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Janoushes to receive honorary degrees at commencement ceremonies

By | Academics, Alumni, Community, GRAMMY | No Comments

Delta State University will continue its tradition of recognizing green and white greatness by conferring honorary doctoral degrees to the powerhouse alumni couple of Lucy and Paul Janoush.

The Janoushes will be recognized during spring commencement ceremonies May 6 at the Bologna Performing Arts Center.

Delta State confers the honorary degree to individuals who have made significant and meritorious contributions to the university, higher education generally or other areas of society. Achievements can include, but are not limited to, outstanding creative and scholarly work, distinguished leadership or service, significant accomplishments or exceptional philanthropic support.

Lucy, who was named Delta State’s Alumnus of the Year in 2015, has been a dedicated supporter of the institution for years.

Take a look at what used to be the southeast corner of the Delta State golf course, and you’ll notice the latest of Lucy’s many civic contributions. Since 2011, she has served as president of the Cleveland Music Foundation Board of Directors, the group responsible for planning, funding, constructing and operating GRAMMY® Museum Mississippi. The $19 million-dollar facility opened in March of 2016.

This latest project represents just one of many ways Lucy has given back to the school and community that gave her an academic foundation. She started at Delta State in 1974 and graduated Magna Cum Laude in 1978 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English.

Lucy’s memberships and volunteer service in the community runs incredibly deep. To name just a few — executive vice president of the Cleveland-Bolivar County Chamber of Commerce; Hayes Cooper Booster Club, president; Wildcat Booster Club and CHS PTSA, president; Crosstie Arts Council, president; DSU Alumni Association and Booster Club; Cleveland Community Theater; Friends of the Bolivar County Library; and the Cleveland Park Commission, volunteer coach for baseball, soccer and softball.

Lucy’s husband, Paul, also a Delta State alumnus, will be recognized for his decades of contributions to both Delta State and the Bolivar County community. He has served as the Chief Financial Officer at Jantran, Inc., since its founding in 1977.

The Boy Scouts of America and Cleveland scouts have benefited greatly from the many hours of dedicated volunteer work he has provided, including having served as a member of the Executive Board of the Chickasaw Council Boy Scouts of America, past chairman of the Tallaha District and Cub Scout pack leader.

The importance of youth activities within the community has always been one of Paul’s passions. His commitment has been evident in the many years he has volunteered his time and talents to Hayes Cooper Center Booster Club, Cleveland’s Booster Club, and Margaret Green Junior High’s and Cleveland High School’s Parent, Teacher, and Student Association.

His love for Delta State is also evident in his past and present commitments in serving on the Delta State University Foundation Board, the DSU Booster Club and Delta State Alumni Association.

Keynoting the commencement ceremonies is former state Supreme Court Justice Ann Lamar, who was recently appointed to the Board of Trustees for the Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning.

Lamar served as a Mississippi Supreme Court justice from 2007-2016, the third woman to serve on the high court at the time of her appointment.

Lamar earned a Bachelor of Science degree in education from Delta State University in 1974, before completing her law degree at the University of Mississippi School of Law in 1982.

To follow all Delta State news, visit www.deltastate.edu.

Josh Turner Live in Concert April 27

By | Bologna Performing Arts Center, Community, General, Uncategorized | No Comments

Multi-platinum MCA Nashville recording artist Josh Turner is one of country music’s most recognizable hit-makers. He will perform live in concert on Thursday, April 27, at 7:30 p.m. at the Bologna Performing Arts Center. The event is locally sponsored by Robinson Electric.

With a rich, deep voice and distinctive style, Turner a disciple of traditional country music and one of the youngest members of the Grand Ole Opry. From his 2003 Platinum-selling debut Long Black Train to his most recent 2012 Billboard No. 1 release Punching Bag, Turner has garnered multiple GRAMMY, CMA, and ACM nominations. Turner’s hits include “Your Man,” “Why Don’t We Just Dance,” “Firecracker,” “Would You Go with Me,” “All Over Me,” and “Time Is Love,” the most played country song of 2012.

Turner recently released his sixth studio album Deep South, which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Top Country Albums chart. Turner wrote five of the 11 tracks on the well-crafted album and he is impressing fans and critics alike. Rolling Stone declares that Turner, with his “river deep baritone,” delivers an “eagerly-awaited album from a country purist.”

