JCJC creates "seamless transition" - WHLT 22 Connecting the Pine Belt

JCJC creates "seamless transition"

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JCJC poultry science students who plan to attend Mississippi State can enjoy a "seamless transition" according to school officials.

MSU poultry science department head said right now they can't supply enough students for the industry's needs.

JCJC Ag. Science instructor, Tim Ishee said in the last 25 years, almost half of MSU's poultry science students started their college journey at Jones.

They agree that the 2+2 system will benefit both schools, but most importantly - the students.

"Of course the poultry industry is important to south Mississippi," Ishee said.  "It's about a $2-billion per year industry - that's at the farm level."

He said the problem Mississippi State is facing is that they do not have enough students to fill those jobs in the poultry industry.

He and Beck, along with JCJC's President Jesse Smith and MSU's President Mark Keenum developed an agreement they call the 2+2 plan.

"What this will ensure is when students transfer from Jones Junior College, that they walk right into Mississippi State poultry science department," Ishee explained.  "It's a transcending move that's very easy, and it's seamless."

Just as Ishee and Beck hoped, this eases a burden off students' shoulders according to JCJC sophomore Sawyer Taylor.

"I was kind of nervous about if the classes I was taking here were not credited enough at Mississippi State," Taylor said.  "It kind of had me worried, so I was contacting Mississippi State more than I was Jones, but now I can communicate more with Jones and directly to Mississippi State."

Ishee said that typically the students that come from Jones have a higher graduating percentage and grade point average at state.

"Mississippi State is asking us directly all the time for more students," Ishee said.  "We're also the only junior college that's ever gotten a grant from the US Poultry and Ag. Association to further our recruitment of students and try to get them into poultry science."

He said Jones is among an elite group of schools chosen for the grant. The list includes LSU and Penn state.

Ishee said the students graduating from MSU in poultry science have 100% job placement and usually have 4-5 job choices laid out for them.

"They could've gone to multiple states," Ishee said.  "However, most of our students want to come back to this area because the poultry industry is such an intricate part of business economy here in south Mississippi."

He said most salaries in poultry start around $40,000 a year fresh from college.

"Well with the 2+2 deal, it's good that you can come to a junior college and help financially and then go to Mississippi State and then come out with a job sitting there wait on you," Taylor said.  "With this economy, it's tough to get a job, so the 2+2....it's a good deal."

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