Concert to Benefit Oxford Boys and Girls Club

Gospel and country artists Michael English and Trae Edwards set for Tuesday show at Ford Center

Michael English

Michael English

OXFORD, Miss. – A benefit concert for the Boys and Girls Clubs of North Mississippi, featuring gospel and country performers Michael English and Trae Edwards, is set for Tuesday (Oct. 4) at the University of Mississippi’s Gertrude C. Ford Center for the Performing Arts.

Tickets for the 7:30 p.m. show are $25 through the Ole Miss Box Office. To purchase tickets, call 662-915-7411 or go to

English, well known in the Christian music industry, has won two Gospel Music Association Dove Awards and has had a Top 10 Hit on the Adult Contemporary chart. He has toured and recorded with The Singing Americans, the Happy Goodman Family and the Gaither Vocal Band. He also has recorded several solo albums and scored a major Adult Contemporary single with “Your Love Amazes Me.”

Edwards, an emerging country and gospel performer, has a new song, “Love Got Us Through,” climbing the charts.

“The night will be filled with contemporary as well as traditional hymns, such as Trae Edward’s amazing rendition of ‘The Old Rugged Cross,'” said Margaret King, a representative for the LOU Barksdale Clubhouse and organizer of the fundraiser. “Everyone will walk away blessed and with incredible memories. It will be an awesome experience.”

Trae Edwards

Trae Edwards

The event is co-sponsored by The Inn at Ole Miss, the UM Department of Continuing Education and the Oxford Exchange Club.

“The money that is raised will allow us to help more students,” said Amy Goodin, director of LOU Barksdale Clubhouse. “We currently serve 160 students a day, ranging from ages 6 to 18. The money will go towards more tutors and the supplies we use daily.”

Statement Concerning Meeting with UM Students

This afternoon I learned that a number of students had gathered at the Lyceum to express their concerns about a recent social media post and our response to it. Because I have an open door policy, I invited some of the student leaders to meet with me and other university leaders. The students helped me more fully understand the impact on them of national events and this particular social media post. They expressed great pain, sadness, and concern for their own safety.

To be clear, we condemn the recent social media post by one of our students that referenced lynching. In light of our country’s history, that comment can only be seen as racist, offensive and hurtful, especially to members of our African American community. There is no place in our community for racist or violent acts.

I appreciate the willingness of the student leaders to meet with me and to continue the dialogue. Together, we are committed to moving beyond words toward action, harnessing the transformative power of education to realize the ideals of our Creed.

Chancellor Jeffrey S. Vitter

Hispanic Heritage Month Begins Monday at UM

Observance includes film series, lectures and music

hispanic-heritage-month-banner-with-lyceum-1200x444OXFORD, Miss. – The University of Mississippi will present five contemporary films from Spanish-speaking countries and conduct panel discussions and a “Latin Dancing with The Stars,” among other events, to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month on campus beginning Monday (Sept. 19).

The second installment of the “Hispanic Heritage Series,” the featured films all have English subtitles. The screenings are slated for Room 200 of the FedEx Student Athlete Academic Support Center, and all are free and open to the public.

“This series aims to promote an understanding of our global community,” said Carmen Sánchez, a UM modern languages instructor and one of the event’s organizers.

The group is pleased to offer opportunities to view these films “that would otherwise not be available to our community,” said Irene Kaufmann, UM lecturer in Spanish

The following Hispanic Heritage Month events are scheduled on campus:

– Monday (Sept. 19), 4 p.m., Student Union, Room 404 – Hispanic Heritage Month kickoff and opening lecture. Members of the UM community are invited to share Hispanic culture, life and influences.

– Thursday (Sept. 22), noon, Student Union Plaza – “Latin Dancing With The Stars” and “Union Unplugged.” At 5:30 p.m. in Bryant Hall, Room 209, a discussion titled “What Does Columbus Day Mean Now?” will cover the history of Columbian commemorations in the United States and the development of Hispanic Heritage Month.

– Friday (Sept. 23), noon, Lamar Hall, Room 555 – “Spanglish Reflections & Nuyorican Dreams: Latinos in the U.S. South.” This self-reflective talk features documentary photography that will take the audience on a cultural journey.

