Civitans help community through workforce scholarships

Acie Vance, president elect of the West Point Civitan Luncheon Club, presents Mitzi Thompson and Tshurah Dismuke with a check for the Civitan Workforce Scholarship at East Mississippi Community College - West Point campus.
Staff Writer

Tshurah Dismuke and Mitzi Thompson of East Mississippi Community College-West Point campus, visited the West Point Civitan Luncheon club recently.

The Civitans are a partner with EMCC providing workforce scholarships for those who need financial help to be able to take the Work Keys test and to attend the manufacturing skills classes. Both enable people to be qualified to work in today’s technologically-advanced manufacturing facilities.

"We offer many resources for Skill Prep, ACT, and Work Keys at EMCC," Dismuke said. "I want to thank this organization for providing scholarships to help those needing to take the Work Keys test and manufacturing skills training."

Thompson talked about some of the people that had taken advantage of the Civitan scholarships to prepare to enter the workforce.

"I want to thank you for what you are doing for the students by providing the scholarship program," Thompson said. "We had planned on bringing the latest recipient with us to meet you today. But she called this morning to apologize for not being able to make it. She had two job interviews today. She is most thankful to your club for helping her to have the opportunity to work."

Thompson said four of the scholarships have been awarded recently, which makes 10 in total.

"They have all gotten job interviews, we provided the money for them to become qualified, the rest is up to them," Acie Vance, president-elect of the Civitan Club, said. “We work together with Mitzi Thompson. She chooses who needs our help in order to award the scholarships to those who are serious about employment."

Civitans recognize February as Clergy Month and the members invited local pastors and ministers to have a light lunch and be a part of the meeting.

"I spoke with Jeanette Unger and told her we would be sure to remember her husband, the late Kelly Unger," Jay Jackson, president of the Civitan Club, said. "Kelly served us for many years, as a member and as chaplain. We want to honor and remember him during Clergy month."

Minister Deloris Doss was asked to speak to the club by secretary Betty Mason for Clergy Week.

"In Amos 3:3 we find 'Can two walk together except they be agreed?’” Doss said. "The way we can work together for the good of all us is with unity within the community. Where you have unity, you have strength."

She said there are two things that must happen in order for there to be unity.

"We have to learn to get along and love one another," Doss said. "It doesn't matter what race, gender, where we live or how much we have. We can only learn to get along if we are willing to listen to the opinion of others. Without listening, we will never have unity."

Doss explained how important it is that everyone walk together. Going in the same direction will allow for goals to be accomplished.

"We trust in our Sheriff's and Police departments to know and follow the rules according to the law," Doss said. "We have to obey those rules, too. Without rules, we have chaos."

Doss said the people of the community must talk together. Common ground must be found in order to be on the same page and heading in the right direction.

"There are too many people who just want to do things their way," Doss said. "They have no intention of listening to someone else's views or ideas. We can't be that way. We need to compromise and meet in the middle. I've seen a lot of things happen in my 17 years of working for the city. Teamwork makes the dream work."