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USM Students, Faculty Excited about Start of Spring Semester

Wed, 01/22/2020 - 16:17pm | By: Van Arnold

Freshmen students Hailey Talley, left, and Baylie Busby are excited about the start of the spring 2020 semester.After more than six weeks away from college life, University of Southern Mississippi freshman Baylie Busby expressed enthusiasm about the resumption of classes for the spring 2020 semester, which began on Wednesday, Jan. 22, at both the Hattiesburg and Gulf Park campuses.

“I am really glad to be back on campus and beginning a new semester,” said Busby, a freshman from Mobile, Ala. “It was a long break, and I like the routine that I had established in my first semester at USM. Also, I really missed all my friends, so it’s great to see them again.”

Her good friend and fellow freshman, Hailey Talley, echoed those sentiments while complimenting the USM community on its welcoming nature.

“All my friends had already started their classes at other schools, so I was more than ready to get going again,” said Talley, a native of Meridian, Miss. “I enjoy being here because the atmosphere is so great. And everybody is so eager to help. I know it sounds like a stereotype, but USM is just the perfect size and place for me.” 

Dr. Cheryl Jenkins, Associate Professor in USM’s School of Communication, is equally excited about returning to the classroom after a lengthy break between semesters.

“I know it can be difficult for students, and some faculty, to hit the ground running when they've been out of the process for an extended period of time, but I'm ready to get started,” she said.

Jenkins is teaching a Journalism Workshop (Advanced Reporting), as well as Gender/Race/Media, and Survey of Mass Communication courses this semester.

“So many things have inundated our news cycle over the past two months, and I'm anxious to engage with journalism students about these issues and what they mean,” she noted. “I expect the students to return ready to work, learn and think about this world we live in.”

Freshman Kenneth Kirkpatrick, of New Orleans, La., is eager to begin his second semester as a nursing major.

“The biggest thing for me is to manage my time,” said Kirkpatrick, who is taking a 14-hour class load. “It’s a lot different than high school. But I think I’ve adjusted pretty well. I’m looking forward to this semester.”

For Busby, an accounting major, the goals are quite simple for the spring semester.

“A 4.0, that’s it,” she said. “I just missed it in the fall by making one B (in psychology). I was so mad about that.”

In Talley’s case, a perfect grade point average was achieved in her first semester as a nursing major.

Both Busby and Talley are members of Chi Omega Sorority at USM, another fact that makes a return to campus so invigorating.

“That’s how we met and became such good friends, through Chi Omega,” said Talley. “It’s great being back with all my sorority sisters again. Having a long break was nice, but I’m glad to be back now.”