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Alumni

Entergy power lunch 2016

Entergy Mississippi gives grant to Delta State InFuse program

By | Alumni, Foundation, General | No Comments

The Bolivar County Power Lunch was held recently at Delta State University. The luncheon celebrated a new $50,000 grant presented to Delta State by Entergy.

“At Entergy, our vision is ‘We Power Life’. That means not only providing electricity, but also enriching our communities through improved educational opportunities,” said Haley Fisackerly, Entergy Mississippi president and CEO.  “Our grant to Delta State will be divided between providing scholarships for worthy students and helping to fund the InFuse program. This program will provide more students with science and technology skills and education, preparing them for the in-demand jobs of the future.”

This is not the first time that Entergy Mississippi has partnered with schools in the region they serve. In 2012, the company received two Governor’s Awards of Distinction from the Mississippi Association of Partners in Education. The company has been listed in the top 10 for Site Selection magazine’s Top Utilities in Economic Development for the past eight years, and this year, Corporate Responsibility magazine named Entergy Corporation #18 overall  among the Top 100 Corporate Citizens and #4 in corporate giving.

“Delta State University deeply values its partnership with Entergy Mississippi, and sincerely appreciates their support of our students and of InFuSE, the university’s current initiative to secure private funding to support programs in the sciences,” said Gary Bouse, chief development officer, Delta State Foundation.

Speakers at this event included: Robbin Jeter, vice president of customer service and operations, Ed Gardner, director of business and economic development, Aaron Hill, manager of transmission planning, Brandon Presley, Mississippi public service commissioner Northern District, Cecil Brown, Mississippi public service commissioner Central District, and Haley Fisackerly, president and CEO of Entergy Mississippi.

Entergy Mississippi, Inc. started as Mississippi Power and Light Company in 1923. Entergy Mississippi now serves over 445,000 customers in 45 counties.

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Bolivar County Alumni Crawfish Boil hosted Thursday

By | Alumni, Community | No Comments

The Delta State University Alumni Association has been busy planning the annual Bolivar County Alumni Crawfish Boil. This year’s event will be April 28 at 5:30 p.m. in front of Walter Sillers Coliseum.

In addition to crawfish, BBQ plates can also be purchased. Free Domino’s pizza will be available to children 12 and under with the purchase of an adult ticket. There will also be a silent auction and a Kids Zone. Live entertainment will be provided by the Delta All Star Cheerleaders, Fusion Gymnastics and Delta Blaze Competition Cheer.

Tickets for crawfish are $20 in advance or $25 at the door. BBQ tickets are $10. Tickets can be purchased at the Hugh Ellis Walker Alumni-Foundation House, online at www.deltastategiving.org/alumniassociation/bolivarcountycrawfishboil, or at the door.

All alumni, friends, students, faculty and staff are invited to attend. Proceeds from tickets, the silent auction and sponsorships benefit the Liza Vaughn Memorial Scholarship Fund, which provides scholarships to incoming Delta State students from Bolivar County. This scholarship was established in 2011 and was named for past assistant director of Alumni Affairs, Liza Vaughn, who lost her battle with cancer in April of 2012. To donate to the scholarship, visit https://www.deltastategiving.org/alumniassociation/lizavaughnmemorialscholarshipfund.

“The Delta State Bolivar County Alumni Chapter’s top priority is to raise scholarship dollars for students who attend Delta State from Bolivar County,” said Will Bradham, president of the Bolivar County Chapter.

2016 Bolivar County Alumni Association Crawfish Boil planning committee.

2016 Bolivar County Alumni Crawfish Boil planning committee.

This year, the Alumni Association is teaming up with Athletics to provide a photo booth with the Delta State coaches from 5:30–7:30 p.m. Visitors will be able to take photos with their favorite Delta State coaches.

Fans who use the Statesmen Nation app will be able to receive points for attending the crawfish boil.

The event would not be possible without the generosity of sponsors. Corporate Sponsors include: Statesmen Level – Bolivar Medical Center and Polk’s Meat Products; Okra Level – Patrick Davis State Farm, Air Evac Lifeteam, Hey Joe’s, Celia Manley ERA and Renasant Bank. This year’s event sponsors include: Okra Level – Guaranty Bank, Boyle Lumber Company, Needle Speciality Products, Yo Eddie BBQ, Kossman’s, Majic 107.5, Delta Radio, Domino’s, Delta Maids, Right at Home Healthcare; Green Level – Auto Mark, Nehi Bottling, Planters Bank, Denton’s Dairy, Statewide Federal Credit Union, Cleveland Lumber, Lipscomb Oil Company, Mississippi Land Bank, Ray Funeral Home, Shipp Family Eyecare, Ten Twenty Four, The Image Specialist, Hardy & Associates, PA and Griffith Real Estate; White Level – Robinson Electric Company, South Street Pharmacy, Backdraft, Bolivar Tire and Alignment, H Squared Ladies Wear, New York Life, Joe Reed & Co., Sonic Drive-In, Cleveland State Bank, Byrd Service Station, Peltan Eye & Laser, Todd Walley Plumbing, Williams Equipment & Supply, Cleveland Apartments, Abraham’s, Harmony Lanes and Flatlanders.

