowed attendees to climb behind the wheel of a virtual front end loader that showed in high definition what kind of job they’d do on a construction site. Next to the flat-screen monitor was the actual front end loader, neighbored by a truck belonging to Empire Truck Sales LLC students could climb into. Each company was a major sponsor of the event.

“It was fun to try it out,” Tucker said. “I’m wanting to do physical therapy because I like helping people.”

Other hands-on experiences at the expo featured free haircuts from the college’s Barbering program, a sample of leather refined by ISA TanTec, which began production in Warren County earlier this year, a full-size Entergy bucket truck and a police cruiser belonging to the Vicksburg Police Department.

The wide range of career-tech programs available at Hinds appealed to those students still mulling their futures.

“I’m visiting the tables that touch my interests, which have been music, culinary and nursing,” said Taylor Middleton, a Warren Central High School senior visiting tables at the expo with fellow senior Jordan Moncrief.

Jordan Moncrief gets his pulse taken as Taylor Middleton looks on. Both are seniors at Warren Central High School. High school juniors and seniors from the Vicksburg visited a Career Expo at the Vicksburg Convention Center on Thursday, Oct. 22, 2015. (Hinds Community College/April Garon)

Jordan Moncrief gets his pulse taken as Taylor Middleton looks on. Both are seniors at Warren Central High School. High school juniors and seniors from the Vicksburg visited a Career Expo at the Vicksburg Convention Center on Thursday, Oct. 22, 2015. (Hinds Community College/April Garon)

“I’m just impressed with all what Hinds offers,” Moncrief said. “It’s what’s impressed me most.”

Partnering on the event with Hinds were the Vicksburg Warren School District and the Vicksburg Warren County Chamber of Commerce.

1 1319 26 October, 2015 News more
Students in Hinds CC Diesel Tech help program kick into high gear
Posted by
21 October

Students in Hinds CC Diesel Tech help program kick into high gear

Students in Diesel Equipment Technology this semester at Hinds have been jacks of many trades.

If they do well, all 12 will be a step closer to being a master at one of them, namely the in-demand field of being a big-rig mechanic.

“You have to understand the concept of diesel and how it works,” said Jakeb Cooksey, 22, of Lake, in Scott County. “Systems are different than your light-duty vehicles. On those, there’s so many now because they’re introducing new things on environmental standards.”

Jimmy Flint, dealer trainer for Empire Truck Sales, works with student Jakeb Cooksey during a hands-on Diesel Technology workshop.(April Garon/Hinds Community College)

Jimmy Flint, dealer trainer for Empire Truck Sales, works with student Jakeb Cooksey during a hands-on Diesel Technology workshop.(April Garon/Hinds Community College)

Jesse Locke, 22, of Brandon, has done a little of everything in the realm of large equipment, from retail to welding to irrigation work. But, now he’s ready to tackle his passion – under the hood of a semi.

“I’ve always had a knack for fixing things, taking things apart and seeing how they work,” Locke said. “And how to make them faster, stronger and more powerful.”

Preparing for the next generation of diesel engines has sped up demand for new blood in the diesel mechanic world – something not lost on Jimmy Flint, of Empire Trucking Sales LLC, during a daylong seminar the company put on earlier this semester at the Gray-Partridge Center near the Raymond Campus.

“The GHG-17, the next generation of engines, is geared to fuel economy,” Flint said. “We can’t get rid of CO2 gas unless you decrease the amount of fossil fuel you burn. The better fuel economy you get, the less CO2 gas is there.”

Empire is among several firms which partner with the diesel mechanic program. Two full-time trainers with Empire, Flint and Bradly Cade, worked with students to focus on preventive maintenance on big rig engines. That’s the second of two, eight-week courses in the program, which comes after a fundamentals course. Two parts each of Diesel Engine and Electrical Systems courses follow before it wraps up with Air Conditioning and Heating and Hydraulics. Students who complete the program have the option to learn more about trucking or about heavy equipment, such as equipment used in logging and farming.

Bradly Cade, a trainer with Empire Truck Sales LLC, works with student Trent Craft during a hands-on workshop earlier this semester at the Gray-Partridge Center near the Raymond Campus. (April Garon/Hinds Community College)

Bradly Cade, a trainer with Empire Truck Sales LLC, works with student Trent Craft during a hands-on workshop earlier this semester at the Gray-Partridge Center near the Raymond Campus. (April Garon/Hinds Community College)

“The seminar gives us a chance to get some hands-on experience on late-model trucks with the latest technology in our field,” Diesel Equipment Technology Instructor Brent Johnson said, adding students are graded on following directions, work habits, attendance, cleanliness in addition to written examinations. “What we did is learn how to maintain equipment, make it safer, more fuel-efficient, and more dependable for customers.”

