Former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was in the Magnolia State Tuesday to help raise money for student scholarships.
The educator and past Stanford provost spent time with students at Mississippi College covering an array of topics before the annual scholarship banquet.
Rice spoke to local media after a question and answer session with business and political science students.
The professor and author talked with them about international affairs, tensions in Libya, North Korea and Syria, along with the job front when they enter the workforce.
But she said her passion remains teaching, and she is not interested in returning to government.
"You see it in their eyes sometimes possibilities they never even dreamed of. Why would a black woman from Birmingham, Alabama ever become a soviet specialist? Well it was because of a great class with a terrific professor, who by the way was Madeline Albright's father," said Dr. Rice.
According to the 66th Secretary of State, high corporate taxes, increasing regulations and a lack of a trained work force is affecting the American economy.
"I've heard many CEOs say that they would like to bring a lot of their manufacturing back but they can't find the right skill set, and so we obviously aren't training our people," added Rice.
Students were impressed with her vast knowledge, advice and accomplishments.
Taylor Stringer of Tylertown is graduating in May with a degree in Business Administration.
He will continue to work at the Mississippi Manufacturer's Association.
"It was a great experience. Dr. Rice spoke about education, and that is where it starts improving the economy. You have to have educated people in order to perform jobs," said Stringer.
M.C. Junior Josh Carver is also a Business Administration major.
He wants to do research in forestry wildlife conservation upon graduation.
"It just is really great for somebody of her position to come back and give back to a small southern town. She said that it's not where you're from, it's where you're going when it comes to growing in your future, and I think that's really great coming from a small delta town Leland Mississippi," said Carver.
Dr. Glenn Antizzo is the head of the Political Science Department.
The professor hopes the students take advantage of the wisdom of the series of speakers who visit the college each year.
"I'd like them to get an insight into the high calling of public service. This is a woman who's very accomplished, had a promising career in academia and has a large degree of expertise in the area of foreign affairs," said Dr. Antizzo.
Rice's visit will raise money for student scholarships.
School officials said more than 400 tickets were sold to the event at a cost of $200.00 each.
The annual scholarship banquet has raised more than $1.3 million since 2008.
This was former Secretary of State's second visit to MC.
She was keynote speaker for the MC Law graduation ceremonies in 2003.
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