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Volume 3, Issue 16
Friday, April 25, 2008
Edited by Jennifer Rogers

Mississippi's Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning

News from the System
University News
yellowarrowLegislation Impacts University System
yellowarrowUSM Gulf Coast Professors Awarded for Using Classroom Technology
yellowarrowMississippi Receives Competitive Lumina Foundation Grant
yellowarrowAlcorn State University Nursing Program Accredited by NLNAC
yellowarrowListening Sessions at MSU and MVSU Next Week
yellowarrowDSU Department of Social Work Unveils Simmons Awards Program
yellowarrowApril Mississippi's Business Released
yellowarrowNorman Hutchins and Myrna Summers Headline JSU's Music Workshop
yellowarrowMSU Helps Neighboring City 'Unlock' Secrets, Plan Future Paths
yellowarrowMSU Extension Helps State's Corn Farmers Fight Weather, Slugs
yellowarrowMUW Chorale to perform at Carnegie Hall
yellowarrowB.B. King Returns to MVSU for June 6 Blues Workshop
yellowarrowUM Sets Goal to Become a 'Green' American Public University
yellowarrowChildren's Miracle Network Honors Pullen with Achievement Award
yellowarrowSouthern Miss President Signs Climate Commitment
yellowarrowFor more IHL News, click here.
yellowarrowTo subscribe to this e-newsletter, click here.

Legislation Impacts University System
During the 2008 Legislative Session, state lawmakers passed a number of bills that impact Mississippi's University System. Most importantly, legislators appropriated $788.7 million to IHL for fiscal year 2009. This represents a $9.65 million, or 1.2 percent, increase over the current year appropriation (only $4.05 million increase for education and general, E&G), but falls short of the System's request of $1.04 billion. Of the $4.05 million dollar E&G increase, all but $1.3 million dollars are designated or earmarked to cover a health insurance rate increase, legislative line items, legal requirements, and Board initiatives. Lawmakers also passed HB 1641, which authorizes $29.75 million of state bond funding for the IHL System. Click here for a previous article regarding the allocation of bond funds. Below is a list of other approved legislation that will impact the System or individual institutions:

  • SB 2480 and HB 125 extends the authorization to create the Center of Excellence for abused and neglected children at the University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC).
  • SB 2590 impacts schools of nursing in Mississippi by allowing the Office of Nursing Education within the IHL Office of Academic and Student Affairs to conduct a feasibility study for the utilization of clinical simulation laboratories in schools on nursing.
  • SB 2887 conveys the old Farmer's Market property to UMMC.
  • SB 2965 names the old extension service building after former and current employees.
  • SB 3031 authorizes the Department of Finance and Administration to sell certain property fronting Hwy. 49 in Hattiesburg.
  • HB 540 exempts UMMC from provisions of the state's wireless communication services.
  • HB 1244 creates a State Capital Improvements fund to allow the use of one-time funds for appropriations for capital renewal projects.
For more information, contact Assistant Commissioner for Governmental Relations Dr. Jim Borsig.
Mississippi Receives Competitive Lumina Foundation Grant
Mississippi is one of only ten states selected for participation in the competitive Making Opportunity Affordable grant program, sponsored by Lumina Foundation for Education and Jobs for the Future. Of 37 states that submitted a letter of interest in December, Mississippi was among the ten states selected to receive a one-year $100,000 planning grant. At the completion of the first year, five states will be selected to receive up to $500,000 for four years based on the plans developed during the planning year. The grants are designed to help states advance a productivity agenda in higher education by developing goals, policies, and practices that produce more degrees at a lower cost per degree. As part of the grant, a seven-member team from each participating state will attend a training academy in June. Grant team members include Dr. Hank Bounds, state superintendent of education; Dr. Eric Clark, executive director of the State Board for Community and Junior Colleges; Dr. Harold Fisher, executive director of the Mississippi Association of Independent Colleges; Mr. Donald Pendergrast, director of instruction for the Mississippi Private School Association; and a number of support members. Other team members, who will be representing the team at the training academy, are Cheryl Mowdy, IHL director of support operations in the Office of Finance and Administration; Mississippi Senator Doug Davis, chair of the Universities and Colleges Committee and vice-chair of the Appropriations Committee; Mr. Johnny Franklin, education policy advisor to Governor Barbour; Dr. Jason Dean, vice president of economic policy for the Mississippi Economic Council and chief operating officer for Momentum Mississippi; Dr. Thomas C. Meredith, commissioner of higher education; Dr. Jim Borsig, IHL assistant commissioner for governmental relations; and Dr. Lynn J. House, IHL assistant commissioner for academic and student affairs. For more information, contact Dr. Lynn J. House. Lumina Foundation for Education is an Indianapolis-based, private foundation dedicated to expanding access and success in education beyond high school.
Listening Sessions at MSU and MVSU Next Week
Presidential searches are now underway for Mississippi State University and Mississippi Valley State University. The Board Search Committee for the next president of Mississippi State, chaired by Trustee Scott Ross, along with Commissioner of Higher Education Dr. Thomas C. Meredith, will meet with various Mississippi State constituency groups on Monday, April 28, beginning at 7:45 a.m. in the Hunter Henry Center on the Mississippi State campus. The purpose of the meeting is to allow the Search Committee to hear what qualities the Mississippi State community is looking for in their next university president. These qualities will be used to draft the profile and job description. On Friday, May 2, the Board Search Committee for Mississippi Valley, chaired by Trustee Bettye Henderson Neely, along with Commissioner of Higher Education Dr. Thomas C. Meredith, will hold a similar listening session, beginning at 8:30 a.m. in the Business Education Building on the MVSU campus. Schedules for both day-long listening sessions can be found on the institutional executive officer search website for Mississippi State and Mississippi Valley State. Members of the two Board Search Committees are also listed on the website. To learn more about the institutional executive officer search process, including a timeline of events, visit http://www.mississippi.edu/ieo/.
April Mississippi's Business Released
The April issue of Mississippi's Business has been released by the Economics Department of the IHL Office of Policy Research and Planning. The issue, which can be accessed online as a PDF, provides an overview of the state's economic situation as indicated by the leading and coincident indexes. The issue also includes an article on the important role that family and nurturing play in a child's education. For more information about Mississippi's Business, contact Senior Economist Darrin Webb at (601) 432-6556.

