The University of Southern Mississippi Department of Economic and Workforce Development has launched a new Graduate Certificate in Economic Development that teaches the basics of the practice of economic development.
The 12-hour certificate is designed for economic development professionals seeking career-advancing training or students in related graduate programs desiring a specialty in economic development practice. It requires executive format, hybrid in-person/on-line courses in business attraction, entrepreneurship facilitation, plus business retention and expansion, as well as an elective economic development course.
Graduates of the university’s economic development program typically find employment with local, regional, or state economic development organizations, chambers of commerce or non-profits providing business assistance. Prospective students can apply through the Southern Miss Graduate School (http://www.usm.edu/graduateschool/graduate_certificates.php).
“There are many different career opportunities in economic development, which is the management of public-private investment collaborations to facilitate sustainable growth in the economy as typically measured by job creation, increased citizen wealth, a greater tax base and improved quality of life,” said Dr. Chad Miller, graduate coordinator of the program.
In addition to being able to transfer the credits toward the university’s Masters of Science in Economic Development degree, the certificate courses can be applied to other graduate programs. For example, a student may get a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) with a certificate in economic development, or a Masters of Public Administration from Mississippi State University with a graduate certificate in economic development from Southern Miss.
Since 1979, Southern Miss has continuously offered the Masters of Science in Economic Development with the express purpose of producing quality economic development professionals. It is interdisciplinary and highly applied focus on economic development at the state, regional, and community levels. The program was the first of its kind offered in the U.S. by that name, and is renowned worldwide for the achievements of its faculty and successful alumni it has produced.