Entergy Mississippi, Inc. reaffirmed its support of engineering programs at Jackson State University by presenting a $150,000 check to the College of Science, Engineering and Technology (CSET) to be used for endowment, scholarships and program support. Matching funds will increase the overall value of the donation to $230,000.
Haley Fisackerly, president and CEO of Entergy, who visited the campus to help kick off Engineering Week 2017, said, “The No. 1 issue for Entergy is developing our workforce. We would not be in existence if there were no engineers.”
The contribution to JSU is part of Entergy’s People Power Initiative, a multi-year investment of more than $1 million from shareholders to help prepare the state’s workforce and raise its competitive level to attract business and industry.
According to CSET dean Dr. Richard Aló, Engineering Week has been celebrated during the month of February for over 60 years. It is a tradition for engineering organizations across the globe to mark their calendars and join forces to increase awareness of engineering contributions to a positive quality of life all over the planet.
“JSU-CSET joins the rest of the world in celebrating ‘E-week’ to increase awareness among students and communities about the importance of a strong STEM-based education by inspiring them to pursue careers in engineering,” Aló said.
Fisackerly told the crowd that Entergy had supported the founding of the engineering program at JSU several years ago with a $500,000 contribution.
Since that time, the company has hired 49 graduates from the JSU engineering program.
“The success of our company is dependent on the people we serve. … If we don’t take time to invest in our community and people, then why are we here? … We need to put our money where our mouth is,” Fisackerly said.
Interim JSU President Dr. Rod Paige said the gift from Entergy is an example of how Jackson State continues making a difference in the lives of our students and the state of the economy.
Paige added, “I’m excited about this. We want to play a leading part in developing this great state.”
Aló said, “Jackson State is among 15 HBCU engineering schools that comprise 4 percent of engineering schools across the country and through that 4 percent we produce 30 percent of African-American engineers in the country. Jackson State University is proud to be part of that fabric.”