MCEF Honors 19 Graduates of Apprenticeship Programs

Trade professionals complete four-year program toward journeyman status

PEARL ― Nineteen graduates of the Mississippi Construction Education Foundation’s apprenticeship program were honored recently for completing training requirements that move them one step closer toward becoming journeymen– the highest level in a trade profession.

MCEF’s apprenticeship program is approved by the Department of Labor and prepares journeymen in eight trades: carpentry, electrical, HVAC, pipefitting, plumbing, sheet metal, welding and interior finish. Students must work for an approved employer to be accepted into the four-year program, which includes a total of 576 hours of classroom instruction and 8,000 on-the-job training hours. Students work during the day and take classes at night.

“Construction companies throughout the country, as well as here in Mississippi, are gearing up to hire more workers ― if only they can find them,” said Mike Barkett, president of MCEF. “This shortage of skilled labor is having a negative impact on the construction industry and causing the loss of millions of jobs each year. MCEF is working to address this crisis by encouraging interest in technical-based careers and providing training, resources and recognition to help build a ready workforce for Mississippi.”

In addition to increased job skills and pay, graduates can take apprentice certificates to a community college and earn up to 32 academic credit hours toward an associate degree.

Graduates were honored at two ceremonies ― in Gulfport and Pearl. MCEF also presented outstanding student awards to graduates with the highest GPAs and perfect attendance awards.

Graduating from MCEF’s apprenticeship program were:

  • Joseph Atwood of Tucson, AZ; electrical, employed by Moses Electric.
  • Stephen Brady of Pelahatchie, MS; electrical, employed by Dear Electric.
  • Brock Chapman of Pearl, MS; plumbing, employed by Clark Plumbing.
  • Alicia Cowan of Gautier, MS; electrical, employed by Edwards Electric.
  • Troy Deshamp, Jr. of Gulfport, MS; electrical, employed by Moody’s Electric.
  • Joseph Evans of Crystal Springs, MS; electrical, employed by Synergy Electric.
  • Cody Favre of Vancleave, MS; electric, employed by Moses Electric.
  • Nick Fortenberry of Jackson, MS; electric, employed by Synergy Electric.
  • Robert Harris of Florence, MS; plumbing, outstanding student award, employed by Metro Mechanical.
  • Loren Inabinette, of Ocean Springs, MS; electrical, employed independently.
  • Brandon Jackson of Gulfport, MS, electrical, outstanding student award; employed by Moses Electric.
  • Raymond Jenkins of Carthage, MS; electrical, employed by Moses Electric.
  • Stance LeBlanc of Gulfport, MS; electrical, employed independently.
  • William Milner of Lena, MS; electrical, outstanding student award, employed by Synergy Electric.
  • Matthew Reid of Jackson, MS; electrical, employed Ward Mechanical.
  • Jeffery Robinson of Jackson, MS; electrical, employed by ADCO Electric.
  • Collin Smith of Raymond, MS; electrical, employed by ADCO Electric.
  • Jon Derek Smith of Carthage, MS; electrical, employed by ADCO Electric.
  • Connor Sutherland of Madison, MS; electrical, employed by Sutherland Electric.                                                            

MCEF is a non-profit educational foundation that provides NCCER craft training and credentialing in more than 100 career and technical programs across the state. The foundation’s mission is to train individuals for the construction and manufacturing industries in Mississippi.

MCEF also offers workforce training and credentialing in construction, industrial maintenance and manufacturing trades. Learn more about MCEF at

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