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International

Aviation student spanning the globe

By | Academics, Aviation, College of Business and Aviation, International, Students | No Comments

One Delta State University aviation student is literally soaring to new heights this spring break.

Malik Sinegal, a junior commercial aviation major and Biloxi native, is currently flying around the world in an ambassador role for Republic Airline. And joining him for the trip — the mini Fighting Okra doll available at the university bookstore.

For 16 days of fun and adventure, Sinegal will be flying aboard Republic flights as an ambassador. Fulfilling a lifelong goal, he will completely span the globe, with stops in Egypt and its pyramids, the mammoth skyscrapers of Dubai, the iconic Sydney Opera House in Australia, the busy streets of Tokyo, and more.

Sinegal is dedicating the trip to his grandmother, who had always dreamed of traveling the world before passing away in 2017.

“I thought that it would put my heart finally at rest if I did this for her,” he said.

Headquartered in Indianapolis, Republic Airline employs 5,500 talented professionals to support its operations in partnership with American Airlines, Delta Air Lines and United Airlines. The company operates 950 daily departures to over 100 U.S. cities, Canada, Central America and the Caribbean.

Thanks to Sinegal’s private pilot certificate, instrument rating, RJet Cadet training, and education through Delta State’s Department of Commercial Aviation, he was a perfect fit for the ambassador position. Sinegal will serve in this capacity for about a year and a half, after which, he aims to stay with Republic as a first officer.

“My role as an ambassador is to recruit the best people for our award-winning environment — flight attendants, pilots and business majors,” said Sinegal. “At Republic, we want people who use our company’s motto to strive for excellence in their everyday lives.”

And Sinegal’s effort has already paid off for his fellow Delta State aviation peers. A couple of his classmates recently passed their cadet interviews with Republic.

“It’s always fun to come back to school and tell fellow students about the trips that I’ve been on,” Sinegal said. “Many students think that school will be for the rest of their lives, and they tend to get distracted and lazy. However, what they don’t realize is that their dream jobs are just around the corner.”

Sinegal added that he was prepared to work with Republic thanks to the quality instruction at Delta State.

“They have blessed me,” he said. “We have the best teachers and instructors. Dr. Speakes, Sam Washington, Chip Cooper, Rogel Campbell and Brett Oleis definitely need more credit for their hard work on campus.”

Dr. Julie Speakes, chair of the department, said Sinegal is a prime example of an aviation student making the most of his training.

“What an exciting opportunity Malik has to see the world and promote DSU Aviation,” said Speakes. “There are many unique prospects in the aviation sector, and our students are linked with some of the best opportunities at the university level.”

With his loyal mini Fighting Okra by his side, Sinegal continues to rack up miles in the sky, setting the foundation for a lengthy aviation career ahead of him.

“I have been blessed enough to see all of the amazing opportunities that this world is ready to offer us,” he said. “What you do today will set you in the right path for the rest of your life.”

Learn more about Delta State’s Department of Commercial Aviation at http://www.deltastate.edu/college-of-business/commercial-aviation.

Reza selected for prestigious Australian fellowship

By | Academics, College of Arts and Sciences, Environmental Science, Faculty/Staff, International | No Comments

Dr. AHM Ali Reza, associate professor of biology and environmental sciences, was recently selected for a highly competitive fellowship spearheaded by the government of Australia.

The program, Australia Awards–Endeavour Scholarships and Fellowships, is a merit-based fellowship providing opportunities for Australians to undertake study, research or professional development overseas, and for overseas citizens to do the same in Australia.

The fellow selection process of the Endeavor program is conducted through a global competition open to all nations.

“This is an absolute honor to be selected as a recipient of the Endeavour executive fellowship,” said Reza. “Selection of this program goes worldwide, and it’s extremely competitive and merit-based. Being selected for this program brings enormous credit to anyone, and I feel no exception. I feel like even though I am from a small regional school in the Mississippi Delta, we are strong enough to compete on a global stage.”

Through the program, he will be in Australia from mid-May to early August, and he’ll be utilizing the fellowship for both research and teaching.

Reza will be based at the Australian Museum in Sydney, the country’s oldest museum, which also holds international distinction in the fields of natural history and anthropology.

His host will be Dr. Jodi Rowley, a scientific officer at the museum who also holds a position at University of New South Wales. Working as a lab partner with Rowley, Reza’s time will be divided between the museum and UNSW conducting research on frogs and teaching classes on wildlife ecology.

“My goal is to learn the latest techniques used in conservation genetics,” added Reza. “The Australian Museum houses the Australian Centre for Wildlife Genomics, and I will be learning conservation genetics there under the supervision of Dr. Rowley.”

In addition, Reza said the experience would help him develop and revise his coursework at Delta State to the benefit of his students.

Reza has taken part in and organized a number of international educational experiences in the past few years. Most recently, he led a field course in December 2017 in his homeland of Bangladesh.