Items included in the "University News" section of the System Review are submitted each week by the universities. The news items are listed in rotating alphabetical order by university.

Southern Miss Professors Receive Awards for Using Technology in Classroom
A group of University of Southern Mississippi Gulf Coast professors were honored recently for their effective use of technology in their classrooms during the Associate Provost's Distinguished Professor of e-Learning Awards Luncheon. The awards, made possible through funds contributed by Butch Oustalet, recognized faculty members for their dedication and commitment to technology-rich learning and teaching. Dr. Pat Joachim, associate provost of Southern Miss Gulf Coast, and Oustalet announced the four winning faculty members during the luncheon. "These professors deepen the learning environment by promoting critical thinking and developing communication skills, while using multimedia tools to expand conceptual knowledge and technological understanding," Joachim said. Learn more.

Southern Miss Gulf Park Campus to Benefit from Piano Sale

Southern Miss Gulf Coast Graduate Student Serves as Representative in Las Vegas

Southern Miss Faculty Contribute to American History Encyclopedia Set

Alcorn State University Nursing Program Accredited by NLNAC
The National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission, Inc.'s Board of Commissioners granted the baccalaureate degree nursing program continuing accreditation and scheduled the next evaluation visit for fall 2015. The Board of Commissioners stated in their Summary of Deliberations and Recommendations on March 17, 2008, that the Alcorn State University nursing program "demonstrates a continued interest in having the program measured against the highest national standards of quality in nursing education." Learn more.

Alcorn State University Alumni Invited to Welcome New President

Alcorn Holds 28th Annual Jazz Festival

Delta State Department of Social Work Unveils Debbie Simmons Awards Program
Calvin Simmons addressed the audience at the recent Social Work Workshop about the program he established in memory of his wife, Debbie Simmons. Debbie Simmons was a 1990 graduate of Delta State University, receiving a bachelor of social work degree. Learn more.

Delta State's Gunn Award Presented to Richardson

Delta State University Student Government Members Installed

Delta State's Benzaki Named GSC West Player of the Year

Norman Hutchins and Myrna Summers Headline JSU's Church Music Workshop
Jackson State University will celebrate its 32nd Annual Church Music Workshop of America with nationally acclaimed gospel artists Norman Hutchins and Myrna Summers. The workshop is scheduled June 16-19 in the F.D. Hall Music Center on the JSU campus. Focusing on the theme "Music and Worship: A Celebration of Life," it features a variety of seminars relating to various aspects of worship service music. Hutchins, of Los Angeles, is a multiple Stellar and Dove Award nominee with hit songs "Battlefield," "God's Gotta Blessing With My Name on It," and "Emmanuel," His most recent releases are "God Is Up to Something" and "A Move of God Is on the Way." Summers, a writer and arranger, has been performing professionally for more than 40 years and is currently the minister of music at Reid Temple A.M.E. Church in Glendale, MD. The Grammy-nominated artist is known for her original compositions "God Gave Me a Song," "Give Me Something to Hold on To" and "Mountain Get Out of My Way," her latest project with the Reid Temple A.M.E. Mass Choir, which was released in December 2006. Learn more.

