UM Law School to Host Third Race and Sustainability Conference

Former Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr. headlines opening dinner

A C Wharton Jr.

OXFORD, Miss. – “Vulnerability, Historical Memory and Healing” is the theme of the third Race and Sustainability Conference, set for March 29-31 at the University of Mississippi School of Law.

The event kicks off at 3 p.m. Wednesday (March 29) with a civil rights-themed tour of Oxford and an opening dinner at the Burn-Belfry Museum. A C Wharton Jr., civil rights attorney, former Memphis mayor and a 1971 graduate of the law school, is the keynote speaker for the event.

“The Race and Sustainability Conference seeks to create a deeper understanding among communities in the region and across the nation,” said Michele Alexandre, UM professor of law and the conference organizer. “Together, the participants collaborate to provide solutions and models for improving the conditions faced by marginalized communities.

“This conference continuously attracts scholars, activists, students and community members from across the United States and abroad.”

Rita and Bill Bender, civil rights attorneys, activists and educators, will deliver the opening lecture “Historical Memory, Archival Findings and Mississippi” at 9 a.m. Thursday in the Robert C. Khayat Law Center, Room 1115.

Following the opening lecture is a series of panel discussions featuring scholars, activists, students and community members, all set for various locations at the law school. Topics for the panel discussions include “Immigration and Access to Sustainable Life,” “Historical Memory Across Disciplines and Regions,” “Historical Memory, Trauma and Incarceration” and “The Environment: Where We Go From Here.”

Devin Carbado, professor of law at UCLA will deliver the conference keynote on “Understanding the Dynamics of Marginalization, Connections and Healing Moving Forward” at 4:15 p.m. Thursday in Weems Auditorium. Carbado is the 2017 McClure Lecturer at Ole Miss.

Partnering with the School of Law to present the conference are several co-sponsors: the UM Center for Inclusion and Cross Cultural Engagement, UM Center for Population Studies, Mississippi Sustainable Agriculture Network, UM School of Education, Meek School of Journalism and New Media, and the UM Law Journal.

For more information about the conference or to register, visit http://law.olemiss.edu/sustainability-conference-series/2017-2/ or email Michele Alexandre at malexand@olemiss.edu.

Two Honors College Students Receive Barksdale Awards

John Chappell and Elizabeth Taylor each given $5,000 to fulfill dream projects

Barksdale Award winners (from left) Elizabeth Taylor and John Chappell are congratulated by Dean Douglass Sullivan-Gonzales during the Sally McDonell Barksdale Honors College’s annual spring convocation. Photo by Kevin Bain/Ole Miss Communications

OXFORD, Miss. – With $5,000 awards to support separate creative projects, two students in the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College at the University of Mississippi students have been named 2017 Barksdale Award winners.

John Chappell, a sophomore Arabic and international studies major from Albuquerque, New Mexico, and Elizabeth Taylor, a junior sociology major from Sherman, Texas, were presented the awards during the Honors College’s annual spring convocation earlier this month.

The Barksdale Awards were established in 2005 to encourage students to test themselves in environments beyond the classroom, teaching lab or library. Chappell and Taylor are the 21st and 22nd recipients of the honor.

“I am very proud of these two citizen scholars,” said Douglass Sullivan-Gonzalez, dean of the Honors College. “They demonstrate what is possible when you confront a question with both mind and heart, and a willingness to risk failure. Good for both of them. We can’t wait to see what comes from their efforts.”

Chappell is planning a comparative study of local water politics in Morocco and New Mexico. Taylor will spend a month in Dublin, Ireland, in association with Ruhama, a nongovernmental organization that has been successful working with those affected by sex trafficking and prostitution.

“I suspect that the water politics or irrigation systems in both Morocco and New Mexico show the influence of Arab institutions,” said Chappell, who expects to graduate in May 2019 with a focus in Middle East and international governance and politics. “I hope to test this hypothesis and also to learn more about the socio-political structures at work in water-scarce environments in general.”

