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College of Arts & Sciences Archives - News and Events

MS School for Math and Science students complete summer research

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Pictured (left to right): Student John Tierce, Dr. Sharon K. Hamilton, Dr. Adam Johanson and student Stormy Gale.

Two visiting students from the Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science recently wrapped up a two-week research experience at Delta State under the direction of the Department of Chemistry and Physics.

Rising seniors participating in the program were Stormy Gale (Columbus, Mississippi) and John Tierce (Cleveland, Mississippi).

“The Department of Chemistry and Physics is been proud to once again host summer research students from the Mississippi School for Math and Science,” said Dr. Joe Bentley, chair of the department. “When students come to Delta State for a summer research experience like this, it’s great all the way around. The MSMS students get a taste for doing research in an academic lab, it will help them with their applications to college, and the professor gets to work with highly qualified high school students.”2017 math science interns-1

Tierce worked closely with Dr. Sharon K. Hamilton, assistant professor of chemistry.

“John has been working with other students in my lab determining the optimal formulations for drug-loaded natural polymer fibers,” said Hamilton. “These fibers can be used for drug delivery and wound healing purposes. John is gaining valuable research experience that will help him as he pursues his college degree next year. It is my hope that our high school chemistry and physics research program can continue to grow in the years to come, especially with such great student recommendations from Dr. Elizabeth Morgan at MSMS.”

Tierce also partnered on research with current Delta State students Katie Penton (Southaven, Mississippi), a graduate student in chemistry, and Zachary Kinler (Pascagoula, Mississippi), an undergraduate student.

Gale worked with Dr. Adam Johanson, planetarium director and assistant professor of physics.

“Stormy Gale spent two weeks developing an original planetarium presentation entitled ‘History of Astronomy,’” said Johanson. “She not only outlined the show, but wrote over 1,000 lines of computer code to program the planetarium to display videos, pictures and animations to complement the narration.”

The presentation of Gale’s hard work was given to the public on July 21 in the Wiley Planetarium.

Hamilton’s research is supported by the Mississippi IDeA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence, and funded by an Institutional Development Award from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences of the National Institutes of Health under grant number P20GM103476.

Learn more about Delta State’s Department of Chemistry and Physics at http://www.deltastate.edu/artsandsciences/chemistry-and-physics.

Boldon accepted into MS Rural Physicians Scholarship Program

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Emilee Ann Boldon, a junior at Delta State and a native of Greenwood, was recently selected to participate in the undergraduate portion of the Mississippi Rural Physicians Scholarship Program. Boldon is the daughter of Billy and Treasa Boldon of Greenwood.

Created in 2007, MRPSP identifies college sophomores and juniors who demonstrate the necessary commitment and academic achievement to become competent, well-trained rural primary care physicians in Mississippi. The program offers undergraduate academic enrichment and a clinical experience in a rural setting. Upon completion of all medical school admissions requirements, the student can be admitted to the University of Mississippi School of Medicine or William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine.

During medical school, each MRPSP scholar may receive $30,000 per year based on available funding. Consistent legislative support of MRPSP translates to 60 medical students receiving a total of $1,800,000 to support their education this fall. Additional benefits include personalized mentoring from practicing rural physicians and academic support.

Upon completion of medical training, MRPSP Scholars must enter a residency program in one of five primary care specialties: family medicine, general internal medicine, medicine-pediatrics, obstetrics/gynecology or pediatrics. The MRPSP scholar must provide four years of service in a clinic-based practice in an approved Mississippi community of 15,000 or fewer population located more than 20 miles from a medically served area.

MRPSP provides a means for rural Mississippi students to earn a seat in medical school, receive mentoring during the medical school application process, earn a $120,000 medical school scholarship in return for four years of service and learn the art of healing from practicing rural physicians.

For more information, contact MRPSP Associate Director Dan Coleman at 601-815-9022, jdcoleman@umc.edu or http://mrpsp.umc.edu.

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The Mississippi Rural Physicians Scholarship Program and the Mississippi Rural Dentists Scholarship Program are state-funded efforts to increase the number of dentists and physicians serving the healthcare needs of Mississippians in rural areas. Housed at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, and collaborating with its schools of medicine and dentistry and the College of Osteopathic Medicine at William Carey University in Hattiesburg, the programs use various outreach, mentoring and training methods to identify, support, educate and deploy new generations of healthcare workers for Mississippi’s underserved populations.

Newman honored for campus and community contributions

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Erin Newman ’17

First attracted to Delta State’s swim program, recent graduate Erin Newman began her college career as a quiet freshman, but quickly found her voice through her passion for history.

Her professors are most impressed by her spirited discussions with both upperclassmen and instructors.

“She uses evidence to support logical arguments, proves her point in a quiet but effective manner, and often persuades others to embrace her perspective,” said Dr. Charles Westmoreland, assistant professor of history.

Given her stellar performance in the classroom, Erin has amassed a variety of academic honors at Delta State. Most recently, she was the recipient of the 2017 Jack Winton Gunn Award at this year’s College of Arts and Sciences awards program.

The Gunn Award is given for overall academic excellence in honor of the former dean of the university, and it is among the highest awards presented at Delta State.

Outside the classroom, Newman has also played an important role in preserving the history of Delta State and the surrounding region.

In the summer of 2015, she interned with University Archives and Museum, an experience which allowed her to assist in the development of the DSU 90th Anniversary Exhibit. Additionally, she has been a key contributor to two exhibits on sports history and culture, one of which was a Smithsonian traveling exhibit on display on campus in the fall of 2016.