Jackson State's Commencement Returns to Campus May 9-10

JSU Inducts 21 Athletes into Honor Society

SWAC Golf Championships: JSU Tigers Claim 20th Title

MSU Helps Neighboring City 'Unlock' Secrets, Plan Future Paths
As long as anyone can remember, West Point's downtown has maintained an aura of traditional small-town Southern charm and hospitality. For passing north-south travelers on nearby U.S. Highway 45, however, the main street's appeal is something they likely can never know. Instead, they see only strip-mall congestion, fast-food outlets, gas stations, and other types of commercial development found--sadly--throughout Anywhere, USA. Yet, research by economic developers and community planners consistently has demonstrated that most people desire to both live in and visit locales with distinctive personalities that offer something special, even if off the beaten path. Jeremy Murdock has observed that for people to gravitate toward places with a sense of place and charm like West Point, they first must know and appreciate what makes them special. A community planner with Mississippi State University's Community Action Team, he is part of a group working with state municipalities and counties to help them solve community problems. At the moment, one of those locations is the nearby Northeast Mississippi community of nearly 12,000 that also is the seat of Clay County government. Learn more.

MSU Army ROTC Commands High Ground Once Again

'Country Doctor,' World Mining Exec to Address MSU Grads

OMNOVA Grant to Help MSU Architecture Research Be 'Smarter'

Retired MSU Faculty Colleagues Honor Charles Moore

MSU Extension Helps State's Corn Farmers Fight Weather, Slugs and Crawfish
Freezing temperatures, slugs, and crawfish sound more like biblical plagues than problems for Mississippi's early corn. Nevertheless, those are among the challenges growers are reporting to the Mississippi State University Extension Service. Erick Larson, Extension small grains specialist, said although a mid-April frost likely will cause little damage across much of the state, many other problems are being reported. "Growers are replanting more March-planted corn fields than normal because frequent rainfall kept soils saturated and caused seedlings to die in poorly drained areas of fields," Larson said. "Rainfall also has delayed planting progress." Slugs have been reported in isolated areas of the Delta, and crawfish are destroying crops in portions of east Mississippi. Growers' biggest test of faith still may be purchasing expensive fertilizer to produce their 2008 corn crop. The state is predicted to plant 670,000 acres of corn, down 30 percent from last year's 940,000 acres. Larson said corn is one of the more expensive crops to produce, and growers have few cost-cutting options available. "Corn requires more nitrogen than other crops, and nitrogen is the most expensive input," Larson said. "Our management recommendations are always based on crop profitability, so growers may not have much leeway to minimize inputs, or they likely will lose money." Learn more.

MSU Report: Mississippi's 62-year-old Tree Farm Program Holds One-tenth of U.S. Acreage

Moore Named Interim Head of MSU's North Mississippi Research and Extension Center

Pruett Assumes New Role as Interim MSU Veterinary Research Dean

MSU Partners with Community Colleges in Veterinary Technician Programs

MUW Chorale to Perform at Carnegie Hall
Mississippi University for Women's Chorale will perform Mozart's "Requiem" at Carnegie Hall in New York on Sunday, May 11 at 2 p.m. Mid America Productions of New York City is sponsoring the performance, and MUW's group will join a mass choir consisting of several choirs from the Birmingham, AL, area under the direction of Terre Johnson. The weekend prior to the trip, the MUW Chorale will perform the "Requiem" under Johnson in Birmingham with the other choirs. The Alabama Symphony will play for this concert. Dr. Debra Atkinson, MUW director of choral activities and assistant professor of music education, said, "Mr. Johnson felt that it would be a good idea for us to join those choirs in their Birmingham performance so that we would be accustomed to his conducting before we reach New York." This will be the MUW Chorale's second performance in New York. The first was several years ago under the direction of Dr. Bruce Lesley. This second opportunity arose when Dr. Atkinson searched for different ways the students could experience how it would be to perform with a mass choir while accompanied by a symphony orchestra. Learn more.

