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Concert series gears up for fall

By | Community, Faculty/Staff, Students | No Comments

Delta State and the Cleveland community are getting ready for this fall’s concert series made possible through the Levitt AMP [Cleveland] grant awarded by Levitt Pavilions.

Amber Foster, Levitt Amp Cleveland coordinator, is a current Delta Music Institute student who is serving in this leadership role to fulfill her senior project. Expecting to graduate in December of 2015, Foster understands the valuable experience she will gain through this concert series.

“I am elated to take on this concert series as my senior project,” said Foster. “I’m really getting a huge dose of hands on experience that will further prepare me for the entertainment business. The fact that we have this opportunity to bring the community together in music is just awesome.”

Foster said that a whole team in Cleveland is dedicated to making this a great opportunity for the city. The lineup for the series will soon be announced.

“Each night we will have different genres of music, so there will be something new every week along with kids activities and food. Also, these are free shows. I can’t wait to see all the people that come out,” said Foster.

The concert project will reflect the three goals defined by Levitt Pavilions — to amplify community pride and the city’s unique character; enrich lives through the power of free, live music; and illustrate the importance of vibrant public places.

Lisa Cooley, Team Cleveland Main Street manager for the Cleveland-Bolivar County Chamber of Commerce, said that the grant provides the community a unique opportunity.

“The Levitt program is great for Cleveland because it will provide quality entertainment while also bringing people into our downtown, and it will bring visitors to Cleveland,” said Cooley. “Anytime we bring people into our community and into our downtown, it creates an economic boost for our local businesses.”

The concert series will require community support from volunteers, who can register at this link:

“We’re looking for enthusiastic, dedicated volunteers who’d like to use their love of music and people to enhance the Levitt AMP experience,” said Foster. “Help make the 10 weeks of free concerts at the Green Space on the Crosstie Walking Trail at College Street a huge success.”

The Levitt AMP Cleveland Music Series is supported in part by Levitt Pavilions, the national nonprofit behind the largest free outdoor concert series in America. Dedicated to strengthening the social fabric of our communities, Levitt partners with cities to transform neglected public spaces into thriving destinations through the power of free, live music.

In 2015, free Levitt concerts will take place in 16 cities across 14 states, all featuring a rich array of music genres and high caliber talent. In addition to Levitt AMP, Levitt forms the only national network of nonprofit outdoor music venues, each presenting 50+ free concerts every year. Within this region is the Levitt Shell ( in Memphis, Tenn. with concerts taking place this May, June, July, September and October. Learn more about locations and impact:

Federal Court dismisses civil lawsuit

By | General, President | No Comments

The United States District Court for the Northern District of Mississippi has dismissed a civil lawsuit filed against Delta State University President William N. LaForge by faculty member William Hays.

Following standard practices and procedures, the University did not renew Hays’ at-will contract as chair of the Division of Languages and Literature at the end of fiscal year 2014.  In his complaint, Hays alleged that LaForge violated his First Amendment right of free speech and retaliated against him for various things Hays said or wrote over a period of more than 20 years.

In a 34-page Memorandum Opinion Granting Defendant’s (LaForge’s) Motion to Dismiss, U.S. District Judge Glen Davidson concluded, “…Plaintiff’s (Hays’) Second Amended Complaint in its entirety fails to state a claim for First Amendment retaliation. Accordingly, Defendant’s motion to dismiss shall be granted on this ground.”

In the context of federal court litigation, the dismissal of a civil case in the early stages of the process is an extraordinary result indicating that the plaintiff has no cause of action and has failed to state any claim for relief permitted by law.  The outcome here is particularly telling, as Hays filed three different versions of his complaint in his attempt to avoid dismissal.

“This is an outcome well-deserved by President LaForge and Delta State,” said attorney Cal Mayo of Oxford. “Disgruntled employees cannot hold the institution hostage out of anger over decisions made in the best interests of the University and the students and broader community it serves. With the complaint properly dismissed, President LaForge and Delta State can now devote all their time and resources toward the future and continued fulfillment of the University’s higher education mission.”

