Retirees Association tours library

Screen Shot 2015-12-21 at 8.41.14 AMUniversity Libraries hosted members of the University Retirees Association on Saturday, Oct. 3. Library faculty members Jocelyn Tipton, Alex Watson and Brian Young, along with Dean Julia Rholes and development of officer Angela Barlow Brown, welcomed the group. Watson presented a slideshow of the libraries’ history, and Young offered a demonstration of STUDIOone, the new video recording and editing service in the J.D. Williams Library. Watson and Tipton then led the group on a “hidden treasures” tour of the library.

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B.B. King continues to inspire through Blues Archive

Screen Shot 2015-12-21 at 9.09.29 AMCelebrated Mississippian and blues legend B.B. King died in his sleep on May 14. The winner of 15 Grammys and a Presidential Medal of Freedom passed away peacefully at 89 after a half-century career of moving audiences with his music and live performances. But the thrill isn’t gone; it can be rediscovered in the Blues Archive at the University of Mississippi.

Between 1982 and 1983, King donated almost 10,000 sound recordings from his personal collection to UM’s Blues Archive, one of the world’s largest public collections of blues recordings, publications and memorabilia. Established in 1985, the archive, which is now a unit in the Department of Archives & Special Collections, is located on the third floor of the J.D. Williams Library. It features more than 70,000 sound recordings, 40,000 photographs and 1,000 videos. This noncirculating collection serves not only UM students and faculty but also researchers worldwide.

Brett Bonner, editorial director at Living Blues magazine, worked for a short time at the Blues Archive and has seen his fair share of King’s monstrous collection.

“You can tell a lot about a man by his record collection,” Bonner said. “While working on the radio show ‘Highway 61’ with Bill Ferris (first director of Southern studies and the Blues Archive), I was able to look and pull from B.B.’s collection. It featured thousands of LPs. I felt I learned more about him looking through his collection; I could figure out what kind of music excited and influenced him.”

King was regarded as a kind and gracious man, always treating people the right way, and he was also an avid learner. It is fitting that UM is able to house and chronicle his unique collection since it features not only recordings of other musicians but also books, manuscripts and materials signifying how King never stopped learning.

“He always tried to better himself,” said Greg Johnson, blues curator at the J.D. Williams Library and associate professor. “In his collection, I found foreign language books that he would study to learn common phrases in order to speak to audiences when he would tour around the world.”

“I found a pilot book because B.B. was a trained pilot,” Bonner added. “And you wouldn’t believe it, but I also found a copy of a book detailing how to play the guitar!”

King made it a point to return to Mississippi. In 2004, the university gave him the title of Honorary Professor of Southern Studies, one of many distinguished titles he had received from numerous universities. Johnson interviewed King for the ceremony.

“It is a testament to the various universities honoring him with degrees and doctorates,” Johnson said. “When I got to publicly interview him, he was such a gracious and kind man, very down to earth.”

“B.B. would always come back to give concerts,” Bonner said. “Whether it was his homecoming concert in Indianola or the Medgar Evers Memorial Blues Concert, B.B. felt it was really important for him to be there.”

King performed and recorded decades of musical hits such as his signature “The Thrill Is Gone.” Among his honors, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987, given a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1991, and is in the Songwriters Hall of Fame. In 2008, his hometown of Indianola opened the $14 million B.B. King Museum and Delta Interpretive Center.

King influenced millions of people with his music. Musical genres, such as rock ’n’ roll, R&B, gospel and jazz, can thank the work of King and his beloved Gibson guitar, Lucille.

“The number of people he influenced and the reach of his music is unbelievable,” Johnson said. “Blues is the biggest cultural export of the state, and B.B. truly was an ambassador. He wasn’t one just for the blues or Mississippi but for the entire United States.”

For more on B.B. King, read Johnson’s blog at

First English Ph.D. Recipient Honored

Kenneth Holditch lectures at Faulkner conference

Screen Shot 2015-12-21 at 9.09.08 AM The University of Mississippi honored its first doctoral recipient in English, Kenneth Holditch, during his presentation at this year’s Faulkner and Yoknapatawpha Conference.

