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CCED receives large grant to begin Delta Reads Plus

By | Academics, Center for Community and Economic Development, Community | No Comments

Delta State University’s Center for Community and Economic Development recently confirmed it would be one of 11 Mississippi organizations receiving grant funding from a $3.3 million AmeriCorps campaign to support nonprofit and educational organizations across the state.

The grant will support the new the Delta Reads Plus (DRP) project, which will be housed at the CCED on campus. DRP has received $263,761 thanks to the grant.

Through DRP, 50 AmeriCorps members will tutor students one-on-one in grades K-8 five days a week for the 2016-17 academic term in school districts in Bolivar, Coahoma, Leflore, Washington and Sunflower counties.

The program will help reach 400 economically disadvantaged students. Focus areas will include reading and math. The AmeriCorps tutors will guide the students to program completion by participating in 30 or more tutoring sessions.

“Delta Reads Plus is great news for both DSU and the local schools because some schools in the Mississippi Delta are facing low student achievement due to a perpetual lack of support and the economic disadvantages persistent in the area,” said David Tanner with the CCED. “Having AmeriCorps serve as tutors in these areas is a great way of leveraging resources and enhancing student achievement. DSU has a longstanding partnership with K-12 schools throughout the Mississippi Delta region and is committed to helping those schools succeed.”

According to Robin Boyles, director of the Office of Institutional Grants at Delta State, DRP is currently seeking school districts interested in receiving certified tutoring services within the five target counties.

“Delta State, through its Center for Community and Economic Development, has a long history of partnering with the Mississippi Commission on Volunteer Service and the Corporation for National and Community Service, to provide programming that addresses the needs of the Mississippi Delta region,” said Boyles. “Through the Delta Reads Plus project, we are furthering our commitment to addressing the region’s educational outcomes by focusing on increasing student achievement in reading and math.”

Interested districts are encouraged to contact Tanner at contact Tanner at 662-846-4808 or dtanner@deltastate.edu.

Statewide, the federal investment of the 11 grants totaling $3.3 million will support 546 AmeriCorps members. Through these grants, AmeriCorps members will support youth development and education programs serving Mississippi students in grades K-12, and help expand economic opportunities in all 82 Mississippi counties.

The Corporation for National and Community Service will also provide up to $1.6 million in education scholarships for the AmeriCorps members funded by these grants to help pay for college, vocational training, or repay student loans. The federal investment is projected to generate an additional $2.2 million in local support to increase community impact and return on federal investment.

“AmeriCorps members make a powerful impact on the toughest challenges facing our nation,” said Wendy Spencer, CEO of the CNCS. “Building on Mississippi’s strong tradition of neighbor helping neighbor, AmeriCorps members will improve lives and strengthen communities across the hospitality state. While they serve others, AmeriCorps members will also expand opportunity for themselves — gaining skills and experience to jumpstart their careers. I salute AmeriCorps members for their dedication, and thank our outstanding partners who make their service possible.”

Learn more about Delta State’s CCED at http://www.deltastate.edu/academics/graduate-and-continuing-studies/center-for-community-economic-development/.

Join the Delta State University National Alumni Association for the annual Greater Jackson Area Alumni Event July 14 at the Jackson Yacht Club.

Alumni Association to host annual Jackson event

By | Alumni, Community | No Comments

The Delta State University National Alumni Association will be traveling to Jackson for the annual Greater Jackson Area Alumni Event July 14 at the Jackson Yacht Club.

The evening begins with a social at 6 p.m. followed by the program at 7 p.m. featuring Delta State President William  N. LaForge, Alumni-Foundation staff, and

Jeff Arnold (left to right), Lydia Watson McCardle, Lisa Grantham, Jennifer Covington Stringer, John Stringer and Jeffrey Farris.

Jeff Arnold (left to right), Lydia Watson McCardle, Lisa Grantham, Jennifer Covington Stringer, John Stringer and Jeffrey Farris.

other guests from campus. Entertainment will be provided by Douglas Hurd. Complimentary draft beer and a cash bar will be available for guests 21 and over.

