Hattiesburg, Mississippi – On Thursday afternoon, Mayor Toby Barker joined William Carey University President Tommy King, Ph.D. to sign an agreement that will provide a 50 percent discount to city employees with children (under the age of 25) who are pursuing an undergraduate degree. It will also provide six free credit hours per trimester as a pilot program for the city’s police and fire departments.
Dr. King states that this agreement is a prime opportunity to give back to the City of Hattiesburg after so many years of services provided to the institution.
“We’ve gone through several disasters that almost wiped us out, and every time, the City of Hattiesburg has played an instrumental role in helping us get back on our feet,” said King. “We depend on the services they provide. This agreement allows us to give back in a way that gives directly to those who work for the city – those who have removed debris, installed sidewalks, paved roads, provided public safety and more.”
The cost of the discount is a scholarship provided by William Carey, and the six free credit hours per trimester will be split between William Carey and the professional development budgets of the Hattiesburg Police Department and Hattiesburg Fire Department.
“We will always seek ways to partner with the educational institutions in our community so that we can improve the quality of life and create opportunities for our employees and their families,” said Barker. “This agreement is one more step in providing more for our incredible employees, and we’re proud to do that with William Carey.”
Education incentives available to employees with the City of Hattiesburg currently include:
- Tuition discount for city employees who have children (under the age of 25) who are pursuing an undergraduate degree at William Carey University.
- Free Class A Commercial Driver’s License course and certification through the Workforce Development program at Pearl River Community College.
- Six free credit hours for firefighters and police officers at The University of Southern Mississippi.
- Six free credit hours for firefighters and police officers at William Carey University.
“As city employees, we strive to provide quality customer interactions and services to our citizens with an investment of time and hard work,” said Armendia Esters, training and continuity coordinator in the City’s department of Urban Development. “To have that investment of time and care flipped to provide us with more opportunities for ourselves and our families means so much.”
This agreement was authorized by a unanimous vote from the Hattiesburg City Council at its January 22 meeting and is effective immediately.