Mississippi state auditor says crime rate contributes to “brain drain”

MISSISSIPPI STATE UNIVERSITY, Miss. (WCBI)- State Auditor Shad White speaks often about Mississippi’s “brain drain.” Now, he says it’s made worse by an increase in crime.

Jackson is experiencing major crime. In 2021, the city was ranked number one in homicides per capita in the nation.

In its brain drain research, White’s office found that 30% of college graduates who decide to stay in Mississippi work in Hinds County. White says that makes Hinds a priority for the state’s growth and the increased crime rate can turn away future workers.

Currently, the state auditor’s office has a “Stay in the Sip” program that pays the tuition of accounting students who stay and work at the state auditor’s office after graduation. White met with Mississippi State University President Dr. Mark Keenum Tuesday, to discuss how that program can expand into other fields.

“One thing that we’ve been batting around is career coaches who are specifically dedicated to trying to find jobs for graduates here at Mississippi State, here in the state of Mississippi after they finish up,” said White. “So, a lot of times career offices are motivated by the desire to just get the students jobs wherever it may be. I think that our universities here in the state of Mississippi have an obligation to make the state better. That’s one reason why we spend taxpayer money at these public universities is the idea that they will give back to the state. I cannot imagine a better way to give back to the state of Mississippi than by a university keeping its graduates here.”

White says crime has increased in our viewing area as well. Columbus’s crime rate increased from 2020 to 2021.


Categories: Crime, Local News, News Team, State News