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Center for Community and Economic Development

Members of Delta State's Delta Center for Culture and Learning, along with members of the Community Center of Economic Development, recently participated in a community development panel discussion at the Coahoma County Higher Education Center in Clarksdale.

Delta Center, CCED participate in rural community development research panel

By | Center for Community and Economic Development, Delta Center | No Comments

A group of applied population researchers recently held their annual workshop and mini-conference in the Mississippi Delta. The meeting was part of a multi-state research project titled “The Great Recession, Its Aftermath, and Patterns of Rural and Small Town Demographic Change.”

To better understand issues of concern to rural community and health development professionals, participants engaged in an interactive panel discussion held at the Coahoma County Higher Education Center in Clarksdale.

Sixteen scholars from research institutions across the nation – including Cornell University, Penn State University, Auburn University, University of Missouri, University of Wisconsin, and the USDA Economic Research Service —joined seven of their Mississippi colleagues to present research on demographic and socioeconomic issues of concern following the Great Recession.

The group discussed strategies for better disseminating their work to the public. Additionally, they developed plans for the next five years of their work together, including their recently launched research brief series that is available online as “Population Trends in Post-Recession Rural America.” Interested readers should check the website periodically as new publications are released at http://w3001.apl.wisc.edu/.

The panel discussion was moderated and organized by Dr. John J. Green, director of the Center for Population Studies at University of Mississippi. Panelists included: Dr. Rolando Herts, director of The Delta Center for Culture and Learning at Delta State; Linda Stringfellow, director of the AmeriCorps VISTA Program in the Center for Community and Economic Development at Delta State; Aurelia Jones-Taylor, CEO of the Aaron E. Henry Community Health Center; and Desta Reff, Delta Clinical Fellow, a partnership between Mississippi State University and Harvard Law School.

The group of applied population researchers is associated with the Western Association of Agricultural Experiment Directors. The 2016 meeting was co-hosted and co-sponsored by the University of Mississippi’s Center for Population Studies, Department of Sociology and Anthropology and McLean Institute.

The mission of The Delta Center is to promote greater understanding of Mississippi Delta culture and history and its significance to the world through education, partnerships and community engagement. The Delta Center serves as the management entity of the Mississippi Delta National Heritage Area and is the home of the International Delta Blues Project and the National Endowment for the Humanities “Most Southern Place On Earth” workshops. For more information, visit http://deltacenterdsu.com/.

Over 260 participants took part in the third annual B.E.E.P. Breast Cancer Walk-a-thon.

Walkathon raises funds for breast cancer screenings

By | BEEP, Center for Community and Economic Development, Community, Students | No Comments

To kick off Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the Breast Education & Early-detection Project (B.E.E.P.) and the Outdoor Recreation Program at Delta State University held the third annual B.E.E.P. Walk-a-thon on Oct. 5 at the DSU Fitness Trail.

The event was attended by 261 participants who walked 827 laps, or the equivalent of 413.5 miles. It was sponsored by Dr. and Mrs. Roger Blake and the Blake Surgical Association. Delta Dairy of Cleveland provided samples of ice cream to event participants.

Also partnering for the event were: the College of Education and Human Sciences; Dean of Graduate Studies, Continuing Education and Research; Department of Athletics, HPER; greek organizations; Robert E. Smith School of Nursing; and the Central Mississippi Steel Magnolias Affiliate of the Susan G. Komen Foundation.

A special thanks was expressed to volunteers assisting with the event, including: Debbie Allen, Todd Davis, Dr. Beverly Moon,  Nancy Reginelli, Dr. Rose Strahan, and Kimberly Williams. Also assisting with the walk were DSU students Tia Brown, Katie Genneralli,and Liz Hansen from the Outdoor Recreation Program, and Eric Rush from the School of Nursing.

B.E.E.P. focuses on raising awareness of breast cancer and breast health and increasing the number of women who adopt early cancer detection methods. The project has been funded by a grant from the Central Mississippi Steel Magnolias Affiliate of the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation since 2008. B.E.E.P. provides breast health education and funding for clinical exams, mammograms, and ultrasounds for women who have limited income, are uninsured or underinsured, and have limited access to preventative healthcare in Bolivar, Sunflower, Washington and surrounding counties.

The walkathon raised $1,000 for B.E.E.P. to utilize, in addition to the grant funds, to provide breast cancer screenings and education.

B.E.E.P. has maintained long-term partnerships with local healthcare facilities and community organizations since 2008. Through March 31, 2016, the project has:

  •  sponsored or participated in over 400 breast cancer awareness events.
  •  reached 21,444 individuals
  •  provided 546 mammograms, 37 ultrasounds and 637 clinical exams
  •  provided 511 transportation stipends to participants to assist with costs of travel for the screenings
  •  referred 72 individuals for further testing after the screenings
  •  assisted in identifying 14 individuals with cancer through additional testing

For more information on B.E.E.P., contact Gail Bailey at 662-846-4008 or gbailey@deltastate.edu.

 

golf-tourney

Slots open for B.E.E.P. golf tournament

By | BEEP, Center for Community and Economic Development, Community, General | No Comments

The Delta State University (DSU) Breast Education and Early-detection Project (B.E.E.P.) will partner with the DSU Golf Course to sponsor the Third Annual B.E.E.P. Breast Cancer Awareness Golf Tournament on Saturday, Oct. 22.

The tournament will be a two-person scramble with registration beginning at 8 a.m. and tee off at 8:30 a.m. The tournament should conclude by 12 p.m..

