Two University of Southern Mississippi alumni with experience as administrators in the school’s Division of Student Affairs have been named to manage its Greek Life operations.
Charles Childress, assistant director of Conference and Fraternity Housing at the university, will serve as director of the Office of Greek Life. Megan Wilkinson, currently the operations manager for the Union Complex, will take on the role of assistant director. Both will begin their duties August. 1.
“We are making great strides in Greek Life at Southern Miss, and both Charles and Megan have the experience, work ethic and heart to help us continue on the path of excellence,” said Southern Miss Vice President for Student Affairs Dr. Joe Paul.
Childress and Wilkinson will work along with Dr. Johnell Goins, coordinator for the Office of Greek Life and the university’s National Pan-Hellenic Council advisor.
“Charles and Megan bring a love for Southern Miss and a wealth of knowledge in Greek Life, especially in the functions and operations of the Inter-Fraternity Council and the College Pan-Hellenic Council,” said Dean of Students Eddie Holloway. “Both are proven student affairs professionals and have participated in Greek Life programming as undergraduate students, and advised chapters as graduates. I look forward to them teaming with Dr. Goins as she leads The National Pan-Hellenic Council Greek organizations.”
A native of New Orleans, Childress graduated from Holy Cross School and holds a bachelor’s degree in athletic training and a master’s degree in economic development from the University. As an undergraduate, he was a member of Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity and was active in many campus organizations. He is currently enrolled in Southern Miss’ Human Capital Development doctoral program at its Gulf Park Campus.
In addition to his duties with Conference and Fraternity Housing, Childress served as interim advisor to the university’s Inter-Fraternity Council. He is a member of the Southern Miss Staff Council, an instructor in the Leadership Scholars program and serves on various University committees. He has presented at conferences regarding student retention efforts in combination with alternative late-night programming and developed a program, in conjunction with i-Tech, to track student’s attendance at these events.
“I’m excited about this new venture,” Childress said. “Greek Life organizations provide students with the opportunity to develop their leadership, interpersonal and other valuable skills consequently preparing them for life after college.
“Our office will focus on the development of students so that they can in turn positively influence their organizations and the campus community,” Childress said. “In doing this, we will accomplish our goal of positioning Southern Miss Greek Life as a leader in the Southeast and among its peers.”
A graduate of Clinton (Miss.) High School, Wilkinson earned a bachelor’s degree in advertising in 2007 and a master’s degree in counseling and personnel services in 2008. While a student at Southern Miss, she was a member of its Phi Epsilon Chapter of Delta Delta Delta, and was inducted into the Greek Hall of Fame Eta Class in 2008
She has served as operations manager for the Union Complex in the university’s Union and Programs Department since 2008, where she was also a graduate assistant from 2007-08. She has been alumna advisor for the Phi Epsilon Chapter of Delta Delta Delta since Dec. 2010; an instructor for the Leadership Seminar since 2008; and served on Staff Council from 2011-2014. She was named Greek Advisor of the Year 2011-2012 and 2013-2014.
“Greek organizations provide our students a multitude of experiences which complement their in-classroom learning; it is the development of the whole student at its finest,” Wilkinson said. “Combining my skills, experiences, and dedication, I will add resources and a level of accountability to an office rich with tradition and proven successes.”
Greek Life at Southern Miss dates back to 1935 and offers students opportunities for leadership, academic achievement, community service and relationships that last a lifetime. Approximately 21 percent of the university’s undergraduate students are members of its 11 sororities and 14 fraternities. Alpha Chi Omega will be joining Greek Life at Southern Miss next semester and will begin to recruit members following formal recruitment in the fall. The average Greek Life student holds a 3.14 grade point average, and provides 34 hours of community service while also raising $183 a year for charities annually.
For more information about Greek Life at Southern Miss, visit http://www.usm.edu/greek-life.