The University of Southern Mississippi will commemorate the 103rd anniversary of its legislative founding Monday, April 1 when it holds its annual Founders’ Day celebrations in Hattiesburg and on the Gulf Coast.
Southern Miss students, faculty and staff will be recognized for their achievements at various events throughout the day. The occasion also marks the first day of Dr. Rodney Bennett’s presidency. Bennett was chosen as Southern Miss’ 10th president Feb. 7, following a national search.
“We look forward to celebrating the founding of our beloved university with our students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends, and welcoming Dr. Bennett on his first day as our new president,” said Jerry DeFatta, executive director of the Southern Miss Alumni Association.
The Student Government Association’s executive officers will also be sworn in on Founders’ Day, including Ann Marie Chilcutt, a junior from Columbus, Miss. who was chosen SGA president by fellow students during recent campus elections.
“It’s going to be an overwhelming feeling to be inaugurated on this day in front of an audience that shares my passion for USM,” said Chilcutt, a communication studies major. “It should be an awesome day for all of us to celebrate.”
The schedule of events at each location is as follows:
*3 p.m.: Founders’ Day Ceremony
Location: Bennett Auditorium
*4 p.m.: Founders’ Day Reception - campus and local community members invited
Location: North lawn of Aubrey K. Lucas Administration Building
*9:30 a.m.: Stennis Space Center Teaching and Research Site Ceremony
Location: Department of Marine Science, Building 1020, Lobby
*2:30 p.m.: Gulf Coast Research Laboratory Ceremony
Location: Dining Hall
*3 p.m.: Gulf Park Ceremony
Location: Hardy Hall
Visit the Southern Miss Alumni Association’s Founders’ Day site at www.usm.edu/foundersday