MAC Conference Kicks Off Sunday in Jackson
The 74th Annual Mississippi Association of Colleges and Universities Conference, hosted by Jackson State University, kicks off this Sunday, October 7, with the Halbrook Awards Dinner and runs through Tuesday, October 9. The conference, which will focus on retention in higher education, features presentations on fostering academic success of first-year students; challenging first-year students; defining and measuring first-year excellence; implementing low-cost actions to improve retention; and providing equal opportunities for success to all students. On Monday afternoon, Assistant Commissioner of Academic and Student Affairs Dr. Lynn House will discuss the retention and success initiatives underway at the state's public universities, and Commissioner of Higher Education Dr. Thomas C. Meredith will join Dr. Harold Fisher, executive director of the Mississippi Association of Independent Colleges, and Dr. Wayne Stonecypher, executive director of the State Board of Community and Junior Colleges, in a panel discussion. Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour will participate in Tuesday morning's session. Conference activities will take place at the eCenter @ JSU, the Jackson Marriott, and the Jackson State University campus. View the MAC Conference schedule.
State Economist Addresses JLBC
State Economist and IHL Assistant Commissioner for Research and Planning Dr. Phil Pepper presented an economic overview to the Joint Legislative Budget Office on Thursday, September 27. Dr. Pepper informed the committee that China's economy is growing about three times as fast as the U.S. economy, which will slow because of high energy costs, higher interest rates, and a weak housing market. With the seventh highest foreclosure rate in the nation, Mississippi is feeling the impact of the housing credit crunch. However, with the rising standard of living in many developing countries and the gradual devaluing of the dollar, the agriculture and forestry industries in Mississippi should see increased exports and prices. And despite slow employment growth, there are more people employed in Mississippi now than ever before. Economic forecasts for Mississippi, the U.S., and the world have been lowered in the last few months primarily because of the malaise in the housing market and the associated concerns in the subprime credit markets. Unfortunately, things will probably get worse before they get better. Nevertheless, Dr. Pepper is still optimistic about making state revenue forecast this year. During the first quarter of the state's current fiscal year, revenue collections were $31 million, or 3 percent, above expectations. For more information, contact Dr. Phil Pepper at (601) 432-6408.
September Issue of Mississippi's Business Released
The September 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. Also included in this issue is an analysis of disability in Mississippi. Senior Demographer Dr. Barbara J. Logue discusses the high rates of disability in Mississippi and the economic impact of disability on the state. She also outlines the causes of and possible remedies for disability. The issue concludes with an article by Debra Anderson, economic planner in the IHL Bureau of Long Range Economic Development Planning, on the importance of parental involvement in education. Read Mississippi's Business.
#11 - Ag Units Provide Necessary Agricultural Support
(Top 15 Ways Universities Benefit Mississippi)
Education is the first priority of Mississippi's universities, but the universities do much more for the state than just educate students. The universities also serve the state through agriculture extension and research programs at Alcorn State University and Mississippi State University. Mississippi's agriculture programs not only educate students, often in non-traditional environments, but also conduct research, develop new technologies, and then teach Mississippi farmers how to adopt and use new technologies. Mississippi companies benefit from the universities' ongoing agriculture and aquaculture research programs. Agricultural services, like those offered by Alcorn and Mississippi State are vital to the health of a state like Mississippi, in which more than 50 percent of the population lives in rural areas.
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.
UNIVERSITY OF MISSISSIPPI NEWS
Researchers Study Potential of Rice Fields in Cutting Water Pollution
Researchers at the University of Mississippi Field Station are evaluating the possibility that a popular crop - rice - may provide a natural, effective way to prevent pesticide runoff from fouling freshwater resources. A research team from the United States Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service National Sedimentation Lab is conducting tests and gathering samples in several rice fields growing at the Field Station. The study, led by ecologists Charlie Cooper and Matt Moore of the Sedimentation Lab's Water Quality and Ecology Unit and Robbie Kroger, a post-doctoral wetland ecologist at the Field Station, focuses on the ability of aquatic plants - in this case, rice plants - to decrease the contamination levels from pesticide runoff. "Rice is an interesting plant to use because it is an aquatic plant that also serves as a food source," Moore said. Pesticide runoff generally occurs after rainstorms, so the team simulates a summer storm - minus thunder and lightning - and diverts insecticide-laden runoff water into a rice field. By taking samples at intervals as the water flows through the field and analyzing them in the lab, researchers can gauge the levels of pesticides that leach off into plants, water and sediment. Early results from the project look promising. "It appears that in the decomposition experiment, the rice plants' pesticide concentrations decrease dramatically during decomposition, and that pesticide does not cycle from plant to water within the system," Kroger said. Learn more.
