Young adults in Stone County have one fewer obstacle in the way of getting their high school diploma.
Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College is offering county residents ages 16 to 24 the opportunity to attend classes and get their high school diploma free of charge through the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act Youth Out-of-School Program.
The program applies to MGCCC’s Perkinston campus and it’s crafted to help participants — especially low-income individuals — complete a high school diploma, gain life skills and attain a career.
“Participants will gain preparatory certifications and their high school equivalency certificate,” program instructor Irvette Dove said. “Plus, they will participate in paid work experiences and internships at local industries and businesses who will potentially provide opportunities and referrals for future career choices,” Dove said.
The program is funded by the Southern Mississippi Planning & Development District and the Twin Districts Workforce Development Area.
Every year, more than 1.2 million students drop out of high school in the United States. That’s a student every 26 seconds — or 7,000 a day, according to the U.S. Department of Education.
A high school dropout will earn $200,000 less than a high school graduate over their lifetime and almost $1 million less than a college graduate, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.