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Volume 2, Issue 46
Friday, November 30, 2007
Edited by Jennifer Rogers

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

News from the System
University News
yellowarrowCollege Readiness English Committee Collaborates
yellowarrowMSU Education Programs Again Gain Highest Approval Ranking
yellowarrowUniversity Research Showcased at MTA Conference
yellowarrowMSU Research Helps Bass Make Big Economic Splash
yellowarrowNovember Issue of Mississippi's Business Released
yellowarrowMUW Nursing Students Honored at Convention
yellowarrow#3 - Universities Make State More Competitive in Global Economy
yellowarrowMVSU Concert Choir Presents "Magnificat" on Dec. 4
yellowarrowUM Professor to Advise U.N. on Space Law Education Needs
yellowarrowAPS Recognizes UMC's Granger for Physiology Mentoring, Research
yellowarrowHouston Healthcare CEO to Receive Honorary Degree from USM
yellowarrowCoast Students Participate in USM-Gulf Coast GIS Day
yellowarrowASU Mathematics Department Holds College Algebra Software Workshop
yellowarrowLotven Selected as New Provost, VP for Academic Affairs at Delta State
yellowarrowFormer Jackson State Air Force ROTC Commander Retires
yellowarrowFor more IHL News, click here.
yellowarrowTo subscribe to this e-newsletter, click here.

College Readiness English Committee Collaborates
The College Readiness English Committee, comprised of English professors from the state's eight public universities, is meeting today with representatives from the state's community and junior colleges and the Mississippi Department of Education. The IHL committee will share the competencies it has identified as necessary for students to master before enrolling in college-level courses. The community and junior college representatives will then share information about initiatives underway at the two-year colleges to improve student success. The purpose of the meeting is to begin to collectively identify what students need to know - not just what courses they need to take - to be successful in common freshman English courses. The group will also seek to identify other avenues for collaboration. The IHL Board believes that one way to increase the number of baccalaureate degree holders in the state is to improve access to and success in college. For more information, contact Assistant Commissioner of Academic and Student Affairs Dr. Lynn House at (601) 432-6501.

University Research Showcased at MTA Conference
The research and development activities taking place at Jackson State University (JSU), Mississippi State University (MSU), the University of Mississippi (UM), and the University of Southern Mississippi (USM), were showcased Tuesday during the Eighth Annual Conference on High Technology at the Mississippi TelCom Center in Jackson. Commissioner of Higher Education Dr. Thomas Meredith opened the conference's first plenary session with an overview of the research activities taking place in the state. Following his remarks, Dr. Kirk Schulz (MSU), Dr. Felix Okojie (JSU), Dr. Walt Chambliss (UM), and Dr. Cecil Burge (USM) discussed what their respective universities are doing in terms of research. They also discussed the technologies that have been and are being developed for commercial use by existing and new companies in the state. The business leaders in attendance learned about the significant impact that university research is making on economic development in Mississippi. The conference was sponsored by the Mississippi Technology Alliance and the Mississippi Research Consortium (MRC), which includes the state's four research universities and works to develop interest in the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) fields and to build a research infrastructure to support education and extend technology development in the state. Learn more about the MRC.
November Issue of Mississippi's Business Released
The November 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 in this issue, senior researcher and statistician Christian Pruett notes that consumer and executive confidence levels were mixed in the third quarter of 2007. The Business Confidence Index, which reflects the attitudes of Mississippi executives on the current and future business conditions in the state, decreased slightly since the second quarter, but remains at a historic high compared to previous years. The Consumer Confidence Index rose by more than 36 percent since the second quarter, indicating that consumers view their personal and the state outlooks positively. Nevertheless, consumers have expressed concern over rising energy prices, slow home sales, and the slowing economy. Read Mississippi's Business online. For more information about the confidence indexes, contact Christian Pruett at (601) 432-6445.
#3 - Universities Make State More Competitive in Global Economy
(Top 15 Ways Universities Benefit Mississippi)
Universities help prepare Mississippi for a more competitive role in the global marketplace. The global flow of goods, services, people, and resources is ever increasing, and Mississippi must be prepared to meet the challenges of this new, dynamic environment. To compete, Mississippi needs a more highly educated citizenry, a productive workforce, and an innovative business community. Thirty years ago, the United States boasted 34 percent of the world's enrollment in higher education; today, it has only 14 percent, and the percentage is falling. Moreover, the United States is one of only two nations where younger workers (aged 25-34) are less educated than older workers (45-54). Mississippi's universities are trying to combat this negative trend by sending 14,000 baccalaureate degree holders into the workforce each year. Mississippi's universities also impact the state's worker productivity by driving knowledge stocks and the ability to apply knowledge in a given field. Finally, Mississippi's universities drive business innovation and economic development through their research and development of new technologies with commercial applications.

