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Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College’s Jackson County Campus Fine Arts Department will host a Voice Masterclass and Guest Voice Recital in the Fine Arts Auditorium on campus on Thursday, March 13. The recital, “Diversity,” which is free and open to the public, will begin at 7 p.m. Soprano Mihaela Buhaiciuc will perform, accompanied by pianist Sharon Hudson.
The masterclass will feature several MGCCC student vocal majors, who will also have coaching sessions with Buhaiciuc.
A native of Romania and a former vocal faculty member at University of Mobile, Buhaiciuc is an active performer, pedagogue, lecturer and a true advocate of meaningful singing. Her repertoire includes opera roles such as Mozart’s Susanna, Despina, Zerlina; Haendel’s Nerone; Bizet’s Micaela; Britten’s Miles, Mrs. Hayes in Floyd’s Suzannah among others. Buhaiciuc performed with Mobile Opera, Stony Brook Opera of SBU New York, South Florida Lyric Opera Co., and Brasov Opera House, Romania. Her repertoire includes oratorios, art songs and chamber music from Baroque to Schoenberg and postmodernists.
She has lectured on various topics at International Conferences held at Royal Academy of Music in London, UK; the International Academic Forum, Osaka, Japan; International Congress of Voice Teachers, Paris, France; George Enesco International Festival, New York City among others. Her book, “The Art of Singing. The Science of Emotions,” was published in Romania in 2013.
Buhaiciuc holds a master’s and doctor of Musical Arts degrees in voice performance from State University of New York at Stony Brook. She is currently full-time voice faculty at Transilvania University of Brasov, Romania, and the coordinator of the vocal performance area.
For more information, contact Dr. Jonathan Kilgore, Fine Arts Department Chair, 228.497.7707 or email@example.com.
Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College and Mississippi University for Women announced a new partnership today that will allow culinary arts students to receive a bachelor’s degree on the Coast. The enhanced Two Plus Two program will provide a seamless transition for MGCCC associate degree graduates in culinary arts to finish their four-year degree through MUW.
MGCCC President Dr. Mary S. Graham and MUW President Dr. Jim Borsig signed the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) during a ceremony at MGCCC’s Hospitality and Resort Management Center at the Jefferson Davis Campus. It will provide educational opportunities for students in the Culinary Arts and related hospitality fields, which at MGCCC includes Baking and Pastry Arts Technology and Banquet and Catering Food Service Technology.
“We are pleased The W’s partnership with MGCCC will increase educational opportunities for students, as well as support the workforce needs of the region’s thriving culinary industry,” Dr. Borsig said. “I would like to thank President Graham for her leadership, and we look forward to our collaboration with our colleagues at MGCCC.”
MGCCC’s Culinary Arts Technology and related programs provide a solid foundation in the methods and science of cooking Special emphasis is placed on culinary tools, equipment, techniques, and specialty ingredients. The heart of each program is hands-on lab instruction by a chef instructor in a commercial kitchen. Courses parallel those of the Culinary Institute of America and offer the opportunity for certification in the American Culinary Federation.
“Our outstanding culinary arts programs will now offer graduates the option to continue their educational training at one of the very best bachelor degree programs in the nation,” Graham said. “We are thrilled to offer these possibilities for our students, and we will continue to establish partnerships like this to enhance our educational offerings.”
Established in 1996, The W’s Culinary Arts Institute offers one of the nation’s first four-year baccalaureate degree programs in culinary arts. It is a premier national program that includes concentrations in food journalism, food art, entrepreneurship, nutrition and wellness, and culinology.
Students entering the new program will earn a bachelor’s degree in technology and professional studies with a concentration in culinary arts. Career options include positions as executive chefs, small business owners, caterers, food stylists and food photographers, among others.
Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College pre-employment welding and shipfitting programs placed almost 700 trainees in jobs along the Gulf Coast during 2013. The programs, operated in partnership with Ingalls Shipbuilding, Gulf Ship, Gulf Coast Shipyard Group, LLC, V.T. Halter Marine and Gulf States Shipbuilding Consortium, were offered at the Advanced Manufacturing and Technology Center in Gulfport, the Jackson County and Perkinston campuses, and at the George County center.
