Drum Majors for Academic Excellence, Vietnam Reflections and MUW Nursing Program | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

Drum Majors for Academic Excellence, Vietnam Reflections and MUW Nursing Program

Jackson State University's Development Foundation has launched a campaign called "J5 Drum Majors for Academic Excellence" to help the university generate $1 million within four years for endowed scholarships. Photo courtesy JSU

Jackson State University's Development Foundation has launched a campaign called "J5 Drum Majors for Academic Excellence" to help the university generate $1 million within four years for endowed scholarships. Photo courtesy JSU

Jackson State University's Development Foundation has launched a campaign called "J5 Drum Majors for Academic Excellence" to help the university generate $1 million within four years for endowed scholarships. JSU Development Foundation Chairman Alfred Martin Jr. and JSUTV General Manager Keith Collins named the campaign as homage to the school's J5 Drum Majors and Sonic Boom, but the fundraiser is not an initiative for the marching band.

Five JSU officials will lead five competing teams for the program. The five team leaders have committed $5,000 each to the program and recruited four other members to join their respective teams. Individually, each one will raise $25,000 for a total of $125,000. JSU's Title III program will match the funds on the Sept. 30 deadline for first-year contributions for an expected total of $250,000. The program leaders plan to present a check in that amount on the university's football field during JSU Homecoming on Saturday, Nov. 4.

JSU President William B. Bynum Jr. will dedicate his team's funds to The Christine Bynum Smith Endowed Scholarship for Academic Excellence and Involvement in Campus Ministry. Bill Cooley, the dean emeritus of the JSU College of Business, and Tarita Benson Davis, second vice chairperson of the Jackson State University National Alumni Association, will both donate to the College of Business. Anna Jackson, a Memphis physician and former member of the Sonic Boom, will donate to the Biology Department. JSU President Emeritus John A. Peoples Jr. will donate to JSU's ROTC.

Although each team currently consists of five people, a press release says that alumni, friends and others can contribute to the program. Interested individuals may contribute to the Development Foundation's campaign through JSU's Division of Institutional Advancement by calling 601-979-2282 or visiting https://app.mobilecause.com/vf/DrumMajor.

University of Southern Mississippi Hosting Vietnam Veterans Event

The University of Southern Mississippi's Dale Center for the Study of War and Society and the Mississippi Humanities Council will co-sponsor an event titled "Vietnam Reflections: Mississippi Stories" to honor Mississippi's Vietnam War veterans and raise awareness about the war's impact and veterans' issues. The event is from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sept. 1 at the Ocean Springs Civic Center. Mississippi Public Broadcasting will screen excerpts from filmmaker Ken Burns' new 10-part documentary television series, "The Vietnam War," which premiers on Sept. 17 at 7 p.m. on Mississippi Public Broadcasting Television.

The program will include a panel discussion, luncheon and tour of the Mississippi Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Marshall Ramsey will moderate the panel, which will include people such as USM history professor and the founding director of the university's Dale Center for the Study of War and Society, Andrew Wiest.

Wiest is a historian of the Vietnam War and the author of several books on the war, including "The Boys of '67: Charlie Company's War in Vietnam." He also served as the lead historical advisor for the National Geographic Channel and Lou Reda Productions' Emmy-nominated documentary, "Brothers in War," which is based on "The Boys of '67."

Other guest speakers for the panel discussion include Trang Pham Bui and retired Air Force Lt. Col. Dick Wilson. Bui is a Vietnamese American who fled her native country at the end of the war and now lives on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. She is a former reporter for WLOX-TV in Biloxi and currently serves as public relations specialist for the Harrison County School District. Wilson served as a pilot in the Vietnam War from 1971 to 1972 and helped establish the Mississippi Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Ocean Springs.

The event is free and open to the public, but space is limited. For information or to register online, visit www.mpbonline.org/vietnamevents.

MUW Nursing Program Named to Top 100 List

Diverse Issues in Higher Education magazine, which is a publication that covers topics concerning underrepresented groups in American higher education, recently named Mississippi University for Women's nursing program to its list of the top 100 minority degree producers in the country. The school took the no. 7 spot among institutions that awarded Bachelor of Science in nursing degrees to African Americans in the 2014-2015 academic year.

Mississippi University for Women's enrollment was 2,956 this past fall with 33.8 percent being African American. In the last decade, African American enrollment has been around 1,000 students per semester and ranged from 33.2 to 38 percent. Most degrees at the university are for health professions, with the highest percentage of those degrees being in nursing.

Diverse Issues, formerly titled Black Issues In Higher Education, has compiled national data on the ability of U.S. colleges and universities to award degrees to African American, Hispanic, Asian American and Native American students for 26 years. The magazine reaches more than 200,000 readers weekly in print and online.

To see a comprehensive presentation of Top 100 degree statistics, visit http://diverseeducation.com/top100.

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