Mississippi College

Brookhaven Welcomes Mississippi College Education Classes

March 11, 2014

Mississippi College leaders plan to offer a master’s in education in Brookhaven beginning this fall.

The program is designed to help Brookhaven area teachers advance their professional careers while avoiding the lengthy 90-mile drive to the Clinton campus.

Half of the classes would be offered at a downtown Brookhaven location, while the remaining courses would be on-line.

“Our goal is to offer a high-quality program to an area where we can invest in the students, teachers, and schools,” said MC education professor Cindy Melton. “Our department is about building partnerships and improving student learning.”

Brookhaven business leaders met recently with Melton, who chairs Mississippi College’s Teacher Education Leadership Department, and other school officials to discuss the details.

“I have a great love for Mississippi College and the city of Brookhaven,” said MC trustee Bill Sones, president and CEO of the Bank of Brookhaven. “This is exciting to me. There’s a lot of interest here,” the MC alumnus said by phone Tuesday. “People will enjoy not having to go so far from home to earn their master’s degree.”

Melton and other School of Education leaders first got interested after talking with Mississippi College alums working as teachers in the Brookhaven area. Sones helped initiate meetings with Brookhaven community leaders who soon expressed their support for the 30-hour program.

Plans are to offer one Mississippi College class in the fall of 2014, two additional classes in the spring of 2015 and more courses in Brookhaven in the summer of 2015. The program seeks to become fully accredited by the Mississippi Department of Education.

The School of Education wants to open doors to give busy people an opportunity to earn a master’s degree one step at a time, said Caley Forbes, the admissions director for MC’s Graduate School. “Candidates would be able to get their degree in an accelerated time frame.”

The master’s degree would consist of classes such as teaching elementary and junior high math, and technology in education. It’s a new option for Brookhaven residents taking education classes at other area institutions such as the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg

Mississippi College presently offers more than 50 separate master’s degree classes, and expects to deliver more courses to Brookhaven area residents in the future, Melton said.

Word about the new MC graduate program spread quickly. A story in the “Brookhaven Daily-Leader” was picked up by the Associated Press and appeared in the “San Francisco Chronicle” on a Memphis television station and in “The Clarion-Ledger” and other newspapers around the Magnolia State.

With 5,030 students, Mississippi College is the state’s largest private university and second oldest Baptist college in the nation.

Melton says MC will explore potential partnerships with schools like Copiah-Lincoln Community College as the Christian university explores additional classes in Brookhaven.

For more information, contact education professor Cindy Melton at 601.925.3478 or cmelton@mc.edu.

Photo: Chair of Mississippi College’s Teacher Education Leadership Department Cindy Melton

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