– Sept. 29, 6 p.m. – “Chico Y Rita” (“Chico and Rita”), directed by Fernando Trueba, Javier Mariscal and Tono Errando. This animated film features Cuban music and American jazz. Oscar-winning director Fernando Trueba (“The Age of Beauty”) and famous Barcelona designer and artist Javier Mariscal have teamed up to make an animated love story that features the music, culture and people of Cuba. Chico is a dashing piano player and Rita is an enchanting and beautiful Havana nightclub singer. An epic romance unfolds as the pair travels the glamorous stages of 1940s and ’50s Havana, New York City, Las Vegas, Hollywood and Paris.

– Oct. 6, 6 p.m. – “El Esclavo de Dios” (“God’s Slave”), directed by Joel Novoa. Based on the actual events of a 1994 bombing in Buenos Aires, winner at many film festivals, this film follows Ahmed, trained since childhood as an Islamic terrorist and assigned to execute a suicide bomb at a synagogue; and David, a cold-blooded Israeli special agent who will stop at nothing to prevent the attack. But neither man is defined solely by his extremist views. Ahmed, posing as a doctor, lives happily with his wife and young son; though David’s marriage is on the rocks, he remains devoted to his wife and daughter. With time running out before the attack, David zeros in on Ahmed as a suspect, his investigation culminating in violent, if unexpected, consequences.

– Oct. 13, 4 p.m., Bryant Hall, Room 209 – “Embracing Experiences” panel discussion. Members of the UM community share their stories about Hispanic and Latin American culture and heritage.

– Oct. 13, 6 p.m. – “Ixcanul,” directed by Jayro Bustamante. The film was Guatemala’s official entry to the Academy Awards. The story takes place in the heart of a Kaqchikel Mayan community in contemporary times and is a favorite with younger audiences. Maria, a 17-year-old Mayan girl, lives and works with her parents on a coffee plantation in the foothills of an active volcano in Guatemala. An arranged marriage awaits her. Her parents have promised her to Ignacio, the plantation overseer. But Maria doesn’t sit back and accept her destiny.

– Nov. 10, 6 p.m. – “El Libertador” (“The Liberator”), directed by Albert Arvelo. The most expensive Latin American film ever produced, this movie profiles Simon Bolivar, the man who led Venezuela, Colombia, Panama, Peru and Ecuador toward independence. The movie was shortlisted with other eight titles for the Best Foreign Academy Award. Rising Venezuelan actor Edgar Ramírez stars in this biopic of one of Latin America’s greatest figures, who fought more than 100 battles against the Spanish Empire in South America and rode some 70,000 miles on horseback. His military campaigns covered twice the territory of those of Alexander the Great.

– Nov. 17, 6 p.m. – “Todos Se Van” (“Everyone Leaves”), directed by Sergio Cabrera. The movie is a celebration of freedom and a confrontation of the authoritarian Cuban regime of the 1980s, which led to one of the country’s worst economic crises. It’s based on the award-winning novel of the same name by Cuban writer Wendy Guerra. Eight-year-old Nieve is the object of her parents’ custody battle. Through her diary entries, Nieve reveals intimate details of a turbulent family life while painting a portrait of the social and political unrest in Cuba during a difficult time for the Castro regime.

The film series is made possible with the support of Pragda, the Spanish Film, SPAIN Arts and Culture, and the Secretary of State for the Culture of Spain. Locally, it is sponsored by the Department of Modern Languages, the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College, the Center for Inclusion and Cross-Cultural Engagement, and Alpha Lambda Delta.

Other sponsors for the month’s events include the UM College of Liberal Arts and its departments of English, History, Political Science, and Sociology and Anthropology; the college’s interdisciplinary cinema studies minor program; the Croft Institute for International Studies; FedEx Student-Athlete Academic Support Center; Sarah Isom Center for Gender and Women’s Studies; and the Oxford Film Festival.

Organizers hope to build on last year’s success, said Diane E. Marting, associate professor of modern languages.

“After our success last year, we wanted to bring more films to campus,” Marting said. “There is such a diversity of peoples and cultures in Spanish America, and in these films one can see a little bit of that variety.”

UM Professor’s Research Published in Journal of Consumer Research

Christopher Newman and colleagues studied effects of various front-of-package nutrition labels

Christopher L. Newman co-authored an article in the Journal of Consumer Research.Photo by Robert Jordan/Ole Miss Communications

Christopher L. Newman co-authored an article in the Journal of Consumer Research.Photo by Robert Jordan/Ole Miss Communications

OXFORD, Miss. – A University of Mississippi’s marketing professor’s joint study of the effects of front-of-package nutrition labels shows they serve different purposes depending upon the shopping situation, greatly affecting consumers’ abilities to make proper evaluations and healthful choices.