A Croft Scholar and the winner of UM’s 2016 Arabic Language Award, Chappell spent last summer in Morocco. There, he used his Arabic to communicate with Moroccan artisans in arranging for high-quality, fair trade art for sale internationally.

He is former president and founder of Rebels for Global Opportunity, an international advocacy group focusing on U.S.-international development policy. He is also president and board member of Rebel Global Connections, which seeks to introduce elementary students to world cultures through intercultural events in schools.

Chappell has worked as a research assistant to Vivian Ibrahim, Croft associate professor of history and international studies.

“John possesses proven research, language and interpersonal skills,” Ibrahim wrote in a letter of recommendation. “He is dynamic. More than that, he is genuinely inquisitive.”

The first person to receive a Barksdale Award through the Honors College’s junior entry program, Taylor transferred to Ole Miss after completing her associate’s degree from Grayson College in Denison, Texas, graduating summa cum laude. She was president of the Grayson Honors College, a delegate to Model UN, a Phi Theta Kappa International Honors Scholar and a District Two Hall of Honor member.

Taylor was also an All-USA Scholar, Pierce Scholar, Guistwhite Scholar and a New Century Scholar.

“By creating an organizational ethnography of Ruhama, I want to figure out how to create similar nonjudgmental social, psychological and infrastructure support in the U.S.,” she said.

Taylor understands firsthand about food pantries, being hungry and surviving sexual assault.

“By the age of 9, I had lost my father and both grandmothers to cancer,” she said. “My mother, who struggled with drug addiction, was in and out of prison before being diagnosed with leukemia.”

Defying the odds, Taylor continues to achieve at the highest levels. At UM, she is involved with both McLean Mentors and Rebels Against Sexual Assault. She was also 2015-16 Phi Theta Kappa International vice president of Division ll.

Taylor also worked with James Thomas, assistant professor of sociology and anthropology, in exploring how water policy is formulated and how it impacts disadvantaged communities.

“Elizabeth’s proposal is bold, ambitious and has the potential to shape important social policies at the national and international levels,” Thomas wrote in a letter of recommendation. “When Elizabeth sets her mind to something, the sky is the limit for her.”

For more information about the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College, visit http://www.honors.olemiss.edu/.

UM Pharmacy Student Accepts Internship at Mayo Clinic

Anna Crider hopes to use experience to move into critical-care role

Anna Crider, a UM senior and first-year pharmacy student, has accepted an offer to intern this summer at the Mayo Clinic in its clinical pharmacy department in Rochester, Minnesota. Photo by UM School of Pharmacy.

OXFORD, Miss. – Anna Crider, a first-year pharmacy student at the University of Mississippi, has accepted a pharmacy inpatient internship through the Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences in Rochester, Minnesota.

Mayo Clinic and St. Mary’s Hospital in Rochester partner to give interns exposure to clinical pharmacy while they gain a better understanding of the pharmacist’s role and intervention in the hospital setting.

“The coursework and the rigor of it at our pharmacy school have really made me confident in my ability to say ‘Yes, I can compete on a national level across all pharmacy schools,'” said Crider, a native of Brentwood, Tennessee.

During the 10-week internship, Crider will spend time collecting medical histories of patients and work under pharmacists in the central dispensing unit.

Crider’s academic and thesis adviser, Erin Holmes, credits this internship offer to the extensive education at the UM School of Pharmacy.

“The Mayo Clinic pharmacy internship is, without question, one of the most prestigious summer internship programs in the country,” Holmes said. “For one of our students to be selected for this internship validates the high standards expected in our program and quality of our training.

“Anna is truly deserving of this opportunity, as she is extremely bright, very hardworking, has a passion for learning and is always seeking ways to grow professionally.”

Crider is a member of the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College, where she is working on her thesis, “Mississippi Pharmacists’ Perceptions and Knowledge of ADHD in Children.”