The silent auction is always a signature component of the Jackson alumni event. All proceeds raised from the auction benefit the Greater Jackson Area Scholarship, which is awarded to incoming freshmen from the area attending Delta State. The 2016-17 scholarship recipients are Hannah McMardle, Madison

Sims and Elizabeth Swindle.

The annual event would not be possible without the generosity of sponsors. This year’s sponsors include: BankPlus, Polles Properties, BKD, Casey Myrick, and AvantGarde Strategies, LLC. Corporate Sponsors of the Alumni Association are: Polk’s Meat Products, Bolivar Medical Center, Celia Manley Real Estate, Hey Joe’s, Air Evac Lifeteam, Patrick Davis State Farm and Renasant Bank.

To purchase tickets or donate to the fund, visit http://www.deltastategiving.org/alumniassociation/jacksonalumnievent. Join the Facebook group at Statesmen Graduates, Greater Jackson Area Alumni Event (https://www.facebook.com/events/1766770780270888/).

To stay up to date on the Alumni Association’s activities, follow these social media sites: Facebook (Statesmen Graduates), Twitter (@DSU_Alumni), Tumblr (http://www.dsualumni.tumblr.com), LinkedIn (DSU alumni), Instagram (dsualumni) and You Tube (dsualumni1). Save the date for this year’s Pig Pickin’ (Sept. 24) and Homecoming (Oct. 15).

The College of Education and Human Sciences recently completed its 12th annual Literacy Across the Curriculum Institute.

Literacy Across the Curriculum Institute hosted by COEHS

By | Academics, College of Education and Human Sciences, Community | No Comments

Delta State University’s College of Education and Human Sciences recently completed its 12th annual Literacy Across the Curriculum Institute on campus, which ran from June 1-28. 

LACI is provided through the support of the No Child Left Behind Act: Improving Teacher Quality State Grant.

In total, 18 content area teachers from across Mississippi attended the 20-day institute. The intensive training included a variety of topics, lectures, activities and presentations on a wealth of relevant topics for today’s educators. The most heavily embedded topics of the institute included word recognition, vocabulary, comprehension skills and how to actively incorporate them in their content areas. 

The teachers attended sessions related to literacy and college readiness skills to better prepare their students for not only major assessments, but also for their futures.

The goal of LACI was to enhance the participants’ repertoire of literacy knowledge, skills and dispositions to not only improve their students’ academic performance, but also to act as change agents within their schools and districts.

The director of this year’s program was Dr. Merideth Van Namen.

“Our 18 participants were eager to grow professionally and played an active role in learning new literacy strategies to enhance their classrooms,” said Van Namen. “The instructors were deeply vested in helping the participants learn how to increase students’  literacy skills and overall academic achievement. The combination of wonderful participants and knowledgeable instructors made for an extremely successful institute.”

Upon completing the institute, the teachers will provide staff development for their schools on their newly learned literacy skills, in addition to completing an extensive Teacher Work Sample and collecting evidence of student learning in their classrooms. The teachers will reconvene for two additional follow-up sessions in the fall and spring to continue evaluating their planning, instruction and assessment, as well as to continue learning valuable literacy practices.

Along with Van Namen, the LACI administrative team included Dr. Janet Parker, instructor, and Pam Maxwell, instructor.

For more information on LACI, contact Van Namen at mvannamen@deltastate.edu or 662-846-4412.

This year's DMI Summer Camp final showcase will be held July 16 at 6 p.m. in the Bologna Performing Arts Center.

DMI Summer Camp celebrates tenth year of showcasing talent

By | College of Arts and Sciences, Delta Music Institute, Faculty/Staff | No Comments

The Delta Music Institute Entertainment Industry Studies program at Delta State University is celebrating its tenth year of developing and showcasing young talent through a summer camp for high school students.

This year’s student campers at the DMI Summer Camp will present a showcase of original songs and commercial music on July 16 at 6 p.m. in the Bologna Performing Arts Center on the campus of Delta State. The concert will include material from various commercial music genres, along with several original songs created by the camp’s songwriting students. The show will also include a performance by select DMI Summer Camp alumni.

