The College of Science and Technology is tailgating tomorrow, Saturday October 26 from 3:30 – 5:30 just outside the Bobby Chain Technology Building. Alumni, faculty, staff, students, and friends are all invited to join us as the Southern Miss Golden Eagles take on the Mean Green of North Texas.
We will be offering a delicious meal catered by Eagle Dining. The food is free and we will be giving away door prizes. Don’t forget… get there early because the food goes fast. Hope to see you tomorrow for Homecoming!
This fall we welcome approximately 3,000 returning and new students to the College of Arts and Letters. Those students have chosen to study for undergraduate and graduate degrees in our diverse array of programs in the arts, humanities and social sciences, and in our many collaborative interdisciplinary programs.
The back-to-school season is always an exciting one for our students, faculty and staff, and me personally. I am proud of our A&L community and anticipate another stellar year. Indeed, we will need to raise the bar even higher as we begin to focus on our strategic goals – anchored in our student success and profile expansion efforts. So I encourage everyone to:
Consider the positive individual difference we can make as we, the faculty and staff, work to realize our greatest potential.
There are many ways a college conveys its core values. In an issue of Liberal Education, Jack Meacham and Jerry Gaff noted that it is important that we “do what we say and say what we do.” Our public declaration found in our college and school/department strategic goals is our guide and those declarations share some of the same key words and phrases like “excellence in scholarship, focus on student success, and innovation in the classroom.” Without a clear path forward and a positive commitment to the journey, it is unlikely that our strategic plans will emerge in practice. Our faculty places us well to continue the tradition of developing innovative opportunities for our students and producing meaningful scholarship. Moving forward together is critical to this endeavor as we shift “what has been to what could be”.
Take pause along the way to consider.
I am amazed at how quickly time passes as we move from one academic season to the next. It seems that with the new and ever changing technology that has pervaded our lives, we spend a great deal of time in gear and racing ahead at full throttle. The pace we have adopted in our modern-day lives often influences how quickly we come to some of the decisions we make on issues in our own lives and those as a faculty across the college. Yet in our endeavors in creative and scholarly research, we are committed to thoughtful consideration and a measured and deliberate tempo to produce the great body of work seen in the college. I encourage the same discipline seen in our scholarship efforts as we adapt to an ever-changing constituent need. We must be nimble and flexible, but also thoughtful and deliberate in the decisions that we will have to make in the months and years to come as we strive for relevance and the ability to sustain or increase the impact we have had for our students and the community we serve.
Let us move forward together. Welcome back!
On behalf of the College of Science and Technology, I’d like to extend best wishes to former dean Dr. Joe B. Whitehead, Jr. and former associate dean Dr. Dale Ledford, both of whom retired effective July 31.
We wish Dr. Whitehead success in his new position as Provost of North Carolina A&T State University in Greensboro, NC. Dr. Whitehead was appointed interim dean of the College of Science and Technology in August 2009 and became dean in March 2010.
We also wish Dr. Ledford the best in his new occupation as retiree. Dr. Ledford spent many years at Southern Miss providing leadership for the college at the Long Beach campus and the temporary Gulfport Student Services Center location and more recently on the Hattiesburg campus.
Both men left Southern Miss better than they found it and we are proud to call them permanent members of the Southern Miss family. Good luck to both as they begin new chapters in their lives.
This month I participated in the Aspen Institute’s Wye Dean’s Seminar in Queensland, Maryland. Thirty-two academic leaders from across the country met for a week of intense reading and reflection on great writings reaching back to the ancient Greeks. Our quest was to uncover the hidden truths about leadership as witnessed in the writings of Aristotle, Machiavelli, Rousseau, Dewey, and others. We studied the inaugural addresses of Abraham Lincoln, the writings of Martin Luther King, and the address of Aung San Suu Kyi to the World Commission on Culture and Development. We even staged a reading of Sophocles’ Antigone. We pondered the writings of Confucius, read The Five Pillars of Faith in the Qur’an, and John Winthrop’s “A Model of Christian Charity.” I found the experience to be exhilarating, not only in basking in the luxury of a week devoted entirely to the great writings I have been away from for too long, but also through witness of the interpretations of these writings by deans and provosts from all parts of the country. I realized that far too often I am lost in the pushing of papers and enforcement of policy. As a dean of the arts, humanities, and social sciences, I realized that I cannot lose myself in perfunctory repetition. At the core, the truths of leadership and indeed in living a more perfect life comes from that which we teach in our classrooms, studios, and on our stages. The great secrets for striving to be a good leader, and in decision-making at every turn is waiting for us in the writings of those who preceded us, the great works of the ages.
Congratulations to University of Southern Mississippi students Michael Sims of Hattiesburg, Miss., and Hannah Roberts of Mount Olive, Miss., who have been awarded Goldwater Scholarships. The scholarships recognize the “nation’s next generation of top research scientists.”
Sims is a junior majoring in polymer science and chemistry, while Roberts is a sophomore chemistry major.
Congratulations to both Michael and Hannah. All of us in the College of Science and Technology are proud of you.
Read more about the scholarships at Southern Miss Now.