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Delta State named to 2017 Transfer Honor Roll

By | Academics, Admissions, Students | No Comments

Delta State University recently received the prestigious designation of being named to the Phi Theta Kappa 2017 Transfer Honor Roll, which recognizes excellence in community college transfer pathways.

Delta State is one of only 63 institutions nationwide selected to receive this honor.

The selection was based on the university’s score earned on the Transfer Honor Roll application. Scores were determined based on institutional partnerships, community college collaboration, pre and post transfer institutional support, data tracking, and transfer pathway innovations.

Dr. Charles McAdams, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, said Delta State will continue its efforts to welcome transfer students.

“Delta State prides itself on serving transfer students with the same enthusiasm as freshmen,” said McAdams. “Many students attend community colleges for a year or two, for a variety of reasons, and fully intend to complete a bachelor’s degree. We work hard to make sure the transition for transfer students is as smooth as possible and help put transfer students on a path to completing their bachelor’s degree.”

McAdams said that each academic program at Delta State has developed an “Academic Map” to help students navigate through their bachelor’s degree requirements.

“Our academic advisors stand ready to work with students to help them determine how to complete their degree in the most efficient manner,” he said.

Caitlyn Thompson, director of recruiting at Delta State, was thrilled with the designation.

“The recruiting team supports Delta State’s mission, programs, initiatives and people every day — and we truly believe that any student can benefit in their own way by attending our university,” said Thompson. “There is a great deal of time dedicated by staff and faculty to recruiting new students, so for Delta State to be recognized for these efforts is certainly an honor that makes the job that much more rewarding.”

Phi Theta Kappa’s Chief Student Support Services Officer Jennifer Blalock said the new recognition program reflects the growing importance of universities helping students achieve college completion goals.

“Increasingly, students of all ages and achievement levels are choosing the community college, not only as their first step, but also their first choice, in the pursuit of a quality, affordable baccalaureate degree,” Blalock said. “With this designation, we hope to connect community college students with institutions that value their unique transfer experience and prioritize their success.”

The mission of Phi Theta Kappa is to recognize academic achievement of college students and to provide opportunities for them to grow as scholars and leaders. Learn more at www.ptk.org.

McAdams added urged those considering a transfer to Delta State to contact the Office of Admissions at 662-846-4020.

Annual juried student art show coming to gallery

By | Academics, College of Arts and Sciences, Students | No Comments

Delta State University’s Department of Art invites the public to the opening of its annual juried student exhibition on March 9 from 5-7 p.m. in the Fielding L. Wright Art Center gallery.

The annual exhibit allows the department to highlight the work art students have produced in the past year, and affords students an opportunity to gain professional experience by preparing work for exhibition and submitting it to a jury process. Students are also eligible to win monetary awards in a variety of categories. The awards are made possible through the generous support of art patrons from the Cleveland community.

This year’s juror is Joshua Vincent, a Delta State graduate who teaches at the Mississippi Delta Community College.

Vincent commended the quality of work submitted and said it reflects the diversity of the students’ aesthetics and interests.

Awards will be presented at 6 p.m. The exhibit will remain in the gallery from March 9 to April 20. The gallery is open Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and on Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

For more information, contact the Department of Art at 662-846-4720.

Green crowned Most Beautiful

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Most Beautiful 2017, Leah Green.

Delta State University held its annual Most Beautiful Pageant on Feb. 16 at the Bologna Performing Arts Center. Recognition was given to Most Beautiful, Most Photogenic, Four Beauties and Top 10. A total of 29 girls competed for the title.

Leah Green of Hernando was crowned Most Beautiful 2017.

Four Beauties recognition went to Haley King (Holcomb), Jordan Wright (Hernando), Carly Upchurch (Grenada) and Emily Grossi (Marks).

Most Beautiful 2017 and Four Beauties.

Most Beautiful 2017 and Four Beauties.

“We had another great competition this year,” said Bevin Lamb, executive director of pageants. “We had 29 girls compete, and we appreciate everyone from the campus and community who came to support them.”