Holditch, a professor emeritus of English at the University of New Orleans who earned his doctorate at UM in 1961, presented his lecture, “Growing Up in Faulkner’s Yoknapatawpha Country.” He spoke to an enthusiastic audience in the Faulkner Room of the J.D. Williams Library during the 42nd annual conference.

At this program, Jay Watson, UM Howry Professor of Faulkner Studies and professor of English, announced the Holditch Scholars Award, which will be given annually to a graduate student in the Department of English.

“The creation of the Holditch Scholars Award is exciting news indeed for the English department,” Watson said. “This award will be an important source of support for deserving graduate students in our program, and a lovely way to honor the distinguished career of the man who received the very first Ph.D. granted in English at the University of Mississippi.”

Screen Shot 2015-12-21 at 9.09.17 AMIvo Kamps, UM chair of English, praised the efforts of Holditch and the university for the timely announcement.

“The English department is proud and pleased to recognize its first Ph.D. graduate, Dr. Holditch, with the creation of a graduate student award in his name,” Kamps said.

Watson noted how appropriate it was for Holditch to present his lecture at this year’s conference.

“That the announcement of the award fund came during this summer’s Faulkner conference was a wonderful bit of serendipity, since Professor Holditch pursued his Ph.D. studies at a time when Faulkner was still living in Oxford and since he went on to become an accomplished scholar of Faulkner’s works in his own right,” Watson said.

To contribute to the Holditch Scholars Award, contact Angela Barlow Brown, UM director of development for special projects, at 662-915-3181 or 

Archives gains addition to James Silver Collection

The University of Mississippi’s J.D. Williams Library has acquired a unique collection of notes written by author and former UM faculty member James Silver.

Silver began teaching at the university in 1936 and served as chair of the Department of History from 1946 to 1957. He is perhaps best known for his work on the history of race relations in the state, especially the 1964 publication of Mississippi: The Closed Society. That same year, Silver took a leave of absence from UM and continued to teach at Notre Dame and the University of South Florida.

The collection of notes includes newspaper clippings about race relations as well as handwritten notes, thoughts and underlined sections in the articles relevant to him.

“This gift provides an important glimpse into the research process used by Dr. Silver in conjunction with this seminal work,” said Jennifer Ford, head of Archives and Special Collections and an associate professor. “These notes survive due to the noteworthy efforts of Doris Bain Thompson, and we are deeply indebted to her family for this donation.”

In 1968, Thompson was a teacher working on her master’s degree in American history when she took a course taught by Silver in Innsbruck, Austria. Following a class seminar, Silver discarded his research notes. Thompson gathered and kept what she believed to be 90 pages of research notes for the enlarged edition of Mississippi: The Closed Society, published in 1966.

In a letter to her family while in Austria, Thompson wrote that she was taking a “great course in race relations which I think I have already explained is being taught by James Silver, the author of ‘Mississippi: The Closed Society’ and Thursday he threw out on the seminar table his research notes on the added 120-page addition that was included in the book. … I picked up all that were left after the others had left since he was leaving them for the janitors to clean up. Must have about 50 or 60 pages on yellow foolscap. Should be great to show a class how a researcher goes about writing such a book.”

Thompson’s daughter, Mary Margaret Hansen, said her mother was a teacher who spent many summers taking courses to gain more knowledge about American history.

Thompson taught American history and English to students at Lago Oil and Transport Co.’s school in Aruba and was also a director of choral music. Hansen said her mother was multitalented and also had an intellectual curiosity that drove her to keep learning.

She added that Thompson was a very visual teacher and likely saw these notes as an opportunity to incorporate an example of original research into her own American history courses.

While looking through family belongings, Hansen came across the notes, and she and her siblings decided to donate them to the university.

“We thought they would be more useful in archives, contributing to the subject matter, than they would be for us to keep them,” Hansen said. “We’re happy the papers are where they may be looked at as a small piece of a larger puzzle.”

This collection is a great asset to faculty, students and researchers studying topics dealing with race relations and Southern history, Ford said. 

Caring for the ‘Heart of the University’

Friends of the Library celebrates 75 years

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Beloved English professors, John Pilkington (left) and Charles Noyes devoted countless hours to the Friends of the Library’s cause.

