January 2010


Dr. Claibourne Smith Honored with Resolution and Reception

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DSU President Harry L. Williams presents a gift portrait of Loockerman Hall to Dr. Claibourne Smith during a reception honoring him on Jan. 14.

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The DSU Board of Trustees unanimously passed a resolution that commended Dr. Claibourne Smith for his 16-month service as the University’s acting president. The board approved the resolution during its Jan. 14 regular meeting, in which they also unanimously returned Dr. Smith to his previous post of board chairman. Dr. Smith stepped down from the board in September 2008 to assume the responsibilities of acting president. He returned to the board on Jan. 10, the date in which Dr. Harry L. Williams officially become the DSU president. Following that board meeting, a reception was held in honor of Dr. Smith in the new Martin Luther King Student Center. Many faculty, staff and students were in attendance and testimonials were given in praise of Dr. Smith's service and dedication as acting president. Photos from that event can be viewed at /administration/photo-gallery-appreciation-reception-dr-claibourne-smith . The resolution approved by the board read as follows:   Delaware State University Board of Trustees Resolution in appreciation of Dr. Claibourne Smith, acting President January 14, 2010   Whereas, Dr. Claibourne Smith became the second person to serve as the acting president in the 119-year history of Delaware State University; and   Whereas,  Dr. Smith accepted the responsibility from the Board of Trustees as acting president, fully committing to keep the University focused and stabilized during a trying state and national economic downturn; and   Whereas, Dr. Smith led a delegation to China to expand DSU’s partnerships, provided strong leadership to address H1N1 concerns on campus, and convened a multi-level task force to implement Go Green measures on campus for the short and long term; and    Whereas, Dr. Smith made it a priority to interact with students, faculty and staff to better familiarize himself with how DSU operates, using that information to strengthen the University as well as to inform the Board on key issues through its retreat; and   Whereas, Dr. Smith’s oversight ensured that two major construction project stayed on track, resulting in the completion of a new Wellness & Recreation Center, a swimming facility and a new MLK Student Center; and    Whereas, Dr. Smith capably provided strong and stable executive leadership as acting president, which enabled DSU to methodically conduct its presidential search process resulting in a permanent president; now, therefore, be it    Resolved, that the Board of Trustees recognizes Dr. Smith for his exemplary efforts and accomplishments for 16 months as DSU’s acting president.   In Witness Whereof, the undersigned has executed this resolution as of the date above.   Dr. John Land Acting Board of Trustees Chair      

DSU Puts Its Heart into Haiti Relief Effort

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SGA President Kathleen Charlot shows the Heart for Haiti information table that has been set up in the new MLK Student Center on campus.

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In the tragic wake of the massive January 12 earthquake in Haiti that has claimed the lives of thousands and left many others hungry and homeless, Delaware State University is coordinating several efforts to contribute to the ongoing worldwide relief effort.   Student Affairs has organized the Heart for Haiti committee, with representation from the Office of Student Leadership & Activities, student leaders and student health staff. DSU’s Heart for Haiti endeavors are being manifested through several campus organizations as a natural expression of their capacity for compassion and outreach on a global level.   DSU President Dr. Harry L. Williams is not surprised by the student response to the earthquake in Haiti.   Dr. Williams stated “We are committed to educating our students toward the goal of making their mark on the world.  It is gratifying to witness students actualizing this mantra as they mobilize the campus community to participate in this tremendous opportunity for global community service.”   Student Government Association (SGA) President Kathleen Charlot, who also has Haitian roots said “Many students realize the importance of the role they can play in such a worldwide relief effort. We have a lot of international students at DSU who could be affected by disasters that happen throughout the world. It’s our duty as students and citizens of the United States to care about people in other countries and to help people throughout the world when the need arises.”   How can you participate in the student initiatives?   Visit the literature tables in the MLK student center and at home games for more information about campus relief efforts, Haiti and the effect of the earthquake as well as government calls for action and support. Donate to the Haitian Student Association (HSA) coin drive, which has contribution receptacles located in all residence halls. Contact Mr. Emmanuel Lalande at elalande@desu.edu for additional locations. Contribute donations at any event of the Pan Hellenic greek organizations on campus during the spring semester 2010. The SGA has committed to matching the total amount collected this semester by the Greek organizations. Join DSU staff and students in supporting the White House relief effort by texting “QUAKE” to 20222 to charge a $10 donation to the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund (the donation will be added to your cell phone bill). Share ideas and resources with the Heart for Haiti Committee as they are coordinating additional relief efforts. Contact: Emmanuel Lalande at elalande@desu.edu.   DSU Office of Counseling Services   Emergency on-call counselors are available 24/7. Counseling services can be accessed by calling (302) 857-7386. Haitian Disaster Support Group meeting – 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Thursday Jan. 28 in the Counseling Services Center In addition, anyone in the DSU Community trying to contact family or friends in Haiti can contact the International Committee of the Red Cross at www.icrc.org/familylinks or at CNN iReport at www.ireport.com. Anyone trying to reach U.S. citizens in Haiti can call the U.S. State Department Office of Overseas Citizens Services at (888) 407-4747 or (202) 647-5225.    

