- The University of Southern Mississippi has selected two veteran
professors, administrators and researchers in their respective fields
as the new deans for the College of Arts and Letters and the College
of Science and Technology.
A. Pood, currently the dean of the College of Arts and Sciences
at the University of North Alabama, and Dr. Rex Franklin Gandy,
currently the chair of the University of Idaho's Department of Physics,
will bring their leadership and expertise to the newly restructured
colleges August 1.
Pood and Gandy
were chosen from a strong group of candidates vying for dean positions.
talented, high-quality individuals were interested in the various
opportunities provided by Southern Miss, and we were pleased with
the selection pool," Hattiesburg Provost Dr. Jay Grimes said.
"Southern Miss is competing in a global society and competitive
marketplace, and we have had interest from candidates from across
Pood, 52, received
his doctorate in organizational communication from Florida State
University. He holds a master's degree from the University of Central
Florida and a bachelor's degree in communication from West Georgia
his teaching career at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro
in the division of communication studies, Pood served at UNCG as
the director of the Institute for Communication Research and Consulting.
He then served as director of the broadcasting/cinema division at
UNCG, teaching in both the communication studies division and the
the members of the search committee for their diligent work,"
said Gulf Coast Provost Dr. Tim Hudson. "They were successful
in getting input throughout the selection process from all stakeholders,
including faculty, staff, alumni, community members and students."
Pood will become
the first dean of Southern Miss' newly reconfigured College of Arts
and Letters, which consists of the previous College of The Arts
and College of Liberal Arts. The change becomes effective July 1.
In 1989, Pood
was selected to be the founding chairperson of the Department of
Radio/Television/Photography at Middle Tennessee State University.
There he helped oversee the design and construction of a $20 million
mass communication complex. He was also successful in attracting
more than $1 million in grants from the Bosch/BTS Educational Foundation,
Sony, IBM, Wavefront Technologies and NewStar Systems.
served as assistant dean and interim associate dean of the College
of Mass Communication at MTSU.
of Arts and Letters' search committee, composed of faculty, staff,
students and community leaders, worked diligently to identify top
candidates for this important new position," said Dr. Andrew
Wiest, professor of history and search committee co-chairperson.
Pood quickly rose to the top of the list in a spirited competition.
He is both talented and amply qualified to face the challenge of
leading a newly formed and quite diverse college. I wish him the
best in this important endeavor and look forward to working with
him as dean."
of more than 60 articles and professional papers on the subjects
of organizational and mass communication, Pood has won awards for
his research from the International Communication Association. His
specialty is in organizational communication, with a research-consulting
specialty in organizational conflict management. He teaches courses
in broadcast management, history and development of broadcasting,
communication theory and research, organizational communication,
video production, interpersonal communication, nonverbal communication
and statistical research methods in the social sciences.
He has served
as the producer for two regional Emmy telecasts, served on the Board
of Governors for the Mid-South Chapter of the National Academy of
Television Arts and Sciences and has participated as producer, director,
writer and broadcast coordinator for more than 20 video productions.
Pood has also
served as a consultant to more than 75 different public agencies
and private corporations. In addition, he has reviewed manuscripts
for two publishing companies and currently serves as the executive
editor for The Journal of Academic Leadership. Pood is married to
Bonnie Wagner Pood and has three children, Kenneth, Lindsey and
Dr. Gandy received
his undergraduate education at Johns Hopkins University and at Memphis
State University (MSU), and was awarded B.S. degrees in physics
and mathematics from MSU in 1975. He received an M.S. degree in
plasma physics from MSU in 1977, and in 1981 was awarded a Ph.D.
in plasma physics from the University of Texas. From 1981 to 1984,
he held a postdoctoral research appointment at MIT's Plasma Fusion
Prior to his
work at Idaho, Gandy, 49, served as associate dean for research
at Auburn University's College of Science and Mathematics. Before
that, Gandy was an assistant professor, associate professor and
professor at Auburn for 15 years.
all incredibly fortunate to have Dr. Gandy join our faculty,"
said Dr. Vernon Asper, COST search committee chairperson. "He
brings just the right balance of background, talents and leadership
ability that will be needed to build the new College of Science
and Technology and make it all that we know it can be."
career, Gandy has played a major role in leading research projects,
managing staff and overseeing various financial aspects of his departments.
At Idaho, he worked closely with faculty and staff to improve the
Department of Physics. Over the past three and a half years, enrollment
for undergraduate physics major increased from 27 to 74. Over that
same period, graduate student enrollment increased from seven to
20, and the department's annual external funding increased from
approximately $100,000 to $1 million.
Gandy has published
65 referred articles and has generated approximately $8.5 million
in external research funding. Gandy has supported nine postdoctoral
researchers, served as major professor for 12 graduate students
and supported over 50 undergraduate research assistants.
Gandy has produced
a long and distinguished research career. While in graduate school
at UT he carried out experimental studies on the Texas Experimental
Tokamak, and while at MIT he worked on the Alcator C Tokamak, one
of the nation's premiere fusion research devices. At Auburn, Gandy
led the research activities on two fusion devices, the Auburn Torsatron
and the Compact Auburn Torsatron. At Idaho, he has expanded his
research interests to include studies of plasma-material interactions,
with an emphasis in applications of plasmas in the production of
Gandy has a
long record of successful collaborative research with researchers
from the University of Texas, MIT, University of Wisconsin, Oak
Ridge National Laboratory, Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory,
Los Alamos National Laboratory, Georgia Tech, Boise State University,
Idaho State University and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.
Gandy is married
to Dr. Laura Prange, an award-winning sculptor who will be working
as an assistant professor at Southern Miss. He has three children,
Neil, Joan and Amanda, all of whom are currently pursuing degrees
in higher education.