Christopher L. Newman, assistant professor of marketing, is a co-author of “Effects of Objective and Evaluative Front-of-Package Cues on Food Evaluation and Choice: The Moderating Influence of Comparative and Noncomparative Processing Contexts.” The results were published recently in the Journal of Consumer Research.

His co-authors are Elizabeth Howlett, professor of marketing, and Scot Burton, distinguished professor and Tyson Chair in Food and Consumer Products Retailing, both at the Sam M. Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas.

The research was partially supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation through its Healthy Eating Research Program and by the SEC Faculty Travel Grant Program.

“Our research suggests that one potential reason that the Nutrition Facts Panel has not been effective in preventing the rise of obesity may lie in its failure to directly address the fact that consumers’ evaluative tasks and environments can, and often, vary greatly,” Newman said.

For example, consumers are frequently faced with the rather complex task of assessing the healthfulness of many different products at once, such as when they are considering different food items in a category at the grocery store shelf. This type of “comparative” information processing requires considerable effort and time from consumers because they must first assess all the different available options and then make comparisons between the alternatives.

Other times, consumers may only need to evaluate the healthfulness of a single product by itself in a noncomparative manner, such as when they are examining a particular food item at home. This type of processing is much simpler. Though these tasks are clearly different, the NFP provides consumers with the same type of standardized nutrition information for both types of tasks.

“The purpose of our research was to determine if different types of front-of-package nutrition labels – either an objective or evaluative FOP label – could help consumers by providing them with the nutrition information that’s best suited for the specific task they were faced with,” Newman said.

“Objective FOP labels provide information that is quantitative and objective. In contrast, evaluative FOP labels provide interpretive information about a product’s overall healthfulness and/or specific nutrients.”

Overall, the researchers’ results indicate that the type of processing environment faced by consumers influences the extent to which specific food package cues can affect their food-related evaluations and decisions.

Information that is more detailed and objective may benefit consumers more than when they assess the healthfulness of a single product. When consumers make relative comparisons between many different brands in a product category, information that is more evaluative in nature is likely to be more beneficial in assessing product healthfulness and making healthy choices.

“We believe that the relationship between the type of front-of-package label and the type of evaluative task that a consumer is faced with should be directly considered by public policy makers and the health community in general, particularly given all of the different FOP labeling systems that are currently in the marketplace,” Newman said.

“Our research suggests that there is not a single ‘one-size-fits-all’ front-of-package nutrition label that is suitable for all of the different types of food evaluations and choices that consumers must make,” Howlett said.

Burton agrees with his colleagues.

“If the primary goal of nutrition labeling is to help consumers make healthier choices, then the ability to identify the most healthful alternatives from a broad set of options is crucial,” he said. “Our research suggests that, in general, when there is a match between the choice processing context and the type of format used to present front-of-package nutrition information, consumers tend to make more healthful food choices.

“This is particularly important in comparative contexts in which evaluative information may improve choice from a set of brands.”

For more information about the UM School of Business Administration, visit

Community Invited to Technology Summit on Wednesday

U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker will provide remarks during the University of Mississippi Technology Summit at 10 a.m. Wednesday (Aug. 31) at the Overby Center. All members of the public are invited to attend.

Investiture of Jeffrey S. Vitter To Be Held Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016

The investiture of Jeffrey S. Vitter, 17th chancellor of the University of Mississippi, will be held on UM’s Oxford campus at 3 p.m. Thursday, November 10, 2016. Please make a note of this date. Invitations and additional details about the ceremony will be shared in the coming weeks and months.

Statement from Chancellor Jeffrey S. Vitter

“I fully support our athletics department and its commitment to integrity and compliance with NCAA rules. We will continue to cooperate closely with the NCAA and SEC to investigate the facts. As chancellor, I can assure you that we will never waver in upholding the core values of our university, as epitomized in the UM Creed, which include cultivating personal and professional integrity.”

