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Volume 3, Issue 37
Friday, December 5, 2008
Edited by Jennifer Rogers

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

News from the System
University News
yellowarrowStudy Underway of Simulation Models in Nursing Programs
yellowarrowLongtime Dentistry Faculty Named Interim Dean of School
yellowarrowSystem to Confer 3,547 Degrees
yellowarrowSouthern Miss, Hinds Sign Construction Engineering Degree Agreement
yellowarrowLook for the Next Issue of the System Review in 2009
yellowarrowSouthern Miss Gulf Coast Names Lansford as New Academic Dean
yellowarrowAlcorn School of Nursing Offers CEU's for Lunch and Lecture
yellowarrowDSU's Geospatial Information Technologies Center Holds Open House
yellowarrowJSU, Rep. Bennie Thompson Celebrate Opening of Center of Excellence
yellowarrowMSU Achieves Major Research Status: Less Federal 'Red Tape'
yellowarrowRevamped Landscape Becomes Mississippi State Teaching Lab
yellowarrowMUW Students Earn Top Honors in Art Competition
yellowarrowMVSU Social Work Department, Students Host Virtual Town Hall Meeting
yellowarrowSandersville Native Shad White Wins Coveted Rhodes Scholarship
yellowarrowFor more IHL News, click here.
yellowarrowTo subscribe to this e-newsletter, click here.

Study Underway of Simulation Models in Nursing Programs
A comprehensive study of the use of simulation models in the state's nursing education programs is currently underway. Over the past two decades, simulation models have become important tools in the education of healthcare professionals. Nevertheless, the use of such models varies widely in Mississippi nursing education programs, as some programs offer students fully equipped laboratories while others employ no simulation opportunities. In an effort to plan strategically for equitable access to simulation for all schools, the 2008 MS legislature provided $75,000 to IHL to conduct a one-year feasibility study to assess the schools of nursing and address the concept of shared utilization of clinical simulation laboratories and the utilization of pooled resources of mobile capability models from other states. SimHealth Consulting Services, LLC, an Oregon-based firm, has been retained to conduct the study and recommend a comprehensive plan for nursing schools in Mississippi. The study got off the ground in September when representatives of the MS Council of Deans and Directors of Schools of Nursing and the MS Organization of Nurse Executives received a presentation on trends in simulation based education. The schools of nursing then completed an online survey, and SimHealth used the survey results to determine what additional data was needed. Eight schools of nursing have been identified for a focused site visit to further assess the varying use of simulation in the state. Once the study is complete, SimHealth will recommend steps for designing a state-wide plan for access to nursing education simulation. A full report of the study will be available by mid-January 2009. For more information, contact Director of Nursing Education Dr. Martha Catlette.

System to Confer 3,547 Degrees
As 2008 comes to an end, thousands of Mississippi students celebrate the beginning of a new year and the commencement of life after college. The IHL Board of Trustees is pleased to confer 3,547 degrees this December and extends best wishes to the graduates. The numbers of degrees to be conferred by each institution are as follows:
  • Delta State University - 449
  • Mississippi State University - 1119
  • Mississippi University for Women - 91
  • University of Mississippi - 517
  • University of Mississippi Medical Center - 15
  • University of Southern Mississippi - 1356
Mississippi's University System graduates about 14,000 students each year. These graduates give back to the state in countless ways. They earn higher wages than their peers without degrees, contribute more to the state's tax base, volunteer more, enjoy better health, and raise children better prepared for school. They are employed at higher rates, incarcerated at lower rates, and receive public assistance at lower rates. Congratulations to the graduates and the universities that have educated them.
Look for the Next Issue of the System Review in 2009
The IHL Board Executive Office will close for the holiday season at 5:00 p.m. on Monday, December 22, 2008, and will reopen on Friday, January 2, 2009, at 8:00 a.m. The System Review will take a holiday publication break as well. Expect to receive the next issue on Friday, January 9, 2009. Have a safe and happy holiday season.