DSU Names Kemal Atkins New Interim VP of Student Affairs

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  Delaware State University has announced the appointment of Kemal M. Atkins for one year as its interim vice president of Student Affairs. Prior to his arrival at DSU, Mr. Atkins served over the last two years as the vice provost for Student Affairs at East Carolina University. In that capacity, he supervised 15 Student Affairs departments – 500 full-time employees and 13 unit heads – and administered division budgets totaling $77 million. His review of the university’s student center and multicultural center construction projects resulted in savings of approximately $20 million. Also early in his career, he was an assistant director of Undergraduate Admissions at that same institution from 1994-1996.   Kemal M. Atkins During a seven-year stint at the University of North Carolina, Mr. Atkins served as an assistant vice president for Academic and Student Affairs from 2007 to 2008, as the director of that same division from 2003 to 2007, and as the director for Programming and Operations, GEAR UP NC from 2001 to 2003.   He was also the director of ThinkCOLLEGE, a college access program for high school and college students in Charlotte, N.C. from 1996 to 2001. Part of the nation’s largest and most effective dropout prevention program, ThinkCOLLEGE serves the 37 school-Charlotte-Mecklenburg, N.C. area.   Mr. Atkins has a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature with a minor in Communications Arts and a Master of Arts in English Literature with an emphasis in Postsecondary Instruction, both from Appalachian State University in Boone, N.C. He also completed the NASPA Institute for New Senior Student Affairs Officers.   Mr. Atkins replaces Dr. Paul Bryant, who left DSU to pursue other opportunities.   A national search for a permanent vice president of Student Affairs will be initiated at a later date.  

Gov. Markell appoints DSU alumnus to Board of Trustees

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  Delaware Gov. Jack Markell has appointed Leroy A. Tice, a Wilmington attorney, to serve as a member of the Delaware State University Board of Trustees. Mr. Tice, who is also an alumnus of DSU, has been appointed to finish the six-year term of Dr. Lillian A. Lowery, who resigned from the board earlier this month. In completing Dr. Lowery’s term, Mr. Tice’s current appointment lasts until Oct. 17, 2014.   A native of Milford and a 1987 graduate of Milford High School, Mr. Tice is a member of both the Delaware State Bar Association and the New Jersey State Bar Association. Mr. Tice is currently an attorney with the Wilmington firm of Aber, Goldlust, Baker & Over, where he focuses on workmen compensation matters, employment discrimination, civil rights and personal injury claims. Leroy A. Tice, Esquire, DSU's newest Board of Trustees member.    He is a member of the Delaware Bar Association’s Multicultural Judges and Lawyers Section, the Delaware Trial Lawyers, as well as the National Employment Lawyers Association. He also serves as an outside counsel for the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and as a special hearing officer for the Prestige Academy, a Wilmington charter school.   He has a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Delaware State University and later earned a Juris Doctor from Seton Hall University School of Law.    

DSU Bookstore Opens in New MLK Student Center

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Emmanuel Lalande, assistant to the vice president of Student Affairs, and JoAnn Holmes, bookstore manager, stand in the new DSU Bookstore that opened on Jan. 7 in the MLK Student Center.