Prior to the show, weather permitting, there will be a picnic-style dinner with live music by Craig Adams in the Sanders Sculpture Garden located in front of the Bologna Performing Arts Center. Levee Break Grill, Nehi Bottling Co. and Sweetwater Bleu’z will have food and beverages available for purchase. Dinner and music in the garden will last from 5:30 – 7:15 p.m., and the Josh Turner concert begins in the Bologna Performing Arts Center at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets to see Josh Turner start at $30 and are available at the Bologna Performing Arts Center Ticket Office, open Monday-Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., by phone 662-846-4626 or online www.bolognapac.com. Tickets to the concert are not required to attend the dinner in the Sculpture Garden; food purchases may be made directly from vendors on-site. For more information on Josh Turner, visit www.JoshTurner.com.

Delta State to host Dancing with the DSU Stars

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

The Office of Student Affairs presents Dancing with the DSU Stars on April 22 at 7 p.m. in the Bologna Performing Arts Center. The event is free and open to the public.

The show is modeled closely after the “Dancing with the Stars” television show.  Participating Delta State dancers will be partnered with a husband and wife professional team out of Memphis — Benji and Beth Smith of DanceSmiths Studio.

Participants include: Delta State President William N. LaForge; Michael Lipford, director of Student Development; Dr. Michelle Roberts, vice president for University Relations and chief of staff; Dr. Temika Simmons, assistant professor of psychology; Todd Cooley, head football coach; and Madison Nash, 2016 Delta State University Homecoming queen.

Dr. Vernell Bennett, vice president for Student Affairs, said this will be a great event to improve town-gown relations.

“We are focused on improving student engagement and building collaborations across campus and within our community,” said Bennett. “This fun event will achieve both endeavors because it’s a wonderful opportunity for the campus and community to enjoy one another. It’s also a way for students to see another side of our faculty, staff and administrators.”

“Going forward, Student Affairs will offer at least one event annually that will be for both the campus and the community,” added Bennett. “We’re most grateful to our dancers for committing to this project, especially President LaForge.”

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

Delta Center hosts Amherst, Mississippi State, Wisconsin and Yale students

By | Academics, Community, Delta Center, Faculty/Staff, International Delta Blues Project | No Comments
University of Wisconsin students visited Dockery Farms as part of their Geography of the Mississippi Delta course.

 

The Delta Center for Culture and Learning recently hosted several groups of college and university students conducting experiential learning tours of the Mississippi Delta.

Yale University students gather at The Delta Center's Cast of Blues exhibit.

Yale University students gather at The Delta Center’s Cast of Blues exhibit.

Students from Amherst College in Massachusetts, Mississippi State University, University of Wisconsin-Madison and Yale University traveled to the Delta as part of a variety of structured educational and cultural programs. These included spring break service learning initiatives, Jewish Hillel student organizations and a formal course on the Mississippi Delta.

The students from Yale stayed in the region for a week, touring Mound Bayou and Po Monkey’s Lounge while completing service projects with Delta Hands for Hope of Shaw, Mississippi. The Amherst and Mississippi State groups visited The Delta Center on the same day, visiting Dockery Farms and the Fannie Lou Hamer Memorial Garden in Ruleville.

The University of Wisconsin students visited The Delta Center for the first time as part of a course about the geography and culture of the Delta.

“We learned that the geography course has been offered at the University of Wisconsin for several years now,” said Dr. Rolando Herts, director of The Delta Center. “It is fascinating and exciting to know that such a course about the Mississippi Delta exists at a major research university like Wisconsin.”

Over 40 students from the University of Wisconsin visited the Delta as part of their enrollment in the course. Based on feedback from the visiting faculty and students, interest in the culture and history of the Delta at Wisconsin is strong.

University of Wisconsin students receiving their orientation to the Mississippi Delta at Delta State.

University of Wisconsin students receiving their orientation to the Mississippi Delta at Delta State.

“Their university administration, including the president, is very supportive of that course,” said Lee Aylward of The Delta Center. “We look forward to working with them and the other groups again.”

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. For more information, visit http://deltacenterdsu.com/.