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Volume 2, Issue 35
Friday, September 7, 2007
Edited by
Jennifer Rogers

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

News from the System University News
yellowarrowBennie Thompson College Fair Next Week yellowarrowMSU Leadership Program Offers New 'Day' for Some Freshmen
yellowarrowAccess and Success Series: Part Two - The Access Gap yellowarrowMSU Extension Quick Bites Offers Lunchtime Learning
yellowarrow15 Ways Universities Benefit Mississippi yellowarrowMUW Professor, Two Alumni Honored by Girl Scouts
  yellowarrowMississippi Valley State University Online
  yellowarrowSix Freshmen Receive $40,000 Lott Leadership Scholarships
  yellowarrowUMC Neurosurgery Patient Regains Function Despite Decapitation
  yellowarrowSouthern Miss Film Student Finds Inspiration at Cannes Film Festival
  yellowarrowProfessor Helps Expand Geography Department
  yellowarrowASU School of Education and Psychology Receives NCATE Accreditation
  yellowarrowDelta State Partners to Present First Youth Arts & Letters Festival
  yellowarrowJackson State University Outranks Yale, Princeton in National Study
For more IHL News, click here. To subscribe to this e-newsletter, click here.

Bennie Thompson College Fair Next Week
Over two thousand high school students are expected to descend on the Washington County Convention Center in Greenville, Miss., next Friday, September 14, for a College Career Fair sponsored by U.S. Representative Bennie G. Thompson, who represents Mississippi's second congressional district. The fair, scheduled from 10:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. and open to students in grades 9 through 12 will feature a number of workshops. IHL will present "Who Wants to Be a College Graduate?," a workshop designed to inform students about the high school courses needed for college, student financial aid, and survival skills for freshmen. Sallie Mae will present a workshop about seeking and securing scholarships, and Education Services Foundation will offer a workshop to help students know what questions they should be asking at this and other college fairs. More than 130 universities, colleges, businesses, governmental agencies, and military units are registered to participate in the fair. For more information, contact Timla Washington at (662) 335-9003.

Graph 1:  College going rates have increased for recent high school graduates at all income levels. 

Chart 1:  The highest achieving students (those in the fourth quartile) from low-income families go to college at nearly the same rate as the lowest achieving students (those in the first quartile) from high-income families.
Access and Success Series: Part Two - The Access Gap

This is the second in a System Review series on access and success in higher education. Since 1980, the United States has made moderate strides in improving access to higher education at all income levels, but a wide gap still exists between the "haves" and the "have-nots." The percentage of recent high school graduates enrolled in postsecondary education from low-income families has increased from 32 percent in 1980 to about 51 percent in 2005, while the percentage of recent high school graduates from high-income families increased from 65 percent in 1980 to 79 percent in 2005 (see Graph 1). Despite these improvements, it is interesting to note that the college-going rate for the students from low-income families still hasn't reached the 1980 college-going rate for students from high-income families. Furthermore, the highest achieving low-income students attend college at the same rate as the lowest achieving high-income students (see Chart 1). Some disparities in access to higher education persist across racial and ethnic divides as well. In 1980, the immediate college-going rate for white students was 50 percent; for African American students was 43 percent; and for Hispanic students was 52 percent. In 2005, the rates were 69 percent, 62.5 percent, and 62 percent, respectively. Watch the System Review for the next article in this series on access and success, which will focus on success in higher education.
15 Ways Universities Benefit Mississippi
Later this month, the Joint Legislative Budget Committee (JLBC) will meet with state agencies one-by-one to hear their pleas for more state dollars. The annual IHL JLBC hearing, scheduled this year for September 25, is more than just an opportunity to ask for money; it is an opportunity to demonstrate what the universities do for Mississippi. IHL has only two hours to make its case at the Capitol, but it has 14 issues of the System Review between now and the holiday break to highlight the top 15 ways Mississippi's universities benefit the state.

#15 - Universities offer a valuable investment opportunity for individuals and for the state. It is true that the cost of a university education has gone up in Mississippi, but it is such a VALUE. For about $2,300, a family of four could go to the beach for one week in the summer; buy a new high-definition TV, OR send a student to one of Mississippi's universities for a semester. And when the vacation is over, and the TV has completely depreciated, the university education will have appreciated in value. Not only do universities offer an excellent education and access to respected experts in numerous fields, they offer athletic events, the latest technology, libraries, museums, outstanding speakers and cultural events, and even opportunities to learn in other countries. And in comparison with other universities in the South, Mississippi's universities are a bargain! Of the sixteen states from Delaware to Texas that make up the Southern Regional Education Board (SREB), nine charge higher tuition than Mississippi, and thirteen have had higher tuition increases than Mississippi since 2000. Only Georgia and Florida have had smaller increases. For the state, Mississippi's university system offers a 3:1 return on investment. For every one dollar the state invests in higher education, the universities invest three dollars, and the universities send 14,000 college graduates into the economy each year to earn high wages and pay state taxes.