Aside from her role as a first-year pharmacy student, Crider works as a pharmacy technician in the Oxford community. She is also active in community service organizations such as Relay for Life and RebelTHON.

A senior, Crider is on track to graduate with a bachelor’s degree in pharmaceutical sciences in May. She plans to pursue a critical-care pharmacy role in a clinical setting after completing her residency.

“I hope to be able to serve patients and be an advocate for them in their time of need,” she said.

For more information on the UM School of Pharmacy, call 662-915-7267 or visit http://pharmacy.olemiss.edu/.

UM Alumnus Endows Business Scholarship

Man who helped launch Orville Redenbacher hopes to help mentor Ole Miss marketing students

Lyt Harris, pictured here on vacation at the Baltic Sea port of Warnemunde, Germany, has pledged to increase his scholarship endowment for the UM School of Business Administration to $100,000. Submitted photo

OXFORD, Miss. – Years ago, after spotting the potential for great success in a small-town popcorn grower, University of Mississippi alumnus Lyt Harris helped make Orville Redenbacher a national sensation.

Recognizing the same potential in business students, Harris of Houston, Texas, has established endowments at Ole Miss and three other universities that he trusts will help his scholarship recipients achieve success.

“I’m just looking forward to getting the endowed scholarship program moving forward at Ole Miss and especially hearing from, and hopefully meeting, some of the students who receive the scholarships,” said Harris, a native of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and 1962 graduate of the UM School of Business Administration.

Harris established his UM endowment in August 2016 with a $27,000 gift. He recently pledged to increase the endowment to $100,000, allowing the business school to award scholarships from it in perpetuity.

This gift designates Harris as a charter member of the 1917 Order, created this year and named for the year the business school was founded. The order recognizes generous donors who thoughtfully provide for the school through major giving.

About 10 years ago, Harris funded a similar scholarship program at Northwood University in Michigan, an all-business education university, where he received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree and served on the board of trustees. He and his late wife, Venita, contributed to the fund regularly.

“Really, that was such a good program and I received such good feedback from the students selected for the scholarship that I thought, ‘Why not set up a similar scholarship at the University of Colorado, where Venita went to school, and also at Ole Miss and LSU, where I went to school?'” Harris said.

“Shortly after the fund was established at Colorado, I met my student and became good friends with him. He was very appreciative. It wasn’t the amount of money he received; he was just so amazed that he was selected for the award out of a number of students in the economics department who could have received it.”

After completing graduate school at Louisiana State University in 1963, Harris rose through the ranks of Scott Paper Co., where he became project manager for the first disposable diapers, which he took from test market to national distribution. Later, he joined a large division of Hunt Wesson Foods as director of marketing.

On a business trip to Chicago, Harris and his colleagues visited Marshall Fields department store, where they spotted a Mason jar of popcorn labeled “with a picture of a funny little man with a bowtie,” he said, adding that a manager told them the product had become a best-seller in the store.

Intrigued, Harris conducted an extensive laboratory test at Hunt Wesson and found the product to be all that Redenbacher claimed and more.

“So we went and contacted Orville in person and said, ‘You’ve come up with this strain of corn that everybody likes, and we’re marketing experts,'” Harris recalled. “‘If we get together, we can do some great things and probably make you the Colonel Sanders of the popcorn business.’ That’s exactly what we ended up doing.”

Today, Orville Redenbacher’s popcorn is the nation’s No. 1-selling brand.

“If he’d never met us and we’d never met him, it probably would have never happened. He wasn’t a marketing person at all. He was just having fun with it and didn’t realize its potential.”

After Hunt Wesson, Harris worked several years as a senior executive in the banking and finance industry before moving to Houston in 1982 to become president and eventually CEO of Southwest Management and Marketing Co. There, he met his wife in 1984 at an art exhibition; both were avid collectors.

