GULFPORT, Miss. (WLOX) - Harrison County is now part of the ACT Work Ready Initiative. The program sets up training for high school career-tech students, so they’ll be ready to meet the needs of future employers.
Thirty-five counties in Mississippi are certified, while 48 counties are taking part in the program. Harrison County is one of those pushing towards certification.
"The clock starts ticking, we have two years from today to get those 479 folks and 82 employers we need to be certified,” said Mel Arsenault, Port of Gulfport external affairs.
Some of those employers were on hand for Tuesday's kickoff event hosted by the Harrison County Development Commission.
The ACT Work Ready test is a benchmark for those hoping to get a skilled labor job. For potential employers and businesses looking for a home, ACT Work Ready creates a specific pool of qualified candidates.
"It would be awesome to have connections here and be able to find a good job where you grew up and where you’re comfortable living,” said Ellie Herndon, a Gulfport High School senior who’s interning at the Harrison County Development Commission.
The numbers say more than 82 percent of businesses use the ACT Work Ready template in their hiring processes.
"When I talk to site consultants, I talk about who do you need, and what do you want?” said Development Commission Executive Director Bill Lavers.