What a school thinks about its library is a measure of what it feels about education,” educator Harold Howe II wrote. Two forces of nature – the late University of Mississippi English professors John Pilkington and Charles Noyes – were instrumental in helping to define what the Ole Miss family thinks about the J.D. Williams Library and were relentless in building support to purchase books and an array of other library resources.

“A library is the absolute heart of a university,” Noyes said on numerous occasions.

Many who have joined Friends of the Library, the support organization for the J.D. Williams Library, established in 1940, did so out of their great affection for Pilkington and Noyes. However, the two professors passed on the belief that we all have a responsibility to strengthen the university’s library. And now, new generations of alumni and friends have taken up the mantle of building support, and Friends of the Library is observing its 75th anniversary.

The Friends of the Library’s endowment is nearing $1 million, with annual income enhancing library assets. For decades, the organization has purchased library resources to meet the needs of students, faculty, researchers, staff and other patrons. Records show that during a calendar year, the Friends may purchase as many as 4,800 new books or resources for the J.D. Williams Library, with purchase decisions made from librarians’ recommendations and employees, students, and faculty members’ requests.

Carole Lynn Meadows (BSC 60, MBEd 64) of Gulfport, a former Ole Miss Alumni Association president, heads up the committee that has planned Friends of the Library anniversary events, which have included coffee receptions for UM administrators, faculty and staff to encourage them to join the organization. Also, the Ole Miss Alumni Association, a longtime library supporter, annually gives a $50 gift to honor each faculty and staff member with 25 years of service, resulting in a gift of a couple thousand dollars to the Friends organization. The association increased the amount to $75 to help mark the 75th anniversary.

“If you described the whole university as a wheel, the hub would be the library,” Meadows said. “Supporting this hub is no longer just about purchasing books; we have to attract funds for an array of technological resources that our students need to succeed in their classes and to increase their understanding of the world. 

“Being part of the Friends organization is a great way to give back; it’s an outlet for the tremendous appreciation and love I feel for the university. … I am compelled to find ways to strengthen the university for future generations and encourage others to join this effort.”

Anniversary events will continue through early 2016, with a holiday party planned for Friends of the Library members and a special event in the library’s Archives and Special Collections. Alumni and friends are encouraged to become involved members, enjoy the social aspects of membership and provide library support that’s needed more than ever.

The anniversary observance, of course, includes a tribute to professors Pilkington and Noyes.

“They are monumental figures at our university,” said Stephen Monroe (MS 03, PhD 07), assistant dean of the College of Liberal Arts and president of the Friends of the Library. “These two men were devoted scholars, teachers and servant leaders. Their commitment to the library, in particular, is an ongoing inspiration.”

Monroe said those involved in the Friends of the Library today are carrying on the tradition of dedication and service established by Pilkington and Noyes.

“We have strong, energetic board members,” Monroe said. “Together, we’re working to increase overall membership and to raise our endowment above $1 million.” 

This Friends’ support continues to make a world of difference in the lives of Ole Miss students by enhancing the J.D. Williams Library. Open 109 hours a week and 24/7 during the last three weeks of each semester, the library is usually packed with students. In addition to more than 2 million volumes, the library boasts several special collections and such features as individual and group study areas, exercise bikes for study breaks and a Starbucks coffee shop – where the line is always long. 

“We are so grateful for the longtime support of the Friends of the Library,” said Julia Rholes, dean of libraries. “The J.D. Williams Library is thriving because it offers students such strong resources; it also played a pivotal role in the university being chosen to shelter a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa (the nation’s oldest and most prestigious liberal arts honor society). Our growth and success would not be possible without the amazing support of the Friends.” 

Library technology assists students with learning and research. More than 180 public computers and an array of software are available, such as programs that help students compute and solve mathematical formulas and equations; and produce, analyze and print graphs, data tables, text and histograms. A crowdfunding initiative recently attracted private gifts to fund Studioone, a video recording and digital editing suite in the library for students to practice making presentations, complete multimodal assignments, create e-portfolio introductions or tape group discussions.