– Chancellor Jeffrey S. Vitter

UM Statement on Death of Student

The entire Ole Miss family is saddened when we lose one of our students. This morning, we learned of the loss of Tristan Byrd, a freshman from Brandon, Mississippi. We offer our deepest sympathy to Tristan’s family and friends during this tragic time. Each student is special, and we know Tristan will be greatly missed. Representatives from the University Counseling Center are available to individuals who would like to talk with someone. For more information about the Counseling Center, visit

Statement regarding allegations of unacceptable behavior at Derby Days event

The Office of the Dean of Students at the University of Mississippi has been made aware of an incident that reportedly took place on campus Friday evening during a Derby Days event. Derby Days is an annual philanthropic initiative sponsored and hosted by the Sigma Chi fraternity at UM.

Representatives of the Title IX Office at UM are actively investigating the allegations that have been discussed on social media platforms.

If substantiated, the behavior reported at this event clearly violates campus policy and one of the UM community’s core values, which is for our students to show respect and dignity for all. While the investigation into the incident moves forward, the Sigma Chi fraternity has been directed by university officials to cease any official or unofficial Derby Days activities.

“The university takes the report alleging a hostile environment very seriously,” said Rebecca Bressler, director of Equal Opportunity and Regulatory Compliance at UM. “It is important that members of our community feel safe and supported – actions that undermine that goal will not be tolerated.”

University officials expressed their appreciation to those who have come forward to discuss this incident, and they encourage others who were either there or have information that may be helpful to also assist in the investigation.

Such individuals should contact Honey Ussery, Title IX coordinator at UM, by either calling 662-915-7045 or emailing

A Look Back on Ole Miss Football’s Spring Break Mission Work in Haiti

The Rebel family helped provide a sustainable water system to their friends in Camp Marie

Members of the Ole Miss Football team use their spring break to serve those in need.

Members of the Ole Miss football team use their spring break to serve those in need.

OXFORD, Miss. — Select members of the Ole Miss football program and support staff recently gave up their spring break for the third year in a row to serve others by doing mission work in Camp Marie, Haiti.

A 28-person group representing Ole Miss made the return trip to Camp Marie to help provide valuable irrigation to the crops of Haitian farmers. In previous trips, the Rebels helped dig a well to provide clean water for the same village.

Coach Hugh Freeze emphasized the value this trip has not only for those he’s serving, but also the Ole Miss players and staff.

“That trip never disappoints in the realm of making you grateful and thankful for what we have here,” Freeze said. “It is a difficult trip for me the older I get, but it’s worth it to a lot of families and kids.”

Rebels senior quarterback Chad Kelly was on the trip for the second straight year, bringing along teammates Talbot Buys, Armani Linton and Sean Rawlings.

“It was amazing,” Kelly said. “You have the opportunity to kind of take a step back and realize how thankful you really are to be here in the United States and have the opportunity to play at a great university. A lot of those kids grow up in a certain situation and they can’t really get out of it. For us, to be able to go over there and put smiles on kids’ faces, that’s what it’s all about. We’re thankful we are able to go there and help them.”

Ole Miss partnered with the 410 Bridge organization, which has provided continued support for the Haitians that call Camp Marie home. With the help of 410 Bridge and the Rebels, Camp Marie is now closer to being able to take higher steps and see economic growth as a village.

Stephen Ponder, Ole Miss senior executive associate athletics director, and his family joined the trip this year, and Ponder also spoke on the weight of the trip.

“I know that for my family and the others on the trip from Ole Miss, seeing the need for basic things like water, food, shelter and clothing was overwhelming at times,” Ponder said. “We can take things for granted so easily at home, so seeing this up close and personal made a lasting impact.”

Ponder, being the only senior administrator on the trip this year, reflected on the lasting impact trips like this can make on the young people.

“I think it is so important that our student-athletes learn so much more about life outside their sport,” Ponder added. “Seeing how fortunate we are every day, taking advantage of opportunities before us and keeping things in perspective are valuable teaching moments that our coaches can use to transform lives on our teams. Coach Freeze does a great job of utilizing football as a platform for a higher purpose to change lives.”

Along with several other members of the Ole Miss athletics family and support staff, coaches Corey Batoon and Maurice Harris and their families joined the trip as well this year.

“We are well known in that village,” Freeze added. “They love to see the Ole Miss group there and to see them get fresh water and the joy they have for getting it is pretty humbling. It always ends up impacting us more than it’s impacting them.”

Freeze added that his foundation, the Freeze Foundation, has committed continued assistance to Camp Marie’s irrigation growth in the future.

Follow Ole Miss football on Twitter at @OleMissFB, as well as Facebook and Instagram. For more information, visit

See more images from the trip here.