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.

Longtime Dentistry Faculty Named Interim Dean of School
When Dr. Buford O. "Butch" Gilbert helped develop the curriculum for the fledgling School of Dentistry at the University of Mississippi Medical Center as a young instructor in 1975, he established the foundation for what would become one of the nation's foremost dental schools. Now he has the opportunity to lead the school he has helped nurture for 33 years. Gilbert was named interim dean of the School of Dentistry in October. He succeeds Dr. James R. Hupp, who served as dean of the school from 2002-08. "As a Mississippian, I clearly saw the importance of the School of Dentistry," Gilbert said. "From Mississippi's standpoint, I wanted this to be the very best school it could be and as good - if not better - than any school of dentistry in the country." Learn more.

Helmets Critical in Minimizing ATV-related Injuries, Deaths

Southern Miss, Hinds Sign Construction Engineering Degree Agreement
A new 2-plus-2 agreement between The University of Southern Mississippi and Hinds Community College allows Hinds students interested in the Southern Miss' construction engineering technology degree to take courses in the program at the Raymond campus. The program expansion targets a construction industry demand for qualified workers. The program "is exactly the kind of thing we should be doing because we're celebrating what we're supposed to do - and that's educating students," said Southern Miss President Martha Saunders. Southern Miss courses for the program will be offered on the Raymond campus, beginning with the Construction Organization course Tuesday evenings in the spring 2009 semester. The three-hour course will be taught by Southern Miss School of Construction director Desmond Fletcher. "It is a great day for us to announce the signing of an important agreement between the University of Southern Mississippi and Hinds Community College. Hinds and Southern Miss have been closely tied together for many years," said Hinds Community College President Dr. Clyde Muse. "Today is all about the 2-plus-2 agreement, which is unique and going to be a great asset to this college, the university, and to this community." Learn more.

Southern Miss Fall 2008 Graduation Set for Dec. 12

Southern Miss Receives Emergency Management for Higher Education Grant

Crosslink Signs Lease Partnership with Southern Miss

Graduate Students Pitch Ideas in Annual Business Plan Competition at Southern Miss

Southern Miss Gulf Coast Names Lansford as New Academic Dean
The University of Southern Mississippi has named Dr. Tom Lansford as academic dean for the university's Gulf Coast operations effective Jan. 1. Lansford previously served as the Southern Miss College of Arts and Letters associate dean. "I am excited that Dr. Tom Lansford has been selected for this important leadership role," said Southern Miss Provost Bob Lyman. "He has the academic experience and the vision to build consensus and ensure success for our Gulf Coast operation." As Gulf Coast academic dean, Lansford will serve as the chief academic officer for the Gulf Park campus and five Southern Miss Gulf Coast teaching and research sites. Lansford will work with administrators and faculty to accomplish educational objectives for the coast. Additionally, he will develop and monitor budgets for the university's academic programs on the coast and he will play a significant role in the development of the new campus scheduled to be built at Cross Creek. "I am very honored and humbled to have been chosen for this position. I look forward to working with the faculty, staff, and students of the Gulf Coast in this very exciting, though challenging, era," said Lansford. "We have a number of historic opportunities to redefine higher education on the coast through new linkages with partner communities and a renewed commitment to the people of the Gulf Coast." Learn more.

