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College of Arts and Sciences

Delta State excels in two national rankings

By | Academics, College of Arts and Sciences, College of Business | No Comments

Delta State University’s College of Business has been identified for providing one of the best online MBA programs according to a new ranking from Great College Deals.

Editors of the list slotted Delta State as No. 6 in the national poll.

Each of the colleges listed in the ranking has tuition and fees of less than $12,000 annually.

Great College Deals’ methodology included a point system, which placed value on the number of specializations and concentration areas within the MBA program. Points were awarded for small class size and low student-to-faculty ratios. Additional value-adding components, such as student body diversity and the availability of special projects and internships, were also evaluated.

Great College Deals’ mission is to provide high schoolers and other prospective college students with information about top-ranked universities offering accredited degrees at competitive tuition rates. The organization is dedicated to turning students into smart shoppers who can avoid having overwhelming loan debt at graduation.

Learn more about Delta State’s College of Business at http://www.deltastate.edu/college-of-business.

Additionally, Delta State’s College of Education and Human Sciences has been identified for having one of the most affordable online Master’s in Elementary Education programs in the country in a new ranking from http://www.bestmastersdegrees.com.

Delta State came in at No. 4 on the list.

The Best Master’s Degree organization reviewed 113 accredited schools and then narrowed down the initial pool to schools ranked by major publications like Forbes magazine, The Princeton Review, or U.S. News and World Report. Tuition data was gathered from the NCES College Navigator database.

The Best Master’s Degrees’ mission is to help prospective graduate students make informed decisions about what kind of degree to pursue and where to study. Its main focus is providing rankings and profiles of degree programs across a variety of the most common master’s degree areas.

Learn more about Delta State’s Education and Human Sciences at http://www.deltastate.edu/college-of-education.

Chamber ensembles concert coming to BPAC

By | Academics, Bologna Performing Arts Center, College of Arts and Sciences, Community, Faculty/Staff, Students | No Comments

The Delta State Department of Music presents an evening of chamber music featuring the DSU Woodwind Quintet, DSU Flute Quartet and the DSU Saxophone Duo in the Bologna Performing Arts Center Recital Hall on Nov. 16 at 7:30 p.m.

The concert is free and open to the public.

The chamber ensembles have just returned from a tour of northern Mississippi, where they delighted high school audiences with their performances.

Delta State’s newly-formed Woodwind Quintet is comprised of leading members of the DSU Wind Ensemble, including flute player Amanda Lutz of Horn Lake, oboe player Mollie Searcy of Grenada, clarinet player Emily Hercules of Ripley, bassoon player Tristan Crockett of Grenada, and horn player Jacob Jackson of Southaven. The quintet is coached by Dr. Shelley Collins and Dr. Bret Pimentel. The quintet will play works by Haydn and Persichetti.

The DSU Saxophone Duo, under the direction of Pimentel, will perform works by W. F. Bach, Arthur Mayeur, and Paul Hindemith. Members of the ensemble ainclude Sara Crider of Purvis and Dakota Young of Grenada.

The DSU Flute Quartet, under the direction of Collins, will perform Cathleen McMichael’s “Legends from the Greenwood,” a showpiece inspired by the poetry of Longfellow, and “Concerto in A Minor,” by French Baroque composer Boismortier. Members of the quartet include Savannah Cavalier of Brookhaven, Barbara Doorenbos of Meridian, Amanda Lutz of Horn Lake, and Caitelan Shelton of Ripley.

For more information, contact the Department of Music at 662-846-4615.

Handel’s “Messiah” to be performed at Delta State

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Zeigel Hall on the campus of Delta State is currently filled with the sounds of one of the most beloved musical works of all time, “Messiah,” by George Frideric Handel.

The Delta Chorale, Delta Singers Okramen and Delta Singers Women’s Chorale are learning the masterwork for a performance at the Bologna Performing Arts Center on Nov. 28 at 7 p.m.

Across town on Monday nights at First United Methodist Church, the Delta Choral Union is learning the same music in preparation for a grand collaboration that will take shape over the next three weeks, culminating in the concert performance.

Dr. Adam Potter, director of Choral Activities at Delta State and the conductor of the Delta Chorale and Delta Singers Women’s Chorale, is the music director for the performance. He will share the podium with ElizaBeth Beckham, conductor of the Delta Choral Union, and Kevin Tharp, conductor of the Delta Singers Okramen.

“There is no better way to kick off the holiday season than with a gala choral performance like this,” said Potter. “We are so excited to bring ‘Messiah’ to the Delta.”

The Delta Chorale is the premier touring vocal ensemble at Delta State. Comprised of approximately 40 mixed voices, it performs frequently both on and off campus. Its repertoire features high-quality choral music from diverse styles, musical eras, languages and cultures. The chorale has performed by invitation at state and regional conferences of the Mississippi Music Educators Association and American Choral Directors Association.

Delta Singers encompasses two separate choirs, the Okramen men’s choir and Women’s Chorale, which perform together frequently. These non-auditioned choirs provide singers an opportunity to learn many styles of music and also focus on developing vocal and musicianship skills. They also serve as lab choirs for advanced student conductors.