“These programs are very successful, helping local residents who are unemployed or underemployed and local industries, which in turn helps South Mississippi’s economy,” said Larry Porter, the MGCCC master trainer who oversees the program. “For the past couple of years, there has been a critical demand for welders and shipfitters in our area, which is why we reach out for partnerships with that industry.”
Mark Scott, manager of project training at Ingalls Shipbuilding, said that students who complete the programs are offered jobs, can expect to be paid well and that the retention rate is excellent. “The training programs at MGCCC represent a true partnership between Ingalls and the college. The MGCCC instructors, as well as the curriculum to support our program, set the standard for industry training. Programs like this have a positive effect on our ability to hire high-quality shipbuilders and will contribute to our competitiveness and success in the future.” He said Ingalls has a retention rate of 88 percent after 16 months of employment for the students who complete MGCCC’s training.
Porter said that classes are running at both AMTC and the Jackson County Campus this year. “We are currently running shipfitters boot camp classes and pre-employment welding classes at those two locations.”
Classes are offered during the day and evening to offer the most flexibility for those who attend. Additionally, a job fair is included at the end of each shipfitting program that allows graduates to talk face-to-face with potential employers.
For more information on the programs and how to apply, contact Virginia Overstreet, WIA coordinator, at the WIN Job Center at 228.897.6912 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Twenty-six students from Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College won awards at state SkillsUSA competitions for career and technical students held Feb. 25-26 in Jackson. Seventeen MGCCC students won first place.
George County Center (postsecondary only) winners are Douglas Reitz of Lucedale, first place in Welding Sculpture; Vickie Bishop of Lucedale, first place in Occupational Health and Safety Single; James Wooley of Lucedale, first place in Chapter Display; Darius Smith of Lucedale, first place in Chapter Display; Dustin Allgood of Lucedale, second place in Welding Fabrication; Cyndi Hale of Lucedale, second place in Promotional Bulletin Board; Amanda Todd of Lucedale, second place in Promotional Bulletin Board; and Haley Byrd of Richton, second place in Promotional Bulletin Board.
The winners from the Jackson County Campus are Tim Sandifer of Moss Point, first place in Technical Drafting; Corey Wallace of Moss Point, first place in Welding; Comilo Montalvo of Pascagoula, first place in Occupational Health and Safety Team; Carrie Yonge of Lucedale, first place in Occupational Health and Safety Team; and Michael Ward of Escatawpa, third place in Architectural Drafting.
Jefferson Davis Campus winners are Stephen Broussard of Biloxi, first place in Technical Computer Applications; Brandi Upton of Lucedale, first place in Auto Collision; Lisa Geeslin of Ocean Springs, first place in Culinary Arts; Shelby Blackmon of Biloxi, first place in Preschool Teaching Assistant; Cody Goodwin of Gulfport, first place in Industrial Motor Control; Maria Leeks of Ocean Springs, second place in Commercial Baking; Clarence Montgomery of Gulfport, second place in Residential Wiring; John Russell of Petal, second place in Internetworking; and Tom Koch of Long Beach, third place in Computer Maintenance.
Winners from the Perkinston Campus are Alaisa Morgan of Gulfport, first place in Advertising Design; Leif Henley of Bay St. Louis, first place in Web Design (team); Levi Cripps of Wiggins, first place in Web Design (team); and Anthony Nichols of Gulfport, first place in Technical Math.
Winners are eligible to attend national SkillsUSA competitions, to be held June 23-27 in Kansas City, Mo.
Community College Week has named Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College a Fastest Growing Community College. MGCCC is ranked in the top 50 community colleges with enrollments of 10,000 or higher. The ranking is based on data provided by the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics.
While other community colleges in the state and nation have been experiencing considerable dips in enrollment, MGCCC has managed to buck the trend and maintain, even grow, enrollment. Between fall 2011 and fall 2012, MGCCC enrollment increased by 1.3 percent, placing it at 36th in the top-50 list.