Southern Miss Gulf Coast Civic Chorale Brings Holiday Cheer with Two Concerts

Alcorn School of Nursing Offers CEU's for Lunch and Lecture
Nurses in the Mississippi-Louisiana area had the opportunity to advance their professional knowledge via Continuing Education Units (CEU's) offered by Alcorn State University School of Nursing, Tau Eta Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International, the honor society of nursing, and District 1 of the Mississippi Nurses Association (MNA). These two nursing organizations sponsored lunches with lectures for all Miss-Lou area nurses. In addition to the benefit of professional growth, attendees had the opportunity to earn valuable CEU's. Funding for the CEU application was made possible by a generous donation from Dr. Vikram Dulam, Board Certified Cardiologist. Dr. Diane Blanchard, president of MNA, District 1, states, "We feel so honored to have the support of Dr. Dulam in our nursing education endeavor. His gift demonstrates his support of nursing education, and this gift gives back to the community." As a result of Dr. Dulam's donation, Sigma Theta Tau International, Tau Eta Chapter, and MNA, District 1, hosted their first of the luncheon/lecture series on Monday, December 1, 2008, with Sarah Ware, RN, MS, as the keynote speaker. Mrs. Ware discussed international nursing and shared highlights from her recent nursing trip to Honduras. The luncheon was held in the Nursing Auditorium at Alcorn State University School of Nursing. One CEU was awarded for participation to the participating Miss-Lou area nurses. Learn more.

Delta State's Geospatial Information Technologies Center Holds Open House
The Delta State University Center for Interdisciplinary Geospatial Information Technologies (GIT) recently held a "GIS Day" open house to showcase their ultra modern area for teaching and learning geographic information. The GIS Day included Geo Hikes, in which faculty instructed visitors on using an advanced global positioning, or GPS, unit, the high definition projection of the "Earth the Biography" series, instruction on 3-D modeling and a presentation on the U.S. National Grid system. The renovations of Kethley Hall offered GIT Director Talbot Brooks the opportunity to design and create a high tech area to teach and for students to learn. Brooks transformed a large lecture room in Kethley into office space, a development center, and an impressive "Theater of the Mind." Collier Parker, Delta State Dean of Arts and Sciences, is proud of the technology the GIT center offers the Delta. "The new Theater of the Mind projection room allows the center to bring community planners from all over the state and region to view 3-D images of their projects, thus enabling them to see the pros and cons of their plans," Parker said. "Overall, the new center will help to take the GIT program to a new level of teaching and leadership in the state and region." Learn more.

Delta State University Choirs to Present Annual Holiday Concert

Children's Christmas Recital at the Bologna Performing Arts Center

Schroeder Receives Jackson TD Club Award

Hicks-Green Named Region Defensive Player of the Year

JSU, U.S. Rep. Bennie Thompson Celebrate Opening of Center of Excellence
Jackson State University and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security celebrated the grand opening of its newest Center of Excellence on Monday, Nov. 24. Located at the Mississippi e-Center @ JSU, the Center for the Study of Natural Disasters, Coastal Infrastructure and Emergency Management is one of 11 centers of excellence nationwide. Through this designation, JSU and its partner, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, will develop and manage education programs regarding natural disasters and emergency management. Jackson State will receive $1 million per year in federal funds during the next six years. "The world is Jackson State's oyster," said Jay M. Cohen, U.S. Department of Homeland Security undersecretary for science and technology, describing the benefits of the hard-earned designation. "The opportunities are unlimited," he said noting that this designation places Jackson State at the table with the Department of Defense, the Department of Energy, and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The Centers of Excellence program brings together leading experts and researchers to conduct multidisciplinary research and education for homeland security solutions. Each center is led by a university in collaboration with partners from other institutions, agencies, laboratories, think tanks, and the private sector. Jackson State was chosen after an 18-month competitive process with universities across the country. Learn more.

