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Toy Drive gathers more than 400 toys for Bolivar County children

By | Community, Faculty/Staff, General | No Comments

More than 400 toys were donated for children in Bolivar County during the DSU Annual Toy Drive.

Rhonda Loper, special projects committee chair for Delta State Staff Council, said the success of this year’s program is due to the partnership with Delta State Athletics, local churches, and Delta State faculty and staff.

The toys were delivered this past week to the Bolivar County Family and Children’s Services office and will go to children in the county who are receiving services through the Human Services Department.

“In many cases, without the generosity of those who selflessly gave, these children would receive any presents this holiday season,” Loper said.

She added the importance of the Annual DSU Toy Drive is best summed up in the following statement from one of the partners.

“Thank you for the opportunity to participate with DSU. We have a few people who literally have very little themselves that were so excited to be able to give a toy,” said Cheryl Dean, from the Church of the Latter Day Saints. “Those opportunities to give sometimes bless the giver more than the receiver. I guess that’s part of what makes Christmas such a wonderful time of the year.”

Loper said the success of the toy drive sends a special message going into the holiday season.

“We can all celebrate the fact DSU is extending our family beyond our campus borders into our community, through our outreach and charitable giving,” she said. “Working together for a better DSU!”

For more information on how you can become a part of the DSU family, contact Loper at rloper@deltastate.edu or at 662-846-4504.

Dr. John Hilpert (left), president emeritus of Delta State, and President William N. LaForge at the SACSCOC conference in Houston Dec. 7.

Delta State president emeritus honored with prestigious national award

By | Faculty/Staff, General, President | No Comments

CLEVELAND – Dr. John M. Hilpert, president emeritus of Delta State University, was honored Monday as the 2015 recipient of the James T. Rogers Distinguished Leadership Award given by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), the regional accrediting body for more than 800 colleges and universities.

Hilpert, who served as president at Delta State from 2003 until his retirement in 2013, worked more than 30 years in higher education administration, including serving as president of Northern State University in Aberdeen, South Dakota, executive vice president and acting president of the University of South Dakota, and vice president at Thiel College in Pennsylvania.

Delta State President William N. LaForge said Hilpert’s distinction as a leader is one of the primary reasons he nominated Hilpert for the award.

“During Dr. Hilpert’s tenure at Delta State, he exemplified all the characteristics of a distinguished leader involved with, and supporting, the activities, mission and spirit of SACSCOC,” LaForge said. “Not only was he an actively involved member president, but he served the SACSCOC in various roles throughout his presidency at Delta State.

“Respected by his peers throughout the higher education community for his depth of knowledge and exceptional leadership ability, Dr. Hilpert was elected to serve on the 2008 Executive Council of the Commission and chair of the State Delegation Executive Council of the Commission, and the following year he was elected vice chair of the SACSCOC,” he added. “At the December 2009 annual meeting, he was elected for the first of three one-year terms as chairman of the SACSCOC and served as chair in 2010, 2011 and 2012. I am pleased that the committee supported my nomination of Dr. Hilpert for this prestigious award.”

In addition to his leadership roles with SACSCOC, Hilpert served as chairman of the Mississippi Delta National Heritage Area board; board president for the Delta Health Alliance, a regional non-profit corporation with a $40 million annual budget; and, president of the Mississippi Association of Colleges and Universities, an organization of all public and private, two-year and four-year postsecondary institutions in the state.

In October of this year, Hilpert published a book on Theodore Roosevelt and his “Whistle Stop Campaign” which is available through Amazon. Having lived for many years in states visited by Roosevelt prior to the election of 1900, Hilpert sought to fill in a gap in historical biographical information about Roosevelt. He has also authored pieces for scholarly journals, newspapers and periodicals.

Named for a Delta State alumnus who served as executive director of the Commission on Colleges for more than 20 years, the James T. Rogers Distinguished Leadership Award is the highest public recognition given by the commission and is reserved for extraordinarily distinctive and effective leadership. Rogers was a 1955 Delta State graduate who served as president of Brenau College in Georgia for 15 years before taking the position as the executive director for the Commission of Colleges of SACS.

During his tenure, Rogers worked with the membership and the commission’s leadership and staff to institute comprehensive changes in accreditation standards which placed a renewed and deep emphasis on student learning. Rogers was named Delta State’s Outstanding Alumnus of the Year in 1995, is a member of the Delta State Alumni Hall of Fame, and received an honorary doctorate from Delta State in 2007.

