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DAFVM Spotlight Employee: Cori Speights
As an Extension Associate for a Row Crop Entomologist, Cori Speights spends the majority of her summer days in the field assisting in small-plot research aimed at understanding and controlling insect pests. Throughout the fall and the spring semesters, her team disseminates the information they collect across the state of Mississippi by hosting and attending conferences and county meetings. “It takes a village to get all our work done each year,” she said. “Without support from research and Extension colleagues, consultants, farmers, and numerous funding agencies we would not be successful. I love the support I feel working for Extension. All my colleagues feel like family.”
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DAFVM Spotlight Employee: Jamila Taylor
Jamila Taylor is the Director of the Head Start Program in Harrison County where she and her team serve children and their families on the coast in many ways. Her responsibilities include overseeing the entire program and the staff, and responding to community and family needs. “One thing about Head Start is that we are able to provide intense services for families as well,” she said. “We do family road maps for parents to help them get their GED or go back to school if they want. We want to help them provide for their families as best they can.”
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Athletic Department awarded 2020 MBS Outstanding Achievement Award
Mississippi Blood Services is recognizing organizations that have gone “above and beyond” to help maintain a healthy blood supply in the state, despite the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. MBS recently recognized the MSU Athletic Department and Bulldog Sports Properties with the Mississippi Blood Services 2020 Outstanding Achievement Award. “The changing climate in which MBS operates, and even how the organization had to deal with the pandemic, did not stop the need for blood and blood products. However, it did present an entirely new set of challenges. The MSU Athletic Department stepped up in a major way to help us during the pandemic. Not only were they eager to hold blood drives on campus (with record numbers), but they also promoted any blood drive that was hosted in the Starkville area.”
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MSU Golf Course offering summer membership special for students, faculty and staff
The Mississippi State University Golf Course is offering a membership special for MSU students, faculty and staff. The $550 special includes unlimited golf green fee and golf car fees for the entire summer semester. A green fee only option is available for $300. Membership will be valid from May 10-Aug. 8. For more information, stop by the golf shop or contact PGA Head Golf Professional Tim Basel at 662-325-3028 or tbasel@business.msstate.edu.
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Reminder: University policy addresses employee political activity
With political campaigning underway for local elections, Mississippi State's Office of General Counsel offers the following reminder of the university’s policy on political activities. There are several basic guidelines that university employees should keep in mind when engaging in any form of political activity. MSU employees are encouraged to review OP 01.14: Political Activities in its entirety and to understand their rights and responsibilities.
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Smoke-free policy enhances healthy environment
Mississippi State University is a smoke-free campus. Official policy prohibits the use of any combustible or vapor products anywhere on campus property including university buildings, university grounds, university vehicles, parking areas and sidewalks. The smoke-free campus policy is part of the university's commitment to creating a healthy environment for all members of the campus community. Use of cigarettes, e-cigarettes, cigars, pipes, hookah or other similar devices are prohibited by this policy. The complete policy is available at www.policies.msstate.edu/policy/91301.


The Office of Public Affairs provides Maroon MEMO as a general information
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Web links are subject to change. Submit news, questions or comments to Jim Laird.
Keenum thanks Zacharias Distinguished Staff Award recipients for ‘going above and beyond’
Mississippi State employees are being recognized for outstanding service with this year’s Donald W. Zacharias Distinguished Staff Awards. Presented during the university’s virtual Staff Appreciation Day last week, the honors are a memorial to the university’s 15th president. The annual event is organized by MSU’s Staff Council. During the online event, President Mark E. Keenum congratulated and thanked this year’s Zacharias honorees for “going above and beyond” to serve and excel. “Mississippi State would not be the special place it is without you and your colleagues. Your efforts have kept our university growing, getting better, and making ever-greater contributions to our state and nation, and your hard work is deeply appreciated,” he said.
Bagley College of Engineering announces year-end awards for faculty, staff and students
As the 2020-21 academic year comes to a close at Mississippi State University, the Bagley College of Engineering is recognizing several faculty, staff and students who have contributed significantly to Mississippi State’s mission of research, teaching and service. “I continue to be impressed at the work done each year by our faculty and staff within the college,” said Jason Keith, dean of the Bagley College of Engineering. “Their efforts help propel our top-notch research community and contribute to outstanding teaching and service, both on campus and in the community. I am happy to recognize this year’s award winners.”
Department of Communication honors Chambers, Knight and Seitz with annual awards
The Department of Communication at Mississippi State University recently announced the winners of faculty awards for 2021 recognizing excellence in teaching, research and service. During the monthly department faculty meeting in April, Cheryl Chambers, Amy Knight and Holli Seitz were honored for their contributions to the department. “I decided last year -- and the faculty agreed -- we could all use some good news and celebrate our colleagues as we close out the academic year,” said Terry Likes, professor and head of the communication department. “After observing faculty teaching, and realizing we have excellence in the classroom, I wanted to recognize our faculty and add a $500 financial award for each winner.”
Hong to represent Mississippi as 2021 State Fellow
A nonprofit regional arts organization working to enhance the public value of the arts has named 10 2021 State Fellows. Mississippi State University Assistant Professor Ming Ying Hong will represent Mississippi and is now in consideration for two larger Southern Prize awards that will be announced at a virtual ceremony on June 17. The visual artists -- representing each state in South Arts’ region of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee -- are receiving a $5,000 award and will be included in an exhibition at the Bo Bartlett Center in Columbus, Georgia, from Aug. 20 through Dec. 20, 2021.
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