GOLDEN TRIANGLE, Miss. (WCBI) – For some students, the real work begins after the school year is complete.
“Each year it seems the kids get better. I think they go back to school and they say it’s a good job. This year they came out ready to work,” says George Irby, Assistant Director of Federal Programs for the City of Columbus.
This is the 17th year that the city of Columbus has offered a summer work program for local students. It’s funded through a grant from the Mississippi Department of Transportation. Participants say the program offers more than just cash for the Summer. They get to meet new people and earn money for college.
Students in West Point are also participating in the summer work program. Melanie Busby says the program treats students as if they are real city employees.
“They applied just like they were applying for a real job with the city. We interview the students and they have a rating system where they rate them based on their interviews and based on their application. So the top six students are chosen,” says Busby.
Students in Columbus and West Point are required to take life skills classes while they’re employed. George Irby of the City of Columbus says the summer work programs are good for everyone involved.
“I think it’s a win/win for the students to get life skills training, to make some money and the community gets some well-deserved landscaping work from them,” says Irby.
Columbus was able to hire 30 students this year and West Point hired their top six applicants for the summer.
This year the City of Columbus contributed additional funds to the program so that they could hire more students.