Entry fees are $30 per person ($60 per team) and cart rental is $10 per person ($20 per team).

B.E.E.P. is funded through a grant from the Central Mississippi Steel Magnolias affiliate of the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation. B.E.E.P. participates in Breast Cancer Awareness events and provides breast health education throughout Bolivar, Sunflower, Washington and surrounding counties. The project also provides funding for clinical exams, mammograms, and ultrasounds for women who have limited income, are uninsured or underinsured, and have limited access to preventative healthcare.

A fish fry will be held for all participants at the conclusion of the golf tournament. The costs of the fish fry is $10 per person.

All proceeds from the tournament will go to support B.E.E.P.

For more information, contact David Williams at 662-846-4585 or dewilliams@deltastate.edu or B.E.E.P. Project Coordinator, Gail Bailey, at 662-207-0262 or gbailey@deltastate.edu.

vista-cced

VISTA participates in 2016 Delta Stand Down

By | Center for Community and Economic Development, VISTA | No Comments

On Sept. 10, members and staff with the VISTA project at Delta State University’s Center for Community and Economic Development joined efforts with the Gulf Coast Veterans Advocacy Council, Inc. and the Washington County Board of Supervisors to host the 2016 Delta Stand Down for more than 400 participants in recognition of National Day of Service and Remembrance.

On the 15th anniversary of 9/11, a total of 15 agencies provided services and connected more than 300 veterans and their families to health, education and federal benefits. Some of these agencies included the Division of Medicaid, Veterans Association of Memphis, VA Hospital of Jackson, Humana, Mississippi Valley State University and the American Red Cross.

More than 20 volunteers from the Washington County area assisted with preparing lunch for attendees, helping exhibitors and issuing supplies to veterans, such as blankets, boots, backpacks and sleeping bags

Eric Simmons, mayor of Greenville; Kenneth Johnson, mayor of Mound Bayou; and several members of the Washington County Board of Supervisors participated in the Stand Down.

Learn more about VISTA at http://www.deltastate.edu/academics/graduate-and-continuing-studies/center-for-community-economic-development/mdscamericorpsvolunteers-in-service-to-america/.

trio and CCED

Dept. of Education awards $1.1 million for Delta Educational Opportunity Center

By | Academics, Center for Community and Economic Development, Community | No Comments

Delta State University’s Center for Community and Economic Development recently received news of a major grant from the Department of Education in the amount of $1,180,000 to establish the Delta Educational Opportunity Center.

The grant is for five years at $236,000 per year.

The overall goal of the DEOC will be to increase the number of adults who enroll in postsecondary education institutions. The program will provide counseling and information on college admissions to qualified adults who want to enter or continue postsecondary education.

Services will also be provided to improve the financial and economic literacy of participants. An important objective of the program is to counsel participants on financial aid options, including basic financial planning skills, and to assist in the application process.

“The DEOC will be very important for this region because the Mississippi Delta has some of the state’s poorest educational outcomes when it comes to obtaining a high school diploma or equivalent and graduating from college,” said David Tanner with the CCED. “I am looking forward to increased enrollment numbers and graduation rates at Delta State. Many jobs are requiring applicants to have certain skills acquired from a post-secondary education, and the DEOC will help strengthen the economy with workers who are skillfully trained.”

Another key figure to help secure the grant for the CCED was Robin Boyles, director of the Office of Institutional Grants at Delta State.

“There is such a need for an Educational Opportunity Center that serves the residents of the Mississippi Delta,” said Boyles. “Through the Delta EOC, adults will be able to obtain assistance through the oftentimes overwhelming steps required for college admission. Providing these services to help those desiring to enter post-secondary education is one more opportunity that we have to address and positively impact the educational and economic development needs of our community.”

The program will be one of the eight federal TRIO Programs, which are outreach and student services programs designed to identify and provide services for individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds. TRIO works continuously to serve and assist low-income individuals, first-generation college students and individuals with disabilities to progress through the academic pipeline from middle school to post-baccalaureate programs.

Thanks to the grant, around 1,000 participants in 12 Delta counties will be serviced by DEOC. These counties include: Bolivar, Coahoma, Holmes, Humphreys, Issaquena, Leflore, Quitman, Sharkey, Sunflower, Tallahatchie, Tunica and Washington.

News of the grant also pleased Mississippi Congressman Bennie G. Thompson, who has worked hard to service those from disadvantaged backgrounds.

I am very pleased that Delta State University has been selected as a new recipient of an Educational Opportunity Center grant through the Department of Education’s TRIO programs,” said Thompson. “This will be the first time that counties in this area will benefit from this very important grant funding. Delta State has long worked as a community partner with counties in the Mississippi Delta to provide educational attainment opportunities and better health outcomes in the region. The programming that Delta State will put in place is yet another example of their continued commitment to the Mississippi Delta’s citizens and I applaud their efforts.”

Dr. Beverly Moon, dean of Graduate & Continuing Studies and Research at Delta State, is also thrilled to begin the DEOC venture.

We are so excited to be funded for this project, which we’ve been imagining and discussing for some time,” said Moon. “Finally, we were able to propose to the best possible funder, the Department of Education’s TRIO programming. The CCED’s 20-year history includes impactful programs in economic development, social justice, health services and educational programming. For a couple of years now, all of us involved with the CCED have worked specifically towards programming that would further the university’s positive impact on educational attainment levels.”

For more information, contact the CCED at 662-846-4808.