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  The DSU Bookstore opened its doors Jan. 7 at its new location in the almost completed Martin Luther King Student Center on campus. While workmen are putting the final touches on the new student center, the DSU Bookstore began selling books and merchandise from its new location as students begin preparing for the spring 2010 semester.   Bookstore students workers Brianna Swanston (l) and Tanisha Wilson do a final inventory of books in preparation for the Jan. 7 opening. The 7,000 square foot bookstore – located on the first floor east side of the student center, is much larger than the previous ones.   “The additional space allows us to grow in all of our departments,” said JoAnn Holmes, bookstore manager. “For instance, we can now offer more nursing apparel and supplies.”   In addition to more room for textbooks, the larger facility also allows for growth in supplies, clothing, gifts, health and beauty, campus living items, snacks and beverage offerings.   Ms. Holmes said the new facility will permit the store to have more cash registers to serve the customer. She added that in comparison to the previous two locations that had no windows, the new location has natural light from outside that enhance the atmosphere on the inside.   “The natural lighting is good for the morale of the bookstore workers,” she said.   The store will also be equipped with a 52-inch flat screen television and a DMX music system to make shopping more enjoyable.    “It’s all about serving the needs of our students,” Ms. Holmes said.   On Jan. 11 the bookstore commenced its regulars semester hours:   Monday         8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday         8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesday    8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday        8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday            8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday        10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday          Closed   Purchases can also be made online 24 hours a day and 365 days a year at www.dsu.bkstr.com .  

DSU Establishes MBA Program at Vietnam National University

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DSU and VNU officials gather to sign accord. (Back l-r) Binh Song Nguyen, head of VNU International Relations, Dr. Nanda Viswanathan, DSU assoc. professor, Dr. Nhuan Trong Mai, VNU president, Amir Mohammadi, DSU vice president of Finance & Admin., Mr. Minh Ngoc Vu, vice director of Hanoi Television, Mr. Thuat Quang Nguyen, VNU Head of Student Services; (seated l-r) Kishor Sheth, DSU MBA director and Dr. Binh Quang Hoa Nguyen, VNU Ed. Technology & Career Development director.

 

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  A delegation from Delaware State University recently returned from Vietnam where an agreement was finalized to establish a DSU Master of Business (MBA) Degree Program in that country. Amir Mohammed, DSU Vice president of Business and Administration, traveled to the country with Kishor C. Sheth, Director of the DSU MBA Program and Dr. Nanda Viswanathan Associate Professor of Marketing to meet with officials of Vietnam National University (VNU) and sign the new accord with them.   The agreement signing and the launch of the MBA program were highlighted by a major press conference in Hanoi.   The joint academic collaboration between DSU and VNU will involve DSU faculty members who will travel to Vietnam to teach MBA courses there in an accelerated format. While most of the work will involve classroom instruction, some parts of individual courses will be taught online.   Dr. Viswanathan will be the first faculty member to teach at VNU, as he will conduct courses at that institution’s Center for Education Technology and Career Development in Hanoi in August. Other DSU professors will travel to Vietnam to teach MBA courses during subsequent semesters.   In addition, plans have been developed to expand the DSU MBA Program to the VNU campus in the Vietnamese city of Ho Chi Minh in May later this year.   “We are excited to extend DSU’s academic impact to Vietnam through the offering of our MBA Degree Program at the Vietnamese National University,” said DSU President Harry L. Williams. “The establishment of this program gives DSU the privilege of helping Vietnam to expand its sector of middle and senior management professionals, and strengthens the global presence of our institution’s academic and research partnerships in higher education to over 30 countries.”    

U.S. Sen. Kaufman Visits with Dr. Harry Williams

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Dr. Harry L. Williams greets U.S. Sen. Ted Kaufman, who stopped by to wish him well on his upcoming presidential tenure that starts on Jan. 10.

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  U.S. Sen. Ted Kaufman (D-Del.) paid DSU President-select Harry L. Williams a visit on Jan. 6 to wish him well as he prepares to assume the top executive post at DSU next week. Dr. Williams and Sen. Kaufman both share a North Carolina connection, as the DSU president-select was born and raised in the Tar Heel State while the senator graduated from Duke University. In addition to sharing memories and stories about North Carolina, Dr. Williams and Sen. Kaufman talked about the opportunities for jobs in the STEM areas (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). “The STEM fields is where the future jobs are,” said Sen. Kaufman, who earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering. “DSU has some real interesting things going on (in the STEM disciplines).” Dr. Williams shared with the senator some of the things the university is doing, such as establishing a STEM Council at DSU for better coordination between disciplines and assisting middle school teachers that teach in those areas.  

