From the Mississippi Development Authority:
The Mississippi Development Authority’s Asset Development Division is accepting applications for the 2020 Aspire Mississippi program. The program is designed to help communities become better places to live, work and visit through economic, community and workforce development.
“Participants of MDA’s Aspire Mississippi program master the leadership = community development = economic development model, sharpening their leadership skills to effectively develop their communities, which attracts private capital investment creating new jobs in their communities,” MDA Executive Director Glenn McCullough Jr. said in a statement. “Past participants of Aspire Mississippi demonstrated their commitment to bettering their communities through a variety of proactive projects that will bolster their economic development efforts for years to come.”
Aspire Mississippi provides support to counties as they identify marketable assets, allowing participants to increase industrial and economic development in their counties. The program helps communities develop projects that achieve significant and sustainable community and economic development outcomes. Curriculum focus areas include data-driven decision making and project mapping, as well as community, economic and workforce development.
The location for each session will alternate among the Aspire Mississippi counties. In addition to support from MDA, participants receive guidance from partners at the state’s universities, private businesses, nonprofit organizations, and state and federal agencies.
Each Aspire Mississippi team is typically formed through the local economic development office and consists of approximately eight to 10 local stakeholders committed to enhancing their knowledge in key community and economic development areas. Teams from the following counties recently graduated from the 2019 Aspire Mississippi program: Covington, Lawrence, Leake, Panola, Sharkey and Walthall.
The 2020 Aspire Mississippi program begins in April and will conclude in late fall with each team’s project presentations and a graduation ceremony.
The deadline to apply for the 2020 program is Monday, Feb. 3. To apply, go to mississippi.org/aspire. For additional information, contact Ellen Bourdeaux with MDA’s Asset Development Division at 601-359-9333 or [email protected].