Gifts of all sizes strengthen the library and are welcome beyond membership dues. The anniversary goal is to reach 100 lifetime members, and the Friends organization is halfway there. Those who would like to join Friends of the Library or support the UM Libraries can do so online at or by contacting Angela Barlow Brown, development officer for libraries, at or 662-915-3181. The levels are students, $15; faculty and staff, $25; supporting, $30; contributing, $75; sustaining, $150; and life, $1,000. Friends of the Library members receive news about the library and invitations to Friends events. 

Tina H. Hahn is director of communications for the Office of University Development and the University of Mississippi Foundation. A longer version of this article was published in the summer 2015 edition of the Ole Miss Alumni Review.

Scholar Events

groupBethany Cooper, Corporate Recruitment and Talent Management Coordinator at FNC, Inc., met with several of the OMWC scholars for an informational Lunch and Learn session.  Students were able to hear firsthand from a recruiter, what can set themselves apart from the competition, when applying for jobs and internships. Bethany illustrated the perfect resume, discussed interview skills and how to prepare for interview questions, and also focused on the importance of effective networking. The main take away from her time with our OMWC scholars, was “to treat a job search, like a full time job!” Proper research, practice, and preparation can make all the difference.

The OMWC scholars welcomed University Police Department’s new Chief, Tim Potts, who came to Ole Miss from Purdue University as the Red Plate Supper speaker for October. Chief Potts noted that he sees his position as one to serve the students, and he prides himself on being available to them constantly. The scholars will wrap-up the fall semester with a holiday gathering at the Memory House in December.

Rose Society

primaryOne of the many reasons behind the success of the Ole Miss Women’s Council scholarship program is the annual fundraising component, the Rose Society.   The OMWC established the Rose Society in 2010 to play a crucial role in the scholarship program.  Each year, Rose Society members commit to contribute $1,000 which helps to provide the much-needed programmatic support for the student mentorship-leadership programs which make it unique.

“We established the Rose Society as not only a ‘fundraiser’ but a ‘friend-raiser,’” current OMWC Chair, Karen Moore said. The Rose Society provides the means for the OMWC to offer the mentoring program and leadership training, as well as monthly dinner meetings and other opportunities for the scholars to excel in school and beyond.

Like Moore, the Rose Society members and the OMWC members are all incredibly passionate about the program, and are continuously seeking new ways of improvement.

“Joining the Rose Society means becoming a part of an amazing group of people who love Ole Miss and who empower the scholars,” Moore said. “These programs are a unique and powerful way to produce caring and ethical leaders of the future.”

“When you accept the OMWC scholarship, you become a part of something bigger than yourself,” states OMWC senior scholar, Debra Whitley. “Had it not been for this program, I might have missed out on a lot of important opportunities during my college career.”

As the holidays approach, an annual membership to the Rose Society is an incredible gift to honor a special woman in your life, to join an organization promoting friendship, leadership and philanthropy. Members are invited to all OMWC events, including an annual signature event exclusively for Rose Society members. This year’s event, the Songwriters’ Soiree’, will be held on Friday, April 15, 2016 at the Lyric.  For more information on the Rose Society, please contact Nora Capwell at

Women’s Council celebrates 15th Anniversary

With roses representing students, the Ole Miss Women’s Council for Philanthropy boasts a garden that is changing the world. Council members, now celebrating the 15th anniversary, first came together to create scholarships that would have a far greater effect on students’ lives than

providing financial assistance alone. The OMWC is producing exceptional citizens by giving students access to mentors, leadership training, life skills and travel opportunities

that prepare them for careers and, hopefully, a lifelong commitment to creating a more caring world.

Realizing the need to celebrate leaders who stand as role models for their scholars and countless others, the OMWC created the Legacy Award in 2010. This year’s recipient, Charles Overby (68, BA 14) of Franklin, Tenn., and formerly of Washing- ton, D.C., is a champion of the First Amendment and free press and former chair of the Freedom Forum, Newseum and Diversity Institute. His name graces the façade of the Overby Center for Southern Journalism and Politics on the Oxford campus.

Singer-songwriter Rivers Rutherford and fellow artists entertain at a reception honoring Legacy Award sponsors and Rose Society members.

