Amber Cobb of Hattiesburg is one of several Pearl River Community College students doing an internship this semester thanks to the federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act.
Cobb, 37, a graduate of South Jones High School, is doing her internship at Chain Electric of Hattiesburg. Her husband, Charles, is a security officer at PRCC.
“My teachers and fellow students excite me about being a student at PRCC,” said Cobb, who is majoring in both Accounting and Business Management Technology.
Internship programs through PRCC provide work-based learning experiences that are as beneficial for students as their classroom time.
“These internships offer critical skills that contribute to the success of our graduates,” said Dr. James David Collum, Dean of Career and Technical Education at PRCC’s Forrest County Center.
“No lab or classroom can fully emulate the experience of participating in an internship.”
The PRCC WIOA Internship program is funded thanks to a grant by the Southern Mississippi Planning and Development District (SMPDD). Interns are selected by instructors and paid through the grant.
“I am grateful for our industry partners for working with us and for the Twin Districts Workforce WIOA internship grant for making this life-changing opportunity available for PRCC students,” said Collum.
Cobb, a sophomore, is a Phi Theta Kappa and National Technical Honor Society student. She also served as secretary for DECA. She plans to find a job in finance.
“Mrs. Debbie Ferrill has been the best instructor through my whole journey at PRCC,” said Cobb. “She has been by my side every step of the way. She is the one to thank for my internship at Chain Electric.”
Cobb was a work-study student for the Business Technology Department.
“Amber was very organized and always thinking ahead of what needed to be done,” said Ferrill. “She was very fortunate to obtain an internship with Chain Electric and is doing very well working in their cost accounting department.”
Ferrill says Cobb has had to overcome obstacles while working toward her degree.
“She is a cancer survivor who has undergone chemotherapy treatments while working toward her degree,” said Ferrill. “She never sat out of school and never missed submitting an assignment. She is now cancer free and we are very proud of her for all she has had to overcome. Amber has never complained and just kept her eye on the prize - her degree from Pearl River Community College. We are very proud of all she has accomplished.”
Deloris Butler, PRCC WIN Case Manager, believes these internships are a plus all the way around for PRCC students.
“The internship program gives students the opportunity to practice their skills in a real-world environment, build their professional network, and connect with prospective employers,” she said.