The list ranks MGCCC with the biggest community colleges in the nation, including colleges from large metropolitan areas in Florida, California, New York and Massachusetts. Other community colleges in Mississippi experienced enrollment growth, but none with more than 10,000 students. In fact, MGCCC is the only college in Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana, Tennessee or Arkansas to be included in the top-50 list of the largest community colleges in the nation.
MGCCC continues to be the first choice for many outstanding, high-achieving, traditional-age students in South Mississippi, a fact indicated by the college’s three consecutive Aspen recognitions as a top community college; a national ranking as a Top-100 Associate Degree Producer; and the presentation of the Halbrook Award in 2012 and 2013 for having the highest graduation rate among all of Mississippi’s community college athletic programs.
The National Student Clearinghouse Research Center data shows that enrollment at two-year public colleges, which had been pumped up since 2007 by the effects of the Great Recession, is now declining. To counter this, MGCCC president, Dr. Mary S. Graham, said the college is focusing on recruiting non-traditional students, helping mid-career workers retool their skills, and expanding access to minority and first-generation college students.
“For community colleges to continue to be successful, we have to provide educational and training opportunities for students in a way that is appealing and convenient to them,” she said. “ For instance, we are using innovative ways of approaching our education offerings at MGCCC – innovations like our Hospitality and Resort Management Center that functions as a working convention and conference center and as an educational facility, or our planned Nursing and Simulation Complex that will double our nursing graduates, and the Maritime Training Academy in Pascagoula that allows students to complete the Ingalls Shipbuilding Apprenticeship Program while receiving an associate degree in Maritime Technology. Additionally, we are expanding areas that have already proven successful for us, like online learning and workforce training.”
The ranking for the Fastest Growing Community Colleges, along with research data collected for the ranking, are listed in the Feb. 17 edition of Community College Week in the analysis, “A Downward Trend: As the Economy Improves and GDP Grows, Enrollment Heads in Opposite Direction.” More information on the research used is available at www.ccweek.com.
In remarks to students, faculty and other supporters of the 15 community colleges gathered at the Capitol Rotunda in Jackson on February 25, key legislators voiced support for the colleges and their efforts to achieve mid-level funding. In 2007, legislators promised to fund the colleges at the mid-level point, which is per-student funding halfway between K-12 education and the regional public universities. However, the community colleges are only getting 52 percent of those promised funds. The colleges are seeking to regain the ground they lost since the legislation was passed.
Dr. Johnny Allen, vice president of the Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges and president of Northeast Community College, said the money is there this year for the legislators to appropriate money toward mid-level funding.
“We want to make sure we have the means to support our students with quality faculty not only today but in the future; to provide access to quality higher education through the lowest possible tuition costs; and the means to employ modern technology to make sure we have the tools to do the teaching job,” Allen said. “We believe that the means are there. We are calling on the members of the Legislature to make sure we preserve one of the most outstanding aspects of public education. “
With 64 percent of all freshmen as their students, Mississippi’s 15 community colleges play a key role in our state’s higher-education system that leads to a more educated populace and a trained workforce. Mississippi community colleges enroll more than 75,000 students, 54 percent of all undergraduates and nearly half of all students taking a credit course.
“Mid-level funding is a means to keep tuition affordable, to recruit and retain quality faculty, and prepare more students for work. It is also simple fairness,” said Dr. Eric Clark, executive director of the Mississippi Community College Board.
Using data from FY 2012, the regional public universities were funded at $6,125 per student and public schools were funded at $4,828 per student. Accordingly, community colleges should have been funded at $5,476 per student, but instead received only $3,075 per student.
The Mississippi Faculty Association sponsored the event for Community and Junior Colleges (MFACJC). The faculty associations join college presidents, students, alumni and trustees in asking legislators to support more funding for community colleges. Since fiscal year 2000, community college enrollment has grown 44.7 percent while state support per student has declined by 16.8 percent.
