-- The University of Southern Mississippi continued a recent trend
of promoting from within Thursday by naming Southern Miss's assistant
director of British Studies, Dr. Ken Panton, as new dean of the
Southern Miss Honors College.
Panton, a native
of Edinburgh, Scotland, and member of the Southern Miss Geography
Department faculty since 1997, will take over the post vacated by
Dr. Maureen Ryan, who was promoted to associate provost last fall.
Dr. Tom Richardson, coordinator of senior honors in the Honors College,
has been serving as interim dean.
a privilege to be working at Southern Miss and to be named dean
of the Honors College," said Panton. "I'm looking forward
to working with some of the brightest students on campus. It's an
intellectual stimulus for me and a pleasure to work with these students."
he wants to make the Honors College one of the best in the country
and a point of pride for students associated with its programs.
it to be a place that people want to come and where it is a privilege
to be a member," he said. "I'm also looking forward to
working with faculty who enjoy teaching these bright students and
getting their input about development of the Honors College."
a master of arts in geography and subsidiary politics and social
anthropology from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland in 1970.
He earned a doctorate from King's College, University of London,
to Southern Miss, Panton served as a senior lecturer in geography
at London Guildhall University, and at City of London Polytechnic,
and was an assistant professor of geography at Kansas State University
specialty areas include geography of education, religion, language
and, more recently, study-abroad education. He is the author of
three books a two-volume Historical Dictionary of the United
Kingdom and a single-volume Historical Dictionary of London. His
other published works include "Literacy in London: Study of
Patterns of Reading Ability of Eight-Year-Old School Pupils in the
Inner City," a journal article based on his doctoral dissertation.
book (released in 2002) was designed as a reference text for American
libraries, but has been picked up by a British publisher and is
being adapted for publication to a more general market in the United
Kingdom," the dean noted.
Ryan said she
has known Panton for 15 years through their association as colleagues
and their mutual participation in the British Studies program, adding,
"More recently, he's taught frequently in the Honors College.
I have no doubt he'll be an excellent Honors College dean."
Miss Honors College provides students with a broadly-based liberal
education often found in a smaller college environment within the
context of a large, comprehensive university. Its origins trace
back to 1965 with the university's honors program, which grew into
a separate college in 1976, making it the sixth oldest honors college
in the nation.
has an approximate enrollment of 300 student and is divided into
two sections including General Honors for freshmen and sophomores,
and Senior Honors for juniors and seniors. The Honors College works
with any degree program offered by the university and offers scholarship
opportunities based on academic and leadership abilities. For more
information about the college and its programs, call (601) 266-4533