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 Education Programs Again Gain Highest Approval Ranking
Mississippi State University's teacher-training programs at both the Starkville and Meridian campuses are receiving continuing accreditation from the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE). Following an extensive and voluntary review process that included visits to both campuses by an accreditation team, officials of the professional organization recently notified the university's College of Education that its programs meet its rigorous standards. The five-year accreditation process is designed to ensure that collegiate programs continue producing teachers who meet the highest standards and are successfully prepared to help students learn, said college Dean Richard Blackbourn. Mississippi State has continuously received accreditation since 1961, with the next NCATE assessment scheduled for 2014. "This process allows us to demonstrate that Mississippi State is responding to the needs of teachers and students in today's classrooms," he said. "NCATE accreditation is a nationally recognized benchmark that says our programs are achieving the highest professional standards." Nearly 625 institutions that annually produce two-thirds of the nation's new teacher graduates currently are accredited. "The organization revises its standards every five years in order to incorporate best practices and research," Blackbourn explained. "Institutions must adjust and demonstrate that students have in-depth knowledge of subjects they will teach. Learn more.

New 'Peoples' History of MSU Now Hitting Bookstands

MSU Names Choice for Vice President for Finance and Administration

Former Athletic, Academic Standouts to Address MSU Grads

MSU Researchers Focus on Impact of State Bird-watching Revenue

MSU Research Helps Bass Make Big Economic Splash
Research by scientists at the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station (MAFES) is reaping benefits for Nature's Catch, the largest pond-based U.S. producer of hybrid striped bass. For more than 11 years, MSU researchers Lou D'Abramo and Terry Hanson have worked with the Clarksdale-based aquaculture enterprise to develop a more efficient culture system for rearing the bass. In the past, pond culture of hybrid striped bass was based on a three-phase system. "The problem with the old system is that there is intensive labor and high mortality associated with the transfer of the stocking size fish into ponds for final grow-out," explained D'Abramo, a professor in the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. For this reason, research has focused on the elimination of the transfer phase. Field testing and economic analysis of the alternative two-phase system, termed "direct stock," is encouraging. "By eliminating the need to grade and transfer fish harvested from ponds, the direct stock management system decreases mortality," said Bubba Groves, biologist and assistant manager at Nature's Catch. Management of water quality, Groves added, also should be less resource demanding. "Because we will stock the fingerlings at lower densities in the direct stock system, water quality is much easier to manage," said Groves, an MSU aquaculture alumnus. Hanson, MAFES agricultural economist, found a 30 percent reduction in production costs realized through the decrease in turnover time. Learn more.