Join the Facebook Event page at https://www.facebook.com/events/183381515388241/. To stay up to date on the Alumni Association’s activities, follow these social media sites: Facebook (Statesmen Graduates), Twitter (@DSU_Alumni), Tumblr (http://www.dsualumni.tumblr.com), LinkedIn (DSU alumni), Instagram (dsualumni) and You Tube (dsualumni1). Save the date for this year’s Pig Pickin’ (Sept. 24) and Homecoming (Oct. 15).

The 2015 Outstanding Alumnus of the Year Lucy Janoush (center) with Ann Giger, director of Donor Relations, and Jeffrey Farris, director of Alumni Affairs.

Alumni Association Seeking Nominations for Annual Awards Gala

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The Delta State University Alumni Association is seeking nominations for the 2016 Alumni Service Awards, Alumni Hall of Fame and Outstanding Alumnus of the Year. The deadline for nominations is May 27. The award recipients will be recognized at the Annual Alumni Awards Gala on October 14 during Homecoming weekend.

“The Annual Alumni Awards Gala celebrates the accomplishments of our alumni and friends of Delta State University,” said Jeffrey Farris, director of Alumni Affairs. “The awards banquet gives us the opportunity to showcase our alums, invite alumni to campus, and host a formal gathering in the Bologna Performing Arts Center.”

The Outstanding Alumnus of the Year award was established to give recognition to an alumnus of Delta State who has made significant contributions to human or institutional programs in which a situation, an institution or a movement has been materially changed for the better because of that individual’s personal participation.

Induction into the Delta State University Alumni Hall of Fame is the highest honor bestowed upon an individual by the Alumni Association. Established in 2007, the Alumni Hall of Fame is extended to alumni and friends who have achieved professional distinction and made significant community service contributions at the local, national and/or international level, and who have thus brought honor and distinction to the university.

The Gladys Castle “Friend of Delta State” Service Award was named for Gladys Castle, a 46-year employee of Delta State who served as the first alumni secretary, and is presented to recognize outstanding service and contributions to the university by a non-alumnus.

The Kent Wyatt “Young Alumnus” Service Award is named for Dr. Forest Kent Wyatt, president emeritus of 24 years, and recognizes outstanding service and contributions to Delta State by a young alumnus 36 years of age or younger.

The Hugh Ellis Walker Alumni Service Award is named for Hugh Ellis Walker, a 24-year director of the Delta State University Alumni/Foundation, and recognizes outstanding service and contributions to Delta State by an alumnus.

The Legacy Award is presented to someone who has made an institutional change upon the university. The Alumni Chapter of the Year is presented to an alumni chapter that is dedicated to raising scholarship dollars for Delta State students in their area.

The Dr. Henry Outlaw Faculty and Staff Service Award was established in 2014 as a way to recognize former faculty or staff members who have made a significant influence in the life of the university and/or the National Alumni Association.

To nominate a person or a group for an award, and to view past recipients, visit http://www.deltastategiving.org/alumniassociation/alumniawardwinners. Nomination forms can be submitted online or mailed to DSU Box 3104 Cleveland, MS 38733.

To stay up to date on the Alumni Association’s activities, follow these social media sites: Facebook (Statesmen Graduates), Twitter (@DSU_Alumni), Tumblr (http://www.dsualumni.tumblr.com), LinkedIn (DSU alumni), Instagram (dsualumni) and You Tube (dsualumni1). Save the date for this year’s Pig Pickin’ (Sept. 24) and Homecoming (Oct. 15).

Former Delta State biology professor, Dr. James Steen (left of center with book), recently donated his 20-year project, “A Selected Chronological Bibliography of Biology and Medicine.” Joining in the celebration were (l to r): Emily Jones, university archivist; Dr. Ellen Green, chair of Biological Sciences; Dr. Charles McAdams, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs; Ann Steen, Steen’s wife; President William N. LaForge; Dr. David Breaux, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences; and Jeff Slagell, dean of Library Services.

Steen donates 20-year project

By | Academics, Alumni, College of Arts and Sciences, Faculty/Staff, President, Students | No Comments

Former Delta State University biology professor, Dr. James Steen, recently made a heartfelt donation of his 20-year project, “A Selected Chronological Bibliography of Biology and Medicine.”

The four-volume bibliography that Steen self-published in 2015 celebrates the secondary authors and laboratory technicians who are responsible for the great labor of discovery in the fields of biology and medicine. The work includes 2,875 pages, 21,457 references, 8,097 first authors cited and 2,632 journals cited.

Steen a Delta State graduate in 1962, taught in the Department of Biological Sciences for 30 years. He recently donated the hard copies of his compilation to Delta State University President William N. LaForge.