Watch the System Review next week for #14.

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.

MSU Leadership Program Offers New 'Day' for Some Freshmen
"Leadership begins with Day One." It's more than a catchy phrase or inventive play on words to promote the new freshman leadership development program at Mississippi State University (MSU). According to university officials, those five words encompass the commitment by a team of mentors and teachers to shape the students of today into persons of impact and significance tomorrow. The brainchild of university President Robert H. "Doc" Foglesong, Day One is part of a leadership continuum currently being developed through the Appalachian Leadership Honors Program that Foglesong founded earlier. Among its programs is a summer leadership camp called Young Guns for high school students entering their senior year. Day One is led by a team of MSU's John Grisham Master Teachers under the guidance of director Tom Carskadon. The semester-long program has the potential to have a significant impact on the lives of the students who participate, the veteran psychology professor explained. "We want this to be the course students write home about," Carskadon said. "And, more than that, we want it to be what stands out when these students look back in 30 years as making the difference in their lives at the university. If that happens, it will be because of the team we put together to lead them." Kelley M. Barber of Sallis said she is "looking forward to the rest of the semester. It's going to be a lot of fun but a lot of work. Learn more.

Watson Assumes New Title as MSU Extension, Outreach Director

MSU Accounting School Named for Alumnus, International Executive

McCarty Named New MSU Business College Development Officer

National Workforce Development Website Address Now Located at MSU

Quick Bites Offers Lunchtime Learning
Any Mississippian can turn a sandwich and a trip to the county extension office into a learning experience. Each Thursday from noon until 1 p.m., county extension offices receive Quick Bites live, interactive video feeds from Mississippi State University. There is a new topic each week, and the topics are as varied as the state of Mississippi. Learn more.

Camps Help Delta Youth Pursue Medical Careers

MSU Student Combines Mental, Physical Skills in Successful Experience

MUW Professor, Two Alumni Honored by Girl Scouts

Mississippi University for Women (MUW) professor Dr. Suzanne Bean has been awarded the Girl Scouts of Northeast Mississippi Tribute to Women Award in the education category for her involvement in the organization for many years. MUW alumni Lee Edwards Alford ’92 of Columbus and Merlinda Oliver ’72 of Macon also were honored in the categories of volunteer community service and health and human services respectively. “I appreciate Dr. Limbert nominating me for this award, and I am especially honored to have received it because the Girl Scout organization is one which helps to build the lives of strong, successful young women,” Bean said. “I believe in that purpose and have committed part of my time and energy to that purpose as well.” Bean, who serves as director of the Roger F. Wicker Center for Creative Learning and professor of education at MUW, has spent the last 28 years working in the field of gifted studies as a teacher of gifted students, director of the Mississippi Governor’s School, and founder and director of various other programs for gifted students and their teachers and parents. She also has served as director of Graduate Studies and coordinator of graduate programs in education at MUW. Co-author of seven books, she also co-authored a textbook for teachers of gifted students, has had numerous publications in professional journals, and serves on the Editorial Review Board for Gifted Child Quarterly and Journal for Secondary Gifted Education . Learn more.

Mississippi Valley State University Online

Six Freshmen Receive $40,000 Lott Leadership Scholarships
Since its founding in 1848, the University of Mississippi (UM) has nurtured state and national leaders, and that tradition continues including special training opportunities through the Trent Lott Leadership Institute. Six freshmen have entered UM this fall as recipients of $40,000 Lott Leadership Scholarships, which includes association with the institute. The exceptional students are chosen for the awards based on their leadership ability, academic performance, and record of community service. "This scholarship ensures that Ole Miss will continue its long tradition of nurturing strong leaders for our state and nation, and the caliber of these recipients proves that point," said Chancellor Robert Khayat, who invites the Lott Scholars to join the Chancellor's Leadership Class. Scholarship recipients are Chelsea Caveny of Hattiesburg, Christopher Cox of Moss Point, Richard Walters of Brandon, Katie Watson of Louisville, and Alex McLelland and Matthew Henry, both of Madison. Lott Scholars are required to pursue the university's undergraduate degree program in public policy studies, which is the first such degree program to be offered in the state. Besides maintaining academic standards, the students are expected to continue their commitment to community service. To help them balance these requirements, they are paired with faculty mentors in their major fields of study. Learn more.