Alumni Association to Honor Seven Homecoming Weekend for Achievement, Service
Overby Center to Host Symposium Oct. 12 in Tribute to David Halberstam
History Prof Receives Humanities Teaching Award, Schedules Public Lecture
MFA Student Wins Award for ‘Impressive Body of Work'
UNIVERSITY OF MISSISSIPPI MEDICAL CENTER NEWS
MCDI Helps Address "Critical Shortage" of Autism Training
The University of Mississippi Medical Center, in cooperation with the State Department of Education, opened the Mississippi Child Development Institute (MCDI) in April 2003 to become a regional medical center to meet the needs of autistic children. Autism has increased more than 300 percent over the last several years, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “By opening this school, we were trying to overcome the critical shortage of quality programs that provide training to those who work with autistic children,” said Dr. Susan Buttross, chief of the Division of Child Development and Behavioral Pediatrics. Learn more.
Hill: Gold Humanism Honorees Should Care for Patients' Dignity
UMC Alum's First Suspense Novel Reflects Educational, Clinical Roots
JHS, Diabetes Foundation Team Up to Get to "Heart" of Diabetes
New E-journal Site Licenses Make Researching Articles in Rowland a Snap
UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI NEWS
Homeland Security Grant Aids Center for Sports Security Management
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security will provide the Center for Spectator Sports Security Management at The University of Southern Mississippi with nearly $3.5 million to train an estimated 5,370 officials at 1,055 institutions nationwide on sport security management, U.S. Senators Thad Cochran and Trent Lott announced on Sept. 27. "This grant from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security will allow the Center for Spectator Sports Security Management to continue its cutting-edge research and programming," said Dr. Peter Fos, dean of the Southern Miss College of Health. "As the center develops the new discipline of spectator sport security, all Americans will be safer when they attend sporting events." The grant comes from the Department of Homeland Security's Competitive Training Grant Program. It is the second highest award of this year’s 12 recipients and is the highest award given to a university. The center will design, develop and deliver a national risk management training certification for sports events to key personnel responsible for security management of intercollegiate athletic events. Learn more.
Cross Leaves $2.9 Million Gift to Southern Miss Mathematics Department
Retired FBI Special Agent Brings Sports Security Expertise to Southern Miss
Southern Miss Readies for 2007 Homecoming
Southern Miss Photojournalism Summit, Hall of Fame Induction Set for Oct. 12
UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI GULF COAST NEWS
Marine Science Professor Awarded Bennett Distinguished Professorship
The University of Southern Mississippi College of Science and Technology has announced that Dr. Vernon Asper, professor in the Department of Marine Science, is the recipient of the T. W. Bennett Jr. Distinguished Professorship in the Sciences award. “It’s a tremendous honor,” said Asper, who has worked for Southern Miss for 21 years. “It’s recognizing your accomplishments over all those years and the various projects you have been involved with. Of course, I try to do a good job, but you never really know you’re doing a good job until you get singled out for something like this.” The Bennett Distinguished Professorship is awarded every two years to an exceptional professor in the sciences. The awarded professor will receive a total of $40,000 over the course of two years. The funds from the professorship are used to provide research assistance, clerical support, equipment, and travel and to sponsor a symposium. “The symposium is planned for the fall of 2008, and the topic will be the use of advanced technology to explore the ocean,” said Asper. “We will bring in experts from outside the university to come and talk about what’s new and great in ocean exploration.” Dr. Rex Gandy, dean of the College of Science and Technology, said of the honor, "Dr. Asper is a worthy recipient of the Bennett Distinguished Professorship. Dr. Asper is internationally recognized in the field of physical oceanography and exemplifies the type of professor that the award was meant to honor." Learn more.