JSU Department of Technology Receives Accreditation Through 2010

JSU and JPS Collaborating to Aid Students for College

JSU's Public Health Program Earns Accreditation Through 2013

MSU Achieves Major Research Status: Less Federal 'Red Tape'
Mississippi State's recent inclusion in a highly competitive federal partnership now allows university researchers to focus more on research and less on administrative "red tape." Membership in the Federal Demonstration Partnership (FDP) enables campus scientists to streamline administrative steps associated with federally sponsored research, said Robyn B. Remotigue, assistant director of MSU's Sponsored Programs Administration. MSU joins 33 other leading research institutions as new members of a group representing 120 national institutions. It is the only Mississippi institution of higher learning holding FDP membership in the cooperative initiative with 10 federal agencies. "This is a very prestigious opportunity since no other organization brings these groups together to work collaboratively toward streamlining research administration processes," Remotigue said. FDP membership is a formal way of demonstrating professional trust among leading research institutions, she explained. MSU faculty representatives include Robert Moorhead, an endowed professor of electrical and computer engineering and researcher at the GeoResources Institute, and Susan Bridges, a professor of computer science and engineering and researcher at the Institute for Digital Biology. Susan Wyatt Sedwick, associate vice president for research at the University of Texas at Austin and FDP chair, said she anticipates that MSU's representatives will contribute with active and sustained participation. "The enthusiasm and interest (they've) shown already is a great indicator of that expectation," she added. The FDP is designed to save researchers time by streamlining administrative processes involved in competitive appointment, allocation, and management of federal funds. The program began in the 1980s as an experiment with five federal agencies and universities in Florida. Learn more.

Five from MSU Garner Top Regional Student Affairs Awards

New Mills Fund Aids MSU Student Support Services Department

MSU Students Tapped for Education Honor Society

MSU Names Alumni Delegate Leaders

Revamped Landscape Becomes Mississippi State Teaching Lab
Brian Trader has no problem with students asking to have class outside because he is one step ahead of them. Trader, an assistant horticulture professor in Mississippi State University's Department of Plant and Soil Sciences, conducts his plant materials classes in the Dorman Hall landscape he and others revamped this summer into a teaching laboratory. Dorman Hall has been a part of the MSU campus since the 1970s, but the landscaping around the building had not changed in the years since. Trader's teaching style is to expose students to different types of plants. "Students should be able to touch, smell and use other senses to experience plants firsthand," Trader said. "They also need diversity in plant materials so they can laminate actual specimens to build a self-made field guide for future study and use." Trader's challenge was to find a source of plant diversity on campus to introduce to his students. Assessing the landscape around Dorman Hall, he noted only eight plant species. "My job is to teach plant materials and it is difficult if there is no diversity of materials from which to teach," Trader said. "The plant science buildings at many universities are designed to stand out by reflecting the subject matter. I felt the landscape at Dorman Hall needed help." Learn more.

MSU Conference Explores Farm Credit Squeeze Caused by Financial Turmoil

MSU Shows How Wildlife Recreation Impacts Agritourism

Outstanding MSU Staffers Get Excellence Awards

MUW Students Earn Top Honors in Art Competition
Mississippi University for Women art and design students recently garnered top honors in a competition sponsored by the Kappa Pi International Honorary Art Fraternity. Jonathan Cumberland, a senior majoring in graphic design, won first place, and Martin Arnold, a senior working on a Bachelor of Fine Arts in art education, placed second. There were a total of 60 entries. Cumberland, who is from Caledonia, learned about the honor the same day his poster design was chosen for this year's Market Street Festival. "It was an exciting day," he said. "The work that I entered in this competition was a body of five pieces. When I first opened the letter, I could not believe it. Martin told me he had won second place earlier, and I would have never thought that I would receive anything. I am very excited about this award for both the department and myself." Arnold, who is originally from Michigan, submitted acrylic and oil portrait paintings of his good friend and fellow MUW student, Marquita Kirk. Learn more.