Singer-songwriter Rivers Rutherford and fellow artists entertain at a reception honoring Legacy Award sponsors and Rose Society members.

Best in Show

Karen Moore (BS 82) of Nashville, Tenn., president of Project Redesign and OMWC chair, says there is much to celebrate on the occasion of this anniversary.

“Thanks to the incredible investments from alumni, friends and council members, OMWC scholarships and programming are absolutely transforming students’ lives – and we intend for our work to impact many, many more individuals. To further illuminate our mission, we created the Legacy Award, which has become a coveted honor. It highlights servant leaders among us and focuses attention on our scholars.”

Becky West (BA 78) of Memphis, president of WestRogers Strategic Communications and a founding OMWC member, chaired the 2015 Legacy Award events, which included a mid-April reception and dinner at Brandt Memory House for Legacy Award dinner sponsors and Rose Society members, with entertainment by Nashville singer-songwriter Rivers Rutherford (BA 89) and fellow artists. The dinner was hosted the evening before the memorable awards event at Carrier House, when Overby, always the journalist, interviewed Chancellor Dan Jones (MD 75) about his challenges with the Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning that ultimately led to the end of his tenure at Ole Miss.


2015 Legacy Award honoree Charles Overby (left) and Chancellor Dan Jones

“As I looked across this sold-out crowd, I felt the positive impact the Ole Miss Women’s Council is having on the university,” West says. “The ‘interview’ between Charles Overby and Dan Jones is something I will never forget.”

Instead of letting his own accomplishments – which compose a compelling list, including a 1983 Pulitzer Prize for The Clarion-Ledger’s coverage of educational reform in Mississippi – headline the evening, Overby focused on Chancellor Jones’ contributions, with the crowd of around 420 exploding with supportive applause for Jones.

Growing Season

Jones also asked questions of Overby, requesting that he define “mentoring” as it is so integral to the OMWC’s work.

“To me it means somebody who takes an interest in you and who is willing to back you, to support you and push you,” Overby said. “I’ve always had an advocate. My biggest advocate in life was (USA Today founder) Al Neuharth … he pushed me. He would often tell me, ‘You did that job better than you know how, Charles.’”

OMWC scholars Jack Fitzpatrick (left), BreAnna Faust and Brea Rich with Bonnie Brown, a mentoring counselor at Ole Miss

OMWC scholars Jack Fitzpatrick (left), BreAnna Faust and Brea Rich with Bonnie Brown, a mentoring counselor at Ole Miss

The presenting sponsor for the event was C Spire, with event proceeds directed to programming for scholars. Build- ing resources is critical, West says, because as Ole Miss’ enroll- ment continues to soar, so do students’ needs for scholarships and mentorship.

“During the awards dinner, I thought of the vision, mission and core values of the university coupled with the mission of the Women’s Council. Phrases such as ‘lead and excel by engaging minds, transforming lives and serving others,’ ‘chal- lenges and inspires a diverse community’ and ‘philosophy of servant leadership’ quickly flooded my mind. However, it was the faces of our scholars that really captured my focus.


Chancellor Dan Jones (left), OMWC board member Katie Hester, first lady Lydia Jones and OMWC chair Karen Moore

“The Women’s Council uniquely guides our scholars into their future careers and helps them develop life skills through leadership-mentorship programs. Funding an Ole Miss Women’s Council Scholarship is one of the best investments a person can make,” West says.

The scholarships, which have grown to be some of the larg- est and most prestigious on campus at about $32,000 each, are awarded to both young women and men based on academics, leadership and a desire to give back to society after in-depth interviews. After graduating and becoming established in their careers, scholars are encouraged to give back to the program.

Donors who fund scholarships can name them for themselves or for influential people in their lives. Each new scholar- ship is celebrated in a ceremony in the council’s Rose Garden, located outside the Gertrude C. Ford Center for the Performing Arts. The Rose Society is an annual giving program added in 2010 for individuals who feel passionate about supporting mentorship, leadership training and cultural-enrichment activities. All Rose Society membership dues go directly to programming, which includes two opportunities for each scholar to travel during his or her college career.