The pageant was sponsored by the Delta State University Student Government Association and produced by the Pageant Board, a Delta State student organization.

Winning the Race returns March 27-28

By | Academics, Community, Faculty/Staff, President, Students, Winning the Race | No Comments
2017 Winning The Race Committee member include: (front, left to right) Dr. Rolando Herts, Dr. Billy Moore, Dr. Lekeitha Morris, Tricia Walker, Georgene Clarke, Jeanna Wilkes and Dr. Temika Simmons. Back (l to r): Dr. Charles Westmoreland, Dr. David Breaux, Sam Washington, Michelle Johansen and Davlon Miller. Members not pictured: Bryce Anderson, Dr. David Baylis, Dr. George Beals, Travis Calvin, Jondelyn Catlette, Dr. Edwin Craft, Dr. Ellen Green, Dr. Leslie Griffin, Matthew Harris, Dr. Garry Jennings, Elizabeth Joel, Paula Lindsey, Michael Lipford, Don Allan Mitchell, Cleveland Phinisee, Arlene Sanders, Jeremiah Smith, Dr. Myrtis Tabb (ex-officio), Jenn Keathley and Chante Willis.

Delta State University’s award-winning conference Winning the Race returns to campus for the fourth year on March 27-28.

Conference updates, registration and additional information are available at http://www.deltastate.edu/winning-the-race/.

This year’s conference, “Winning the Race: Advancing Education in the Mississippi Delta,” is presented in partnership with the Casey Family Programs and the Mississippi Humanities Council and will focus on identifying educational inequities and strengthening educational opportunities in the Mississippi Delta.

The inaugural program, spearheaded by Delta State President William N. LaForge in 2014, was designed as an innovative academic conference with a focus on engaging, promoting and rekindling conversations in hopes that Delta-area communities can move toward greater equity, forward thinking and reduced racial tensions.

“I am very much looking forward to another outstanding race relations conference, with a program I’m advised will be top flight,” said LaForge. “From the special speakers, breakout sessions and general discussion topics, this conference promises to be another great success.”

“While our conference is not conducted in reaction to anything in the current political climate, it certainly comes at an appropriate time to contribute to the national, regional and local dialogue on how we get along in society,” added LaForge.

In recognition of this work, the university received the 2014 Civil Rights and Social Justice Award accepted by LaForge at the fourth National Civil Rights Conference in Philadelphia, Mississippi.

The 2017 schedule will continue the critical dialogue about current issues related to education, social justice and community healing, while highlighting opportunities for sustained community action, awareness and mobility.

“This year’s conference will provide attendees with the tools to engage in not only the dialogue, but the work of strengthening the educational community and infrastructure in and around the Mississippi Delta,” said Dr. Temika M. Simmons, assistant professor of psychology and conference chair. “Unique to the 2017 platform are opportunities for professional development credits for teachers and counselors, in addition to a special workshop track for high school students — further evidence of the university’s commitment to moving the conference initiative beyond the current dialogue to tangible action and outcomes.”

Highlight speakers for the 2017 conference include Dr. Ivory Toldson, president and CEO of the Quality Education for Minorities Network, and Dr. William C. Bell, a Delta State graduate and president and CEO of Casey Family Programs.

Toldson is a professor of counseling psychology at Howard University and editor-in-chief of The Journal of Negro Education. Toldson’s previous appointments include executive director of the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities, senior research analyst for the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, and contributing education editor for The Root.

With more than 60 publications, four books, and over 150 research presentations in 36 states and numerous countries, Toldson’s work and research have focused on dismantling some of the most pervasive myths about African Americans. Instead, he highlights the talent and potential of students of color. Toldson has been featured on MSNBC, The New York Times, various radio stations, and has been dubbed one of “30 leaders in the fight for Black men,” by Newsweek Magazine. Former U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said he is “a prolific young scholar and myth buster.”

William C. Bell, president and CEO of Casey Family Programs, is returning for another highly anticipated speech. With more than 35 years of experience in the field of human services, Bell chairs the executive team for CFP and is responsible for the vision, mission, strategies and objectives of the foundation.