Supporting documents include a Memorandum Opinion re Motion to Dismiss (051) and Order Granting Motion to Dismiss (050).

Summer Arts Institute Showcases at Bologna Center

By | Bologna Performing Arts Center | No Comments

Over the past two weeks, 50 talented young artists from across the Southeast have immersed themselves in a multi-disciplinary Core Arts program through the Janice Wyatt Mississippi Summer Arts Institute. Students ranging from age 12-18 have taken intensive daily classes in various artistic disciplines including dance, vocal music, theatre, literary arts and visual arts. Led by experienced and dedicated faculty members, counselors and camp staff, the 2015 Core Arts program has been a rewarding experience for all involved.

Tonight at 7 p.m., the institute will present a literary arts reading, visual arts exhibition and closing reception in honor of the participants, faculty and staff. Community members are invited to the Bologna Performing Arts Center to enjoy original prose performed by the campers, as well as a film premier produced by the video production class. Various works of art will be on display throughout the lobby following the performance.

On Saturday at 10 a.m., the community is invited to the institute’s final performance, featuring pieces prepared by the dance, theatre and vocal music classes. Admission is free and both showcases are open to the public.

Applications for the 19th Janice Wyatt Mississippi Summer Art Institute will open in January of 2016. For more information, call 662-846-4844 or visit

The 2014 Core Arts program is made possible through support from the Mississippi Arts Commission, Entergy, the Community Foundation of Northwest Mississippi, the American Legion, King’s Daughters and Sons Circle Number Two, Double Quick, Domino’s Pizza, Crosstie Arts Council and Delta Dairy Frozen Yogurt.

President’s and Dean’s List announced

By | Academics, Students | No Comments

Each semester, Delta State University recognizes students who excel in academic performance.

President’s List
The following students have been awarded the President’s List of Delta Scholars for earning a 3.80 to 4.00 grade point average while attempting 12 or more academic hours during the 2015 spring semester.

Decatur, AL –Elizabeth LongFoley, AL –Shawn Sanks Hueytown, AL –Homewood, AL -Sean Eaton
MaryAnn Banks, Timothy Foy Helena, AR- Ashley TallyLake Village, AR-Caleh TrexlerMonticello, AR- Jessica Wishard

Pacoima, CA- Sheyenne Rosa

Pensacola, FL- Siosifa Finau

Clinton, IL –Adam Clayton

Orland Park, IL- Genevieve Kulak

Oswego, IL –Erin Newman

Bowling Green, KY- Katherine Cabrera

Gonzales, LA- Hannah Core

Madisonville, LA- Carly Keller

Lanham, MD-Alice Koech

Lavale, MD- Elizabeth Quinn

Brighton, MI- Kirsten Stroven

Willmar, MN- Columba Ferdinand

Bridgeton, MO- Laura Fulton

Avon, MS- CandaceChildress

Batesville, MS-  Sarah, Burkhalter, Katherine Carlini, Alexandra Hallmark

Belzoni, MS- Jeffrey Hughes

Benoit, MS- Jessica Woods

Bentonia, MS- Anna Clark

Boyle, MS- Amanda Redden, Matthew  Riggins, William Weeks

Brandon, MS- Amber Adcock, Augusta Clausel, James Johnson, William Lehr, Clinton Sennett

Bruce, MS- Ira McCormick

Canton, MS- Victoria McDonald

Carrollton, MS- Haley Liddell

Carthage, MS- Conor Bell

Centreville, MS – Craig Lyons

Charleston, MS- Latoya Richardson

Clarksdale, MS- Meriwether Bass, Della Biggers, Grabrial Brown, Jonathan Burnwatt, Jacob Elliott