B.B. King Returns to MVSU For June 6 Blues Workshop
It's official - the King of the Blues is returning to Mississippi Valley State University for the eighth annual B.B. King International Blues Workshop. Itta Bena native B.B. King will hold his workshop on Friday, June 6 at the H.G. Carpenter Auditorium on the Itta Bena campus. Events get under way with the Musicians Workshop - Part I from 9 to 10 a.m. Featured speaker will be Attorney Avalyn Pitts. King, a spry 82, will take to the stage from 10 to 11 a.m. He'll talk about his guitar style, described as "one of the world's most identifiable guitar styles . . . integrating his precise and complex vocal-like string bends and his left hand vibrato, both of which have become indispensable components of rock guitarist's vocabulary." As King's website states, "His economy, his every-note-counts phrasing, has been a model for thousands of players, from Eric Clapton and George Harrison to Jeff Beck. B.B. has mixed traditional blues, jazz, swing, mainstream pop, and jump into a unique sound." Part II of the workshop will begin at 1 p.m. with a musical performance featuring King and his daughter, Shirley. Other performers scheduled to attend are MVSU alumni Pat Brown, vocalist; Vickie Baker, vocalist; Rickey Burkhead, drum gear/performer; as well as guests Eden Brent, vocalist and pianist; Nellie McInnis, bass guitarist; Idalee Feaster, drummer; Jessie Robinson, guitar gear/performer; and MVSU student Levan Lortkipanize featured on the harmonica and guitar. Learn more.

MVSU Holds Annual Gala April 16

MVSU Listening Session for Presidential Search is May 2

Online Registration for 2008 Summer I, Summer II, and Fall Semesters Is Under Way

UM Sets Goal to Become a 'Green' American Public University
The University of Mississippi takes pride in being "a great American public university" and is working to add "green" to that description. Chancellor Robert Khayat has signed the American College & University Presidents' Climate Commitment. Sponsored by the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education, the agreement challenges colleges and universities to identify their greenhouse gas output, then develop a plan to reduce those emissions over the next five years. "The Ole Miss Creed is based upon the value of respect, and that includes the environment," Khayat said. "As a community, we are committed to being good stewards of the Earth. It is important that the educational experience of our students includes a keen awareness of the responsibilities of each of us to protect, preserve, and enhance our world." Ole Miss joins more than 500 member institutions in the movement nationwide. The next phases of the university's plan involve establishing a Green Advisory Council, launching a website, and developing communications strategies for both on- and off-campus efforts. The university's approach to reducing its carbon footprint involves reviewing virtually every aspect of what happens on campus, with an eye toward doing more with less, interim Provost Morris Stocks said. "We hope to use the efficiency and sustainability policies that come out of this initiative as teaching tools for future generations," Stocks said. Learn more.

School of Business Makes Top 100 List

New Washington Internship Program Proving to be Excellent for 17 Students

Living Blues Magazine Receives $10,000 Grant for Special Issue

Civil Engineering Chair Spotlighted in Thomson Scientific's ScienceWatch

Children's Miracle Network Honors Pullen with Achievement Award
Dr. Jeanette Pullen, former chief of the Division of Pediatric Hematology-Oncology, was honored for her instrumental role in the fight against pediatric cancer at a Children's Miracle Network (CMN) meeting in Orlando, FL. Hundreds of on-air personalities from TV and radio stations in the United States, Canada, Ireland, and the United Kingdom joined with celebrities from stage, screen, and gridiron at Walt Disney World Resort to honor Pullen and three others with the Children's Miracle Achievement Award. The award is given annually to four caregivers from CMN hospitals throughout North America for their lifetime of service to children. Learn more.

Advanced Clinic First in State to Detect, Prevent Oral Cancer

Medical Students Fete Top Educators at Annual Evers Society Banquet

AAMI Taps Petrini as Chair-elect

Southern Miss President Signs Climate Commitment
University of Southern Mississippi President Martha Saunders signed the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment April 22, a nationwide initiative of college and university presidents and chancellors dedicated to counteracting climate change by taking steps to make their campuses climate neutral. "We will think ecologically with a commitment to actions that reduce, reuse and recycle. Our buildings will be designed with the environment in mind. Our physical plant will re-think operations to minimize our environmental footprint," Dr. Saunders told an audience at a campus Earth Day event. "Good for the environment yes, but these actions will mean bottom line savings." By signing the commitment, Saunders is committing the university to completing an emissions inventory, setting milestones for becoming climate neutral, taking immediate steps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and integrating sustainability into the curriculum. Several Southern Miss sustainability initiatives are already underway. Over the past year Southern Miss officials began work on a new strategic plan, and as a result, identified creating a culture of healthy minds, bodies and campuses as one of four areas of strategic emphasis. This area, said Saunders, is important because "it enables us to put the full force of the university community behind the tenets of sustainability." Learn more.

