What Phillip Powe and T’Kylia Moss have is the classic love story. They were high school sweethearts who became college sweethearts who became engaged this past February 14th. Powe speaks of success, and he cuts his eyes at Moss and grins. She agrees that he is a jokester, and they laugh when they tell the story of how he gave her an empty ring box on February 13th.
She said, “Yes,” the next day when he held the ring up to her while on bended knee. Separately they are both so full of love and hope for the future that it is as if they have simultaneously come down with the very best of diseases, and it’s contagious. They radiate love, but that’s not all that fills the room with this couple’s light. Powe just graduated from the University of Southern Mississippi this past May 8th. He obtained his bachelors of science in Business Administration and Management.
After playing Panther Football Powe went to Jones County Junior College on a scholarship to be a Bobcat. The 2010 QHS Graduate says, “I went into business because of flexibility. Everyone needs a manager, and my hope is to one day become a branch manager of a bank or credit union.” Though he has yet to land the manager in training position for which he has been applying, he says he’s hoping to get a call within a couple of weeks. Powe has been job searching in the Hattiesburg area where Moss will begin her senior year in Medical Laboratory Science.
Moss is a 2012 Graduate of Quitman High School and entered the University of Southern Mississippi through the school’s Honors College. In her senior year she is looking at lecture from 8am till noon and lab from 1pm to 5pm. She explains, “I always loved science, and I realized during my freshman year of chemistry in college how prepared I was. It was a breeze, and I knew then how blessed I was to have Mrs. Smith in high school.”
Powe agrees, and they both rattle off a list of teachers and coaches who not only prepared them but made them feel supported by rallying while they were in high school and continuing that rally now. Moss says, “Even now when we come home for football games we have people ask us how we are doing.” Then as if completing her sentence, Powe adds, “You don’t want to disappoint those people. You want to be better. I made the decision to be better. I went to school on a football scholarship, and I knew I had to be serious about it and get an education. I had a lot of people rooting for me in Quitman. I felt like Coach Hampton and the community itself wanted me to be there.”
The two nod when asked, “Do you feel pressure?”
“Yes,” Powe is the first to respond and Moss nods. “Everyone has a fear of failing, and it is scary, but success is not the same for everyone. For us it is about accomplishing our goals and our dreams. We keep God first in our lives and come home to church every week. People there are praying for us. We know that success will stop for us if we stop having goals and dreams.”
Moss’s smile grows even bigger, and she confesses, “College is harder than you think, than people tell you. I tell people to go in with a plan. It could be really easy to get off track. Everyone should choose a major or at least take courses which interest them and remember to give themselves time to let their hair down.”
What have these two done lately to let their hair down? A recent trip to the beach to celebrate Powe’s graduation and Moss’s willingness to say yes when he asked her to spend the rest of her life with him is one thing. These two also list church, bowling and going to movies on the list of their favorite things to do.
Again Moss nods when Powe explains, “There is a price to pay for success, but it’s great when you find someone who believes in it like you do. Somebody to encourage you.” He glances at Moss, and they both laugh together, “Someone to remind you where you want to go.”
He looks fully to his right where Moss is sitting. They both giggle that young in love, high school sweetheart mutual admiration which fills the room, and he adds, “Time flies when you get out of high school.”