Sowing the Seeds

Debra Whitley of Natchez, an integrated marketing com- munications major, is grateful for such investments.

“Being an Ole Miss Women’s Council scholar has been both a rewarding and humbling experience. I have been intro- duced to so many people, places and things that I normally would not have encountered,” the senior says. “It is because of the council’s generosity that I am able to attend the University of Mississippi.

“More importantly, I have witnessed and been inspired by the fact that the Ole Miss Women’s Council keeps philan- thropy at the heart of everything that it does. In the last three years that I have been a scholar, I have been encouraged to adopt a philanthropic spirit. I have volunteered with a variety of community service projects, including sorting through recyclable items after Ole Miss football game days and making snacks for an after-school program. One other cause that is close to my heart is diabetes research. My grandfather, who lived with diabetes most of his life, passed away my sophomore year. Consequently, I hope to honor his memory and continue my philanthropic spirit by working with diabetes research efforts after graduation,” Whitley says.

Serving a two-year term as OMWC chair, Karen Moore first learned about the organization after her husband, Bruce (BBA 82), created a scholarship in her honor.

“Bruce surprised me for Christmas with an OMWC schol- arship – absolutely the best gift ever,” she says. “I was asked to join the council and met the most wonderful, professional, fun-loving group of women who deeply love Ole Miss and students. Their enthusiasm is infectious and inspiring. Since joining in 2007, I have worked on many committees and events side by side with women who can make things happen.

“Some of the most memorable moments with our scholars have been at graduation dinners,” Moore continues. “Students talk about how our programs have impacted their day-to-day college experiences. One said, ‘Without the Ole Miss Women’s Council mentoring program, I seriously doubt if I would have made it through my four years. Miss Bonnie (Brown, a mentor- ship counselor) guided and helped me through all of my hard times and difficult choices.’ Those are our ‘aha’ moments, when we see that these young people have utilized the resources we provide, and those experiences helped catapult them to success. The scholars are our legacy and must carry the torch for future generations. It is our hope that our scholars will be leaders who give back to the world, as they are being taught.”

Companion Planting

Gloria Kellum, vice chancellor emerita for University Rela- tions and a founding OMWC member, says one of the most important OMWC accomplishments has been developing a structure to encourage and facilitate alumni and friends genuinely reaching out to students and becoming involved in strengthening educational experiences outside the classroom.

Past Legacy Award honoree Olivia Manning (left), OMWC members Gloria Kellum and Mary Ann Frugé, and Archie Manning

Past Legacy Award honoree Olivia Manning (left), OMWC members Gloria Kellum and Mary Ann Frugé, and Archie Manning

“Many in the Ole Miss family would like to help students beyond providing financial assistance if given the opportu- nity,” Kellum says. “The council developed an effective model that hopefully will be replicated. I think the Women’s Council also has highlighted the important role of philanthropy in general. Philanthropy comes in different forms and at different levels, and we can all work to build support systems and make a difference in people’s lives.”

OMWC past chairs include Edith Kelly-Green (BBA 73), Rachel McPherson (BAEd 74), Jan Farrington (BAEd 65), Mary Sharp Rayner (BAEd 64), Kathryn “Katie” Hester (BA 65, JD 82) and Mary Ann Frugé (BA 66, MA 70). There are 34 active mem- bers and 17 alliance council members. Beyond being the archi- tect of a significant scholarship program, the council reflects the emerging financial power of women in philanthropic endeavors and their unique abilities as change agents.

Frugé of Oxford – former national officer for 12 years and president for six years of Chi Omega, the largest women’s fraternity with more than 240,000 members – looks ahead.

“With the strong foundation laid for the OMWC scholar- ships and programming, I foresee that in 15 or 25 years this program will expand exponentially,” she says. “As more people learn how the scholarships provide both financial assistance and extensive mentoring from Ole Miss staff, council members and other professionals – plus essential leadership training – I believe increased numbers will want to be part of our program. Scholarships certainly will grow, as people witness the continued impact of the OMWC.

