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College of Education and Human Sciences

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Clifton Taulbert to lecture July 19 in Ewing Hall

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Delta State University College of Education and the Delta School Leadership Pipeline will host a lecture by Clifton Taulbert.

The lecture, titled Creating a Positive Organizational Culture in Schools, is set for Tuesday, July 19, from 9:30 a.m. until noon in the Jacob Center in Ewing Hall on the Delta State campus.

Clifton lecture July 19Taulbert is an American author, business consultant, and speaker. He has written books such as Eight Habits of the Heart: Embracing the Values that Build Strong Communities, and Eight Habits of the Heart for Educators. His belief is, “The culture we create and the way we think are essential for success within our workplaces. Building community is our commitment to an inclusive and collaborative culture. To think entrepreneurially, is to discover new and exciting pathways to workplace success. Together, they are transformative.”

The College of Education and Human Sciences recently completed its 12th annual Literacy Across the Curriculum Institute.

Literacy Across the Curriculum Institute hosted by COEHS

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Delta State University’s College of Education and Human Sciences recently completed its 12th annual Literacy Across the Curriculum Institute on campus, which ran from June 1-28. 

LACI is provided through the support of the No Child Left Behind Act: Improving Teacher Quality State Grant.

In total, 18 content area teachers from across Mississippi attended the 20-day institute. The intensive training included a variety of topics, lectures, activities and presentations on a wealth of relevant topics for today’s educators. The most heavily embedded topics of the institute included word recognition, vocabulary, comprehension skills and how to actively incorporate them in their content areas. 

The teachers attended sessions related to literacy and college readiness skills to better prepare their students for not only major assessments, but also for their futures.

The goal of LACI was to enhance the participants’ repertoire of literacy knowledge, skills and dispositions to not only improve their students’ academic performance, but also to act as change agents within their schools and districts.

The director of this year’s program was Dr. Merideth Van Namen.

“Our 18 participants were eager to grow professionally and played an active role in learning new literacy strategies to enhance their classrooms,” said Van Namen. “The instructors were deeply vested in helping the participants learn how to increase students’  literacy skills and overall academic achievement. The combination of wonderful participants and knowledgeable instructors made for an extremely successful institute.”

Upon completing the institute, the teachers will provide staff development for their schools on their newly learned literacy skills, in addition to completing an extensive Teacher Work Sample and collecting evidence of student learning in their classrooms. The teachers will reconvene for two additional follow-up sessions in the fall and spring to continue evaluating their planning, instruction and assessment, as well as to continue learning valuable literacy practices.

Along with Van Namen, the LACI administrative team included Dr. Janet Parker, instructor, and Pam Maxwell, instructor.

For more information on LACI, contact Van Namen at mvannamen@deltastate.edu or 662-846-4412.

Top-Counseling-Schools-Best-Value-2016

Counseling master’s program ranked top value

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A new ranking from www.topcounselingschools.org placed Delta State’s master’s counseling program as the top value in Mississippi.

The ranking was created using the online directory of the Council for Accreditation of Counseling & Related Educational Programs to find the accredited counseling programs across the state. TCS ranked the schools based on their program completion rate, job placement rate, licensing exam pass rate, accreditation length, research productivity, and tuition and fees.

According to TCS, Delta State was worthy of the top spot based on the university’s unbeatable tuition rates. Additionally, superior student performance was highlighted, with the most recent round of data showing DSU students passing the national licensing exam and landing jobs with 100 percent success rates.

Small class sizes and a friendly environment have led some industry professionals to label the program “a little jewel among counseling education programs,” the ranking stated.

Also mentioned was the annual F.E. Woodall Spring Conference for Helping Professions, which offers experiential workshops, information sessions and networking opportunities.

Top Counseling Schools’ purpose is to contribute to the academic mission of higher learning institutions by providing pertinent and objective information that counseling students and professionals find relevant to the field of counseling.

See the full list at http://www.topcounselingschools.org/masters/in/mississippi.

Teachers taking part in the Delta Math Science Partnership Initiative  included: (front row, left to right) Darla McDaniel, Tina McDonald, Meghan Davis, Allison Berg, Anna Melton, Sonya Burchfield, Anna Glenn, Sherri Williams,
(second row, l to r) Karen Bright, Sheronda Lee, Demetras Jones, Bruce Goldstein, Aneshia McDaniel, Betty Shelly, Chandria McKnight, Shunquita Henry, Tameka Davis, Rolanda Swarptue. Mary Frances Malatesta.
(third row, l to r) Mary Garcia, Camellia Jenkins, Rosemary Collins, Arika Armstrong, Elizabeth Stallworth, Karen Haun, Jacinta Brown, Annie Steele, Heidi Barbian, Yolanda McGee, Betty Roby, Annie Love, Katherine Thomas, Glenda Lollis-Hawkins, Maria Thigpen, Gregory Jackson Jr., Samuel Mettu and Patrick Evans .

