Bolivar County Alumni Night a success

By | Alumni, General | No Comments

Fans and alumni ‘packed the house’ during Bolivar County Alumni Night at Walter Sillers Coliseum on Jan. 12.

The Delta State University Alumni Association, along with the Bolivar County Alumni Chapter, hosted the annual alumni event. The event began prior to the Lady Statesmen and Statesmen home basketball games.

All alumni who updated their information with the Alumni Association were entered into a drawing for a DSU gear prize pack or a YETI Hopper cooler. Active alumni members had their names put in the drawing twice. Jeff Lusk was the winning name drawn for the DSU gear, and Holly McKee was the winner of the YETI. The Alumni Association would like to thank everyone for attending.

The Lady Statesmen suffered their first home loss, while the Statesmen prevailed over the University of North Alabama.

To stay up to date with Alumni Association’s activities, follow these social media sites: Facebook (Statesmen Graduates), Twitter (@DSU_Alumni), Tumblr (, LinkedIn (DSU alumni), Instagram (dsualumni) and You Tube (dsualumni1). Save the date for this year’s Go Green Weekend (April 8), Pig Pickin’ (Oct. 7) and Homecoming (Nov. 11).

Dead trees to be removed from campus

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Three large trees that have begun to rot significantly will be removed from campus this weekend.

The trees, located along Fifth Avenue, pose a safety hazard to both people and buildings on campus, said Jeff Barkman, director of Facilities Management at Delta State University.

One tree, located at the corner of Maple Street and Fifth Avenue, has begun to drop very large limbs during strong winds due to rotting at the top of the tree, he said.IMG_1399

The other two trees, located outside of the Library, have rotted to the point that the wood has become like sawdust.

“If we get some more bad storms or high winds, those trees could come down easily,” Barkman said.

To replace the trees, Delta State will hold a ceremony on Earth Day in April to plant new trees on campus.

For more information, contact Jennifer Farish, director of Communications and Marketing, at 662-846-4675 or

University of Nebraska-Lincoln students visit The Delta Center

By | Delta Center, General | No Comments

The Delta Center For Culture and Learning at Delta State University recently hosted a group of 25 students from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Service-Study ASB during their “Civil Rights: Past, Present, & Future” experiential learning tour of the South.

The group was treated to a cultural immersion experience led by Lee Aylward and Dr. Rolando Herts of The Delta Center. Their experiential learning day included a historical and programmatic overview of The Delta Center, Delta State and the Mississippi Delta region.

The group started their day at Ewing Hall and visited culturally significant landmarks including Dockery Farms, the Fannie Lou Hamer Memorial Garden in Ruleville, the historic black town of Mound Bayou, the home of civil rights activist Amzie Moore, and the legendary rural juke joint Po Monkey’s Lounge.

Dr. Linda Moody, director of service learning in the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Center for Civic Engagement, brought the group of students to the Delta based on the reputation of The Delta Center’s “Most Southern Place on Earth” workshop funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

“We were referred by a faculty member at Nebraska whose spouse attended the workshop a few years ago,” said Moody. “Their experience was so positive, so impactful. That referral has resulted in our program bringing students to The Delta Center and the Mississippi Delta for the past four years.”

Service-Study ASB places teams of college students in communities to engage in service and experiential learning during their summer, fall, winter or spring breaks. Through this program, University of Nebraska-Lincoln students learn about issues relevant to their local communities, such as poverty, civil rights, racism, immigration, literacy, hunger, homelessness, and the environment. Service projects have included Habitat For Humanity and disaster relief.

In addition to Cleveland, the group also spent time in the lower Mississippi Delta touring Vicksburg Military Park. After departing the Delta, the students traveled to Alabama to visit the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, the Southern Poverty Law Center in Montgomery, and the Edmond Pettus Bridge in Selma where voting rights activists marched in 1965, leading to the passage of the Voting Rights Act.

“Our civil rights tour of the South is not complete without visiting the Mississippi Delta,” added Moody. “The Emmett Till tragedy launched the modern Civil Rights Movement, and Fannie Lou Hamer is a voting rights icon. The Mississippi Delta is ground zero and provides such a meaningful place-based context for this experiential learning program.”

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 MDNHA and is the home of the International Delta Blues Project. For more information, visit

Staff Council wraps up successful giving projects

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

Delta State University staff fed more than 60 families and donated more than 400 toys for local families during two annual giving campaigns this year.

The Delta State Administrative Staff Council special projects committee sponsors both of the drives.

Rhonda Loper, special projects committee chair for DSU Administrative Staff Council, said that the campus donated 59 bags and nine boxes of food during the annual “Feed a Family” drive. Two members of Delta State’s staff received a bag each, and the remaining 57 bags were delivered to the Bolivar County Family and Children Services office. The nine boxes of food were donated to local churches for their food pantry programs.

For the annual Toy Drive,” more than 425 toys were donated, including two bicycles, nine scooters, and several other large toys. These gifts also were delivered to the Bolivar County Family & Children’s Services, who will distribute them to families in need across Bolivar County.

“Once again, the DSU family has come together to make this another successful ‘giving season,'” Loper said. “This act of selfless giving is what continues to help meet the needs of our community.”

She added, “This year, were once again happy to partner with area churches and members of the community, as the news continues to spread about our efforts. I want to personally thank everyone who participated. Until next year, when we get to do it all over again, richest blessings!”

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

New stereomicroscope is enhancing the Delta State Herbarium and Environmental Science Programs

By | Academics, Faculty/Staff, General, Uncategorized | No Comments


During the Fall 2016 semester, the Department of Biological Sciences acquired a new Meji trinocular zoom stereo-microscope on a boom stand with high definition capabilities.

Other features associated with this particular microscope are a LED (Light-emitting diode) ring illuminator, a HD Video Camera, and a widefield, high-eyepoint eyepiece. The instrument was purchased from Miller Microscope and paid for with funds from the National Science Foundation herbarium grant that is associated with the Mississippi Herbarium consortium and participating institutions.

One main goal of this grant is to digitize the entire 17,000 plus herbarium collection that Delta State University possesses.

Mississippi ranks in the top third of U.S. states for the predicted numbers of plant taxa, species, genera, and families per unit area. The documentation of most species is sparse so fulfilling this gap will make an important contribution to the Flora of North America.

Mississippi specimens contained in Delta State University herbarium collection as well as specimens contained in other local herbarium throughout the state (Mississippi State University, the University of Southern Mississippi, The University of Mississippi, and the Mississippi Museum of Natural Science) are being used to compile a checklist of all plant species that occur in Mississippi.

Dr. Nina Baghai-Riding said that the versatility of this microscope is helping with the identification of many problematic herbarium specimens.

“Minute details of flower, stem, and leaf parts can be easily analyzed and photographed and sent to other curators for identification if needed,” she said. “In addition, this microscope has been useful in photographing specimens associated with other undergraduate environmental science projects that will be presented at the upcoming Mississippi Academy of Sciences in Hattiesburg on Feb. 23-24, including prey remains contained in Carolina Biological owl pellets and teeth of a monitor lizard.”

To learn more about the Environmental Science program at Delta State University, contact Baghai-Riding @662-846-4797 or