New military leadership class to begin at PRCC Thursday

A new military class begins Thursday at PRCC.
A new military class begins Thursday at PRCC.

POPLARVILLE, MS (WDAM) - For the first time in decades, a military leadership class will be offered at Pearl River Community College. It's part of the new Magnolia Gold (Guard Officer Leadership Development) program.

It will offer both classroom and field training and is open to students regardless of whether they're in the military.

The class begins Thursday on the Poplarville campus. The instructor is Sergeant First Class Jeff Yelverton of the Mississippi National Guard.

"We'll have some hands-on stuff, land navigation, water survival, things like that we'll throw in there on the lab part," said Yelverton. "And it will just be basic leadership, what we're going to teach here is basic leadership skills," he said.

Yelverton hopes 12-15 students will register for the class this semester.

Among those who registered Wednesday was Akayla Powell, a student from Pike County who is a private first class in the Mississippi National Guard.

"I'm really excited because it's an opportunity to just learn more about the army and stuff like that," Powell said.  

PRCC is one of six community colleges across the state that has partnered with the National Guard to offer the program.

In 1935, PRCC became one of the first two-year colleges to offer an ROTC program. It was run by the Army, but was transferred to the Mississippi National Guard in 1948. It was discontinued sometime later.