Jeffrey Farris, Delta State Alumni Affairs Director, said the association is pleased that the award is named after the distinguished alumnus and that it is fitting that Hilpert be honored as a recipient.

“The award being presented to our former university president, Dr. John Hilpert, is a testimony to the leadership qualities that are exhibited by our students, alumni and employees,” Farris said. “I congratulate Dr. Hilpert and Dr. Rogers on behalf of the National Alumni Association for their exemplary leadership of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.”

The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges is the regional body for the accreditation of degree-granting higher education institutions in the Southern states. It serves as the common denominator of shared values and practices among the diverse institutions in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and Latin America and other international sites approved by the Commission that award associate, baccalaureate, masters or doctoral degrees.

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Giving Tuesday marks launch of Delta State’s Centennial Fund

By | Alumni, Community, Faculty/Staff, General | No Comments

On Dec. 1, as part of the global “Giving Tuesday” event, Delta State will officially launch a new fundraising program. This new program, called The Centennial Fund, was motivated by a generous gift from the Gertrude C. Ford Foundation.

“Giving Tuesday” has gained momentum in recent years as a global day dedicated to giving back, and people around the world are encouraged to come together for the common purpose of giving and celebrating generosity.

The Delta State’s Centennial Fund was started by providing each of the colleges —Arts and Sciences, Business, and Education — as well as the School of Nursing, an initial gift of $5,000. Every dollar contributed will be matched with a dollar from the Gertrude Ford Foundation gift — up to $5,000 for each academic unit. There is also an option of giving to the General Academic Fund, where every penny received goes to support important academic initiatives. You can give online at www.deltastategiving.org/academics/centennialfunds, and each Dean will receive a notice of every gift received.

Tornado Watch issued for Bolivar County

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

The National Weather Service has issued a Tornado Watch for the Bolivar County area through 8 p.m. tonight. The area also remains under a Wind Advisory and a Flash Flood watch due to the potential for severe weather.

The Delta State Emergency Response Team is monitoring the situation and will issue alerts throughout the day. The team remains in contact with the National Weather Service, emergency officials and the university’s administration.

Any changes to the university’s schedule this evening including night classes will be posted using deltastate.edu, email, text messages, Twitter (@DeltaState) and Facebook.

This weather system has the potential to affect travel conditions for our area. If you have travel plans, please check weather conditions and road conditions and use judgment before traveling. If a tornado warning is issued, remain calm. Go to an interior hall or windowless room. Crouch low, head down, and protect the back of your head with your arms.

Further updates will be posted using deltastate.edu, email, text messages, Twitter (@DeltaState) and Facebook

Anyone who has not yet registered his or her cell phone number for emergency text alerts is encouraged to do so now by completing the following steps:
1. Login to your “My DSU” account:
2. https://banapp2.deltastate.edu:9010/dsu/twbkwbis.P_GenMenu?name=homepage
3. Choose the “Personal Information” section and the “Enroll in Okra Alert” option.
4. Add your cell phone number (with area code).

Be aware of potential for severe weather today (Tues., Nov. 17)

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

The National Weather Service has predicted the potential for severe weather for the Bolivar County area later today (Tuesday, Nov. 17). It is too soon to determine the exact timing of the weather system, but it is expected to arrive late this afternoon into early evening.

The Delta State Emergency Response Team is monitoring the situation and will issue alerts throughout the day. The team remains in contact with the National Weather Service, emergency officials and the university’s administration.

Any changes to the schedule this evening (Tuesday, Nov. 17) will be posted using deltastate.edu, email, text messages, Twitter (@DeltaState) and Facebook. Any changes to the Tuesday (Nov. 17) night class schedule and events will also be communicated through these outlets.

This weather system has the potential to affect travel conditions for our area. If you have travel plans, please check weather conditions and road conditions and use judgment before traveling.

Updates and any changes to the university’s operating schedule will be posted at deltastate.edu, email, text messages, twitter (@DeltaState), and Facebook.

Anyone who has not yet registered his or her cell phone number for emergency text alerts is encouraged to do so now by completing the following steps:
1. Login to your “My DSU” account:
https://banapp2.deltastate.edu:9010/dsu/twbkwbis.P_GenMenu?name=homepage
2. Choose the “Personal Information” section and the “Enroll in Okra Alert” option.
3. Add your cell phone number (with area code).