Gautier, MS- Marc Leggett 

Cleveland, MS-Cecilia Becerril Nieves, Jamiya Boddie, Carly Bridges, Meredith Burchfield, Mohamed Diaby, Raymond Dooley, Robyn Dye, Angela Gresham, Katherine Jackson, Harrison Lauer, Samantha Lejeune, Richard Nash, Christopher Pecou, Antonette Savage, Elizabeth Stallworth, Faizan Tahir, Dillon Vickers, Anna Wood, Elisabetta Zengaro, Reagan King

Clinton, MS- Jess Bennett

Coldwater, MS- Derrell  Hart

Crystal Springs, MS- Cathryn Beck, Christine Beck

Decatur, MS- Melissa Griffin, Jesse Vaughn

Diamondhead, MS- David Hector

Duck Hill, MS – Elizabeth Rainey

Edwards, MS- Shannon Kavanaugh-Hall

Flora, MS- Zachary Dickerson, Jack Tharp

Florence, MS- Shawna Huff, Cherlyn Wilhelm, Jennifer Duke

Glen Allen, MS- Doris Parish

Gore Springs, MS- Frances Conley, Jessica Hood

Greenville, MS- Alexis Benson, Bernice Briggs-Jones, Lasonya Brown, Caleb Chambers, Jimmieria Chillis, Karmeisha Hill, Raven Hite, Gwendolyn Lidge, Shelton Manus, Muriel Muncher, Bobby Rich, Myiesha Stewart, Phyllis Stewart, Michael Turley, Holley Whitehead

Greenwood, MS- Ulysses Cates, Aaliyah Jones, Cody Nance, Charlotte Quinn, Austin Rausa, Mary Saunders

Grenada, MS – Brady Collins, Taylor Holland, Stephanie Messer, Laura Orsborn, Emily Phillips, Cody Upchurch, Sunni Willis

Hattiesburg, MS- Tyler   Daniels, Dylan Dobbs, Damian Mercier

Hazlehurst, MS-Katelynn Meese

Hernando, MS- Catherine Carver, Cassidy Massey, Calli Musselwhite, Ethan Vaughn

Horn Lake, MS-Miranda WienekeHouston, MS – Charles YoungHurley, MS – Steve McMellonIndianola, MS- Charles Kimbrell, Paula SimmonsInverness, MS- Brenton KingIsola, MS- Ira BargerJackson , MS- Lane Fitzgerald, Bobby WallaceLeland, MS- Haley Turner, Davida White, Kashundra Branch

Louisville, MS-   Kara Nowell, Abbie Smith

Lyon, MS- Adrian Dill, Chrisa Mansell

Madison, MS- Amanda  Covington, Mary Hardy, Austin  Henderson, Megan LaPlante, Kailey Mathis

Marks, MS- Laura Fortner, Emily Grossi, Marley Schiele

Mathiston, MS- Kathryn Hutto

Meridian, MS-   Katherine Davis

Merigold, MS-   Robert Cox, Shanice Cox, Brittany Earls, Emily Tschiffely

Minter City, MS- Karmen Johnson

Nesbit, MS- Amy Babb, Lydia Dias, Meagan Johnson

Olive Branch, MS- Juan  Aldana, Caroline Bickley, Christina Camerota, Jacob Ferguson, Samantha Few, Ashley  Jones, Skylar Kuehn, Laura Strong, Katelyn Westbrook

Oxford, MS- Meredith Allen, Amanda Hinton, Ashley Mooneyham, Victor Rather, Harriet Sudduth, Nicholas Whitfield

