Call for papers: International Conference on the Blues

By | Academics, Community, Delta Center, International Delta Blues Project, Students | No Comments

Delta State University is now accepting proposals for papers, presentations, lecture-performances, workshops, panels and clinics for the 4th annual International Conference on the Blues, to be held Oct. 1-3, 2017.

To celebrate the centennial of John Lee Hooker’s birth, the conference committee is soliciting manuscripts and presentations on Hooker’s music, life and influence. In addition, the conference is seeking presentations and papers on the legacy of ethnomusicologist Alan Lomax, and especially his fieldwork in Mississippi.

Topics of general interest to scholars and enthusiasts are also welcome, such as the African American musical tradition and its influence on world music; call and response as metaphor; black music and the American Civil Rights Movement; African American history in the Delta; African American folk life; and the genres of blues, jazz, gospel and soul music.

Topics of an interdisciplinary nature are also encouraged. Papers are invited from ethnomusicologists, musicologists, scholars, authors, performers, blues enthusiasts and independent researchers.

Additionally, to support young and emerging scholars (graduate students, recent masters, doctoral graduates and junior faculty), the Luther Brown Prize is awarded to the outstanding young scholar paper.

All presentations will be a maximum of 20 minutes in length, with an additional 10 minutes for discussion, and should address a general audience.

Proposals must be submitted online via www.deltastate.edu/blues. Applicants are ask to include a description of the presentation, audio/visual equipment needs and biographical information for all presenters. Please note that not all A/V requests will be granted. Presenters agree to appear at the conference at their own expense, which will include registration fees.

For more information, contact Shelley Collins and Don Allan Mitchell at blues@deltastate.edu or visit www.deltastate.edu/blues.

Alumni and Admissions team up for social media campaign

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

A partnership between the Delta State University National Alumni Association and the Office of Admissions has created a fun initiative for incoming freshmen and transfer students.

The digital campaign created by the National Alumni Association, #deltastatebound, aims to promote awareness of the Delta State family culture to future Statesmen and alumni, as well as promote and engage a positive life-long alumni experience.

For those who have been admitted and have decided to continue their higher education at Delta State, the Alumni Association designed and provided yard sign gifts for the students as a celebratory ‘send off’ from their current residence. Using the hashtag #deltastatebound, students take to social media to share photos with the sign, letting the world know they’re coming to Delta State in the fall.

“The campaign is giving the new students a way to brand their commitment to Delta State. New students are having fun with the signs, which feature the Fighting Okra and Statesman mascots,” said Jeffrey Farris, director of Alumni Relations. “We are also excited to compliment Admissions’ goal of providing students with an atmosphere that fosters commitment and a sense of belonging.”

Melissa Love, assistant director of Alumni Relations, added, “The impact of the campaign through social media outlets has been fantastic. Since our campaign began, the hashtag has been used by admitted students and Delta State officials through Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. These posts have gained thousands of likes and have collectively been shared dozens of times, including being shared by Mississippi Today. Analytics of our own social media accounts report reach totals of several thousand. This doesn’t include measurements from individuals who have posted the hashtag.”

Although primarily a digital campaign, the yard signs are being seen in neighborhoods across the state, additionally promoting Delta State pride.

Students interested in enrolling at Delta State may apply online at www.deltastate.edu/apply, and campus visits may be scheduled at www.deltastate.edu/visit. Students who have submitted an application may check their status by logging in to their student account any time or by calling 662-846-4020.

For more information on the admissions process or admitted student events, contact the Office of Admissions at 662-846-4020 or email admissions@deltastate.edu.

For more information on the National Alumni Association, call 662-846-4660 or email alumni@deltastate.edu. To stay up to date on the Alumni Association’s activities, follow these social media sites: Facebook (Statesmen Graduates), Twitter (@DSU_Alumni), Tumblr (www.dsualumni.tumblr.com), LinkedIn (DSU alumni), Instagram (dsualumni) and You Tube (dsualumni1).

Save the dates: Pig Pickin’ (October 7) and Homecoming (November 11).

Upholt paddles “Big River”

By | General, Uncategorized | No Comments

Sleeping under the stars, rising with the sun to the sounds of the Mississippi River, paddling daily in a handcrafted canoe — Boyce Upholt, a graduate student at Delta State University, spent six weeks on the Mighty Mississippi this spring.

Upholt, a candidate for a Master of Arts in Liberal Studies (geography), is documenting the “batture,” the woods between the levee and the river, as a part of his thesis.

He calls this important and little-known landscape the “walled-in wild.”

“In a way it’s the leftovers,” said Upholt. “It’s half domesticated, contained by the levee wall, with concrete lining much of the river’s edge, too. But it’s half wild, too — maybe more than half.”

See the full story and photos: http://www.deltastate.edu/photostories/2017/05/25/upholt-paddles-big-river/

 

Salute to Delta Honor Graduates held in conjunction with Delta Council Day

By | Community, Delta Council, Uncategorized | No Comments
The 14th annual Salute to Delta Honor Graduates will be held in conjunction with Delta Council Day on June 9. Senator Roger Wicker (left), the keynote speaker for the event, will be joined by co-host Archie Tucker, senior executive with the Department of Agriculture.

Delta Council will hold its 14th Salute to Delta Honor Graduates Event during the 82nd annual meeting of the regional organization at Delta State University on June 9.