The Delta Choral Union is an adult volunteer community choir based in Cleveland. It has a proud history of excellent singing and highly-anticipated concerts. Beckham serves as its music director.

For this performance, the Delta State University choral program has hired a full roster of professional string players from the Memphis Symphony Orchestra to accompany the choirs. Their concertmaster will be Anne-Gaëlle Ravetto, instructor of violin at Delta State.

Department of Music faculty Josh Armstrong, Shelley Collins, Michael Ellzey, Bret Pimentel and Kumiko Shimizu will complete the orchestra in the wind, percussion and continuo sections.

The performance will also feature professional artists presenting the vocal solos Handel interspersed between the choruses. Laurissa Backlin, soprano, is currently an assistant professor of music at Delta State. Chad Payton, countertenor, is an assistant professor of voice at Capital University in Ohio (former DSU faculty from 2011-16). Jamie Dahman, tenor, joined the DSU voice faculty this fall. Patton Rice, bass-baritone, is the director of vocal music at the Mississippi School of the Arts and a frequent soloist with Mississippi Opera.

Tickets for this event are available at the Bologna Performing Arts Center box office or at choir.deltastate.edu. They are $15 for adults, $10 for DSU faculty and staff, and $5 for students and senior citizens.

This performance has been made possible by a generous donation from Margaret Heard Walker.

Delegation presents at vertebrate paleontology conference

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

Delta State University environmental science students and professors recently presented two research posters at the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology Conference in Salt Lake City, Utah on Oct. 25-29.

Students Christine Beck and Danielle Husley co-authored a research poster with biology professors Dr. Nina Baghai-Riding and Dr. Eric Blackwell titled “Paleocommunity of Late Pleistocene Megafauna found along the Lower Mississippi River Delta.”

The poster focused on ice age animals that lived in the Mississippi Delta about 12,000 years ago, including bison, mastodons, mammoths, great short-faced bear, ground sloths, ice age beaver, musk ox and more.

Dr. Judy Massare, professor of paleontology and geologist at Suny College at Brockport, New York encouraged Husely and Beck to publish the work in a respectable scientific journal. Additionally, the students became exposed to new morphological and ecological discoveries about fossil reptiles, mammals and amphibians, learned about new techniques including photogrammetry and basic scientific illustration in Adobe Photoshop, and networked with other students and scientists.

Baghai-Riding also co-authored a poster with her colleague Dr. Carol Hotton associated with the Natural Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, Department of Paleobiology in Washington D.C. Their work was titled “Palynology of the Late Jurassic Morrison Formation: new insights into floristics, paleoclimate, phytogeography, and tetrapod herbivory.”

Learn more about environmental science opportunities at Delta State by visiting http://www.deltastate.edu/college-of-arts-and-sciences/biological-and-physical-sciences/.

Department of Music to host Mississippi Music Teachers Association conference

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The Delta State Department of Music will host the 2016 State Conference of the Mississippi Music Teachers Association (MMTA) and the state competitions of the Music Teachers National Association on campus Nov. 4-5. Approximately 100 music teachers and students from around the state will visit campus for these events.

The official guest artist is pianist Dr. Louis Nagel, who will present a guest artist recital as the highlight of the conference at the Bologna Performing Arts Center Recital Hall on Nov. 4 at 7:30 p.m. The recital will feature piano solo works by Bach, Beethoven and Brahms. Nagel’s recital is free and open to the public. For more information, contact the Department of Music at 662-846-4615.

Nagel combines an active concert and teaching schedule and is noted for his lecture-recitals by musicians and non-musicians alike. He has performed in highly-acclaimed solo recitals and concerto concerts in major American and European cities. He has taught at the Interlochen Arts Camp, International Music Camp in Poland, Adamant Music School and the Amalfi Coast Music Festival in Italy. At the University of Michigan, he is the Director of the School of Music, Theatre and Dance Outreach Program, advisor to the Bachelor of Musical Arts Degree program, the Interim Chair of the Piano Department, and has been on the faculty since 1969.

Nagel is a sought-after presenter at state and national conferences with lecture-recitals at National Music Teachers’ Association conventions in Dallas, Washington, D.C., and Salt Lake City. He is often invited as a state convention artist and has appeared in other forums throughout the United States. He is a member and former board member of the American Liszt Society and often performs at its annual festivals including the Great Romantics Festival at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario.

Nagel is a Steinway artist, and has performed in Steinway Hall in New York as well as numerous times for the Steinway music stores in Michigan. He has recorded “Four Centuries of J. S. Bach” for Equilibrium, Music of C.P.E. Bach and Joseph Haydn for Block M. Additionally, he has collaborated with his wife, psychologist, psychoanalyst and musician, Dr. Julie Jaffee Nagel, at the Michigan Psychoanalytic Institute and the American Psychoanalytic Association.

His three degrees from The Juilliard School include studies with Rosina Lhevinne, Josef Raieff and Joseph Bloch. Subsequent to his studies at The Juilliard School was a summer of coaching with Vladimir Ashkenazy.

Recent performances have included “Mussorgsky’s Pictures” at an exhibition in Florence, Italy, and four programs devoted to the piano sonatas of Schubert at Kerrytown. In addition, he presented a program on the French Suites of Bach at the Music Teachers National Association National Convention in New York.