Pearl, MS- Colton Dunn, Jade Lee, Jalesa Peterson, Bre’Anne Walker

Pontotoc, MS – Anna Roberts

Pope, MS- Haley Allen

Raleigh, MS- Kassidy Tally

Renova, MS- Shavia Johnson

Richland, MS – Shelbie Trest

Ripley, MS- Bethany Grant, Rebbecca Ruckes

Rosedale, MS – Teresa Griffin

Ruleville, MS – Briana Williams

Sallis, MS- Shujuan Smith

Saltillo, MS- Arianna Hodges

Schlater, MS- William Thompson

Senatobia, MS- Katlyn Dickerson, Andrew Van Velsor, Darius Kennedy

Shaw, MS- Ebonee Jackson, Tyler Muzzi, Alexis Williams

Southaven, MS- Christian Clements, Gunter McCourt, Bonnie Moore, Hunter Webb

Sumner, MS- Ciera Triplett

Sunflower, MS- Jammie Marquez, Sherman Stauffer

Thaxton, MS- Haley Quinn

Tunica, MS- Jeremiah Berry, Brittney Smith

Tupelo, MS- Colton Fremont

Tutwiler, MS- Gregory Braggs, Brooke Scallion

Utica, MS- Samuel Goode, Meghan Johnson

Vancleave, MS- Dylan Garrett

Vicksburg, MS-  Rachel Green, Chandler Jackson, Katherine Locke, Hannah Register

Yazoo City, MS- Tiffany Winstead

Fairview Park, OH- Kayla Kazanowski

Loveland, OH- Matthew Swaine

Memphis, TN- Christian McCollough

Frisco, TX- Brook Cline

Exchange Students- Tais Cotta, Melia Tipper, Minji Kim, Catherine Thomson, Maximilian Gerhold, Ran Ni, Hisa Alves, Rebecca Deegan, Melanie Tombers, Matteo Fraschi, Rebekah Napier Jameson, Senni Apuli, Hristina Koceva, Danielle Meerholz, Rosa Maria Kamau, Tiago Doneux, Ahmed Rahmani


Dean’s List

The following Delta State University students have been awarded Dean’s List honors for earning a 3.50-3.79 GPA while attempting 12 or more academic hours during the 2015 spring semester.

Hoover, AL- Trent Dunne, Landry TulloDothan, AL- Christopher CooperNorthport, AL- Juwan HackettTheodore, AL – Monica  ElyTalladega, AL- Hannah WilliamsHelena, AR- Elijah Mondy, Charles SchuepferLakeVillage, AR- Patrick PaigeCabot, AR- Parker Pearson

Marion, AR- Spencer Wann

Mountain Home, AR- Kylie Morton

West Helena- Yvonne Kinchen

Surprise, AZ – Edgar Sokolovich

Corona, CA- Christopher Lietaert

Moreno Valley, CA- Travis Champion

Mandeville, LA- Ian Richard

Metairie, LA- Danielle Dugas

Prarieville, LA- Jaxon Lambert

Slidell, LA – Nicholas Houston

Ackerman – Andrea Cutts

Anguilla – Ashley Clinkscales, Matthew Gore

Arcola – Horace Willis

Batesville – Andrew Taylor, Duarte Keila, Mary Neal, Pamela Bellamy, Rebekah Barbee, Sydney Sullivant, Tyler Toole

Benoit – Steven Womble

Bentonia – Whitney Young

Big Creek- Dustin Files

Biloxi- Emily Bodin

Brandon- Emily Craven, Emmy Ballard, Michael Gibbs, Brooke Jones, Dalea King, Lanie Little

Brookhaven- Caleb Smith

Byhalia- Sarah Bailey

Byram- Holly Mooney

Calendonia- Marshall Tomlinson

Canton- Anna- Katherine

Carrollton- Cassandra Taylor

Charleston-Alexis Ross

Clarksdale – Aallyah Wright, Shaana Dishman, Devin Doss, Mary Harris, Brenda Haris-Watara, Sara Hood , Jasmine Cleark, Connor Keenum, Regilyn Keys, Leah Lamb, Carla Mills, Virginia Peacock, Gregory Tackett, Seneca Walton