Provost Search Committee Established

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    In one of his last action as Provost before he takes over as the 10th president of Delaware State University, Dr. Harry L. Williams announced the establishment of a 13-member Provost Search Committee that will seek his permanent successor as Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs.   Dr. Richard Barczewski, chair of the Department of Ag & Natural Resources, and Dr. Akwasi Osei, chair of the Department of History, Political Science & Philosophy, have been tapped to serve as the co-chairs of the search committee.   The committee is comprised of a diverse mix of seven faculty members, one dean, one Board of Trustees member, two administration representatives and one student. The members of the committee include:   Ms. Lori B. Crawford, associate professor of art. Dr. Tom Butler, professor of social work Dr. Dyremple Marsh, dean of the College of Agriculture & Related Sciences Mr. Jose F. Echeverrí, Board of Trustees member Ms. Carolyn Curry, vice president of Institutional Advancement Ms. Cecilia Dunning, financial date analyst, Office of the Provost Ms. Kathleen Chalot, Student Government Association president Dr. Cynthia Reed Mayo, chair of the Department of Hospitality and Tourism Mgmt. Dr. Bradley Skelcher, professor and associate provost Dr. Sabrina McGary, associate professor of biology Dr. Cherese Winstead, assistant professor of chemistry.   Dr. Williams said the University’s goal is to have a Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs in place by the beginning of the fall semester 2010. Dr. Ronald H. Blackmon has been brought in to serve as interim Provost during the spring semester 2010.  

DSU President receives Education Award in N.C.

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DSU President Harry Lee. Williams shows the Presidential Award of Distinction in Education he received from the General Baptist Convention of North Carolina on Jan. 8.

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  Dr. Harry L. Williams was honored by the General Baptist State Convention of North Carolina with the Presidential Award of Distinction in Education at the organization’s Jan. 8 MLK Memorial Banquet in Durham, N.C. Dr. Williams was honored for his accomplished career in higher education, which include his recent selection at the 10th president of Delaware State University. Dr. Williams began his first day as president on Jan. 10. The DSU president – who is a native of Greenville, N.C. and affiliated with the General Baptist Convention – was honored along with two other North Carolinians, Dr. Gardner C. Taylor, a nationally known Baptist pastor and leader, and Charlotte, N.C. Mayor Anthony R. Foxx.  

DSU Hosts First-Ever Delaware Brain Bee

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Savannah Zukas of Indian River High School reacts to the verdict on her answer at the Delaware Brain Bee held at DSU on Jan. 9

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  DSU was the site of the first-ever Brain Bee Competition in Delaware on Jan 9 and by the end of the competition, Amy Forster of the Charter School of Wilmington won 1st place for the best neurology knowledge among the contestants.   Held in the Mishoe Science Center on campus, the inaugural Delaware Brain Bee intellectually pitted 14 students from Caesar Rodney High School, Charter School of Wilmington, and Indian River High School against each other.   The Delaware Brain Bee was conducted in the same elimination style as the Spelling Bee competition that is held across the country. However instead of being given words to spell, contestants in the Brain Bee were given oral questions about neuroscience that they had to answer correctly or be eliminated.   Amy Forster (center), the first-place winner of the first-ever Delaware Brain Bee, is congratulated by Dr. Princy Mennella, (r) DSU assistant professor of biology, and state Sen. Colin Bonini. Ms. Forster's first-place performance won her an all-expense paid trip to Baltimore, Md. where she will represent Delaware in the U.S. National Brain Bee on March 19-20. There are 52 other competitions across the United States that will send their winners to that National Brain Bee competition.   Dr. Princy Quadros Mennella, an assistant professor of neuroscience and the coordinator of the Delaware Brain Bee, said with so much to learn about the brain in connection with diseases such as schizophrenia, depression, autism and Alzheimer’s, it is important to cultivate interest in neuroscience among young people.   “We need bright young minds to help make new discoveries in the field of neuroscience,” Dr. Mennella said. “Educating our nation’s high school students and getting them excited about the brain is important because one of them could be the next neuroscientist to make a breakthrough in our understanding of the many brain diseases that afflict our society.”   Prior DSU’s facilitation of the event to make it possible in the First State, Delaware previously had been one of the few states that did not hold a Brain Bee competition nor have a representative in the National Brain Bee. Dr. Mennella said it is hoped that more Delaware high schools will engage their students to compete in future competitions.    

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