PRCC radiology students don''t mind being in minority

May 23, 2011 - 3:30pm -- braswell

HATTIESBURG - Rishawn Haynes and Holden Logan dont mind being in the minority in their radiologic technology class at the Forrest County Center of Pearl River Community College.And they expect to be in the minority when they graduate and go to work as radiology technicians next year.There arent too many guys, but nobody treats me any different, Haynes said. I kind of feel like I have to be a leader, lead by example.There is only one other guy among the 15 students in their class, which has completed the first year of the two-year program.Men are a minority, said Holder, a Poplarville resident.Officials at PRCC actively recruit minority gender students - women for the heating/air condition, electronics and welding programs and men for the office systems and allied health programs.After receiving a $4.900 grant to promote gender equity, PRCC began distributing brochures and posters throughout the college six-county district to recruit students to specific programs.We visit counselors at the high schools, WIN Job Centers, Head Start Centers, GED centers and libraries in the six_county area, said Dr. Janet Thornton, assistant to the Forrest County Center dean.She also speaks to students during high school assemblies and new PRCC students at registration, showing them a Power Point presentation on the opportunities in non_traditional gender careers.Our Workforce Investment Act coordinator and PRCC counselors also provide information about the opportunities in our programs to new students, she said.Haynes, 21, drives to Hattiesburg every day from his home in Monticello. His mother is a registered nurse and a family friend who works in radiology encouraged him to give the field a try.I love it, Haynes said. I like working with patients. Im kind of a people person. I like to smile and enjoy making a difference in people lives.During his freshman year, Haynes did clinical tours at Forrest General, Highland Community and Gulfport Memorial hospitals.Holder sister is a nurse and he wanted to do something in health care but it was an experience while his late mother was hospitalized for cancer treatment that pointed him towards radiology.My mom was in the hospital, and I saw somebody come in and do an ultrasound, he said. I thought it was pretty interesting.At 24, he one of the older students in the program. He did clinicals at Wesley Medical Center, Hattiesburg Clinic and Marion General Hospital.Everybody willing to give you a helping hand and it doesnt seem there any discrimination towards gender or anything, he said.The radiologic technology program and many of the others at the Forrest County Center are eligible for Workforce Investment Act funding, which will help students with the costs of tuition, books and fees.For information on WIA assistance, contact Frankie Lee at 601-554-5519 or <a href="mailto:flee@prcc.edu">flee@prcc.edu</a>.For information on PRCC admission requirements, go to <a href="../">www.prcc.edu.</a>