Harris sold his company and retired in 2004. He serves as managing partner of the Harris Investment Partnership, specializing in venture capital investments including specialty foods, residential real estate, drug and alcohol rehabilitation centers and other projects.

Always active in civic and charitable activities, Harris has served on the boards of a number of nonprofit organizations, including The Kidney Foundation, Junior Achievement, Boy Scouts of America, Big Brothers/Big Sisters and St. Luke’s United Methodist Church. During his business career, he was listed in Who’s Who in America, Who’s Who in Finance and Industry and Who’s Who in the South and Southwest.

He has served as a mentor for MBA students at the Ole Miss business school and was named an Otho Smith Fellow in 2008. He is also a mentor for middle and high school students in the Spring Branch Independent School District in Houston.

At Ole Miss, he was a member of the University Players theater company, Delta Sigma Pi business fraternity and Sigma Alpha Epsilon social fraternity.

“I enjoyed the whole college experience and being in such a beautiful setting as the university and the Oxford area,” he said. “It was a great environment for learning and for going to school and enjoying a large variety of activities. Hopefully, setting up the scholarship program will allow me to come back to the campus more often for things connected with it.”

The Lyttleton T. Harris IV Endowed Scholarship is available to full-time students in the School of Business Administration who are marketing majors and have a minimum 3.0 grade-point average.

“Mr. Harris’s generous gifts encompass the scope of work we do here by meeting the financial needs of students who want to pursue an education in business,” said Ken Cyree, UM business dean. “We are especially pleased that this gift will be part of the 1917 Order, which is part of the 100-year celebration of the founding of the School of Business, and will allow for the expansion of our success during the next 100 years.”

The Lyttleton T. Harris IV Endowed Scholarship is open to gifts from individuals and organizations. To contribute, send checks with the endowment name noted in the memo line to the University of Mississippi Foundation, 406 University Ave., University, MS 38655; visit http://www.umfoundation.com/makeagift; or contact Tim Noss at 662-915-5932 or tlnoss@olemiss.edu.

Rebel Man Swim and Run 5-K is for Athletes of All Levels

Registration open until day of the race

Participants exit the pool to begin the next phase of the Rebel Man event. Photo by Robert Jordan/Ole Miss Communications

OXFORD, Miss. – The University of Mississippi’s Department of Health, Exercise Science and Recreation Management will host the Rebel Man Swim and Run 5-K on April 9.

The race, previously known as the Rebel Man Triathlon, starts at 9 a.m. at the Turner Center. The event was changed this year because campus construction made the cycling leg of the triathlon too difficult and unsafe.

Participants will begin by swimming 440 meters in the Turner Center natatorium, followed by a 5-kilometer run through campus.

“With a trademark spring event like the Rebel Man that has been on campus for over a decade, we needed to find a way to keep it running,” said Brian Veverka, a graduate assistant in the department. “Even though the Rebel Man will look different this year without the bike route, it is still going to be the perfect race for beginner athletes that haven’t tried races or for athletes just looking to challenge themselves.”

More than 200 people of all ages registered for last year’s event.

Early-bird registration is $30 for students, $80 for student teams, $40 for nonstudents and $100 for nonstudent teams. All participants get a performance race T-shirt and medal. Snacks and food will be provided at the conclusion of the race.

Prices will increase by $10 on March 27 and again April 7. Participants can register online until April 8 at https://racesonline.com/events/rebelman.

UM Pharmacy Administrator Named APhA Fellow

Award honors service to the pharmacy profession

Leigh Ann Ross

OXFORD, Miss. – Leigh Ann Ross, associate dean for clinical affairs at the University of Mississippi School of Pharmacy, is being named a 2017 fellow by the American Pharmacists Association this weekend.

The designation honors those with a history of exemplary service and achievement in the pharmacy profession for at least 10 years. Ross will receive the award Saturday (March 25) at the APhA annual meeting in San Francisco.