Oxford Native, Award-Winning Poet is Grisham Visiting Writer

Designated Areas Limit Tobacco Use on Oxford Campus

Liberto Creates Lasting Tribute to Mom’s Belief in Education

Legal Specialist in Sexual Misconduct, Campus Security to Give Public Address

UMC Neurosurgery Patient Regains Function Despite Decapitation
A revolutionary surgical procedure by a professor of neurosurgery at the University of Mississippi Medical Center has helped restore almost complete function to a patient who suffered a virtual decapitation. Mark Barnett of Ridgeland had been physically active all of his life. He grew up playing a variety of team sports, enjoyed hunting and fishing, worked summers as a fly-fishing and hiking guide on a ranch in Colorado, and became so proficient at shooting sporting clay targets that he achieved a national ranking in the sport when he was 18. One of his favorite activities was cycling. Starting on Independence Day of 2006, the 24-year-old would routinely leave his Ridgeland home and bike several hours each day on the Natchez Trace. Barnett was in great shape physically and his career was on a fast track. He was a rising star of a regional accounting firm. He had begun to study for the CPA exam. He had just received a promotion and already was up for another one as he pedaled his way home on the Trace last September 6. The majority of his workout was over. He was less than three miles from his house. But in a flash, everything in Barnett’s life changed. Learn more.

University Rehab Patients Receive Tasty Take-home Fair at Discharge

SOD Receives State-of-the-art DSC

Spraberry Tapped to Lead UM Health Care Business Development Office

Southern Miss Film Student Finds Inspiration at Cannes Film Festival
Sometimes a summer internship means much more than just a part-time job. It can be a discovery of dynamic dreams and lasting personal connections. For Stephen Fouasnon, a senior radio-television-film major at The University of Southern Mississippi, performing a two-week internship at the 2007 Cannes International Film Festival in May was a memorable adventure that brought him one step closer to realizing his dream and personally connected him with other aspiring film students from around the world who share in that dream. “It really was an incredible experience,” Fouasnon said of his time in Cannes, France, the geographic hub of the film industry’s most celebrated festival. “To be able to work in such a historically renowned city where prominent filmmakers and celebrities come together to showcase their work before the whole international film community…it’s almost like a fantasyland.” Fouasnon, a Bay St. Louis native, interned at The American Pavilion, which serves as a communications and hospitality center for journalists, publicists, celebrities, filmmakers, and motion picture executives working at the festival. This is the first time a Southern Miss student has been selected for the internship program, said Dixon McDowell, professor and director of the film program at Southern Miss. Learn more.

Driskell Named to Legislative Post at Southern Miss

Southern Miss Expands Students' Knowledge of Sports Management

Southern Miss Begins National Search for Top Academic Officer

Chef Cat Cora to Headline Trent Lott Innovation Speaker Series

Professor Helps Expand Geography Department
With an increment borer and a microscope, new University of Southern Mississippi geography professor Dr. David Holt is able to use a stand of trees to unlock the climate history of almost any region in the world. And he believes his research work will be enhanced by being a part of The University of Southern Mississippi Gulf Coast Department of Geography. An increment borer, which is used to remove a pencil-sized sample of wood from a tree, comes first in dendroclimatology, the study of climate changes based on trees. By studying the material found within the trees, Holt and other dendroclimatologists are able to research history in a very unique way. “My dissertation was on central Europe, and I was looking into the possibility that the tribes invading the Roman Empire were under climate stress,” said Holt, one of 12 new faculty members teaching at Southern Miss Gulf Coast this fall. “I reconstructed the history climate from information found in the river valley trees of Germania and most of the events coincided with low-growth years. There are people who have disagreed with this theory, but using the tree rings, I proved this is plausible.” Far from his hometown of Tucson, Ariz., Holt has taught geography at universities in Ohio, Kentucky, and Arkansas. When a teaching position became available in the geography department at Southern Miss, Holt did his research on the university. Learn more.

