Students nominated for Who’s Who honors

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The following students have been nominated to receive Who’s Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges honors:

Jenna James Allen, Nursing
Emily Brennan Barham, Entertainment Industry Studies
Cathryn Beck, Art
Justin Boatman, Entertainment Industry Studies
Gregory Braggs, Entertainment Industry Studies
Katie Busby, Nursing
Tyler Comans, Nursing
Hanna Core, Art
Trey Densford, Nursing
Alice Koech, Nursing
Bethany Leininger, Nursing
Lauren Mansour, Nursing
Tavelle Marion, Nursing
Brittany McGree, Entertainment Industry Studies
Lisa McLaughlin, Nursing
Christopher Pecou, Art
Carrie Lynn Stanford, Entertainment Industry Studies
Joshua Stubbs, Entertainment Industry Studies
Cody Unchurch, Entertainment Industry Studies
Jessica Faith, Entertainment Industry Studies
Sarah Catherine Yawn, Nursing

According to the website, Who’s Who awards are conferred by more than 1,000 schools in all 50 states and the District of Columbia and is symbolized by the presentation of an award certificate. Selections to Who’s Who Among Students are made each fall by individual schools.

Nursing School ranks third in national list

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Delta State’s online graduate program in Nursing ranked third in the nation in a recent list from

“In this ranking of the 50 best graduate nursing programs, we set out to uncover precisely what advanced nursing students want (and need) from a master’s degree,” according to

The website said it selected graduate schools based on program flexibility, faculty involvement in the healthcare field, and tuition cost.

Vicki Bingham, chair and associate professor of nursing, said, “The Master of Science in Nursing program of study has been offered online since 2000. This program of study in an online format provides flexibility to schedules and accessibility to an advanced education for working nurses in different geographical locations.”

The graduate enrollment has increased from 32 in 2000 to 78 in 2016.

“Faculty in the Robert E. Smith School of Nursing are committed to offering quality degree programs and providing students with the knowledge, skills,confidence, and attitudes to practice as a professional nurse providing quality healthcare,” said Shelby Polk, associate professor of nursing.

Polk said being ranked third “speaks to the dedication of our faculty in delivering a quality online program with high standards and student expectations.”

The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) can be earned either as a degree or there is a certificate option which provides study in a role concentration (i.e. Family Nurse Practitioner, Nurse Administrator, or Nurse Educator) beyond the Baccalaureate in Nursing (BSN).

Bingham said, “We have been ranked twice by the U.S. & World News report for the Best Online Graduate Nursing Program in 2016 ranked at 42 and in 2014 at 41. In addition to this ranking by the TopMastersInHealthcare, we received notification that we were ranked eighth as the 2016 Most Affordable Online College by OnlineU.”

Bingham said they feel very “honored and delighted” to be ranked third among all of the other universities.

“The expertise of our faculty members, availability to the students, and affordability of the program put us as one of the best schools to obtain an education and advance in the nursing profession,” Bingham said.

International Business Symposium Celebrates 11 Years

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Delta State University’s College of Business will hold the 11th annual International Business Symposium on Wednesday, March 30 at 2 p.m. in the Baioni Conference Center, and Thursday, March 31 from 9 a.m. to noon in the auditorium of Jobe Hall on the campus of Delta State University.

The theme for this year’s symposium is “Business Communication: Here, There, & Everywhere!” Business professionals will share their knowledge and expertise to provide a unique look at communication trends in the business world.

The symposium is sponsored by David and Sherry Abney, Mississippi Delta natives who currently reside in Atlanta. Abney, a 1976 graduate of DSU, began his career as a part-time United Parcel Service (UPS) package loader while in college, now serves as Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board for UPS, the world’s largest package delivery company. Abney is the eleventh CEO in the 107-year-history of UPS. Through UPS, he has traveled the world on business, but his Mississippi Delta roots are forever ingrained.

“Sherry and I wanted to do something meaningful for the Delta. By bringing global leaders onto campus and sharing their experiences with students, I believe we’ll be able to expand Delta State students’ horizons in how they see and prepare for their futures,” Abney said in a previous Delta State interview.

Assisting Abney and the Division of Management, Marketing, and Business Administration in planning and presenting the symposium is Laird Hamberlin, who is also a graduate of Delta State where he received a BBA in Business Administration. Hamberlin is the Vice President of Sales and Commercial for Terminix (a division of ServiceMaster).

The symposium will feature three distinquished speakers. Charles Pleas, who has served as Senior Vice President, Controller, and Customer Satisfaction for AutoZone, Inc. since 2007. Pleas joined AutoZone in 1996 and has served in key leadership positions including vice president, accounting, and director of general accounting.  Pleas earned his BBA in Business Administration from Delta State majoring in accounting.

Stephen Cesler worked 36 years for Procter & Gamble, the largest consumer products company in the world.  Cesler retired in 2014 as the Sales Vice President for the Global Health & Grooming business, the global Electro channel, and the global Braun business. During his career he worked on virtually all of the P&G brands, both in the United States and abroad.

Jordan Abidor, the Social Media Marketing Manager for ServiceMaster Corporation and the Social Media Marketing Manager for Terminix, will also join the slate of speakers. Abidor began working for American Home Shield, a subsidiary of ServiceMaster global holdings, as a Social Media Marketing Manager in 2014 and has increased the social footprint of the American Home Shield pages by over 5,000% and began driving eComm sales through social media.

The 2016 International Business Symposium is free and open to public. For more information, contact Rebecca Hochradel at 662-846-4190 or email

Berman and Wise to be featured at Winning the Race

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Delta State University’s award-winning race relations conference, Winning the Race, will feature two highlight speakers at this year’s event which will be hosted on campus March 28-29.

Ari Berman is a contributing writer for The Nation magazine and an investigative journalism fellow at The Nation Institute. He has written extensively about American politics, civil rights and the intersection of money and politics. His stories have appeared in the New York Times, Rolling Stone and The Guardian, and he is a frequent political commentator on MSNBC, C-Span and NPR.

His new book, “Give Us the Ballot: The Modern Struggle for Voting Rights in America,” was published in August 2015 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. Berman graduated from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University with a degree in journalism and political science. He lives in New York City.

Tim Wise is the author of seven books, including his highly-acclaimed memoir, “White Like Me: Reflections on Race from a Privileged Son.” He has contributed chapters or essays to over 25 additional books and his writings are taught in colleges and universities across the nation. Wise appears regularly on CNN and MSNBC to discuss race issues.

Wise is among the nation’s most prominent antiracist essayists and educators and has spent the past 20 years speaking to audiences in all 50 states, on over 1,000 college and high school campuses, at hundreds of professional and academic conferences, and to community groups across the nation.

This year’s conference is titled “Winning the Race: Advancing Social Justice in Communities and Institutions.”

The inaugural program spearheaded by Delta State President William N. LaForge in 2014, was designed as an innovative academic conference. The 2016 schedule promises to build on the meaningful dialogue presented at previous conferences.

Follow all Winning the Race updates at