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5/19/2006 - Jackson, Miss.

During its regular monthly meeting, the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning (IHL) met today and officially welcomed Dr. D.E. Magee as its new Board President, and thanked former President Ms. Virginia Shanteau Newton for her exceptional year of service.

Trustee Virginia Shanteau Newton, a resident of Gulfport, was appointed to the Board by Governor Kirk Fordice. "President Virginia Shanteau Newton led the Board through some major milestones, including a change in governance, a search for a university president, and, most notably, Hurricane Katrina," said Commissioner of Higher Education Dr. Thomas C. Meredith. "We commend her for her service." Trustee Shanteau Newton’s term on the Board will expire on May 7, 2008.

Incoming Board President Dr. D.E. Magee is a Jackson ophthalmologist. President Magee was also appointed to the Board by Governor Kirk Fordice with a term expiring May 7, 2008. President Magee received a bachelor of science in chemistry from Central State University in Ohio, a master of science in biochemistry from Howard University in Washington, D.C., and a doctorate of medicine from Meharry Medical College in Tennessee. "We look forward to Dr. Magee’s term as President, and look forward to continuing the Board’s great momentum," said Commissioner Meredith.

In other news, the Board approved 5.5-percent undergraduate resident tuition increases at Delta State University, Jackson State University, Mississippi State University, Mississippi University for Women, the University of Mississippi, and the University of Southern Mississippi, a 5-percent increase at Alcorn State University, and a 4.5-percent increase at Mississippi Valley State University.  The Board also allowed all institutions’ executive officers the option of a 1-percent surcharge to help offset rising utility costs, as well as a variable room and board increase, ranging from 3.7 to 8.5-percent. Over $60 million of the system’s 2007 $90.5 million increase in state appropriations was used toward a five percent salary increase to bring the System closer to the regional salary average, necessary to help retain and recruit qualified faculty and staff personnel. The remaining $26 million was split among key legislative priorities such as the University of Mississippi Medical Center, student financial aid and Ayers settlement funding, leaving $4 million to be used system-wide for education and general university funding. The tuition increase will be used to help supplement the remaining $4 million.

The Board will conduct brief business during a retreat scheduled for the month of June. Details will be announced as soon as plans are confirmed.

Under the leadership of the Board of Trustees, IHL governs the public universities in Mississippi, including Alcorn State University; Delta State University; Jackson State University; Mississippi State University including the Mississippi State University Division of Agriculture, Forestry and Veterinary Medicine; Mississippi University for Women; Mississippi Valley State University; the University of Mississippi including the University of Mississippi Medical Center; and the University of Southern Mississippi.


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