MSU Students Excel in National Dairy Judging Contests

Long-time 4-H Volunteer Hobson Waits Named to National Hall of Fame

MSU Partners with Clergy and Department of Human Services in Marriage Summits

Hollis Cheek is MSU Agriculture and Life Sciences Alumni Fellow for 2007

MUW Nursing Students Honored at Convention
MUW Baccalaureate nursing students recently participated in the Mississippi Association of Student Nurses (MASN) annual convention. The convention was held in Tupelo this year. Several MUW nursing students were honored as well as elected to statewide offices for the MASN. "We are very proud of all of them and glad they are so interested in working in their professional organization," said Janice Giallourakis, faculty adviser of the MUW Student Nurses Association. Among the MUW students honored was Mike Dodson, a senior, who was inducted to Mississippi Student Nurses Hall of Fame and awarded the Mississippi Nurses Foundation Scholarship. Other students received similar honors. Beth Estes, a senior, was also inducted to the Mississippi Student Nurses Hall of Fame, while Andrew Hendrix, a junior, was elected 1st Vice President of the MASN. Junior Conner Reynolds was elected treasurer of the MASN and Courtney Truax, also a junior, was elected MASN Chairperson of Fundraising. Erin Williams, a junior, received the honor of being elected MASN Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) State-Wide Representative. Giallourakis said, "I don't recall a time when we've had so many students at one time be state officers. It's been a very long time since any of our students have been so involved in our state organizations. I think we can have an impact and influence the working of the organization this year." Learn more.

MVSU Concert Choir Presents "Magnificat" on Dec. 4
The Mississippi Valley State University Fine Arts Department presents the MVSU Chamber and Concert Choirs in the annual Valley of Scholars Christmas Concert on Sunday, Dec. 4, at 7:30 p.m. in the H.G. Carpenter Auditorium. Under the direction of Professor Orlando Moss, the choirs will perform a selection of traditional Christmas music such as "Rudolph, the Red-Nose Reindeer," and "Mary Had A Baby," as well as Magnificat, by John Rutter. Magnificat was first performed on May 26, 1990 in Carnegie Hall, New York, by Maria Alsatti (soprano), the Manhattan Chamber Orchestra, and participating choirs in a MidAmerica Production concert directed by Peter Tiboris and conducted by the composer. The selections include "Magnificat anima mea Dominum," "Of a Rose, a lovely Rose," "Quia fecit mihi magna qui potens est: et sanctam nomen cius," "Et misericordia cius a progenic in progenies timentibus," Fecit potentiam in bracho suo: dispersit superbos mente cordis sui," "Esurientes implevit bonis: dimisit inanes" and "Gloria Patri, et Filio, et Spiritui Sancto." The public is invited to attend. Learn more.

UM Professor to Advise U.N. on Space Law Education Needs
A University of Mississippi law professor is to join space law experts and educators from around the world Dec. 3-4 in Vienna to explore the possibility of a basic course on space law as requested by a subcommittee of the United Nations. Joanne Gabrynowicz, law professor and director of the National Remote Sensing, Air and Space Law Center at the UM law school, frequently travels to other countries to address the growing area of law dealing with space. The U.N. meeting will further her visibility as an international space law expert. In a letter from the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs, Niklas Hedman, chief of the committee services and research section of the office, said the Legal Subcommittee of the U.N. Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space requested that the Office for Outer Space Affairs continue exploring the possibility of developing a curriculum for a basic course on space law that could be used in particular for the benefit of developing countries. "My job will be to listen and advise," Gabrynowicz said. "Through their presentations, I will learn what the U.N. centers need and want. Then, I will advise them on what content has to be in the space law curriculum to meet their needs." Gabrynowicz joined the faculty in 2001 as the center's first permanent director and research professor of law. She received the 2001 Women in Aerospace Outstanding International Award for her work and contributions to the broad spectrum of aerospace issues. Learn more.

Friends of Children Fund Assists Growing Number of Families, Contributions Sought

University Community Donates to Needy Families

Mississippi's MorganWhite Group Seeds Scholarship Endowment with $200,000 Pledge

Statewide Science, Math, Engineering Competition for High School Students Produces Winners

APS Recognizes UMC's Granger for Physiology Mentoring, Research
The dean of the School of Graduate Studies in the Health Sciences at the University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMC) has been recognized by one of the world's largest physiological societies for his outstanding contributions to mentoring and research. Dr. Joey Granger, Billy S. Guyton Distinguished Professor, professor of physiology and biophysics, and professor of medicine at UMC, will receive the American Physiological Society's fifth Bodil M. Schmidt-Nielsen Distinguished Mentor and Scientist Award at the society's 2008 Experimental Biology meeting April 5-9 in San Diego, Calif. Granger, associate director of the Center for Excellence in Cardiovascular Renal Research at UMC, is only the second physiologist with ties to the Medical Center to receive the distinction. "I am truly honored by this award from the American Physiological Society, especially the mentoring aspect of the award," Granger said. "The Department of Physiology at the University of Mississippi Medical Center has a long tradition of mentoring. It is quite easy to be a good mentor when you train and work in an environment where camaraderie and collegiality is the norm." Learn more.

