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Two Alcorn students participate in Coca-Cola’s annual ‘Pay It Forward’ program



Adeboye Aladekoba and Kaziah Robinson (Photos courtesy Alcorn State University)

Two Alcorn State University students are preparing for a two-day program that will equip them for the future.

Adeboye Aladekoba, a junior computer science major from Lagos, Nigeria, and Kaziah Robinson, a senior biology pre-medicine major from Bastrop, Louisiana, will participate in the virtual 2020 Coca-Cola Bottling Company United, Inc. “Pay It Forward” program Tuesday, Aug. 4, and Wednesday, Aug. 5.

Russ Hendley, the on-premise sales operation manager for Coca-Cola United in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, applauds the company’s marketing team for providing a way for the program to go on.

“We truly believe in this program, and I am so thankful for our marketing team and their efforts in putting together this virtual experience for our students,” said Hendley.

The purpose of the program is to empower HBCU students and introduce them to real-world experiences while providing them successful techniques for the future. Coca-Cola officials will serve as mentors to the students by giving them information that would improve their business acumen as well as their knowledge in operations management, packaging, pricing, event planning and so much more. Also, students can use the opportunity to pursue careers with Coca-Cola in the future.

Two students from HBCU will spend virtual time with leaders across Coca-Cola and learn how different departments conduct business. A $1,000 stipend will be awarded to each student at the end of the program, as well as a lifetime of Coca-Cola brand ambassadorship.

Getting accepted into the program seemed too good to be true for Aladekoba. Once he got the official statement of his acceptance, he began to anticipate taking advantage of the opportunity.

“I was overwhelmed,” he said. “I remember getting the phone call to tell me I got the internship. I didn’t want to believe it until I saw the official email the next day. I am looking to improve myself professionally and also connect with senior leaders and like-minded students.”

With so much uncertainty of where opportunities lie, Robinson is thankful to have found an enriching internship amid the pandemic.

“I am grateful to receive this internship, especially during these unprecedented times,” she said. “I’m most looking forward to learning about the manufacturing processes and potential career opportunities that I can take advantage of after graduation.”

Participating in the program is a way for Aladekoba to engage with seasoned professionals about the path to success.

“This is a chance for me to make new connections,” he said. “It would also allow me to hear from experienced professionals and their pathway to success, which would be beneficial to me.”

As an aspiring future owner of a medical practice, Robinson’s objective for the program is to learn the necessary tools to achieve her career goal.

“Learning the manufacturing and marketing process can give me insight and strategies for my medical practice that I plan to pursue,” she said.

Both students are proud to represent their alma mater.

“Never did I believe I would be one of the students selected,” Aladekoba said. “Thank you, Alcorn State University.”

“I am grateful to represent my HBCU on a national platform,” Robinson said.


Governor announces two MS Board of Ed appointments



Gov. Tate Reeves announced two Mississippi State Board of Education appointments Tuesday: Angela Bass from Jackson and Glen East from Gulfport. The appointees reflect the Governor’s commitment to continuous improvement in education.

“Mississippi’s children deserve our steadfast commitment to improving education. We must continue to improve outcomes for these students without fear of upsetting the status quo. I am confident that Angela and Glen will serve with honor and represent the interest of parents, teachers and — most importantly — students. Their achievement has to be our top priority,” Reeves said in a statement.

Dr. Angela Bass served as a Teach for America corps member and studied education policy and management at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, later becoming a teacher in both the Tunica and Desoto County school districts and an administrator at the KIPP Memphis Collegiate High School. She currently serves as the Executive Director of the Mississippi Early Learning Alliance.

Mr. Glen East serves as the Superintendent of the Gulfport School District. The district represents 10 schools and approximately 5,800 students. It has been designated an Excellence for All School District.

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Alcorn State University, IRS and USDA partner to provide webinar on Economic Impact Payment 



(Photo courtesy Alcorn State University)

Alcorn State University, the Internal Revenue Service and the USDA Office of Partnerships and Public Engagement have partnered to provide a webinar on the upcoming Economic Impact Payment.

During this Zoom meeting, participants will discuss strategies to help eligible Mississippi residents get their Economic Impact Stimulus payments. Individuals who were excluded from automatic delivery of payments must sign up by Oct. 15 to get their stimulus check this year.

The webinar is scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 8, 2020, from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. (3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. EST) via Zoom.

Register for the meeting online.
Zoom Webinar ID: 851 3831 6826
Passcode: 185598

Register by phone at 408-638-0968 | Code: 85138316826# or
646-876-9923 | Code: 85138316826#

For more information, contact Jacqueline A. Davis-Slay, deputy director, Office of Partnerships and Public Engagement, United States Department of Agriculture, 202-720-2032

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Seven VWSD students selected for state Student Advisory Council



Seven students from the Vicksburg Warren School District have been selected to serve on the Mississippi Department of Education Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council.

  • Mary Katherine Archer – River City Early College
  • Riddhi Patel – River City Early College
  • Marquasia Smith – Vicksburg High School
  • Bobbie Sorrels – Vicksburg High School
  • Gregory Taylor – Vicksburg High School
  • Garrett Lee – Warren Central High School
  • Teyanna Monroe – Warren Central High School

The council includes students in grades 11 and 12 or in their first year of college to serve as members for a term of two school years.

More than 300 students from across the state applied for membership on the council and 163 were selected. They will join the more than 70 students who were selected in 2019.

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