Southern Miss Department of Marine Science Announces Vessel Naming Contest

Photo: Southern Miss Hydrographic Science Students Graduate

GRE Prep Course Offered at Southern Miss Gulf Coast

ASU School of Education and Psychology Receives NCATE Accreditation
Alcorn State University’s School of Education and Psychology has proven its commitment to producing quality teachers by achieving accreditation under the standards of the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE). Alcorn State is one of 55 schools of education that received continuing accreditation in the most recent round of decisions on initial and continued accreditation. NCATE-accredited schools must meet rigorous standards set by the profession and members of the public. Dr. Malvin Williams, President of Alcorn State University said: “Alcorn State University is pleased to have its NCATE accreditation re-affirmed through 2013. I congratulate the Dean, the NCATE Coordinator and all administrators, faculty, and staff in the School of Education and Psychology for the hard work and efforts in accomplishing this task.” Dr. Napoleon Moses, Vice President for Academic Affairs spoke highly of the quality of the Professional Education Unit at Alcorn State and its successful NCATE review. Dr. Josephine M. Posey, Dean of the School of Education and Psychology and the Head of the Professional Education Unit, commented that Alcorn’s Professional Education Unit, housed in the School of Education and Psychology, has produced teachers throughout the world who are highly respected for their knowledge, skills, and dispositions. Learn more.

Delta State Partners to Present First Youth Arts & Letters Festival
It’s a memory that will stay with you forever. You will always be able to recall your little fingers hurriedly turning the pages, as your imagination builds the magnificent storyline in your head. You will never forget that triumphant slam of back cover to front cover as you successfully read your first book – with no help, just you and a hardback. That book title will forever be part of your make-up. It is that “right of passage” memory that Delta State University, in cooperation and conjunction with the Bolivar County Literacy Council, the Bright Beginnings Foundation, the Delta Center for Culture and Learning, First Book – Mississippi Delta Advisory Board, the Roberts-LaForge Library, and the Sunflower County Library System is hoping to capitalize on in a three-day festival celebrating children’s books, authors, and illustrators, Nov. 8-10. “We want this to be a celebration of a memory that forever stays with you. Who can’t remember the first book they read,” questioned Kay Stricklin, Chair of the Mississippi Delta Children’s Arts and Letters Steering Committee. “Our committee has come together in an effort to plan an event that encourages a life-long love affair with reading, and we want to recognize those children’s authors and illustrators who have made contributions to this area.” As such, activities are being coordinated throughout the community from Thursday through Saturday, spotlighting the children of the Delta, the books, and the authors and illustrators. Learn more.

Statesmen Cage JSU Tigers 27-15 at Veteran’s Memorial Stadium

Delta State's Hicks Named League's Defensive Player of the Week

Jackson State University Outranks Yale, Princeton in National Study
Washington Monthly magazine ranked Jackson State University No. 37 among 242 institutions of higher learning across the country — outranking Yale (No. 38), Howard (No. 62), and Princeton (No. 78) universities, according to a study released this month. The overall ranking considers social mobility, research, and service ratings. “This ranking is especially important to Jackson State because it looks at our ability to serve the underserved,” says President Ronald Mason, Jr. “Our intense research offerings and service learning opportunities provide the perfect training environment for all students.” This year’s ranking is up nine slots from the previous year when JSU was No. 46. According to the study, the social mobility rating measures the percentage of students receiving Pell grants and the university’s graduation rate. The research rating measures the amount of federal research dollars, the rate at which students go on to receive Ph.D.s. and the number of doctoral degrees awarded by the university. The service rating is a reflection of the numbers of students serving in U.S. Army and Navy Reserve Officer Training Corps programs, the percentage of alumni in the Peace Corps, and the percentage of federal work-study grant money spent on community service projects. To view the entire report, visit Washington Monthly online: http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/features/2007/0709.natlrankings.pdf . Learn more.

JSU Hosting Community Leadership Summit to Promote Heritage Tourism

JSU’s MURC Sponsoring Workshop on U.S. Census Data

JSU Partnership Aims to Increase Qualified Educators in Louisiana, Mississippi


Sept. 8 - All freshmen are invited to run across the field at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium before the Ole Miss-Missouri game, get a free T-shirt, and earn free admission to the game for the second annual Rebel Run. Participants should sign up in advance. Learn more.

Sept. 9 - Mississippi State University's Riley Center in Meridian presents "An Evening with Trisha Yearwood" at 8 p.m. For ticket information about seeing Yearwood perform, contact the MSU Riley Center box office at (601) 696-2200. Tickets are $70 and $76. Learn more.

Sept. 12 - The Fisher King , a dark 1991 comic-drama starring Robin Williams and Jeff Bridges, is the next in the University of Mississippi's Censorship Film Series, which runs through Nov. 19. The films are presented in Bondurant Hall auditorium, followed by a discussion. Admission is free. Learn more.