Former Faculty Recounts IM's Transformation From "Chaos" to Department

Houston Healthcare CEO to Receive Honorary Degree from Southern Miss
Houston, Texas, healthcare executive David J. Fine has been selected to receive an honorary degree from The University of Southern Mississippi during its fall commencement ceremonies on Dec. 14 in Hattiesburg. Fine will receive the Doctor of Philosophy Honoris Causa from Southern Miss during the afternoon and will be the commencement speaker for both the afternoon and evening graduation exercises. Since June 2004, Fine has served as president and chief executive officer of St. Luke's Episcopal Health System in Houston. St. Luke's is a multi-hospital, integrated healthcare delivery system with 7,000 employees and $1 billion in net patient revenues. It is the home of the famed Texas Heart Institute and the Episcopal Health Charities of the Diocese of Texas. Mr. Fine has 30 years of experience as a healthcare executive, including 20 years as a CEO of university hospitals, multi-hospital systems, medical groups, and managed care organizations. Fine is the namesake of the annual David J. Fine Distinguished Lecturer Series in the Southern Miss College of Health. He also serves as an active member of the Dean's Council, composed of individuals who are advocates for the College of Health and serve as advisers to the dean, students, faculty, and staff. Learn more.

Mississippi Universities to Receive Southern Miss Sports Event Security Aware Seal of Approval

Southern Miss Instructor, Students Help Prepare Soldiers for Humanitarian Mission

Southern Miss Theater Receives Nomination For National Festival

Children's Literature Author Wiles to Present at Southern Miss University Forum

Coast Students Participate in USM-Gulf Coast GIS Day
Students from Long Beach High School and Hancock County's Vocational-Technical Center battled head-to-head to see who would reign as the GIS Day 2007 Geography Bowl winners on Nov. 14. High schools along the Mississippi Gulf Coast were invited to learn all about geographic information systems technology at GIS Day 2007 at The University of Southern Mississippi Gulf Park campus in Long Beach. The event was sponsored by Southern Miss and the Mississippi Association of Spatial Technology. Students attended four sessions to learn more about the different applications of GIS. Two of the sessions were presented by NASA and by the Gulfport Police Department. Following the sessions, students from each school competed in a geography bowl to win GIS Day 2007 awards. For winning the geography bowl, Hancock County Vo-Tech received medals and a plaque commemorating their GIS Day experience. "The only thing I knew about GIS before today was what the initials stood for," said Jesse Stennett, a senior at Hancock High School and one of the members of the winning team in the geography bowl. "After today, we came away with a lot of newfound knowledge of GIS and the different job fields that use it." Learn more.

ASU Mathematics Department Holds College Algebra Software Workshop
The Department of Mathematics and Computer Science faculty members, Math Center tutors, academic technology staff, and college algebra students attended a workshop on Hawkes Learning Systems (college algebra software) on October 5, 2007. The workshop was initiated and organized by Ms. Satya Sreedevi Redla, head of the Math Center. The speaker for the workshop was Ms. Kristin Moeller of Hawkes Learning Systems. The college algebra software was adopted by the Department of Mathematics in fall 2006. Since then college algebra has been taught to undergraduate students using the software. Workshop participants had an opportunity to discuss some difficulties they faced in the process of using the software. As an encouragement, the participants of the workshop received certificates from Dr. Reginald Lindsey, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. At the end of the workshop Dr. Lixin Yu, Chair of the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science, thanked the participants for coming and participating actively during workshop, Dr. Redla for organizing the workshop, and Ms. Moeller for her contribution as a speaker. Learn more.