Ross is also a professor of pharmacy practice and research professor in the Research Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences at the pharmacy school. She earned both her bachelor’s degree and Pharm.D. from Ole Miss and completed a primary care pharmacy residency at the UM Medical Center in Jackson.

“The School of Pharmacy is very proud to call Dr. Ross one of its leaders,” said David D. Allen, UM pharmacy dean. “She has served the profession and the school extremely well for many years, and I applaud her on this honor.”

Ross previously served as the director of the university’s Pharmaceutical Care Services from 2000 to 2008, during which time the pharmaceutical care clinics won a Best Practice Award from the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists. She went on to be the chair of the school’s Department of Pharmacy Practice from 2008 to 2016.

Besides her service to the school, Ross is director of the Community-Based Research Program which implements direct patient care services in community pharmacies and clinics in the Mississippi Delta. She served as a policy adviser to U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran on health care, labor, housing and economic development after completing a two-year congressional fellowship.

She also has held leadership positions in many state and national pharmacy organizations.

“It is truly an honor to be recognized by APhA as a fellow,” Ross said. “I’m most appreciative of the mentorship that has been provided and the friendships that have been developed through my involvement in APhA. I look forward to many more years of service in APhA and pharmacy.”

Center for Manufacturing Excellence Receives Gifts from Milwaukee Tool

Wisconsin-based manufacturer delivered tool sets, equipment for UM students' use

UM engineering students Ashley Irons (left) and Vera Gardner (right) enjoy opening Milwaukee Tool packages as Satoka Watanabe (center), adjunct associate professor, shares the moment. Photo by Robert Jordan/Ole Miss Communications

OXFORD, Miss. – The Haley Barbour Center for Manufacturing Excellence at the University of Mississippi received a generous gift Thursday (March 23) from Milwaukee Electric Tool Co.

Three representatives from one of the nation’s leading power tool manufacturers delivered more than a dozen toolboxes, power tools and accessories to the CME. University administrators and students welcomed the visitors and thanked them for the donations.

“The CME team is honored and humbled by this most generous gift from Milwaukee Tool,” said Scott Kilpatrick, CME associate director of internal operations. “We are thankful to the company leadership for their commitment to supporting our students and this manufacturing program.

“These tools will provide an outstanding environment for our students to use on a daily basis, and will hopefully be just the first step of many forms of collaboration between the university and Milwaukee Tool.”

A Brookfield, Wisconsin-based subsidiary of Techtronic Industries Co. Ltd., Milwaukee Tool is a manufacturer and marketer of professional, heavy-duty power tools and accessories. The company has three facilities in Mississippi: manufacturing operations in Greenwood and Jackson, and a distribution facility in Olive Branch.

Jack Bilotta, director of the company’s Greenwood plant, was accompanied by Chris Greer, continuous improvement manager at Greenwood, and Dale Russell Sr., manager of human resources at Greenwood.

“Our objective is to recruit the best talent possible and preferably people with Mississippi ties,” Bilotta said. “The addition of the CME and their growth strategy aligns very well with what our business needs. There is no question that Ole Miss is turning out some of the very best every year.”

Discussions leading to Thursday’s donation began last fall when company officials visited the center.

“Some members of the Milwaukee Tool leadership team visited the campus and immediately recognized the value in partnering with the university,” said William Nicholas, director of economic development at UM’s Insight Park.

“The donation of power tools and equipment helps cultivate brand awareness among students and provides Milwaukee Tool a great opportunity to hire some of our best and brightest after graduation. They provide an innovative company culture that will appeal to many of our students.”

The company’s engagement is not intended to be a one-year involvement, but to build a partnership that grows over the years, the representatives said.

The donation of tools will be crucial in supporting various labs and course projects that are part of the center’s program, Kilpatrick said.

“For example, when senior capstone teams are working on their final projects, they will be using the best tools available on the market,” he said. “From a functionality standpoint, it is hard to quantify how immensely helpful that will be.”