Opinion/Editorial: Surviving the Shards of Wars and Hurricanes
ALCORN STATE UNIVERSITY NEWS
Alcorn State University to Increase Awareness of Agriculture
The Alcorn State University Department of Agriculture is hosting a month-long Jamboree to increase the awareness of agriculture and to spread information about internships and scholarships available for students, who wish to begin careers in agriculture. This month-long information session will start at 11:00 am and last until noon and will give the students opportunities to meet and greet professionals in government as well as the private sectors of agriculture. At Alcorn State University, the Department of Agriculture is implementing innovative ways to boost enrollment and public awareness of the vast array of career opportunities available to its community, statewide and globally. Learn more.
DELTA STATE UNIVERSITY NEWS
Delta State to Welcome Pulitzer Prize-Winning Poet to Campus, Oct. 10
There is an obvious distinction that comes with winning a Pulitzer Prize. Equally, there is an understandable distinction that comes in hosting a Pulitzer Prize winner on a University campus. Delta State University will have such a distinction Wednesday, Oct. 10, as the Cleveland campus welcomes Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Natasha Trethewey for a reading inside Jobe Hall Auditorium. Immediately following the reading, Trethewey will be available for book signings. A reception will precede the reading in the atrium of Kent Wyatt Hall from 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. A native of Gulfport, this will be Trethewey’s first visit to an institution of higher learning in her native state since winning the Pulitzer Prize in 2007. “Professor Trethewey joins a long list of Mississippians that have won the Pulitzer Prize – everyone from William Faulkner to the staffs of The Clarion Ledger and The Sun-Herald, to Tennessee Williams, Eudora Welty, and Beth Henley,” offered D. Allan Mitchell, assistant professor of English at Delta State and one of Trethewey’s current students. “What’s great about her is her grace and kindness. She is one of the finest teachers I have ever had, and there is no better ambassador for poetry or for Mississippi than Natasha Trethewey.” Her most recent collection of poems, Native Guard , (Houghton Mifflin 2006) earned her the prestigious Pulitzer, as well as the 2007 Mississippi Institute of Arts and Letters Book Prize. Learn more.
'Great Flood' Site Visited, Delta State's Brown to Present Talk
Statesmen Football to Pink Parker Field; Delta State Athletic to Support Breast Cancer Awareness
Delta State's Eyster Signs with Eskimos of CFL
JACKSON STATE UNIVERSITY NEWS
JSU’s 'Walking Wednesdays' a Success
Gov. Haley Barbour and Mississippi’s first lady Marsha Barbour led a group of more than 250 Jackson State students, faculty, staff, and friends Oct. 3 as the university kicked off “Walking Wednesdays,” a weekly program to encourage Jacksonians to live healthier lives. The walkers took their first steps after Mrs. Barbour repeated her famous line, “Let’s go walkin’ Mississippi!” taken from the campaign her husband kicked off one year ago to promote exercise and fitness. “I’m very glad Jackson State is taking a leading role,” said Gov. Barbour. “It doesn’t have to be grueling, demanding exercise, just walking.” President Ronald Mason Jr., out of the country, shared his hopes via a prerecorded statement that all Mississippians would make small efforts to “get moving.” “Health issues are not a secret in our state,” he said. After completing the brief walk around the campus, Alice McGowan was pleased. “The turnout was wonderful,” said McGowan, director of the Lottie Thornton Early Childhood Center, which sponsored the event with the College of Education and Human Development. “Our president, the governor, everyone is really supportive of what we’re doing.” Sonya Parks was just one of the students who plans to be a regular participant in "Walking Wednesdays." “I have a goal to lose weight, but I usually don’t have time to exercise,” says the senior elementary education major from Morton, Miss. “This is a good opportunity to do it." Learn more.