ASU Business Student's Talent Reflected in Vicksburg Post Article

Lotven Selected as New Provost, VP for Academic Affairs at Delta State
Following four days of intensive on-campus visits conducted the week of November 12, Delta State University President Dr. John M. Hilpert announced, on Monday, November 19, the hiring of Dr. Ann Candler Lotven as the university's next Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs. Lotven has served as the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at Texas A&M University - Texarkana since 2004. Previous positions include Dean of the College of Education at Oklahoma State University from 1995 to 2004, Associate Dean for Administration at Texas Tech University from 1990 to 1995 and Professor of Education at Texas Tech University from 1976 to 1995. "We are fortunate to have Dr. Lotven as our new Provost," Hilpert said of Delta State's hire. "She brings breadth and depth of experience to the position. She has been outstanding wherever she has served, and we expect her to be a strong leader in our campus community." During her academic tenure, Lotven has also served as Executive Director of the South Plains Teacher Education Center, an organization that built university-school-community partnerships, as well as President of the Oklahoma Association of Colleges for Teacher Education from 1999 - 2000. She will begin her tenure on the Cleveland campus on Monday, February 4, 2008. Learn more.

Delta State to Host Grant Training Center Workshop, Led by Renowned Grant Expert

Garfield Set to Celebrate Holidays at BPAC

Lady Statesmen Climb to No. 2 in Latest USA Today/ESPN Top 25 Poll

Former Jackson State Air Force ROTC Commander Retires
Three priorities in Col. Joseph L. Brown's life helped him become successful throughout his 30 years in the U.S. Air Force. "God, family, and job," said Brown, former commander of the Jackson State University (JSU) Air Force ROTC. On Nov. 9, the Florence resident was honored during a retirement ceremony in the Jacksonian lounge of the Jacob L. Reddix Campus Union on the JSU campus. Brown, a native of Jackson, had begun working at Jackson State in March 2005. In addition to being the commander of Detachment 006, he also was a professor of aerospace studies. Lt. Col. Aundra Moore succeeded him. Family, friends, and colleagues joined to honor Brown's hard work, commitment, and dedication. "He is an awesome man. I couldn't ask for a better commander," said Capt. Monique D. Johnson, JSU Air Force ROTC instructor and commandant of cadets. One thing that has stuck with him from the first time he met Brown to now is Brown's "good straightforward, dedicated spirit," said Brig Gen. Erik Hearon, commander of the Mississippi Air National Guard. Brown began his career at the 1606th Air Base Wing at Kirtland Air Force Base in New Mexico. He worked in the Consolidated Base Personnel Office, where he served as section chief. Brown now works at Raymond High School. Brown makes it a point to let people know, "I've grown over the years; I didn't get here by myself." At the ceremony, Brown was accompanied by his wife of 30 years, Rebecca Brown, and two of his four children. Learn more.

JSU Offers Student Leadership Skills During Summit

JSU Hosting World AIDS Day Forum

JSU Student Wins Award at Biomedical Research Conference

Nov. 30 - The MUW December Graduates' Recognition Ceremony to recognize December graduates will be held in Rent Auditorium in Whitfield Hall at 6 p.m. Learn more.

Nov. 30 - A public discussion at 11 a.m. in the UM Overby Center Auditorium celebrates the 25th anniversary of legislation that brought a kindergarten system and greater school funding to the state. Hosted by the UM Overby Center for Southern Journalism and Politics, the program features Gov. William Winter. Learn more.

Nov. 30 - The UM William Winter Institute for Racial Reconciliation hosts a free concert titled "The Welcome Table: A Seasonal Concert" at Millsaps College. Performances, at 6 and 8 p.m. in the Academic Complex Recital Hall, feature music from Hebrew, Indian, Islamic, Kwanzaa, and Christian traditions. Learn more.

