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University announces Rula as 2019 national alumnus
Mississippi State University is honoring construction industry leader Richard A. Rula with its highest alumni honor. In a campus ceremony on March 1, 2019, the longtime Ridgeland resident will be recognized formally as the university’s 2019 National Alumnus. “We are proud to salute Richard Rula on behalf of Mississippi State University for his success in industry and for his loyal lifelong connection with his alma mater. Richard’s achievements serve as a primary example of the success our university hopes each of its graduates achieves,” said Jeff Davis, executive director of the MSU Alumni Association. “Of more than 142,000 living alumni, Richard is a distinguished selection for this honor.”
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Starkville-MSU Community Band enters 16th year, seeks musicians
Mississippi State’s band staff again is inviting university students and employees, as well as Golden Triangle residents with previous band experience, to participate in the Starkville-MSU Community Band. Practice sessions will take place 6:30-8:30 p.m. each Monday during the spring semester at the MSU Band and Choral Rehearsal Hall, located at 72 Hardy Road on the Starkville campus. A $20 participation fee is required, which can be paid at the first meeting of the semester on Jan. 7. No pre-registration is required. The band’s diverse repertoire includes traditional marches, patriotic selections and “pops” arrangements.
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High demand boosts Christmas tree prices
Mississippians looking for locally grown Christmas trees have several varieties to choose from but should be prepared to shop early for the best selection. John Kushla, a Mississippi State University Extension Service specialist and research professor who specializes in agroforestry and Christmas trees, said there are several ways to test for freshness when choosing the perfect tree at a tree farm. “Needles should be green, with flexible branches,” he said. “If a branch tip snaps between your fingers, that tree has dried out.”
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Select, care well for Christmas poinsettias
It’s that time of year again for shopping, eating, delivery trucks and poinsettias. Yep -- it’s the Christmas season. The range of available poinsettia colors is truly remarkable. Poinsettia is no longer just that red Christmas plant. Poinsettias need at least six hours of indirect sunlight and comfortable room temperatures. If you’re comfortable, then the poinsettias will be happy. That poinsettia might look great by the front door when guests arrive, but the sudden temperature changes from drafts, either cold or warm, will cause the leaves and bracts to drop.
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New federal sponsor reporting requirements for harassment and sexual misconduct
Some of you may have seen news articles from various federal sponsors such as the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration concerning new or pending policies on university notification requirements regarding sexual harassment, other forms of harassment or sexual assault. These federal policies are specific to individuals involved in projects sponsored by those federal sponsors.


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Alfred Rankins Jr. inspires fellow MSU graduates to make their mark through leadership, service
Mississippi Public Universities Commissioner of Higher Education Alfred Rankins Jr. encouraged more than 1,400 Mississippi State fall graduates to celebrate their accomplishments while moving forward with character and determination during commencement exercises last Friday at Humphrey Coliseum. “MSU has given you an outstanding tool and means to be great for the rest of your life,” said Rankins, who holds master’s and doctoral degrees in weed science from MSU. “The education you have received provides the foundation for your future. Your credential from MSU tells the world you are ready.”
Grala named James R. Moreton Fellow in Forestry
A forestry professor has earned a prestigious fellowship in Mississippi State University’s College of Forest Resources. Professor Robert Grala has been named the Department of Forestry’s first James R. Moreton Endowed Fellow. Professor Dan Seale earned the inaugural accolade in the Department of Sustainable Bioproducts last year. “We are grateful to Mr. Moreton for establishing this fellowship to honor a professor who embodies the land-grant mission of teaching, research and service,” said George Hopper, dean of the College of Forest Resources.
New peanut specialist Zurweller has dual responsibilities
Mississippi State recently hired a peanut agronomist to serve the state’s agricultural producers. Brendan Zurweller began his work in the peanut industry while pursuing a doctoral degree at the University of Florida. During his time there, he focused on a wide range of physiological and agronomic research. As a peanut specialist with the MSU Extension Service and an assistant professor in the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station, he delivers educational programs and conducts research designed to improve peanut production systems in the state.
Bagley College of Engineering high voltage laboratory gains Entergy Mississippi support
Generous support from Entergy Mississippi of Jackson will enhance the Paul B. Jacob High Voltage Laboratory in the James Worth Bagley College of Engineering at Mississippi State University. Entergy Mississippi’s most recent commitment provides a $250,000 lead gift for updates within the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering facility. In addition, Entergy’s transmission organization has provided a Hi-VARC Arrestor Tester in-kind gift to the laboratory. Jason Keith, Bagley College dean, said the university is grateful for corporate partners like Entergy, Electric Cooperatives of Mississippi, Siemens, Quanta, and Irby.
Mississippi State University  •  Mississippi State, MS 39762  •  Main Telephone: (662) 325-2323  •   Contact: The Editor  |  The Webmaster  •   Updated: December 17, 2018Facebook Twitter