Additionally, from a cultural viewpoint, the Milwaukee Tool brand will be present in the minds of Ole Miss students, Kilpatrick said.

“This is a company that is a global leader in their industry but also has a very strong presence here in Mississippi,” he said. “This will certainly send an encouraging message to students about potential future professional opportunities with the company, as well.”

“We want the CME to have the very best of what is available in Mississippi,” Bilotta said. “A world-class facility should only have world-class equipment.”

UM administrators, faculty and students welcome representatives from Milwaukee Tool as they deliver power tools and equipment to the Center for Manufacturing Excellence. Pictured are (front row, from left), UM students Ashley Irons and Vera Gardner; Sakota Watanabe, adjunct associate professor; Cris Greer, continuous improvement manager for the company’s Greenwood plant; Chancellor Jeffery Vitter; Jack Bilotta, director of the Greenwood plant; and William Gottshall, CME interim director; and (rear, from left) Scott Kilpatrick, CME associate director of internal operations; Alice Clark, vice chancellor for university relations; William Nicholas, director of economic development at Insight Park; Tyler Biggs, CME admissions counselor; UM student James Halbrook; Dale Russell, manager of human resources at the Greenwood plant; and James Vaughan, CME director emeritus. Photo by Robert Jordan/Ole Miss Communications

Administrators anticipate future collaborations with Milwaukee Tool, Kilpatrick said.

“From the perspective of the CME, this is the type of partnership that can benefit all parties and clearly serves the mission of our center,” he said. “One of our primary goals is to support and serve manufacturers here in Mississippi, and an essential method that we use to accomplish that goal is to provide an educational and experiential program that prepares graduates to serve as leaders in the manufacturing industry.

“So the aim here is clear; we plan to provide Milwaukee Tool with talented graduates to help lead their operations while also exposing our students to fantastic career opportunities as well.”

Several CME students present expressed their appreciation for the new tools and equipment.

“This is like Christmas in so many ways,” said James Halbrook, a sophomore chemical engineering major from Madison. “Milwaukee Tool has given us everything we need and more to do our best work.”

Vera Gardner, a senior mechanical engineering major from Memphis, Tennessee, agreed.

“These will come in very handy as we complete our senior design capstone project,” she said. “We will definitely use the equipment in the production phase.”

Milwaukee Tools officials said they are certain UM graduates can and will find employment within the company’s Mississippi plants.

“We have a year-over-year need for the top engineering talent, adding as many as 10 or more to our facility each year,” Bilotta said. “We want to be a part of keeping Mississippi talent in Mississippi. It’s a ‘win-win’ for all involved.”

The Haley Barbour Center for Manufacturing Excellence was established in June 2008 to provide unique opportunities for students interested in manufacturing. The opportunities developed are considered distinctive to the CME and are not available to undergraduate students at other universities in the United States.

For more information about the CME, visit http://www.cme.ms/.

For more information on the full line of Milwaukee power tools and accessories, call 1-800-SAWDUST or visit http://www.milwaukeetool.com.

UM English Major Wins Prize at Southern Literary Festival

Junior Page Lagarde took top honor in nonfiction category

Page Lagarde recently won the nonfiction category at the Southern Literary Festival. Submitted Photo

OXFORD, Miss. – Page Lagarde has always aspired to write professionally. Still, the University of Mississippi junior wasn’t expecting her first entry in a prestigious regional competition to win first place.

An English and French major from Winchester, Virginia, Lagarde won in the nonfiction category at the Southern Literary Festival. Besides receiving a cash prize, she will read her story at the event, set for March 30-April 1 at the University of Arkansas at Fort Smith.

“I was so surprised,” she said. “I found out via email while studying with friends, and they can tell you that I gasped very audibly. It was very exciting!”

Lagarde won for a story titled “To Thaw.” In the piece, the fledgling author reflects upon an Outward Bound dogsledding experience she had.