Crossroads Program Awarded Nearly $170,000

AT&T Teaching Circles at MUW Announced

MUW Professor to Contribute to ABC-CLIO Production

MVSU Social Work Department, Students Host Virtual Town Hall Meeting
The Mississippi Valley State University Department of Social Work hosted the University's first virtual town hall meeting on Dec. 1 at the J.H. White Library. Students enrolled in the class Methods of Social Work Practice III used distance learning technologies to meet simultaneously with educators, political leaders, and health department officials in Leflore, Holmes, and Sharkey counties. The theme of the meeting was "Health Issues Affecting Children in Rural Mississippi." Course instructor Dr. Catherine Singleton-Walker and her students coordinated the event. Students selected the theme and invited representatives from the various counties. James Bartlett, a graduate assistant in the MVSU Master of Social Work Program, moderated the meeting. Participants were able to share their thoughts and concerns in real time on how to make health care systems in Mississippi work for children and families living in poverty. Of particular interest were the subjects of obesity in children and the high rate of HIV infections in the Mississippi Delta. Dr. Vincent Venturini, chair of the Department of Social Work, said the project had two origins. "Social work is one of the academic programs that receives funding from the United States Department of Agriculture," he said. "One of the USDA objectives," according to Venturini, "calls for us to prepare students to design more effective programs to serve rural communities." Learn more.

MVSU New President, Dr. Donna H. Oliver, Schedules University Address on Jan. 5

Sandersville Native Shad White Wins Coveted Rhodes Scholarship
Shadrack "Shad" Tucker White recently was named the University of Mississippi's 25th Rhodes Scholar and is the first to receive prestigious Rhodes and Truman scholarships. The UM honors graduate was selected following rigorous interviews in Kansas City. The scholarship provides an all-expense-paid opportunity to study for two years at Oxford University in England, one of the world's oldest universities. "We have not had a more capable student than Shad White," said UM Chancellor Robert C. Khayat. "Shad had already been selected as a Truman Scholar, so we knew he had the intellectual, personal, and leadership skills needed to be selected as a Rhodes Scholar. Plus, he is multitalented and keenly interested in enhancing the quality of life in our society. "Our entire community enthusiastically supported Shad, and we fully expected him to be our 25th Rhodes Scholar." Since graduating summa cum laude from UM in May, White has been in Washington, D.C., working to improve early childhood education in both Mississippi and the rest of the nation. "My days are filled with analyzing new research that comes out or helping policy analysts," he said. "I split my time between good research and good advocacy." A Sandersville native, White graduated as a fellow of UM's Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College with a bachelor's degree in economics and political science. Before doing so, he spent a summer working at an impoverished orphanage in San Salvador, El Salvador. Learn more.

Teacher Candidates Assist Struggling Readers As Volunteers at Area Elementary Schools

Field Station, Sedimentation Lab Partner to Provide Unique Learning Experiences for Fifth Graders

Honors College Students Visit Washington, Conduct Thesis Interviews, Network with Alums

Friends Honor Barry Hannah and Wife with Creative Writing Scholarship

Dec. 4-12 - Southern Miss will host a senior art exhibit featuring the works of graphic communication and fine arts students at the university's Museum of Art. The exhibit is free. For more information, call the Museum of Art at (601) 266-5200. Learn more.

Dec. 5 - Jackson State will host the 2008 Census Information Center Technical Assistance Workshop from 9 a.m. to noon at the Mississippi e - Center @ JSU. For more information, call 601-979-4204. Learn more.

Dec. 5 - Mississippi University for Women will hold its sixth annual December Graduates' Recognition Ceremony at 6 p.m. in Rent Auditorium of Whitfield Hall. Learn more.

Dec. 5 - Amateur stargazers can get a close-up look at the planets and beyond at an open house at the UM Kennon Observatory. The free viewing, 5:15-8:30 p.m., is to look at Venus, Jupiter, and Uranus using the university's telescopes. Later in the evening, the focus is on the moon and interesting stars. Learn more.

Dec. 7 - Jackson State University's department of music will sponsor its Annual Winter Concert at 7 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. Performers will include the University Chorale and JSU Singers. Willenham Castilla will be the conductor. Learn more.

Dec. 9 - The Blair E. Batson Hospital for Children at the University of Mississippi Medical Center will glow with the lights of thousands of Mississippians who support the annual Christmas tree lighting fund-raiser. Donors may honor a loved one with a tree light for a minimum $10 donation. Learn more.