The university will now house the hardcover copies, and an online edition is available at http://ntweb.deltastate.edu/jtift/scbm/scbm-1.html.

“It’s a wonderful feeling to see this come to fruition,” said Steen. “I appreciate the university being gracious enough to receive this and put it in their collection. I wish to express my gratitude to Dr. Tiftickjian, my friend and former colleague at Delta State University. John formatted and placed my book on the DSU server, thereby allowing easy access to anyone wishing to search it.”

Steen started the project primarily for students, providing them a guiding source throughout their research. And Steen said he’s not fully done with it, as he and Tiftickjian will continue to update the information online.

LaForge could not be more thrilled to add the work to the Delta State library.

Dr. James Steen (left) with President William N. LaForge.

Dr. James Steen (left) with President William N. LaForge.

“We very much appreciate your contribution to your university. This is a wonderful compilation of work you put together, and it’s truly a labor of love,” said LaForge. “The volumes that you have here represent a lot of time — from the heart and the mind. Thank you for bestowing this on our university.

“It’s the students who will benefit most from this great work you have contributed.”

Dr. Charles McAdams, provost and vice president of Academic Affairs, was also grateful for Steen’s donation.

“Let me just echo the thanks from President LaForge,” said McAdams. “It’s this type of bibliographic information that is extremely valuable for students as they begin their journey down a research path.”

Follow all Delta State University news at www.deltastate.edu.

Dominique Rashad Warren, a Delta State biology graduate in 2013, is serving in the Peace Corps in The Gambia.

Delta State grad serving in Peace Corps

By | Alumni, College of Arts and Sciences, Faculty/Staff, International, Students | No Comments

Dominique Rashad Warren, a Delta State University biology graduate in 2013, is making his mark in the world by serving in the Peace Corps. Warren has been with the organization since October of 2015.

Despite being based in a rural area of The Gambia, a small West African country, Delta State Communications and Marketing was able to communicate with the distinguished alumnus via email.

Warren will serve for 27 months as a health extension volunteer, which will allow him to provide malaria, malnutrition and sanitation education, as well as work hands-on and with the people of the country.

“I had no previous connection with The Gambia before applying, but I was interested in the health positions they had available in this country, and the culture looked very interesting,” said Warren. “I’m really glad I chose The Gambia as my first choice because this place has lots of history. Being here makes me want to know more about my family history. I feel a deep connection with this place.”

The Cleveland native first considered applying to the Peace Corps when his passion to make a global impact grew.

Dominique Rashad Warren '13.

Dominique Rashad Warren ’13

“I always wanted to travel the world, see new places and meet new people, but I couldn’t think of a way to do it,” he said. “I was very glad I stumbled across the Peace Corps website because it gave me the opportunity to combine my passions. I would be able to help people in need and explore the world at the same time, for free. I don’t think you could ever get a better deal than that.”

He has already experienced numerous life-changing moments, but his favorite thus far occurred during training in the village of Jalambere.

“My host family there was amazing,” said Warren. “Every day after language class I would walk home. As soon as the children saw me they would run full speed to the end of the road to meet me. Sometimes I would have as many as 10 kids holding each of my fingers and singing my name as we walked home. This is easily one of the best experiences of my life.”

Warren said the area is quite reminiscent of the Mississippi Delta, but pressing issues plague the region such as education, health care, infrastructure, poor water quality, and lack of electricity and air conditioning.

While at Delta State, he was known for being an active student who made an impact. He was inducted into Delta State University’s Hall of Fame in 2013, and was elected Mr. Delta State University the same year. Additionally, he served on the SGA, was a tenor in Delta Singers, was a founder of the Delta Sigma chapter of Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity, and worked as a RA and hall director.

Dr. Ellen Green, department chair and associate professor of biology at Delta State, got to know Warren as his teacher.

“The first time I met Rashad in class, we were discussing prospecting for biofuels in various countries,” said Green. “In our very first conversation, he told me that he wanted to see the world. Rashad is a natural for the Peace Corps because he is curious, has great work ethic and amazing people skills. Coupled with his biology degree, he is well equipped to tackle the medical mission that he volunteered for as his Peace Corps service.

“Rashad was voted Mr. DSU in his senior year, in large part I think, because of his personality. He became friends with everybody. I expect him to be voted Mr. The Gambia any day now.”

Dr. Christy Riddle, executive director of the Student Success Center and International Student Services, said Warren would be a strong representative for Delta State while volunteering.

“While serving with the Peace Corps, Rashad is also a cultural ambassador for DSU,” said Riddle. “People say that DSU is the best kept secret in education, and we continuously search for ways to spread the word abroad about the benefits of attending DSU.”

While Internet access is extremely hard for Warren to come by, on the rare occasion he gets online, he is blogging about his experiences. Follow Warren’s journey at https://rashadinthegambia.wordpress.com.

To stay updated with Delta State news and events, visit www.deltastate.edu.