Bell’s awards include Special Contribution to the Judiciary Award from the King County Washington Women Lawyers (2016), the Orgullo de la Comunidad (Pride of our Community) Award from the Coalition for Hispanic Family Services (2015), and the 2014 James A. Joseph Lecturer for The Association of Black Foundation Executives.

Additionally, he was named Delta State’s 2012 Outstanding Alumnus of the Year and was inducted into the university’s Alumni Hall of Fame and the Omicron Delta Kappa national leadership honor society.

Bell is nationally renowned for his contributions and lifelong commitment to improving the lives of children and families, his tireless work to prevent child abuse and neglect, his fight to make the judicial system more accessible to all, and his battle to improve the lives of children in foster care.

In addition to stellar speakers, conference breakout sessions will feature topics covering social justice, civil rights and law, economic opportunities, education and community, and culture and community. These sessions will be guided by leaders from around the state and nation.

Other featured activities include poster competitions for high school and college students, and performances by the ROOTS of Sunflower County and the Delta Blues Museum Band.

The university will kick off this year’s conference with an open house on March 26 from 2-6 p.m. at the Amzie Moore House Museum and Interpretive Center located at 614 South Chrisman Avenue in Cleveland. A press conference honoring the work of Mississippi civil rights veterans will take place at the house at 3 p.m.

Conference activities will begin on campus at 8 a.m. on March 27 in the Bologna Performing Arts Center at Delta State.

For more information, contact Simmons at tsimmons@deltastate.edu.

Students observe state legislators in session

By | Student Government Association, Students | No Comments
Photo 1 (left to right): Sen. Derrick Simmons (District 12, represents Bolivar County); Sen. Buck Clarke (District 22, represents Bolivar County); student Jordan Galtelli; student Hunter Webb; Senator David Parker (District 2, Allie Rose Parker’s father); student Allie Rose Parker; and Senator Willie Simmons (District 13, represents Bolivar County). Photo 2 (l to r): Hunter Webb; Rep. Abe Hudson (District 29, represents Bolivar County); Allie Rose Parker; and Jordan Galtelli.

A delegation of Student Government Association students from Delta State University visited the Mississippi State Capitol this month to observe legislators in session and to host Delta State’s local members for lunch.

The group of students included Allie Rose Parker, SGA president; Hunter Webb, SGA attorney general; and Jordan Galtelli, philanthropic affairs chairman.

Attending legislators included Sen. Derrick Simmons (District 12, represents Bolivar County); Sen. Buck Clarke (District 22, represents Bolivar County); Sen. Willie Simmons (District 13, represents Bolivar County); Rep. Abe Hudson (District 29, represents Bolivar County); and Sen. David Parker (District 2, Allie Rose’s father).

Rep. Hudson said the visit was special for him because of his ties to Delta State.

“Because I worked there for five years, Delta State University will always be a special place to me. I spoke with members of the student government association while they were in Jackson,” he said. “They were all knowledgable about happenings on campus and around the Mississippi Delta. Though we only spent a few minutes together, I was happy to see folks from back home.”

Parker said the experience of seeing the legislators in action was especially exciting.

“We took the time to meet our legislators to discuss Delta State,” said Parker. “We talked with them about the bills going through this session that had to with our university and about the recent budget cuts. It was an awesome experience to see the legislators in session because it was the first date for bills to be on the floor. We were able to witness the bills actually being talked on and voted on.”

The students also took time to complete a recent philanthropy project, delivering Valentine’s cards signed by students across campus to the Blair Batson’s Children’s Hospital.

On March 9, Delta State will continue it’s longstanding tradition of hosting legislators for a brown bag luncheon at the capital, providing more students the opportunity to network and interact with elected officials.

“We really look forward to the luncheon because it’s a great way to spread the word about the great things going on at Delta State,” said Parker. “It’s also a great way for students to connect with legislators on a more personal level, and improve DSU’s relationship with the legislature.”