Dec. 10 - The Mississippi University for Women Foundation presents The Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra featuring The Pied Pipers and Nancy Knorr in the Rent Auditorium at 7:30 p.m. Admission is free. Learn more.

Dec. 10 - Mississippi University for Women will hosts Town & Tower Club's annual holiday gathering in the Hogarth Dining Center from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. The cost of lunch is $13. For more information, call Frances Jutman at (662) 329-6540 or email fjutman@cableone.net. Learn more.

Dec. 10-12 - A landscape short course at Mississippi State University will give professionals and enthusiasts a chance to learn more about plants and their maintenance. Sponsored by the MSU Extension Service, the event will be in Dorman Hall. Contact Tammy Scott at (662) 325-2701 or tscott@pss.msstate.edu. Learn more.

Dec. 11 - Delta State University will present "Buddy Greene's 'Not Just Any Night' with featured artists Odessa Settles and Tricia Walker" in the Delta & Pine Land Theatre of the Bologna Performing Arts Center at 7:30 p.m. For ticket information, call the Box Office at (662)846-4626. Learn more.

Dec. 11-12 - Mississippi State presents the university's fall commencement ceremonies in Humphrey Coliseum. U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn will give the commencement address. Learn more.

Dec. 12 and 14 -The Southern Miss Gulf Coast Civic Chorale will perform two free holiday concerts on Dec. 12, at 7 p.m. in the Advanced Education Center auditorium in Long Beach and Sunday, Dec. 14, at 2 p.m. in the Cathedral of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Biloxi. Learn more.

Dec. 13 - The heartwarming story of Oliver Twist, "Oliver!" is to be retold onstage at UM Ford Center for the Performing Arts. The show begins at 8 p.m. Tickets are $30, $33, and $37 for various seating - $10 for students - and available through the UM Box Office, telephone (662) 915-7411. Learn more.

Dec. 13 - The Southern Miss Steel Band, Percussion Ensemble, and Samba Band will present its "Rhythms of Christmas" concert at 7:30 p.m. at the Mannoni Performing Arts Building auditorium in Hattiesburg. For tickets, call (601)266-5418 or (800) 844-8425 or order online at www.southernmisstickets.com. Learn more.

Dec. 15 - Mississippi State University's Student Health Center presents a flu shot clinic in Lee Hall from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Each shot costs $20 for anyone over the age of nine-years-old. Learn more.

Dec. 15 - The Southern Miss Percussion Ensemble will perform their Christmas Show at 7 p.m. in the Advanced Education Center auditorium on the Southern Miss Gulf Park campus in Long Beach. This concert is free and open to the public. Learn more.

Dec. 17 - Delta State University will present "Christmas Carol: The Musical" in the Delta & Pine Land Theatre of the Bologna Performing Arts Center at 7:30 p.m. For ticket information, please call the Box Office at (662) 846-4626. Learn more.

Dec. 22 - Mississippi State University's Athletic Department presents the Bulldog basketball team competing against Nicholls State University at Memorial Coliseum at 7 p.m. Call 1-888-Go-Dawgs for tickets. Learn more.

Through Dec. 31 - Rare and previously unexhibited paintings by artist Theora Hamblett are on display at the UM Museum. "Trees" is a 23-piece collection showcasing Hamblett's paintings of horticulture. The museum is open 9:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays and 1-4:30 p.m. Sundays. Admission is free. Learn more.

Jan. 8 - MSU Extension hosts the 19th Annual Mississippi-Louisiana Dairy Management Conference in Tylertown. Featuring specialists from MSU, LSU, and Auburn, the event deals with production, policy and economics. Contact Lamar Adams at (601) 876-4021 or walthall@ext.msstate.edu. Learn more.

Jan. 21- 22 - The 35th annual Delta Ag Expo, coordinated by the Mississippi State Extension Service, will be at Cleveland's Bolivar County Expo Center. Contact Don Respess at (662) 624-3070, or drespess@ext.msstate.edu. Learn more.

Look for the next issue January 9, 2009.

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

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