Over 20 students ages 15-18 from Mississippi and Alabama are participating in the 2016 program. The intensive six-day residential camp experience explores three integrated music industry tracks, including audio engineering, band performance and songwriting. The camp culminates with a recording session at the DMI studios followed by the showcase.

Instructors for the camp are DMI faculty members along with entertainment industry professionals.

“For the past 10 summers, it has been amazing to see talented young people write original music, rehearse, and put together such a great show in only a week’s time,” said DMI Director Tricia Walker. “It’s also fun to watch them form friendships with other like-minded campers from all over the state.”

The July 16 showcase is free and open to the public. Supporters of these talented young musicians are encouraged to attend and enjoy the show.

The DMI Summer Camp is supported by grant funds from the Mississippi Arts Commission and Entergy Mississippi.

The Delta Music Institute offers a Bachelor of Science degree in Entertainment Industry Studies at Delta State University. The focus of the DMI is to provide students with a broad and thorough education in the technological, business and creative areas of the entertainment industry. For more information, call the DMI office at 662-846-4579 or visit www.deltastate.edu/dmi.

A group of faculty from Anyang Institute of Technology in China recently arrived at Delta State for a two-week exchange program.

Delta State welcomes Chinese delegation

By | Academics, Faculty/Staff, International | No Comments

A group of nine faculty members from Anyang Institute of Technology in Anyang, China are visiting Delta State for an intensive two-week exchange program, as both universities will explore future international exchanges.

The trip, being coined as China Summer Camp, is the result of a partnership that Dr. Charles McAdams, Delta State provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, helped form after visiting AIT earlier this year.

The AIT delegation, which arrived July 3, will be on campus until July 16, and their visit will focus on exploring U.S. higher education, Southern culture and study abroad opportunities for students.

The first week has focused on specific aspects of Delta State and Mississippi Delta Chinese heritage. The second week will mainly pertain to U.S. business practices, community tours and events.

“I am very excited for Delta State to hold its first summer camp for Chinese faculty,” said McAdams. “This training workshop is another result of the partnership agreement we established with AIT this past spring during my recent trip to China. We are partnering with AIT in order to attract their students who wish to finish their degree at an American university.

“We also provide summer training workshops for faculty to help them understand our educational system in hopes that they will send their students here to study. Our plan is to have a camp next summer for students to help them prepare for studying in an American university. These camps are a benefit to their students and to DSU.”

McAdams added that not only is there a potential for increasing enrollment, but Delta State is also providing the opportunity for its students and faculty to learn about other cultures though direct contact with Chinese faculty and students.

“Dr. Christy Riddle and the Office of International Student Services in the Student Success Center, along with faculty in the College of Business, have done a fantastic job of planning and administering this workshop,” said McAdams.

Riddle is thrilled to host a new group of foreign visitors on campus, as Delta State continues to build its international relations.

“This visit is another opportunity for DSU to expand its international efforts to establish partnerships that will allow our students to study abroad,” said Riddle. “We hope this is the beginning of continued collaboration. We are designing a summer camp for next summer to host students from China who are interested in studying abroad at DSU in the fall of 2017. Additionally, we plan to formalize the partnership to encourage international exchange opportunities for DSU faculty, students and staff.”

This is the first trip to the U.S. for all of the AIT faculty participants, all of whom are business faculty. Their fields include: management, marketing, logistics management, accounting, finance, business negotiations, international trade, and electronic commerce.

Yupeng Li, an AIT participant in the camp, has enjoyed the experience thus far.

“Our city in China is actually very similar,” said Li. “And I find many things in common with our universities too. We see that everything is about agriculture in Mississippi, and our province is the same. The people here are very friendly and generous. I really like it.”

Anyang is one of China’s most historic cities, and is considered one of China’s seven ancient capitals. Similar to the Mississippi Delta, Anyang has been a long-time regional agricultural center.

AIT was founded in 1983, and is a non-profit public higher education institution. The university offers bachelors, masters and doctoral degrees in arts and humanities, business and social sciences, language and culture, medicine and health, engineering, and science and technology.