Governor Haley Barbour today announced the launching of “Make Things Happen,” a media campaign designed to increase public awareness about exciting and well paying career opportunities in the advanced metalworking industry, particularly in South Mississippi and the Gulf Coast regions. The campaign will target individuals interested in careers in welding, pipefitting, and machining.

“Raising awareness of job opportunities is particularly important during this global economic recession, so I am pleased that Momentum WIRED is taking the initiative to ensure Mississippians are aware of available high-skilled, high paying jobs,” Governor Barbour said.

“After all, Mississippi has an enormous need for advanced workforce development and job training, especially in our southern region which was hit hardest by Hurricane Katrina.”

“Make Things Happen” will be implemented under Momentum WIRED – Workforce Innovation in Regional Economic Development – a federally-funded grant program designed to address workforce needs for advanced manufacturing industries located in 18 counties in southeast Mississippi. The $5 million grant initially was awarded to Mississippi in 2007 with a goal of helping Mississippi workers attain more advanced skills in order to fill the shortage of metal and construction workers in the region. The marketing campaign, created by Jackson advertising agency Maris, West & Baker, promotes metalworking careers to residents of 18 southern Mississippi counties. The campaign includes television, radio and newspaper ads which will run throughout August of this year.

Additionally, a website – www.makethingshappenms.com – provides Mississippians with information about metalworking careers and links to community college training programs. Training for highly skilled careers in advanced metalworking will be made available at the Centers for Excellence located on the campuses of Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, Pearl River Community College, and Jones County Junior College.

Governor Haley Barbour Press Release
4/13/9