Sept. 12 - The Mississippi Area Health Education Center will host its third annual Mississippi AHEC Symposium on serving the state's rural and underserved communities from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. in the conference center of the Jackson Medical Mall Thad Cochran Center. Learn more.

Sept. 13 - Mississippi State University's Muslim Student Association presents its annual fast-a-thon benefit dinner at 6:30 p.m. at the Palmeiro Center. The event helps educate people about Islam and Ramadan while providing a traditional ethnic dinner and henna tattoos. For more information, call (662) 341-5076.

Sept. 14 - Jackson State University will host the BET Black College Tour and Interactive Fair at Gibbs-Green Plaza.  The event will feature career counseling, live entertainment, and free gifts. For more information, call (601) 979-3706.

Sept. 15 - The Christian musical group Avalon will perform a concert at the Forrest County Multi-Purpose Center to benefit The University of Southern Mississippi Children's Center for Communication and Development. For more information, contact the Children’s Center at (601) 266-5222. Learn more.

Sept. 17 - Mississippi State University's Sexual Assault Services presents The Clothesline Project from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the university's Drill Field. This nation-wide event brings attention to sexual assault. For more information, contact LaWanda Swan at (662) 325-2091. Learn more.

Sept. 19 - Graduate and Professional School Information Day will take place in the James L. Bolden Campus Union Building Ballroom on the Alcorn State University Campus from 9 a.m. until noon and from 1:00 p.m. until 3 p.m. The event is open to the public. For more information, call Placement Services at (601) 877-6324.

Sept. 20 - Jackson State University will hold a Graduate and Professional Schools Information Day for juniors and seniors considering graduate school from 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the General Purpose Room of the Jacob Reddix Campus Union. For more information, call (601) 979-2477 or email alisa.s.hughes@jsums .

Sept. 20-21 - An interactive mobile exhibit that gives visitors a simulated journey into space comes to the University of Mississippi. NASA's Vision for Space Exploration Experience allows patrons to experience a virtual journey to the moon and Mars, surrounded by stars and other planets. Learn more.

Sept. 25, Oct. 23, Nov. 7 - Mississippi State University Division of Agriculture, Forestry, and Veterinary Medicine is sponsoring Mississippi Women in Agriculture, a three-day intensive business management seminar for farmwomen with a passion for business involvement and a desire to increase knowledge and skills. For more information, call Suzie Manning at (662) 325-3080 or e-mail womeninag@ext.msstate . Learn more.

Now through Sept. 29 - The Southern Miss Museum of Art is hosting an exhibition of photographs by Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist Clarence Williams. Williams is a Distinguished Visiting Lecturer in photojournalism at Southern Miss. Learn more.

Oct. 2 - The Annual Soul Bowl Blood Drive will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Gibbs-Green Plaza at Jackson State University. For more information, call (601) 979-3706.

Oct. 3 - Alcorn State University is sponsoring Career Day.  General Assembly will take place in the Ray Johnson Assembly Center at 9:05 a.m., followed by exhibits and classroom visits from 10:00 a.m. until noon and from 1:00 p.m. until 3 p.m. For more information, call Placement Services at (601) 877-6324.

Oct. 4 - Mississippi State University Division of Agriculture, Forestry, and Veterinary Medicine is hosting an Ornamental Horticulture Field Day at the South Mississippi Branch Experiment Station in Poplarville, beginning at 8:30 a.m. Nurserymen, homeowners, and landscapers will get the latest information about the coastal green industry. Learn more.

Oct. 12-13 - Mississippi State University Division of Agriculture, Forestry, and Veterinary Medicine will host the Fall Flower & Garden Fest at the Truck Crops Branch Experiment Station in Crystal Springs.  The Southeast's biggest gardening and horticulture event features three acres of vegetable, flower, and herb gardens; wagon and walking tours; educational displays; and 17 seminars. Learn more.

Oct. 18-20 - MUW's Department of Languages, Literature, and Philosophy will host the Eudora Welty Writers' Symposium to honor one of its most famous alumni. The opening session will kick off with renowned Mississippi writer Ellen Douglas and will be held in Parkinson Hall. For more information, call (662) 241-6125. Learn more.

Now through Oct. 31 - A new exhibit, "Everything Old Is New Again" will be open in the Capps Archives & Museum on Delta State's campus. The exhibit features some of the recent donations made to the museum. For more information, call (662) 846-4780.  

Look for the next issue September 14.
Mississippi's Institutions of Higher Learning
Attention: Public Affairs
Jackson, Mississippi 39211-6453
Fax: (601) 432-6891

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