Starting in 2010, diesel engines for the U.S. market were required to emit lower nitrous oxide levels to comply with standards set forth by the Environmental Protection Agency. Most manufacturers have reengineered their products to meet the standard, with more upgrades expected in the coming years. Engines powering big rigs on the road a decade ago averaged 6 or 7 miles per gallon of fuel, whereas economy has improved to about 10 per gallon on the newer models, Flint said.

Emissions standards being a new normal coincides with the ranks of big-rig mechanics in the region getting a little grayer. To that end, a new initiative between Hinds and Empire could infuse the industry with talent trained specifically to deal with ins and outs of diesel engine technology.

“There’s a severe technician shortage in Jackson,” Johnson said. “These partners are working with us to ramp up our program. It will have a total of eight instructors, with four instructors to be housed at the Empire base in Richland, while another four will be here at the Raymond Campus. They will teach the third semester course of study there. We were graduating 20 a year and the goal is to graduate 60 a year, with industry assistance.

“But because of all that technology, these guys’ pay will have really jumped. Truck mechanics today who have worked on commission are making six figures now.”

Cade points out the advanced training on newer-model engines should give a leg up to all students in the program willing to put in the effort.

“They’ve added a lot of parts to the exhaust systems and there’s computers all over the truck now,” Cade said “So, it’s more involved to troubleshoot.

“But, we like to hire technicians who come from a heavy-duty mechanical program like this. That way, we know they’ve had some experience and know the basics.”

Locke, for one, is eager to earn what he’s worth once he completes his coursework.

“It’s an industry where a lot of older people about to retire can’t turn wrenches anymore, and it’s opened a lot of positions for young guys like myself and these others,” he said. “And it’s a chance to earn a living for me and my future family.”

0 1647 21 October, 2015 News more
Hinds CC receives gift to train, boost ranks of women truckers
Posted by
04 September

Hinds CC receives gift to train, boost ranks of women truckers

Andre’a Gaston had faced challenges before enrolling in truck driver school – mainly being a mother to two daughters and a son.

Driving a manual shift transmission turned out to be a close second in that category, but now she’s certified and bona fide to take on the road.

“At first, I thought my age would prevent me from doing it and the fact I’m a female. I had not driven a stick shift vehicle in my life, and I’m 44!,” Gaston said Thursday during a ceremony in which Hinds Community College received $220,000 from the Walmart Foundation to support the training of more women and underserved populations who enroll in the driver’s academy at KLLM Transport Services.

Andre'a Gaston, who earned her commercial driver's license (CDL) at the KLLM Driving Academy, speaks Thursday during a ceremony to present Hinds with a $220,000 check from the Walmart Foundation to train more women truck drivers.

Andre’a Gaston, who earned her commercial driver’s license (CDL) at the KLLM Driving Academy, speaks Thursday during a ceremony to present Hinds with a $220,000 check from the Walmart Foundation to train more women truck drivers.

“My entire family is proud of me for taking this big step and doing what no one thought I could do,” Gaskin said.

The Grenada native credited instructors at the firm’s driving academy for helping her secure her commercial driver’s license last week.

“I had my days where I had trouble. But they’re determined. They stick with you and make sure you get it. Anyone who wants this job, it can be done. You’ll have the backing for it from every single teacher and instructor.”

The money, part of a larger $100 million commitment by the retailer to bolster workforce training, education and career pathways for retail workers nationwide, will support training women and underserved populations who enroll in the driver’s academy at KLLM Transport Services. The money comes to Hinds via the Jackson-based Foundation for the Mid South.

Dr. Clyde Muse, from left, Tice White, of the Walmart Foundation, Dick Hall, Transportation Commissioner for the Central District and Ivye Allen, president of the Foundation for the Mid South, hold a ceremonial check signifying a $220,000 gift to Hinds from the Walmart Foundation to train more women truck drivers.

Dr. Clyde Muse, from left, Tice White, of the Walmart Foundation, Dick Hall, Transportation Commissioner for the Central District and Ivye Allen, president of the Foundation for the Mid South, hold a ceremonial check Thursday signifying a $220,000 gift to Hinds from the Walmart Foundation to train more women truck drivers.

“Walmart supported us in this plan to expand opportunities to all folks, but gave us a challenge to do it women,” said Ivye Allen, president of Foundation for the Mid South. “I’m glad today to see females represented here in this profession.”