Nine JSU Students Win Poster Awards at Environmental Health Symposium
JSU, AKA to Host Town Hall Meeting on Mental Health
Jackson State Hosting Mississippi Association of Colleges and Universities
MISSISSIPPI STATE UNIVERSITY NEWS
National Society Honors MSU President with Top Alumni Award
Citing career accomplishments that reflect its guiding principles, a national engineering honor society is recognizing Mississippi State President Robert H. "Doc" Foglesong with its highest professional award. Tau Beta Pi (TBP), the world's largest professional organization in engineering, is naming the university leader as its 2007 Distinguished Alumnus. Given each year since its establishment in 1997, the honor will be presented at the group's annual meeting Oct. 13 in Dearborn, Mich. "The program was established to recognize alumni who have continued to live up to the ideals of Tau Beta Pi and to foster a career of liberal culture on the local, national, and international scales," said TBP executive director James D. Froula. Foglesong is being recognized for outstanding lifetime achievements, he added. An Apollo 8 astronaut and an endowed chairholder of engineering at Princeton University are the two most recent selections for the award. In addition to receiving a commemorative plaque, Foglesong will have a $2,000 scholarship given in his name to a deserving student member of Tau Beta Pi. Learn more.
MSU Art Gallery Joins Depot Welcome Center, Clock Museum, Bookstore
Mr. and Miss MSU 2007-08
Award-winning Writer Bapsi Sidhwa to Speak at MSU
MSU Criminal Justice Leader Honored by Southeastern Peers
MISSISSIPPI STATE UNIVERSITY COLLEGE OF AGRICULTURE, FORESTRY AND VETERINARY MEDICINE NEWS
College of Veterinary Medicine Pathology Lab Chases Down Clues
When presented with a mysterious animal death, a group of dedicated technologists at Mississippi State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine (CVM) spends its time looking for a few good clues. By working together over the years in the Clinical Pathology Laboratory, Missy Bolin, Heather Peavy, Nicole McBrayer, Margaret Sanborn, and Aleah Arney have a camaraderie that allows them to quickly provide information necessary for diagnosis and treatment. “Many times we know what’s probably wrong with an animal before the veterinarian actually does because we analyze the samples and see the clinical evidence first,” Bolin said. “We don’t know what the results may be because the treatment is determined by the clinician.” The laboratory focuses on pathology, or the cause, development, and consequence of diseases, but the seriousness of their job does not drain the life out of the staff. Although the unit is part of CVM’s Department of Pathobiology and Population Medicine, staff members have opportunities to assist specialists in different situations. Second-year veterinary students add to their clinical pathology knowledge by working in the laboratory for one summer, Bolin said. Their assistance allows the lab to provide 24-hour service to the veterinary hospital at peak periods. Learn more.
Innovator Receives Veterinary Teaching Award
MSU Graduate, Doctoral Candidate Named STAR Fellow
MSU Student Forestry Group Again Tops Among Peers
MAFES 25th Annual Production Sale
MISSISSIPPI UNIVERSITY FOR WOMEN NEWS
Continuation Grant awarded to MUW’s Crossroads Program
The Mississippi Department of Education has once again awarded a grant to the Roger F. Wicker Center for Creative Learning at Mississippi University for Women to fund the Crossroads Program. The Crossroads Program, led by Ivey Ivy, is designed as a “comprehensive support program” targeting seventh through ninth grade students from Columbus Municipal School District. The grant, a 21st Century Community Learning Centers Continuation Grant, is in the amount of $211,989. The goal of the project is to provide a safe and enriching environment for students outside of regular school hours, where the students are further exposed to leadership development, reading, language arts, and mathematics. The students also make use of a web-based literacy program called TeenBiz3000. There are also weekly programs sponsored by the Columbus Arts Council that allow students to become experienced with oil painting, music, drama, videography, and creative writing. Learn more.
MISSISSIPPI VALLEY STATE UNIVERSITY NEWS
Mississippi Valley State University Online
Oct. 4-9 - Jackson State University will present Fences , August Wilson’s Pulitzer Prize- and Tony Award-winning Broadway play, at Rose Embly McCoy Auditorium. Tickets are $10 for general admission and $5 for senior citizens and students with IDs. Learn more.