Cleveland- John Aaron, Tarzan Adams, John Aldridge, Alecia Wilson, Al-Yassin Nadeem, Anwar Wardha DeAndra Smith, Crystal Grose, Julie Adams, Lawson King, Lisa McLaughlin, Austin Payne, Alexander Peach, Niko Ptasinski, Sarah Pugh, Frances Rivera-Velazquez, Jervetta Robinson-Bradley, Austin Runnels, Taylor Saia, Andrew Smith, Connor Taylor, Craig Taylor, Timothy Howze, Kevin White, Brandy Rubio, Yvan Nys, Kamila Dessalles, Amirita Tipper, Buffiesha Faulknor

Clinton- Molly Granger, Lindsey Pardue, Laura Macher, Cailee Conrad, Declan Harrick

Coila – Kenisha Henry

Coldwater- Hope Hanks, Hannah Simpson, Justin Holt, Madison Smallwood,

Columbia- Rosemary O’Quin

Corinth- Rory Young

Crenshaw- Sheketra Bell

Drew- Tara Willingham

Duncan- Eurekia Beasley

Ellisville- Kevin Sherman

Eupora- Justin Boatman

Flora- William Chapman, Walter Shephard

Florence- Jennifer Duke

Georgetown- Kelsey Allen

Glen Allan- Ollissea Morganfield

Greenville – James Allen, Shelby Barrett, Derek Weddington, Dylan Elkins, Jeremy Hughes, John Marsh, Lamia Lattimore, Tierra Nolan, Pattie Rose, Lea Pugh, Sangelia Smith, Maya Smith, Leontyne Timmons

Greenwood- LaToya Hill, Allison Watkins

Grenada- Emily Davis, Lisa Hill, Kimberly Holland, Edwin McCurdy, Michael Hankins, Michael Holland

Gulfport- Elizabeth LeMere

Hattiesburg- Jacob Mercier

Hernando- Allison Dale, Madison Ennis, Taylor Jones, Kristen Olson, Keelan Ready, Emily Riley, Meaghan Vogelsang

Holcomb- Anthony Henson, Amy Brower, Elizabeth Bullion

Hollandale – Jessica Clinton, Undra Richardson

Horn Lake- Amanda Lutz, Taylor LeeIndianola- Ann Dewitt, Lakeisha Draine, Whitney StricklandJackson- Krystal Henson, Charles StaytonJonestown – Shernikio BellamyKosciusko – Taylor Cannon, Heather HudginsLambert – Katherine ShookLeland – Camry CampbellLena -Tanya Jones

Louisville -Levell Hawkins, Zachary Taylor, Tyler Sullivan, Victoria Burton

Lucedale- Bradford Thornton

Lula- Ashley Martin

Maben- Brandon Avant

Madison- Katelyn Averitt, Kreslyn Hanlon, Caitlin Ivey

Marks- Tate Collums, Ethan Dilley, Hayley Atkinson

Meridian- Jonathan Graham

Merigold- Alexis Stanley, Haley McDonald

Midnight- Janie Domino

Moorhead- Yvonne Alvarez

Nesbit- Jack Byrd, Natalie Harrison

New Albany- Ellen Tarrant

Okolona- Duwanda Singleton

Olive Branch-Alana Parker, Alexandria Corkran, Amanda Corkran, Hannah Hindman, Joshua Vanderburg, Kathryn Mangialardi, Kathryn Penton, William McCall, Melissa Britton, Jared Rabren

