Governor Visits WIN Job Center In Gulfport - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

03/06/03

Governor Visits WIN Job Center In Gulfport

People searching for jobs at the state employment office in Gulfport got a surprise Thursday.

Governor Ronnie Musgrove dropped by for a visit.

It was a scheduled stop for the state's chief executive, but several job seekers were not expecting it. The visit gave the governor a chance to talk about job creation, with an eager audience.

The governor is touting his WIN program . WIN stands for Workforce Investment Network. WIN Centers, like the one in Gulfport, offer the unemployed a "one stop shop" for job hunting, employment training opportunities and college classes.

Flashbulbs and business suits greeted the governor's arrival at the WIN center.

Near the reception area, unemployed construction worker, Shelia Smith, scanned a computer for job openings.

"When you're used to making eighteen fifty an hour and the computer shows eight dollars an hour, it's kind of tough," said Smith.

"We have a real focus on making sure we can get people back to work," said Governor Musgrove as he toured the job center facilities.

He greeted office workers and job seekers. The governor also spent a few minutes with the unemployed construction worker from Poplarville.

"And then our skill training with our community colleges and others. And then we work hard to put our people in jobs. Rather than taking, they're able to give something to communities and provide," he told Sheila Smith.

Smith told the governor too many construction jobs are out of state.

"I'd like to see Mississippi do something to offer, we've got a lot of family that works out of state. And we'd like for them to come home, come down here to see what's maybe opened up," she explained.

Felix Gines saw Governor Musgrove's visit as an employment opportunity. He handed the governor a resume.

Gines weighed his political possibilities.

"Politics has always been one of the areas I aspire to go into. So who better to hand my resume to than the governor. The man himself," he said.

The man himself offered high praise for the WIN center resources and staff.

"And I believe it's because of the people. We've got a plan of action to help people in the training and transition," said Governor Musgrove.

By Steve Phillips

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