Oct. 5-6 - University of Mississippi students, alumni, and friends look forward to a wide array of activities during Homecoming Weekend, planned around the theme "All Roads Lead to Ole Miss." The celebration culminates with the Ole Miss-Louisiana Tech football game at 1 p.m. Sat. in Vaught-Hemingway Stadium. Learn more.
Oct 6 - Alcorn State University Homecoming Parade starts at 10 a.m. The game between ASU and Prairie View starts at 2 p.m. Learn more.
Oct. 6 - Jackson State will host "High School Community College Day" for prospective students. For more information, call (601) 979-2913. Learn more.
Oct. 6 - Mississippi State University’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences welcomes graduates to the annual Ag Alumni Breakfast in the Bost Conference Center at 7:30 a.m. Learn more.
Oct. 9 - Mississippi State University's Lyceum Series presents the Koresh Dance Company at 7:30 p.m. at Lee Hall Auditorium. MSU students are admitted free with MSU student I.D. Tickets for adults are $15, for senior citizens are $10, and for children ages 3-12 are $8. For more information, call (662) 325-4201. Learn more.
Oct. 9 - Mississippi State University's Women's Studies Program presents its third fall semester series on gender studies, titled "From Stone Age to Clone Age: What Makes a Male a Man?" The discussion begins at 12:30 p.m. at Rice Hall's Ellen Bryant's Women's Resource Center. Learn more.
Oct. 9 - The Academy of St. Martin in the Fields Chamber Ensemble makes its first visit to the University of Mississippi's Ford Center for the Performing Arts to kick off the Artist Series. Tickets are $27, $24, and $12 for various seating and available at the UM Box Office or by calling (662) 915-7411. Learn more.
Oct. 9, 10 & 23 - The Mississippi State University Extension Service hosts Mississippi Homemaker Volunteer, Inc. Fall Area Meetings in Pontotoc, Batesville, and Meridian. Contact: Marylin Winters at (662) 325-3360 or email@example.com . Learn more.
Oct. 11-12 - The Southern Opera and Musical Theatre Company at Southern Miss presents the Tony-award winning musical Guys and Dolls at the Mannoni Performing Arts Center, with shows starting at 7:30 p.m. For tickets, call (601) 266-5418 or (800) 844-8425. Learn more.
Oct. 12 - Mississippi State University's Department of Music presents Starkville/MSU's symphony orchestra at Lee Hall Auditorium at 7:30 p.m. For more information, contact Jennifer Winter at (662) 325-3070. Learn more.
Oct. 12 - The Southern Miss Photojournalism Summit will feature six graduates who are professional photographers who will discuss their work and careers. The Summit is free and takes place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Thad Cochran Center in Hattiesburg. For more information, call (601) 266-4196. Learn more.
Oct. 16 - The UMC Base Pair/SOAR Program, the Hypertension Education and Treatment (HEAT) Partnership, and the American Heart Association present the 2007 Community Science Forum, "The Heart of the Matter," from 5:30-7:30 p.m. in the Norman C. Nelson Student Union. Learn more.
Oct. 19 - Jackson State University’s premier jazz-infused radio station, WJSU, will host the 3rd Annual “Battle of the Saxes” concert at 7 p.m. at the Rose E. McCoy Auditorium on JSU’s main campus. For more information, call (601) 979-2285. Learn more.
Oct. 22 - A dinner at the Hilton Hotel in Jackson with authors John Grisham and Scott Turow will raise money for the Mississippi Innocence Project at the University of Mississippi School of Law. Tickets are $125 per person and available by contacting Renee Van Slyke at (662) 915-6822. Learn more.
Oct. 23 & Nov. 7 - The Mississippi State University Extension Service sponsors Mississippi Women in Agriculture, a three-day intensive business management seminar for farmwomen. For more information, call Suzie Manning at (662) 325-3080 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org . Learn more.