Students Displaced by Katrina Focus of Southern Miss Research Project

Southern Miss Professor Receives Fulbright Grant

Pulitzer Prize-Winning Poet to Read in Visiting Writers Series at Southern Miss

Southern Miss Singers Earn Spots in Italian Operas

Apr. 25 - Mississippi State University's theater presents Student Showcase at McComas Hall lab theater beginning at 7:30 p.m. Students will present their one-act plays, involving ten plays total. The annual Student Showcase is the capstone project for theater students. Learn more.

Apr. 25 - Jackson State University's Department of Music is sponsoring "Jazz on the Plaza" from 6-11 p.m. on the Gibbs-Green Plaza. Learn more.

Apr. 25 - Mississippi State University's Spectrum presents a day of silence as part of a national day to bring attention to anti-lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender harassment and discrimination in schools. For more information, contact Jenn Fuller at (662) 325-7545. Learn more.

Apr. 26 - The Ninth annual J.H. White Preeminence Awards and Gala will be held at 7 p.m. in the R.W. Harrison HPER Complex. Tickets are $75 for MVSU's largest fund-raising event of the year. Proceeds benefit the general scholarship fund. Learn more.

Apr. 27 and Apr. 29 - The Southern Miss Gulf Coast Civic Chorale presents the American Spectacular performance at 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, April 27, in the Saenger Theatre Biloxi and an encore performance at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, April 28, at Main Street Baptist Church in Hattiesburg. Tickets are $5 at the door. Learn more.

Apr. 28 - Alcorn State Global Programs Open House will take place at 2 p.m. in the new Multicultural and International Affairs Building on main campus. Learn more.

Apr. 28 - International Movie Night as well as a performance by Russian and Indian Dancers will take place at 7 p.m. in the Ray Johnson Auditorium in the Ag Extension Building on the main campus of Alcorn State University. Learn more.

Apr. 28 - The Lafayette-Oxford-University Symphony Orchestra performs its final concert of the season in the Ford Center for the Performing Arts. The orchestra is slated to perform the music of Hector Berlioz, Paul Creston, and Howard Hanson. Tickets to the 8 p.m. concert are $10 for adults and $6 for students Learn more.

Apr. 29 - A fun soccer match featuring the Alcorn women's soccer team against the Volunteers will be held from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. on the track/soccer field on main campus. Learn more.

Apr. 29 - Kenner Rice, chief of the Chemical Biology Research Branch at the National Institute on Drug Abuse, discusses "Medicinal Chemistry in Drug Abuse Research" as the fourth annual Ronald F. Borne Distinguished Lecture in Medicinal Chemistry at UM. The talk is at 11 a.m. in the Oxford Conference Center. Learn more.

Apr. 29 and May 6 - The MSU Extension Service Kudzu Control Workshops in Pontotoc and Como cover basics on kudzu as an invasive weed and how to control it. Space is limited so please register by April 25. Contact pontotoc@ext.msstate.edu or panola@ext.msstate.edu. Learn more.

Apr. 30 - The Natural Resources Summer Camp is June 1-5 on the MSU campus. Sponsored by the College of Forest Resources and the Mississippi Forestry Commission, the camp is open to rising 9th through 12th graders. The cost is $150.00, and the registration deadline is April 30. Contact Patsy Foster at pfoster@cfr.msstate. Learn more.

May 1 - Jackson State will remember the lives of Phillip Gibbs and James Green, who were tragically killed on the JSU campus in 1970. The 38th memorial observance will be held in the Reddix Campus Union and will be followed by a candle lighting ceremony on Gibbs-Green Plaza. For more information, call (601) 979-2329.

May 8-9 - The Southeast Equine Conference focusing on horse nutrition is sponsored by the MSU and University of Tennessee Extension Services. Participants can attend in person at the Memphis Agricenter or online with an interactive webcast. For more information, contact Preston Buff at (662) 325-2852 or pbuff@ads.msstate.edu. Learn more.

May 10 - Fox News anchor Shepard Smith delivers the address for the University of Mississippi's 155th Commencement. The main ceremony is at 9 a.m. in the Grove, with individual school ceremonies to follow in various campus locations. Learn more.

Look for the next issue May 2.

Mississippi's Institutions of Higher Learning
Attention: Public Affairs
Jackson, Mississippi 39211-6453
Fax: (601) 432-6891

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