Allie Martin

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Video: THS Students Learn And Earn Through ‘Plant A Seed’

TUPELO, Miss. (WCBI) — Some high school students get a unique inside look at city government.

For eight weeks, 17-year old Brittany Brock has earned a paycheck while helping out at Tupelo City Hall.

Brock is one of 33 Tupelo High School students taking part in the “Plant A Seed” program.   That initiative allows juniors and seniors to work in departments such as park and rec, public works,  the police or fire department, and other areas.

The young people are paid minimum wage and work 20 to 25 hours per week.

“It’s a really good learning experience,” Brock said.

This is Brittany’s first part-time job. Her supervisor is Contanna Purnell and she says the “Plant A Seed” program helps prepare students for life after high school.

“It encourages them to stay in school, continue on to college, or if college is not for them at least to have good work habits to show up on time for work and to have a positive attitude when they show up for work and to make sure they’ve learned from city employees the meaning of becoming a good citizen for their community ,” Purnell said.

“I’m glad cause it really taught me a lot about the office life,  it really did teach me responsibilities,” Brock said.

On the third floor of city hall,  Monica Williams has been working in the planning department. “Plant a Seed” has taught her the importance of teamwork.
“It’s a lot of work and it’s mostly done with actually the people that work here, not just one person,”  Williams said.

While the eight weeks have gone by quickly,  the lessons learned, important contacts made, and new friendships will last for a long time.

“It’s going to be hard leaving,” Brock said.

More than 90 students applied for this year’s “Plant A Seed ” Program.  If you would like to know how to apply for next year, call the City of Tupelo Human Resources Department at 662- 841-6487.