“At Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, we produce a high-quality, affordable college education for the residents of our four-county district,” said Dr. Mary S. Graham, MGCCC president. “Adequate funding will ensure that we can keep tuition affordable and continue offering outstanding programs.”
About 80 percent of new jobs being developed in the current economy require college-level learning, and, in Mississippi 54 percent of all undergraduates in public institutions are at a community college.
The 15-college system serves nearly 250,000 Mississippians each year in university transfer, career/technical, workforce and adult education programs.
Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College was represented at the annual HEADWAE (Higher Education Appreciation Day-Working for Academic Excellence) program in Jackson on Feb. 18 by instructor Stacey N. Goudy Payton and student Robert Buntyn.
Payton is currently in her tenth year as a full time instructor in the Language Arts Department on the Perkinston Campus. She teaches Beginning and Intermediate English, Composition I and II, World Literature I and II, and Survey of African American Literature. She has a total of 25 years of service in higher education. “Nothing is more gratifying than for administrators to reward excellence shown in the classroom and name me 2014 HEADWAE honoree for the college,” she said. “Now, that I have this beautiful symbol of distinction, the red marble apple with its golden leaf, I’m called to the responsibility to not only maintain standards of excellence, but to find innovative ways to compel students to meet those standards. This award is the highlight and most memorable moment of my career.”
Buntyn is a sophomore who plans on majoring in pre-medicine and eventually becoming an oncologist. A student at the Jefferson Davis Campus, he is a member of both the Phi Theta Kappa chapter there, where he is vice president of Service and in the Honors College. He is also the regional vice president for Phi Theta Kappa in Mississippi and Louisiana. “The HEADWAE event was a wonderful opportunity to talk with MGCCC vice presidents and president and to hear speeches by former governor William Winter and Gov. Phil Bryant,” Buntyn said. “I am honored that I was chosen for the award and to have the occasion to participate in something that promotes higher education in our state.”
Each February, the state Legislature, along with the Mississippi Association of Colleges, recognizes an outstanding faculty member and student from each of the state’s community colleges and universities during the HEADWAE program. This year, all honorees visited the state Capitol and attended the HEADWAE awards luncheon as part of the day’s activities.
Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College will hold a Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) spring conference at the Jefferson Davis Campus on Friday, Feb. 28, at 10 a.m. in the campus Fine Arts Auditorium. Fred Haise Jr., former Apollo 13 lunar module pilot, will be the guest speaker.
Haise is a Biloxi High School graduate and MGCCC alumnus. He was a STEM major in college, graduating with honors in aeronautical engineering from the University of Oklahoma. He completed post-graduate courses at the United States Air Force Aerospace Test Pilot School at Edwards Air Force Base in 1964 and Harvard Business School in 1972.
He underwent naval aviator training from 1952 to 1954 and served as a Marine Corps fighter pilot at MCAS Cherry Point, North Carolina, from March 1954 to September 1956.
On April 11, 1970, he became one of only 24 people to have ever flown to the moon. He would have been the sixth human to land and walk on the moon but the mission was aborted due to spacecraft failure. Due to the free return trajectory on this mission, Haise, along with Jim Lovell and Jack Swigert, the other two astronauts on Apollo 13, likely holds the record for the furthest distance from the Earth ever traveled by human beings. He went on the fly the Space Shuttle Approach and Landing tests before retiring from NASA in 1979. After that, he became a test pilot and executive with Grumman Aerospace Corporation, where he remained until retiring in 1996.
He received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1970, the NASA Distinguished Service Medal and is in the Astronaut Hall of Fame. Bill Paxton played the role of Haise in the film “Apollo 13” in 1995.
The event, aimed at encouraging high school and college students to major in STEM fields, is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Dr. Fran Marchette, at 228.897.3752.
Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College will hold auditions for the 2014-2015 Perkette Dance Team on Thursday, March 6 at 3 p.m. and Saturday, March 15 at 9 a.m. in Malone Hall on the Perkinston Campus. Emphasis will be given to high kicks, marching and technique (turns, leaps, etc.).
