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Stratton named Cochran Congressional Fellow

By | College of Arts and Sciences, President, Students, Uncategorized | No Comments

Delta State University student Paxton Stratton was recently selected as a 2018 Congressional Fellow for U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran of Mississippi.

Stratton, a junior HPER (health, physical education and recreation) major, with a minor in coaching and mathematics, will move to Washington D.C. in January and remain there through the spring semester. The program selects one Delta State student each year to serve on Cochran’s staff, with the goal of providing a better understanding of the legislative process.

“I’m absolutely elated to be accepted as a Cochran Fellow,” said Stratton, a native of Fort Worth, Texas. “It’s a big-time opportunity, and I think it will be a great learning experience for me.”

Stratton said he is excited to learn how the legislative process works, having never previously delved into politics.

“I’ve never really been into politics, but this will be a great way for me to learn the ins and outs of politics,” he said. “I think it will also help my get my foot in the door with people who are changemakers in our country.”

Stratton is driven to design prosthetics after graduating from Delta State, and he said understanding the political environment would be helpful for making prosthetics more affordable to people in the future.

Stratton is also a member of the Delta State men’s soccer team.

Delta State has a long-running tradition of sending fellows to Washington, and Delta State President William N. LaForge served as Cochran’s chief of staff during the 1980s.

“It is professionally and personally gratifying to me that we continue this wonderful relationship with the senator’s office in cooperation with Delta Council and Staplcotn because of the affiliation with Sen. Cochran going back to my days as his chief of staff,” said LaForge. “Paxton will have an excellent experience there, and their office will benefit from his outstanding background at Delta State.”

The fellowship program is funded through Delta State University, the Delta Council and Staplcotn. Additionally, Stratton will receive a stipend from Cochran’s office.

The Delta Council is an area economic development organization representing the 18 Delta and part-Delta counties of Northwest Mississippi. The organization pioneers efforts to solve common problems and promote the development of the local economy. Founded in 1921, Staplcotn (Staple Cotton Cooperative Association) is the oldest and one of the largest cotton marketing cooperatives in the United States.

Flight Team places second at Region IV Safecon Flight Team Competition

By | Academics, Aviation, College of Business and Aviation, Students | No Comments
Members of the Delta State University Precision Flight Team, from left to right: Matthew Hill, Brandon Baioni (team advisor), Ryan Hudson, Emma Jeffries (captain), Adam Holthouser (co-captain), Tristan Crockett and Parker Tomlinson.

The Delta State University Precision Flight Team recently took home second place honors at the Region IV Safecon Flight Team Competition in Waco, Texas, from Oct. 30-Nov. 3.

Delta State’s team was second in flying events and tied with Texas State Technical College for second in ground events. This resulted in the team receiving second overall and an invitation to the National Competition at Indiana State University in Terre Haute, Indiana, in May of 2018. The results are the best finish for the team in recent years.

Delta State also received the Red Baron Team Sportsmanship Award and the Competition Safety Award.

The competition focuses on quality, exact and accurate flying. Teams are graded on a number of skills, including a navigation event, short-field landing event, power off landing event, computer accuracy, pre-flight inspection event, and more.

“I am proud of this team because they faced many challenges over the past two years preparing for competition,” said Brandon Baioni, flight team advisor. “The team showed how a little extra effort pays off in the end. The aviation program offers many tools pilots need to be successful in their careers, but I believe that flight team puts these individuals above the others offering them even more tools.”

The current student roster includes Emma Jeffries, Adam Holthouser, Ryan Hudson, Melvin Tucker, Parker Tomlinson, Tristan Crockett, and Matthew Hill.

“It’s a great feeling to know our team was able to work hard, stay focused and were able to pull out second place,” said Jeffries, team captain.” The flight team offers me a chance to fly, work and socialize with my aviation peers. It’s also a great opportunity to make connections outside of DSU as well.”

Delta State has been competing at the Region IV Safecon Flight Team Competition since 1982.

“I think that through the hard work of preparing the team for competition and the team member’s hard work and efforts, the once quieted Delta State University Precision Flight Team has once again regained a voice,” added Baioni.

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

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.

DSU Homecoming: A Statesman Stroll Down Memory Lane

By | Alumni, Athletics, Community, Faculty/Staff, Students | No Comments

Delta State University is gearing up for its biggest Homecoming in years. Join the celebration of Statesmen pride with Homecoming festivities beginning Nov. 6 at 4 p.m. with Catfish on the Quad sponsored by the Student Government Association.

While the official kickoff for the Homecoming football game is Nov. 11 at 2 p.m., an amped up schedule of activities will lead up to the game. This year’s theme is “A Statesman Stroll Down Memory Lane.”

Dr. Vernell Bennett, vice president for Student Affairs, has spearheaded the event schedule.

“Student Affairs and the Homecoming Committee are really focused on engaging more students, alumni and community members in Homecoming this year,” said Bennett. “Some of our new initiatives include a Homecoming webpage with links to the various events, various college open houses, a bonfire/pep rally at Statesman Park, and the Statesman Stroll.”

The stroll, beginning at the Student Union on Nov. 11, features 12 campus locations that include the open houses and various historic venues. The back of each stroll card has facts about each stop, and each “stroller” is entered into a drawing to win a Visa gift card. This activity begins at 9 a.m. and runs until 11 a.m. For more information on the stroll, visit http://www.deltastate.edu/student-life/homecoming-statesman-stroll.

Registration for the parade is still available at http://www.deltastate.edu/student-life/homecoming-parade. This year’s parade will again feature approximately 10 bands from throughout the region, and campus, alumni and community participants. The parade’s theme is “Statesman Pride On Parade.”

View the full Homecoming schedule below:

For more information, visit the official 2017 Homecoming webpage at http://www.deltastate.edu/student-life/dsu-homecoming.

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Fighting Okra Records seeks next artist

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

Fighting Okra Records, the student-run record label within the Delta Music Institute’s entertainment industry program at Delta State University, has launched its search for the next FOR recording artist.

Performing artists interested in pursuing this unique opportunity can visit fightingokrarecords.com, fill out the application form in its entirety, and submit online for a chance to be selected. The submission period will remain opent until  Nov. 10 at 11:59 p.m.

FOR is accepting submissions from both solo artists and bands of any musical genre. This year, the search has expanded beyond Delta State’s campus to include solo acts or groups in the surrounding area. All applicants must be 18 years of age or older and provide basic information regarding their musical endeavors.

FOR’s main purpose is to select a talented musician or band and provide them with professional industry utilities paired with significant industry insight to expand and strengthen the career of whomever the label selects.

“The artist or band selected for the Fighting Okra Records label will have a unique opportunity to have multiple university resources available to them for their career development through the students in the practicum course,” said Tricia Walker, DMI director. “The FOR members will facilitate photography, professional audio, publicity and promotion services on behalf of the artist in order to provide the artist with tools for building a strong foundation going forward.”

The Delta Music Institute is an independent center of study under the College of Arts and Sciences at Delta State University, offering a bachelors degree in entertainment industry studies. The focus of the DMI is to provide students with a broad and thorough education in the technological, creative and business areas of the music and entertainment industry. For information about the DMI or Fighting Okra Records, contact 662-846-4579, or visit http://dmi.deltastate.edu.