Delta Math Science Partnership hosts institute

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Delta State University recently hosted 39 Mississippi teachers at the Delta Math Science Partnership Summer Institute (MSP) from June 6-17.

The program providing learning designed to support increased content knowledge for grades K-8 in-service mathematics teachers who are committed to fidelity of implementation of the Mississippi College- and Career- Readiness Standards for Mathematics.

Mathematics instruction was provided by Dr. David Hebert and Dr. Liza Cope from the College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Mathematics, with support from Laura Little, Cecelia Jones, Bib Belenchia and Kathleen Lott. Leadership was also provided by the College of Education and Human Sciences.

MSP, a federal program backed by the U.S. Department of Education, strives to improve teacher quality through partnerships between state education agencies, institutions of higher education, high-need local education agencies and schools in order to increase the academic achievement of students in mathematics and science.

In January, MSP at Delta State was selected by the State Board of Education for a new round of grant support to continue its programming. The major grant funding will come over a three-year period, totaling over $1.1 million.

Dr. E.E. "Butch" Caston

University recognizes Caston’s career

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Delta State University is paying tribute to one of its most dedicated retiring employees — Dr. E.E. “Butch” Caston.

Caston, a graduate of Delta State in 1966, retires Friday after serving as interim vice president for Student Affairs since July of 2015. He has come out of retirement multiple times to serve interim roles for the institution.

“I’m looking forward to returning to retirement,” said Caston. “I have a good feeling about our accomplishments this year.”

Caston first made his professional mark at the university by serving as dean of the College of Education from 1989-2002.

“The one thing that I found coming to Delta State initially as a student, was that it’s a close and accepting environment,” said Caston. “Many years later, returning as an employee, I found that quality still existed, and it still does today.”

Caston said he leaves Delta State with nothing but pride for the university that has been a part of his life for decades.

“I’m a product of the university. I came here as a student. Delta State held me up until I could grow up. I’ll always be grateful for that,” he said.

He returned to the university in 2013 at the request of President William N. LaForge to serve as interim provost and vice president for Academic Affairs. His return in 2015 followed the retirement of Dr. Wayne Blansett, who served the university for 40 years.

“Butch Caston has evidenced outstanding service to Delta State by coming out of retirement twice, first in 2013 as provost, and in 2015 as vice president for Student Affairs,” said LaForge. “He was incredibly successful in both posts. The Delta State family, and I in particular, will be eternally grateful to him for his dedication and loyalty. He was on outstanding member of Delta State leadership for years. I deeply appreciate him for his commitment of time and effort to the university.

“I’ve joked with him already, but I wish him better luck in his next effort at retiring.”

President Emeritus Dr. Kent Wyatt, who worked with Caston when he was dean, echoed LaForge’s praise.

“Delta State University was fortunate to attract Dr. Butch Caston back to his alma mater when he accepted administrative roles in the College of Education,” said Wyatt. “Through his leadership and innovative ideas, he helped make Delta State University the outstanding regional university it is today. Dr. Caston’s love for Delta State has been continuous and an inspiration to all. After retirement, he stepped forward in top administrative roles when his all alma mater needed him. Personally, I want to thank Butch for his loyalty and never failing friendship.”

Dr. Michelle Roberts, vice president for University Relations and Chief of Staff, said she will greatly miss Caston’s presence on campus.

“I have had the opportunity to watch Dr. Caston excel in many different areas at Delta State, and in every role, he has shined,” said Roberts. “But, in my view, his role as vice president of Student Affairs has been his crowning moment. He was a natural when it came to working with students. It’s like his personal family grew to include the thousands of Delta State students as his children.”

“Dr. Caston did not play the typical interim role,” added Roberts. “He did not view this position as simply keeping a seat warm. He rolled up his sleeves, and was determined to leave Delta State a better place than he found it. His love and passion for Delta State, our students, and this community are admirable, and the service he has provided our university has been extraordinary. Dr. Caston exemplifies the spirit of the Delta State family, and he is indeed a true Statesmen.”

Mikel Sykes, a senior at Delta State, has worked closely with Dr. Caston, most recently during Sykes’s two terms as Student Government Association president.

“I’ve really enjoyed working with Dr. Caston the past couple of years, especially seeing how much he cares about the student experience,” said Sykes. “He’s been a leader I’ve looked up to during my time in the SGA. We all wish him the best in retirement.”

Taking over for Caston is Dr. Vernell Bennett. Bennett arrives at Delta State after previously serving in the same role at Kentucky State University in Frankfort, Kentucky. Her extensive experience at KSU enabled her to foster collaborations between Student Affairs and Academic Affairs, faculty, staff, students, the administration and community.

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