Diane Smith, one of Gaston’s driving instructors, could attest to her own life-changing achievement. She began driving trucks nearly 20 years ago and ran her own business.

“At first, I didn’t want to be a truck driver because of what people would think of me,” Smith said. “But I did it to provide for my family.”

She started her career at KLLM and was eager to return to KLLM for the opportunity to help other women earn their CDL and become financially secure.

Diane Smith, at podium, speaks at a ceremony Thursday to present Hinds with a $220,000 check from the Walmart Foundation to train more women truck drivers. Smith has been a licensed truck driver for nearly 20 years. At left is Andre’a Gaston, who earned her commercial driver’s license last week.

 

Hinds’ partnership with KLLM to train truck drivers at the company’s Richland headquarters and boost their ranks began in fall 2012. KLLM handles the training. Hinds handles the coursework. The facility itself opened in March 2014.

“Basically, one of our goals at the company is to make sure we have a person in all 3,000-plus trucks we currently have,” said KLLM vice president Kirk Blankenship.

Hinds President Dr. Clyde Muse said the funds enhance the partnership’s initial goal of helping train the state’s overall workforce and taps into a growing segment of the student population at Hinds.

“Now, with the Walmart Foundation and the Foundation for the Mid South, we have a secondary goal, and that is to increase the number of female drivers,” Muse said. “Our student body now consists of 65 percent females, so there’s great fertile ground out there to find female students.”

A mix of grants and other investments from Walmart and its philanthropic foundation are part of the Opportunity Initiative, rolled out earlier this year. It will spread the funds over five years to help retail workers across the industry advance careers and achieve greater economic mobility.

“The big focus is on women’s empowerment,” said Tice White, of the Walmart Foundation. “So to hear this provides support to women in retail and transportation sectors and is so important to our community.”

Kirk Blankenship, vice president of KLLM Transport Services, from left, Eric Red, director of the KLLM Driving Academy, Hinds President Dr. Clyde Muse, Tice White, of the Walmart Foundation, and Dick Hall, Transportation Commissioner for the Central District, Kirk Blankenship, vice president of KLLM Transport Services, from left, -----, director of the KLLM Driving Academy, Hinds President Dr. Clyde Muse, Tice White, of the Walmart Foundation, and Dick Hall, Transportation Commissioner for the Central District, Kirk Blankenship, vice president of KLLM Transport Services, from left, -----, director of the KLLM Driving Academy, Hinds President Dr. Clyde Muse, Tice White, of the Walmart Foundation, and Dick Hall, Transportation Commissioner for the Central District, Kirk Blankenship, vice president of KLLM Transport Services, from left, -----, director of the KLLM Driving Academy, Hinds President Dr. Clyde Muse, Tice White, of the Walmart Foundation, and Dick Hall, Transportation Commissioner for the Central District,

Kirk Blankenship, vice president of KLLM Transport Services, from left, Kirk Blankenship, vice president of KLLM Transport Services, Hinds President Dr. Clyde Muse, Tice White, of the Walmart Foundation, Dick Hall, Transportation Commissioner for the Central District, Donald Slabach, grants coordinator at Hinds, and Dr. Chad Stocks, vice president for Workforce Development and Coordination of Career/Technical Education, associate dean of Career and Technical Education for the Raymond Campus, hold a ceremonial check Thursday signifying a $220,000 gift to Hinds from the Walmart Foundation to train more women truck drivers.

The grant further enhances the standing of Mississippi’s transportation system, said Dick Hall, transportation commissioner for the state’s central district.

“The training of a driver student like this that will use our transportation system certainly gets my attention,” Hall said.

0 1241 04 September, 2015 News more
New Hinds CC workforce training director ready to supply industry
Posted by
27 August

New Hinds CC workforce training director ready to supply industry

RAYMONDA keen understanding of what heavy industry needs to fill the ever-increasing demand for skilled labor is what David Creel wants to convey as he leads a key training component in Workforce Development at Hinds Community College.

“I have seen the gap between applicant skill and what these companies need,” Creel said. “Hinds is working to close that gap, and I am excited to be part of it.”

Director of Workforce Manufacturing Training David Creel.

Director of Workforce Manufacturing Training David Creel.

Creel, of Byram, began work June 1 as director of Workforce Manufacturing Training. He arrived at Hinds from a nearly 30-year career with Milwaukee Electric Tool, during which the company was a client of Hinds and Creel himself took classes here and at East Central Community College.

