White returns to Stage 2 as Riley Foundation Summer intern

At 22, Virginia White has already carved a path combining theater and public relations.  

A veteran of Meridian Community College's Stage 2 program since she was 12, White's passion and commitment have earned her the Riley Foundation Internship this summer. 

A graduate of the University of Mississippi with a bachelor's degree in integrated marketing communication, White is now pursuing her master's degree in the same field, with the completion goal of May 2025.  

This summer, White is back on the MCC campus, where she will be the assistant stage manager for the Arts & Letters Series production of "Guys and Dolls." Her role will involve managing the stage, handling graphics and social media, and participating in publicity appearances. 

Reflecting on her journey, White said, "I've done the Stage 2 marketing and PR internship for two years after my freshman and sophomore summers. I studied abroad last year so I couldn't intern then, but I still helped backstage. I applied for the Riley Foundation Internship because I've been involved in Stage 2 for so long. Even as an alumna, I couldn't imagine a summer without Stage 2." 

The eight-week internship, which will end on July 11, is a testament to White's enduring connection with Stage 2. "Our alumni are heavily involved, and it's only natural for them to return and help. It's something that's always been around, even when I was younger," she noted. 

White's goals for the internship are focused. "I hope to fine-tune the skills I've gained from my previous internships. Susie Johnson [Stage 2's director] has allowed me to take on more of a supervisory or managerial role, which will help build my resume. I'm also getting some kids to help me with social media and publicity, sharing my knowledge from undergrad and the first year of my master's program. I'm looking to develop a new skill set in stage management and leadership," she said. 

For those considering joining Stage 2, White offers her views. "Stage 2 is a great organization that doesn't just provide theatrical training; it helps build your character and morals. You're involved in community service and bond closely with your peers, forming a second family. These ties last even after you've moved on from Stage 2. You do build deep, lifelong bonds," she said. 

To learn more about the MCC Arts & Letters Series or Stage 2, visit meridiancc.edu/artsandletters.