“As a former chair, I can attest to the fact that council mem- bers make significant investments in scholars’ lives and give inordinate amounts of time to fundraising,” Frugé says. “I’ve witnessed members taking time from their personal lives to help scholars when needed and to attend their activities. Rela- tionships develop trust with our scholars. A recently graduated scholar contacted me to help her prepare for a phone interview for a job. I agreed and spent time practicing with her. From that phone interview, she was chosen for a face-to-face interview and landed the job. Believe me, this is only one example of how the program develops confidence in our scholars. Additionally, permanent friendships are forged as our scholars move forward in creating a more caring and ethical society.”

Gathering the Blossoms

The past and future will be spotlighted when the OMWC hosts its anniversary celebration Sept. 25, with Moore promis- ing a memorable evening.

“We will highlight our scholars, alumni scholars and the peo- ple who have supported our efforts through our 15-year tenure, as well as present highly recognized entertainment,” Moore says.

OMWC scholarship naming opportunities are available for a contribution of $125,000 from an individual, corporation or foundation and can be paid in a lump sum or annually over several years. Yearly membership in the Rose Society is $1,000. All sizes of contributions are welcome and used to further OMWC goals. For more information, contact Nora Capwell at or 662-915-2384, or visit online: Scholarship application directions also are located on this website.

* This story was provided by the Alumni Review

An exciting summer interning for OMWC scholars


Debra Whitley (bottom right) and her fellow Southwest interns

Debra Whitley, a senior Integrated Marketing and Communications major, was able to intern with Southwest Airlines this summer in Dallas, Texas. During her 3 months as an intern, Debra worked with the Southwest marketing team and helped create campaigns for their Rapid Rewards program! With the exciting and laidback environment at Southwest, Debra was able to enjoy a high-energy work place and cultivate important skills for her future in marketing. Not only was Debra able to travel over 14,000 miles during her internship, but she was also awarded the “Fun-Luving Attitude” award by her fellow interns!

What could be better for a Public Policy Leadership and Political Science major than to intern with a congressman? Luckily for Caleb Pracht, he got to do just that this summer! Caleb was able to intern Congressman Jim Cooper in Nashville, where he reported daily events to the congressman, sat in on meetings, and wrote policy memos. For Caleb, this internship has given him a lot of experience in politics, as well as further develop his writing skills. While Caleb wasn’t a huge fan of the rush hour traffic in Nashville, his favorite part was meeting with shipping industry lobbyists on a tugboat!

Public Policy Leadership major Bridges Lamar was fortunate to intern for the House Committee on homeland Security this summer! Under the leadership of Chairman Michael McCaul, Bridges had a number of tasks, ranging from compiling media on homeland security, attending committee hearings, and drafting press releases. As a student who loves to be challenged, Bridges found the Washington, DC office to be just the place for her! And with her new found interest in communications, Bridges is excited to see what her future holds for her, maybe even
back in Washington, DC!


Bridges Lamar and U.S. Representative Michael McCaul.

OMWC scholars kick-off the fall semester


The Ole Miss Women’s Council kicked off the fall semester by holding its annual scholar retreat on Sunday, August 30, 2015, at The Depot. Mrs. Bonnie Brown, Mentor Coordinator for the scholarship program, unveiled a new feature for this year’s program. For the first time, the scholarship program will be centered around a “theme,” with this year as the Year of thankfulness, focusing on an attitude of gratitude.

The keynote speaker, Rose Flenorl, FedEx Manager of Social Responsibility is not only an Ole Miss alum, but also an OMWC member.  Her speech, “The Road that Lies Ahead” was centered on giving advice about preparing for college and beyond.  Flenorl emphasized the importance of networking, and gave students guidance about preparing for a successful career.

OMWC Chair, Karen Moore, gave her best wishes to all the scholars to have a great year and to enjoy the program and the opportunities they are presented.


Red Plate Supper

The first OMWC Red Plate Supper was held on Thursday, September 10 with Dr. Morris Stocks, the Ole Miss Interim Chancellor.  Dr. Stocks shared his life and career path story with the scholars, as well as encouraged the students to be open to possibilities and work on becoming their very best selves.

The next Red Plate Supper is Tuesday, October 6th, featuring speaker Tim Potts, the new UPD chief.