“It’s a story about faith and surrender when we’re pushed to our limits,” she said. “This is the first writing contest I’ve ever entered, so this one is particularly exciting because I want to eventually be a published writer.”

Lagarde deserves the recognition, said Ivo Kamps, UM professor and chair of English.

“Page’s win is a testament to her talents, and we like to think that the instruction she received in her English and creative writing classes also played a role,” Kamps said. “Thanks to Beth Spencer, lecturer in English, the English department has had robust student participation in the Southern Literary Festival in recent years.

“Each year, Ms. Spencer mentors some of our fine young writers and takes them to the festival, where they can meet their peers as well as a group of impressive professional writers.”

While Lagarde is still processing this honor, she already has her sights set on even bigger achievements.

“After graduation, I hope to pursue an MFA in fiction writing,” she said. “After that, I want to continue writing and also teach.”

As for her publishing dreams, Lagarde said she remains hopeful.

“Creative writing is a fairly new endeavor for me, and I know that it’s so hard to be successful in this field,” she said. “This was really encouraging.”

The Southern Literary Festival is an organization of Southern colleges and schools founded in 1937 to promote Southern literature. For more about the event, go to http://www.southernliteraryfestival.com/.

For more information about the UM Department of English, visit http://english.olemiss.edu.

 

UM Faculty Among Presenters at SEC Academic Conference

More than 60 researchers from across region to discuss 'The Future of Water' at March 27-28 meeting

Cris Surbeck (at right in white shirt) takes a group of students on a tour of a wastewater treatment plant as part of their coursework. Photo by Robert Jordan/Ole Miss Communications

OXFORD, Miss. – Four University of Mississippi professors will join researchers from across the Southeastern Conference for a two-day academic conference examining water and climate issues.

“The Future of Water: Regional Collaboration on Shared Climate, Coastlines and Watersheds” is set for March 27-28 at Mississippi State University. UM presenters include Catherine Janasie, senior research counsel in the Mississippi Law Research Institute; Scott Knight, director of the UM Field Station; and Cris Surbeck, associate professor of civil engineering. Stephanie Showalter-Otts, director of the National Sea Grant Law Center, will serve as a moderator.

More than 60 scientists, representing all 14 SEC institutions, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Geological Survey and Environmental Protection Agency, are scheduled to participate.

“This conference will bring together the best of the best in the SEC doing water research,” said Daniel Petrolia, an MSU associate professor of agricultural economics and one of the conference organizers. “We will tackle some of the most pressing water issues facing the Southeast, the U.S. and the world.”

Knight will participate in a panel discussion of nonpoint source pollution and best management practices for dealing with it. Surbeck is moderator for the session.

Stephanie Showalter-Otts conducts research at the UM Field Station. Photo by Robert Jordan

As part of a panel on emerging water law and policy issues, Janasie will present “Mississippi v. Tennessee – the  Interstate Groundwater Dispute.”

“I will be covering the United States Supreme Court case over the use of groundwater near the Mississippi-Tennessee border, which focuses on Memphis’ water pumping and how that affects Mississippi’s water resources,” Janasie said. “My talk will also cover how freshwater is allocated and how interstate disputes are traditionally handled by the Supreme Court.

“The Supreme Court has never handled an interstate dispute over groundwater, so the case is groundbreaking law.”

Janasie said she hope those in attendance will learn about the specific laws concerning how freshwater is allocated, that surface water – lakes, rivers, streams – and groundwater – aquifers – are treated differently under the law, and that interstate disputes have another specific set of rules that apply to them.

Scott Knight is director of the UM Field Station. Photo by Thomas Graning/Ole Miss Communications

“I also hope they learn that even though Mississippi seems to have an abundance of water resources, Mississippi relies heavily on groundwater,” she said. “That’s where we get about 90 percent of the water we use, so the case has big implications for both Mississippi, the city of Memphis and the innumerable other places throughout the country who rely on groundwater.”