The Honor Graduate event is slated for 9 a.m. in a tent on the parking lot outside the east entrance of the Bologna Performing Arts Center.

U.S. Senator Roger Wicker will be the keynote speaker for the event, and United States Department of Agriculture senior executive Archie Tucker will serve as co-host for the event.

“We are pleased that two exceptional Mississippi leaders — Senator Wicker and Mr. Tucker — will be there to underscore the importance of continuing their educational and professional pursuits to these top young men and women of the Delta,” said Cass Pennington of Indianola, Delta Council Educational Policy chairman. “The Delta Honor Graduate event is designed to raise the level of awareness of parents, teachers and our local communities of the importance of bringing these bright young minds back to the Delta after they have completed their formal and advanced education.”

Wicker, a native of Pontotoc and resident of Tupelo, has represented Mississippi in the United States Senate since December 2007. Wicker serves as a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, and he chairs the Subcommittee on Seapower. He is a member of the Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, serving as chairman of the Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, Innovation and the Internet; Environment and Public Works Committee; and the Rules Committee.  Wicker is also a member of the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy Congressional Board of Visitors.

Co-hosting the event will be Archie Tucker of Greenville, who is the deputy administrator of USDA’s largest Agricultural Research Service regional location in the country. Tucker’s extensive professional and civic activities have led to personal recognition including the Distinguished Alumni Award in 2005 and the Herbert White Preeminence Award for Achievement in Excellence from Mississippi Valley State University, a resolution from the Mississippi House of Representatives and Parent of the Year for the 1999-2000 school year from the Mississippi State Board of Education. Additionally, Tucker is a member of several organizations including the Advisory Board of the National Society for Minorities in Agriculture, Executive Board of Alcorn State University and the National Alumni Association for MVSU.

The Honor Graduate Event is designed to bestow special honor upon two exemplary students from each of the high schools throughout the Mississippi Delta Region, including public, parochial and private schools. Students are selected by school administrators based on grade point average, extracurricular activities and community service.

In addition, a $2,500 scholarship will be awarded to the top Delta Honor Graduate as selected by higher education officials in the Delta, to help defray tuition and expenses as the student’s college of choice sees fit. The top Delta Honor Graduate will be recognized on stage at the Delta Council annual meeting during the Business Session, which begins at 10:30 a.m. Wicker will also be on hand to introduce the keynote speaker for the 82nd Annual Meeting, United States Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue.

Sponsors for the meeting: BankPlus, Catfish Farmers of Mississippi, Cotton, Inc., Sanders, Mississippi Corn Promotion Board, Mississippi Rice Promotion Board, Mississippi Soybean Promotion Board, and Southern Ag Credit/Mississippi Land Bank.

Fulcher named Special Assistant to the President for Donor Relations

By | Alumni, Faculty/Staff, Foundation, President | No Comments

Delta State University President William N. LaForge and DSU Foundation President Tim Harvey recently announced that Keith Fulcher, executive director of Delta State University Alumni and Foundation, is moving into a new role as Special Assistant to the President for Donor Relations.

In the position, Fulcher will provide strategic leadership in support of the president for fundraising efforts around institutional initiatives of the highest value and priority to Delta State.

Reporting to LaForge and serving as a member of the Advancement Senior Leadership Team, Fulcher will develop and execute coordinated strategies aimed at maximizing the engagement and philanthropic support of the university’s top prospective donors.

Fulcher has served in the executive director role for Alumni-Foundation since 2003.

“I am extremely pleased to continue my 21 years of service to Delta State University in this new role,” Fulcher said. “Private support is key to the future of the University. It is my goal to identify, cultivate, and invite Alumni and friends to consider Delta State as one of their top charitable causes to support. Taking philanthropic giving to unprecedented levels will ensure that the quality of instruction that Delta State is known for is maintained and enhanced for future generations.”

The news comes on the heels of Delta State announcing upcoming plans for a major private fundraising campaign. The campaign will allow Delta State to continue its efforts to boost student success and enrichment, academic excellence, and cultural and social heritage.

“As Delta State approaches the major endeavor of a fundraising campaign, we’re making every effort to organize ourselves for success,” said LaForge. “I am pleased to announce that Keith Fulcher will become the full-time Special Assistant to the President for Donor Relations. This move will allow Keith to focus on cultivation of donors and prospects, and to engage in the advancement of our capital campaign interests over the next several years. I am thrilled he has agreed to take on this new role, and I look forward to working with him.”

Harvey is also thrilled with Fulcher’s new responsibilities.

“This campaign will be one of the most significant initiatives in the 92-year history of Delta State, and having Keith focus all his energy and vast experience working directly with President LaForge on the campaign is critical in creating the results that will be crucial to Delta State for years to come.”

Fulcher received his Bachelor of Science in Social Studies Education degree from Delta State in 1983 and a Master of Education in 1985, also from Delta State.

He will commence his new duties over the next few weeks during which time the management of the Alumni-Foundation office will transition to a visiting consultant, who will serve as Interim Executive Director through the end of the calendar year.  The consultant selected for the interim role is Patrick Hundley, and he joins Delta State from the REGISTRY for College and University Presidents, an organization that provides experienced higher educational professionals on a part-time basis.  Hundley will commence his duties next week.  University and Foundation officials will conduct a search later in the year for a permanent Executive Director.

To give to Delta State, visit deltastategiving.org.