Dec. 1 - The Roots Reunion live radio music show featuring the music of South Mississippi will take place from 7 to 9 p.m. at Hattiesburg's Saenger Theater. It is presented by The University of Southern Mississippi Center for Oral History and Cultural Heritage. Admission is free. Learn more.

Dec. 2 - Mississippi State University's department of music presents a guitar studio recital at 5 p.m. at Music Building C. For more information about the free recital, contact the department of music at (662) 325-3070. Learn more.

Dec. 3 - Mississippi State University's Lab Rats comedy troupe presents "Lab Rats Comedy is NOT on Strike" at McComas Hall Lab Theatre. Tickets for the 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. shows are $5 for MSU students and faculty and $10 for general admission. For more information, call (228) 596-7419. Learn more.

Dec. 4 - MVSU will hold its annual Christmas Tree Lighting at 4 p.m. at the front lake. Afterwards, MVSU faculty and staff will serve the students the traditional holiday meal in the Charles Lackey Recreation Center. Learn more.

Dec. 6 - The Jackson State University Margaret Walker Alexander National Research Center will host its annual dinner theater and auction at 7 p.m. in the General Purpose Room of the Jacob L. Reddix Campus Union. Learn more.

Dec. 7 - Mississippi State University's department of music presents its wind ensemble performance at Tupelo's BancorpSouth Center at 8 p.m. Fore more information, contact Jennifer Winter at (662) 325-3070. Learn more.

Dec. 8 - The Southern Miss Steel Band, Percussion Ensemble, and Samba Band will present its ever-popular "Rhythms of Christmas" at 7:30 p.m. at the Mannoni Performing Arts Center. For tickets, call (601) 266-5418 or (800) 844-8425. Order online at www.southernmisstickets.com. Learn more.

Dec. 9 - Start the holidays in style at 3 p.m. in the University of Mississippi Ford Center with musical favorites featuring the Tupelo Symphony Orchestra, alumni Mary Donnelly Haskell and Laurie Gayle Stevens, and baritone Steve Amerson. Tickets, at $35, $32, and $29, are available by calling (662) 915-7411. Learn more.

Dec. 11-12 - MSU's annual cotton short course features Extension specialists, researchers, and professionals from MSU and other institutions and agencies reviewing research-based practices in cotton fertility, disease, weed and insect management, pest management, production practices, and emerging technologies. Learn more.

Dec. 15-16 - The Southern Miss Gulf Coast Civic Chorale will perform their annual Christmas concert on Saturday, Dec. 15 at 7 p.m. in the auditorium of the Advanced Education Center on the Southern Miss Gulf Park campus. An encore performance will take place on Sunday, Dec. 16, at 2 p.m. at the Cathedral of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Biloxi. The concerts are free and open to the public. Learn more.

Dec. 16 - The registration deadline is fast approaching for the Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant Consortium's Jan. 17 Biloxi, Miss., workshop on setting priorities for a Gulf of Mexico regional marine research plan. Similar workshops will be held in Spanish Fort, Ala., Jan. 15; St. Petersburg, Fla., Feb. 19; Baton Rouge, La., Feb. 26; and Galveston, Texas, Feb. 28. Anyone who sponsors, conducts or uses Gulf coastal or marine research may attend. There is no registration fee. Register online at http://masgc.org/gmrp/workshop.htm or contact Steve Sempier at stephen.sempier@usm.edu.

Jan. 15-16 - The Mississippi State University Extension Service coordinates the Delta Ag Expo, Mississippi's oldest regional farm show, in the Bolivar County Expo Center in Cleveland. For more information, contact Ben Spinks at (662) 843-8361 or bspinks@ext.msstate.edu. Learn more.

Feb. 12-14 - The Mississippi Crop College at MSU's Bost Extension Center previews the 2008 growing season for crop consultants and Extension agronomists. For more information, contact Larry Oldham at (662) 325-2701 or loldham@pss.msstate.edu. The pre-registration deadline is January 30, 2008. Learn more.

Look for the next issue December 7.

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

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