The Southern Miss Gulf Scholars Program (GSP) aims to inspire and prepare undergraduate students to create a more equitable, just, and resilient Gulf of Mexico region through developing inquiry and service-learning projects built on the foundations of sustainability and interdisciplinary thinking.
GSP will begin recruiting seven students from diverse backgrounds and disciplines to meet the long-term sustainability needs of coastal Mississippi by equipping student leaders to address perennial and novel challenges with interdisciplinary and civic-minded thinking. For Southern Miss undergraduate students, we will accomplish this mission by creating inquiry-based curricular, co-curricular, and extra-curricular pathways to a culminating active-learning and research experience of their choice, the Gulf Impact Project.
Southern Miss’s geographic location and vision will facilitate the Gulf Scholars Program. Southern Miss’s turn to coastal resiliency was partly invigorated by a university-wide reorganization that creates a unified vision for future-oriented integration of the various coastal operation sites. This vision is to become “a national leader in addressing issues relevant to people in coastal and maritime settings.” To anchor this vision, the President and Provost approved three pillars— (1) “understanding the oceans and coasts”; (2) “improving coastal resilience”; and (3) “supporting the blue economy.”
GSP’s vision is to create a next generation of diverse undergraduates as agents of positive, coastal change with environmental and leadership skills. GSP hopes to create capable leaders who can effectively and advantageously impact the Gulf of Mexico region.
1. Inspire interest and engagement in the sustainability and resiliency of the Gulf Region
2. Build the capacity of Gulf Scholars to address sustainability and resilience challenges within the region.
3. Cultivate partnerships with community, industry, and government entities to create and promote student learning opportunities, concerning sustainability and resiliency of the Gulf region.
1. Develop knowledge of the Gulf of Mexico and its coastal zone in order to identify potential leverage points for creating a more livable, equitable, resilient, and joyful Gulf Region.
2. Employ the intercultural knowledge, mindset, and skills through active involvement with diverse Gulf communities.
3. Integrate perspectives and approaches from the humanities, engineering, social and natural sciences to develop interdisciplinary responses to complex socio-environmental challenges.
4. Practice civic responsibility and ethical reasoning in problem-solving and research
5. Conceptualize, develop, research, and implement innovative responses to major Gulf region challenges, grounded in respect for community knowledge and expertise.