Since 1952, the Perkettes have been an integral part of the Band of Gold and are a must-see fixture at football games. The 2013-2014 Perkettes dance squad brought home seven blue ribbons and also earned the Most Improved Award during the Universal Dance Association camp held at The University of Alabama this past year. They also have the opportunity to train with renowned choreographers each year in preparation for both camp and the new season.
Full tuition scholarships are available.
For more information, please refer to the Perkette page at https://www.mgccc.edu/band-of-gold/perkettes/ or contact Stacy Fore at 601.928.6369 or email@example.com.
At 9:45 p.m. on April 29, 1941, Perkinston Junior College student Charles Earl “C.E.” Murphy wrote a letter. He placed the letter in a canister and inserted it into a wall of the concrete-block Dairy Barn, which was completed that same year. Seventy-two years later, on December 6, 2013, a construction worker found the canister during renovation of the Dairy Barn. He promptly delivered the canister to Jason Breland, MGCCC construction manager, who then turned it over to the MGCCC Archives.
In the three-quarters of a century since, the Dairy Barn had changed its use many times. The small concrete block dairy barn was built in 1941 to sell surplus milk to soldiers at Camp Shelby. Construction continued in January 1953 to include a Malvern tile storeroom and pasteurizing plant. Milk processing ceased operation in 1959. The building was then converted into an agriculture classroom. In late 1968, it became the headquarters for the MGCCC Maintenance Department, and in 2000, the building served as the Engineering Building, Computer Service Center and a storage facility. In 2013, plans were made for the Yellow Brick Project. In its next incarnation as part of that project, the Dairy Barn will be utilized to promote a creative economy through community arts-based projects and programming. It will provide a place for students of all ages to experience the arts through classes, performances, exhibits, and workshops that promote creativity and celebrate the community. The project is scheduled for completion in April 2014.
“It is an exciting moment for the college that this letter was found as the Dairy Barn is reanimated and renovated into a community-arts facility,” Dr. Mary S. Graham said. “I think Mr. Murphy would be proud of what the barn will become, even though our expansions are not related to its original purpose as a dairy.”
Murphy, a Vancleave native who died on January 19, 2013, entered Perkinston Junior College on September 10, 1940, and graduated with special honors on June 1, 1942. He was “a milkhand” at Perk, and he was obviously proud of his professor and the then brand-new barn. It was a promising time at Perkinston, but for the world, there was darkness on the horizon in the form of World War II.
Charles Sullivan, MGCCC archivist, has investigated the letter, its author and has proudly added the letter to the archival history of the college.
“Murphy did not know how prophetic his reference to Germany (in the letter) would be,” Sullivan said. “He was on one of 5,000 ships that took part in the greatest amphibious assault in history: D-Day, June 6, 1944.” Murphy’s son, Kenneth, told Sullivan that his father was a machine gunner. He was the recipient of a Purple Heart and an oak leaf cluster, which indicates “twice wounded.”
After the war, Murphy graduated from Mississippi State University with a degree in entomology and retired from the Louisiana State Department of Agriculture with 30 years of service.
Transcript of The Milkhand’s Letter:
“To the finder of this note: May the wall that contains this note be destructed only with the purpose of building the barn larger or getting rid of the partition altogether for a betterment of the plan of the structure. May this barn be a model structure for other dairymen to follow suit in building clean, neat, sanitary buildings in which the cleanest most precious food on earth is extracted.
“May the Professor of Agriculture, Mr. F. O. Parsons, be generously rewarded (by profits and a wonderful exhibition of his skill as an able and efficient manager) for the tireless efforts that he has put forth in the construction of this modern building.
“I hope that when there is reason for this note to be discovered that Mr. Parsons will be retired from active service, that this school will have become a Senior College, that I may be a prominent citizen of the United States and that Germany will have ceased to exist as a distrustful nation.”
C. E. Murphy
For more information about the Yellow Brick Project, contact Sandra Cassibry at 601.928.6298 or firstname.lastname@example.org. The milkhand’s letter can be seen on display in the college archives on the Perkinston Campus, along with other items of interest related to both the college and the Dairy Barn.