In 2016, Newman took on extensive responsibilities in historical interpretation and preservation by serving as the program director at the Amzie Moore House Museum and Interpretive Center, a Cleveland historic site that interprets the life and legacy of civil rights leader Amzie Moore. Her work with the museum involved leading group tours and engaging in community outreach programs.

Newman, right, works with James McBride, president of the Bolivar County Board of Supervisors, and Will Hooker, Bolivar County administrator.

Newman, right, works with James McBride, president of the Bolivar County Board of Supervisors, and Will Hooker, Bolivar County administrator.

“Erin has made significant contributions to our mission to expand the legacy of Amzie Moore and the work of the civil rights movement in the Mississippi Delta,” said Will Hooker, Bolivar County administrator.

Emily Jones, university archivist, is grateful for Newman’s contributions to campus and community.

“From the beginning, Erin demonstrated initiative and a desire to learn more about the field of archive and museum studies,” said Jones. ”She has soaked up every opportunity, and now that hard work and drive is taking her down an amazing career path.”

Recently, Newman was accepted into the Museum Studies program at the University of Leicester in England, where she has been awarded a President’s Post-Graduate Scholarship for International Students.

To complement her formidable academic talents and community service, she has been a valued member of the Delta State swim team. She has served in a leadership capacity as the vice-chair of the Student Athlete Advisory Committee for the Gulf South Conference.

“Both inside and beyond the classroom, she has helped peers and younger colleagues as they seek to balance the challenges of academics and athletic competition,” added Jones. “Despite practicing several hours a day for the past four years, Erin has been one of the most accomplished students on this campus. She is a model scholar and campus citizen who has taken a vested interested in serving Cleveland and the entire region.”

Follow news of student success at Delta State at www.deltastate.edu.

Students attend American Chemical Society National Meeting

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First row, left to right: (holding award) Bonita Nuon (holding award), Tia Brown. Second row (l to R): Dr. Sharon K. Hamilton, Kierstin Page, Daisy Camarillo, Ashley Griffin. Third row (l to r): Will Weeks, Scarlett Salter, Katie Penton.

In early April, the Delta State University American Chemical Society (DSU ACS) attended the 253rd American Chemical Society National Meeting & Exposition in San Francisco, Califronia.

Two members, Will Weeks and Kierstin Page, presented their research projects. Additionally, Daisy Camarillo, Ashley Griffin, Zach Odoms, Tia Brown, Bonita Nuon and Scarlett Salter presented a DSU ACS Chapter poster in the Division of Chemical Education for the Undergraduate Research Poster Session and the Successful Student Chapters Session.

Page’s poster was selected for the Sci-Mix, a large meeting-wide event that combines a social event with poster presentations contributed by each participating division. Divisions participate in Sci-Mix by contributing posters. The number of posters may not exceed 20 posters or 10 percent of the total number of papers in a division, whichever is larger. Her selection for a poster is a distinction as she represents the best of what the Division of Chemical Education has to offer in terms of the science and presentation.

Graduate student Katie Penton presented a research poster in the joint Polymeric Materials: Science and Engineering/Polymer Poster Session.

The DSU ACS chapter also attended the undergraduate awards ceremony where Penton, the chapter’s president, accepted the Commendable Student Chapter Award on behalf of the chapter.

“The ACS national meeting is a wonderful opportunity for students to meet chemists from around the world, hone networking and communication skills, and gain information regarding graduate schools, the interview process, and professional opportunities,” said Dr. Sharon Hamilton, assistant professor of chemistry at Delta State. “The DSU ACS students who attended the conference in San Francisco were exposed to cutting-edge research in oral and poster presentations. They were also able to explore San Francisco, gaining valuable exposure to cultures outside of the Delta.”

“Presentations at a national meeting are highly competitive, and it speaks highly of the DSU ACS chapter and the research being done in the Department of Chemistry and Physics that our students were able to present four different posters at the meeting,” added Hamilton. “It is truly a great honor for Kierstin Page to be selected to present her research at the Sci-Mix. Kierstin has worked hard on her chemistry education project and has continued to network with other departments at Delta State in the hopes of expanding the project next year. She always has quite a bit of traffic at her poster presentation which is a good sign that the research she is doing at Delta State is pertinent and of interest to other researchers and educators in America.”

For more than 140 years the American Chemical Society has been improving people’s lives through the transforming power of chemistry. Learn more at https://www.acs.org.

World-class heavy metal artists to perform at Delta State

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Professor Velvet Brown and Dr. Neal Corwell will perform at Tuba-Euphonium Day 2017 on April 1.

The Department of Music is proud to announce Tuba-Euphonium Day 2017, Delta Tuba-Euph Fest.

The day-long event will be held on the Delta State campus on April 1, and the schedule includes two free concert performances by world-renowned guest artists.

Featured guests include Professor Velvet Brown, professor of tuba and euphonium at Penn State University, and euphonium soloist, Dr. Neal Corwell, recently retired master sergeant and euphonium section leader with the United States Army Band “Pershing’s Own.”

As part of the festival, both guest artists will be performing solo recitals. Corwell will be performing a euphonium recital at 11:30 a.m., and Brown will perform a tuba recital at 3:30 p.m. Corwell’s performance will feature works with computer-assisted accompaniment as well as solo repertoire. Brown will be assisted by Delta State’s Dr. Jung-Won Shin, associate professor of music, on piano. Both performances will take place in the Recital Hall of the Bologna Performing Arts Center.

Corwell will perform works by Albeniz, Chopin, Liszt, Arbans and Saint-Seans, among others. He will also be performing several of his own compositions. Brown’s performance will feature selections by Stevens, York, Ionel, Grant Still, Bonner and Mozart.

For more information, contact 662-846-4606.