The Jones County Career Coaching program began in 2021 when the EDA of Jones County was awarded a grant from AccelerateMS. In this inaugural year, the EDA hired two career coaches, each of whom had split their time between two of the four public schools in Jones County. Since then, the program has grown to add a third coach and hopes to add a fourth in the future so each school may be served by one individual.


The goal of the Jones County Career Coaching Program is to provide career insight, resources, and opportunities to students (primarily Seniors and Juniors). The program’s main objectives are as follows:

  • Increase awareness of local industry opportunities
  • Help students align their interests and skills when selecting a career path
  • Prepare students for entering the workforce (must have a plan to “enroll, enlist, or employ”)
  • Provide on-campus professional development activities/workshops
  • Increase connections between community members/industry leaders and students
    • Job shadows
    • Events at the school
    • Field trips
    • Guest speakers
  • Develop soft skills to increase employability among students
  • Create a workforce pipeline to benefit local industries/employers

Program Statistics:

2023-2024 School Year Data

Success Stories:

Career Coach Contact Info:

  • West Jones High School
    • Collyn Leggett | | 601-498-0819
  • Laurel High School
    • Chataura Sanders | | 601-498-0707
  • Northeast Jones and South Jones High School
    • Kalyn Patterson | | 601-325-8192



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