Surbeck said that the intention of her session is to get academics together to discuss areas of research necessary to improve the characterization, modeling and management of pollution in water bodies that comes from storm water runoff.

Headlining the conference are best-selling author John M. Barry, former National Geographic executive environment editor; Dennis Dimick, professor at the University of California at Irvine; and Jay Famiglietti, senior water scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Increased climate variability and water demand are bringing water issues to the forefront of research discussion, conference organizers said. Drought, declines in aquifers used for irrigation and sea-level rise are among core topics of interest.

The conference is designed to stimulate communication and collaboration aimed at sustainable and resilient water resource management in the Southeast, with overarching themes to include shared inland waters and aquifers, coastlines, climate and regional policy.

Catherine Janaskie presents during last year’s TEDXTalk at UM. Submitted photo

The SEC Academic Conference is an expanded slate of academic programming that is expected to showcase SEC university research in areas of critical importance within the region and around the nation.

For the complete agenda and registration, visit http://www.secconference.msstate.edu.

Nominations Sought for Annual Frist Awards

UM honor recognizes outstanding service to students

Brandi Hephner LaBanc, UM vice chancellor for student affairs, presents Brett Cantrell, assistant professor of accountancy, with his Frist Award at the 2016 Commencement. Photo by Thomas Graning/Ole Miss Communications

OXFORD, Miss. – Being away from home and their familiar support systems, college students often encounter difficulties, but at the University of Mississippi, faculty and staff members often step in to lend a helping hand or simply provide advice and encouragement.

These efforts often go unacknowledged, other than the students’ gratitude and success. But students, parents, alumni, faculty and staff can formally recognize those who have truly “gone the extra mile” to help students by nominating them for the Thomas Frist Student Service Award.

“This university is composed of so many faculty and staff who go above and beyond to help students,” said Anne McCauley, UM assistant director of sustainability who won the honor in 2015. “Each student could probably name at least one person who has made a real impact on his or her life, and we hope to capture everyone’s attention about the nomination process to encourage students to nominate that person, whether it be an office, custodial, support staff, counselor, student organization adviser, mentor, coordinator or faculty member.”

Students, alumni, friends, faculty and staff can submit nominations for the annual awards online through April 3. Any full-time faculty or staff member, except previous winners, is eligible for the award, which includes a $1,000 prize and a plaque.

Written and submitted by individuals, nominations can be entered at http://www.olemiss.edu/frist_award/. Past nominations also may be considered.

Nominations should not focus on classroom teaching or tutoring efforts. Letters that cite only teaching-related activities may not be considered for the award.

The Elsie M. Hood Outstanding Teaching Award, announced at the annual Honors Day convocation, recognizes excellence in that area.

The nomination narrative should differentiate between obligation and service by citing specific examples in which the person being nominated has gone beyond the call of duty to help a student or group of students.

“Many of our faculty and staff go above and beyond the call of duty to demonstrate their commitment to students,” Chancellor Jeffrey Vitter said. “It is a privilege to honor two such individuals each year who provide such an example for us all.”

All nominees are notified that they have been so honored, and a campus committee appointed by the chancellor chooses the winners. Awards are to be presented May 13 at UM’s spring Commencement.

The 2015 Frist winners were Brett Cantrell, assistant professor of accountancy, and Lindsey Bartlett Mosvick, assistant director of the Office of Violence Prevention in the University Counseling Center

Previous recipients include current faculty members Aileen Ajootian, Luca Bombelli, Don Cole, Charles Eagles, Ellen Meacham, Terry Panhorst, Ken Sufka and Eric Weber; and current staff members Thelma Curry, Carol Forsythe, Dewey Knight, Ginger Patterson, Valeria Ross, Amy Saxton, Marc Showalter and Linda Spargo.

The Frist Student Service Awards were established with a $50,000 gift from the late Dr. Thomas F. Frist of Nashville, a 1930 UM graduate.

For more information or to submit a nomination, visit http://www.olemiss.edu/frist_award/.