Shelby Walters

Oxford-Darren  Collier, Derek Heart, Caroline Grilliette, Kendal Davis

Parchman- Christopher Rogers

Pearl- Donna Ausborn, Peggy Monk, Patti Wheeler

Philadelphia- Chandler Smith

Pontotoc- Rhandi Ball

Pope- William Barefoot, Dana Rico, Mary Gentry, Ashley Roy

Preston- Chadisty Hickman

Purvis-  Sara Crider

Ridgeland- Holli Gill

Ripley- Savannah Wilbanks

Rolling Fork- Amber Ford, Amelie Goss, Hernesha Moore, Monica Scott

Ruleville-Marquitos Cockrell

Saucier- De’lena Keeler, Joshua Rushing

Schlater- Louie  Walker

Senatobia- Darius Kennedy, Cailon Steward

Shaw-Braxton Reed

Sidon-Josephine Howard

Southaven-Kristen Day, Chelsea Tanner, Andrew Whyte

Starkville- Kathleen Logeston

Sunflower-Hannah Myers

Tunica-Tyler Billingsley

Tupelo- Derrick Hughes , Erin Tucker, Madison Nash, Forrest Timmons

Tutwiler – Kathryn Burchfield

Vaiden- Domonique Curry

Vance- William  Rayburn

Vicksburg- Margie Blanche, Caleb Hollingsworth ,Cassandra McLeod, Christine Councell, Porsha Gatson, Amelie  Goss, Jarrick Finkley, Vanessa Shiers

Walls- Jared Kirk

Water Valley-Meredith Brown, Roger Tollison

Winona – Brandon Ott

Yazoo City- Kanwaldeep Kaur, Abbigail Myers

Blue Springs, MO- Kristen Parsons

Nixa, MO- Dylan Crouch

Mooresville, NC- Hannah Kistemaker

Broken Arrow, OK- Nicholas Goza

Piedmont, SC- Whitney Emerson

Lexington, TN- Benjamin Lifsey

Arlington, TN – Julianne Morgan

Bartlett, TN – Lauren Wilkes

Memphis, TN- Basia Thomas, Lisa LaFarlette, Mercy Wanjoeh, Sydnee Williams

Millington, TN- Jonathan Moody

Nashville, TN- Matthew Barrett

Nolensville, TN- Madison Zoeller

Oakland, TN- Hannah Whitaker

Mansfield, TX- Jonathan Boggus

Dallas, TX- Bailey Saebi


PATHS graduates first cohort

By | Office of Information Technology | No Comments

The Office of Information Technology (OIT) at Delta State created the Partnership for Applying Technology to Help Students (P.A.T.H.S.) Program as a professional development opportunity to empower university support staff with resources and information regarding campus OIT services. The goal is to enable participants to contribute to student success with campus technology. The cohort-based program is delivered over three days in a lunch-and-learn format.

Support staff often receive questions concerning IT services, the learning management system and access to IT resources. P.A.T.H.S. was designed to equip “first responders” with a firm understanding of technology services as well as a broad aptitude for operating systems. Participants recognized the value in the training.

“The P.A.T.H.S. program helped me understand the ways in which students and faculty use campus systems, such as Canvas, so I can assist them with any difficulties they have and direct them to other campus resources that are available to improve their digital interactions,” said Rachel Becker, senior secretary for Teacher Education.

The first cohort of five was completed five sessions led by OIT staff. Session topics included “Learning and Teaching with Canvas” and “Cybersecurity.” In addition to workshops about OIT services, participants also received hands-on training in software that can increase efficiency in their assigned work. Over the course of three days, participants learned about OIT supported technologies including Canvas, the university’s learning management system, Banner, DSU Online Services and Microsoft Word and Publisher. OIT presenters included Dr. Edwin Craft, chief information officer, Dr. Nicole House, instructional technology, Chris Giger, admin services, and Jabari Buck, desktop services.

At the conclusion of the program, participants received a Certificate of Completion with recognition as OIT Certified Strategic Partners in promoting student success with technology on campus. The first cohort consisted of Cheryl Ballard, administrative secretary for Academic Affairs and Provost, Cheryl Beaty, senior secretary for Music, Rachel Becker, senior secretary for Teacher Education, Diane McCall, senior secretary for Art, and Margaret I. McClain, administrative secretary for the Dean of Arts and Sciences.

For more information, contact House at or visit