The two-week field experience provided hands-on practice in the ecology and conservation of unique wildlife species in two highly biodiverse ecosystems — Lawachara National Park, a tropical evergreen forest in northeastern Bangladesh, and the Sundarbans Reserved Forest, the world’s largest mangrove forest in southwestern Bangladesh.

The overall objective of the course was to introduce students to tropical wildlife and their habitats, taxonomy, natural history and biogeography, with an emphasis on the conservation challenges and prospects faced by animals within the region.

James Allen, a student at Delta State, had the privilege of attending this exclusive outdoor course.

“The course in Bangladesh was truly one of those once-in-a-lifetime experiences,” said Allen. “I was able to visit ecologically unique places with a group of people who have a passion for ecology and conservation. Having Dr. Reza leading the course, joined with local naturalists and students, gave me a perspective that I wouldn’t have received visiting these places alone. It went far beyond anything one could get from a traditional classroom setting. I lived and worked with folks from Bangladesh, India, and the U.S., learned a great deal, and made great friendships.”

Learn more about opportunities within Delta State’s Department of Biological Sciences at http://www.deltastate.edu/artsandsciences/biological-sciences/programs/.

Study abroad trip to Jamaica offered

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

The Delta State University Department of Art is offering a unique inaugural two-week study abroad opportunity in Jamaica open to all majors and community members.

The three-credit summer session course, “ART492 03, Special Topics in Art,” will take place May 20-June 2, 2018.

Dr. Phyllis Hill, assistant professor of art at Delta State, will be leading the trip.

“The focus of this trip is service learning and community based research,” said Hill. “This is a unique opportunity for two weeks of cultural emersion and engagement with local experts employed in the Jamaican education, historical and cultural sectors. Students will participate in a service learning project with a local educational institution, conduct historical and cultural research using diverse media such as film, painting, photography and sculpture — and share their findings via an exhibition upon return to DSU.”

The trip will primarily take place in the cities of Kingston and Montego Bay. Programming will also include historical tours, lectures, cultural events, local cuisine, music and cultural experiences.

“Study abroad provides a unique opportunity for DSU students to develop as global citizens in their chosen fields,” added Hill. “However, the majority of our students have not travelled outside of the U.S. The reality is that we exist in a globalized world, and those who are most successful are the graduates who have international experience, cross-cultural communication skills and the ability to discuss cultural issues from multiple informed perspectives. Study abroad makes our students more career-ready and competitive on a global scale, in that they are internationally savvy, adaptable within culturally diverse environments and are able to communicate with varying populations.”

The total cost for the trip and tuition is $3,243 per person, which covers round-trip airfare, lodging, in-country transportation, excursions and travel insurance.

“Jamaica is more than sand, sea and sun. It’s a unique blend of people, cultural practices and beliefs,” said Hill. “It offers a wealth of opportunities for historical, cultural and educational collaborations.”

For more information about the trip, contact hill at phill@deltastate.edu.

Study in Jamaica this summer

By | College of Arts and Sciences, Faculty/Staff, International, Students | No Comments

The Delta State University Department of Art is offering a unique inaugural two-week study abroad opportunity in Jamaica open to all majors and community members.

The three-credit course, “ART492 03, Special Topics in Art,” will take place May 20-June 2, 2018.

Dr. Phyllis Hill, assistant professor of art at Delta State, will be hosting an information session about the trip Nov. 8 at 5 p.m. in Holcombe Norwood Hall, room 151.

“The focus of this trip is service learning and community based research,” said Hill. “This is a unique opportunity for two weeks of cultural emersion and engagement with local experts employed in the Jamaican education, historical and cultural sectors. Students will participate in a service learning project with a local educational institution, conduct historical and cultural research using diverse media such as film, painting, photography and sculpture — and share their findings via an exhibition upon return to DSU.”

The trip will primarily take place in the cities of Kingston and Montego Bay. Programming will also include historical tours, lectures, cultural events, local cuisine, music and cultural experiences.

“Study abroad provides a unique opportunity for DSU students to develop as global citizens in their chosen fields,” added Hill. “However, the majority of our students have not travelled outside of the U.S. The reality is that we exist in a globalized world, and those who are most successful are the graduates who have international experience, cross-cultural communication skills and the ability to discuss cultural issues from multiple informed perspectives. Study abroad makes our students more career-ready and competitive on a global scale, in that they are internationally savvy, adaptable within culturally diverse environments and are able to communicate with varying populations.”

The total cost for the trip and tuition is $3,243 per person, which covers round-trip airfare, lodging, in-country transportation, excursions and travel insurance.

“Jamaica is more than ‘sand, sea and sun.’ It’s a unique blend of people, cultural practices and beliefs,” said Hill. “It offers a wealth of opportunities for historical, cultural and educational collaborations.”

For more information about the trip, contact hill at phill@deltastate.edu.