His bachelor’s degree is in business administration from Belhaven University. As director of the new program, Creel said, he will work with new and existing industry to develop and deliver training programs to enhance the workforce.

“We work with individuals that need basic and/or advanced skills to improve their situations, whether that is getting a job, keeping their job, getting a promotion or learning a totally new skill,” Creel said.

Creel said his first project this year will be the conversion of the Offset Printing Lab on the Raymond Campus to the Manufacturing Training Center and Mechatronics Lab. Mechatronics is a multidisciplinary field of engineering that includes a combination of mechanical, electrical, telecommunications, control and computer engineering.

0 1295 27 August, 2015 News more
2pm Academic and Career/Technical Graduation Ceremony
Posted by
15 May

2pm Academic and Career/Technical Graduation Ceremony

Former chief justice of the Mississippi Supreme Court James W. Smith, a Hinds Community College alumnus, spoke to graduates at four ceremonies Friday, May 15 about achieving success in life.

Of the total number of graduates, 73 are graduating summa cum laude, which is a perfect 4.0 grade point average; 151 are graduating magna cum laude, which is a 3.60 to 3.99 grade point average and 238 are graduating cum laude, which is a 3.20 to 3.59 grade point average.

The last Hinds ceremony will be at the Utica Campus at 2 p.m. Sunday, May 17 at J.D. Boyd Gym. Dr. Alfred Rankins Jr., president of Alcorn State University, will be the speaker. Nearly 100 students are expected to graduate that day.

As Mississippi’s largest community college, Hinds Community College is a comprehensive institution offering quality, affordable educational opportunities with more than 170 academic, career and technical programs. With six locations in central Mississippi, Hinds enrolled nearly 12,000 credit students in fall 2014. To learn more, visit www.hindscc.edu or call 1.800.HindsCC.

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Tania Romano of Ridgeland graduated from Hinds Community College on May 15 with a graphic design degree and already has a job with the Ramey Agency in Jackson.

Tania Romano of Ridgeland graduated from Hinds Community College on May 15 with a graphic design degree and already has a job with the Ramey Agency in Jackson.

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Shamonica Roby of Jackson, left, and Regina Robinson of Pearl are thrilled to be graduating from Hinds Community College on May 15. Roby plans to transfer to Jackson State University for a biology degree. Robinson will use her new marketing degree in her own business.

Shamonica Roby of Jackson, left, and Regina Robinson of Pearl are thrilled to be graduating from Hinds Community College on May 15. Roby plans to transfer to Jackson State University for a biology degree. Robinson will use her new marketing degree in her own business.

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Associated Student Government members Abram Muhammed of Jackson, left, and Nathan Murrell of Vicksburg get ready to graduate from Hinds Community College on May 15.

Associated Student Government members Abram Muhammed of Jackson, left, and Nathan Murrell of Vicksburg get ready to graduate from Hinds Community College on May 15.

Michaele Duke congratulates her friend Jasmine Monroe, right, of Jackson after her May 15 graduation from Hinds Community College.

Michaele Duke congratulates her friend Jasmine Monroe, right, of Jackson after her May 15 graduation from Hinds Community College.

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Sherob McDonald Jr., 2, of Vicksburg celebrated the Hinds Community College graduation of his dad, Sherob McDonald Sr. on May 15.

Sherob McDonald Jr., 2, of Vicksburg celebrated the Hinds Community College graduation of his dad, Sherob McDonald Sr. on May 15.

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Christopher McCollum of Jackson graduated from Hinds Community College on May 15. Celebrating with him is his nephew Jeremiah Williams, 5.

Christopher McCollum of Jackson graduated from Hinds Community College on May 15. Celebrating with him is his nephew Jeremiah Williams, 5.

Shamonica Roby of Jackson, left, and Regina Robinson of Pearl are thrilled to be graduating from Hinds Community College on May 15. Roby plans to transfer to Jackson State University for a biology degree. Robinson will use her new marketing degree in her own business.

Shamonica Roby of Jackson, left, and Regina Robinson of Pearl are thrilled to be graduating from Hinds Community College on May 15. Roby plans to transfer to Jackson State University for a biology degree. Robinson will use her new marketing degree in her own business.

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Allea Paz of Jackson graduated from Hinds Community College on May 15. Celebrating with her are friends Reagan Chapman, left, and Christie Cloy, right.

Allea Paz of Jackson graduated from Hinds Community College on May 15. Celebrating with her are friends Reagan Chapman, left, and Christie Cloy, right.

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0 1630 15 May, 2015 News more