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Office of Public Affairs announces promotions and new staff members
Mississippi State University’s Office of Public Affairs is announcing the promotion of two senior staff members and the addition of three other communications professionals to fill staff vacancies. MSU Chief Communications Officer and OPA Director Sid Salter said that Harriet V. Laird, the longtime OPA associate director, will serve as the department’s new senior associate director while MSU’s University Television Center Director David Garraway joins the department’s leadership as OPA’s associate director for broadcast and digital media. Salter also announced the affiliation of veteran higher education communicator Chris Bryant and graphic designers Sarah Gilliland and Haley Rountree with the department.
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Electrical and computer engineering department names new Paul B. Jacob Endowed Chair
Mehmet Kurum has been named the Paul B. Jacob Endowed Chair for the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering of the Mississippi State University Bagley College of Engineering. The Paul B. Jacob Endowed Chair honors Mississippi State alum Paul B. Jacob who received a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering in 1944. Jacob became a faculty member in the electrical engineering department in 1946, and during his time at Mississippi State, developed a high voltage engineering program. The Paul B. Jacob Endowed Chair honors and recognizes the contributions Jacob made to the engineering field. Kurum, an associate professor, said he was honored by the opportunity to hold the Paul B. Jacob Endowed Chair.
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Koshka serving as a National Science Foundation program director
Yaroslav Koshka, an electrical and computer engineering professor at Mississippi State University's Bagley College of Engineering, has been appointed as a program director for the Division of Materials Research at the National Science Foundation. Koshka said he was honored to be appointed to this position and has been eager to begin in his new role, which started on Aug. 1. This is a one-year appointment as a program director with the Electronic and Photonic Materials program in the Division of Materials Research, Directorate for Mathematical and Physical Sciences. Samee Khan, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering head and James Worth Bagley Chair, said it is an honor to have a faculty member from the department named to such a prestigious position.
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MSU Class Ring Days this week
The class ring tradition is a great way to show the world how you are a proud alumnus or alumna of Mississippi State University. The unique design makes it an easily recognized symbol that links all generations of Bulldog graduates, whether from two or sixty-two years ago. This year's MSU Ring Days are coming up Tuesday [Sept. 20] through Thursday [Sept. 22] from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Hunter Henry Center. If you have any questions or would like to order your MSU Class Ring today, please contact Toria Carter at tcarter@alumni.msstate.edu or 662-325-7000.
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Faculty and staff invited to football practice, offered discounted Bowling Green tickets
Two Mississippi State football-related benefits are available to faculty and staff. Employees are invited to watch the Bulldogs practice from 4-6 p.m. Tuesday [Sept. 20] at the Leo Seal Facility. A tour of the facility is also scheduled, and family members are invited. The event is free, but attendees must first register at www.hailstate.com/fspractice. Discounted football tickets to the MSU-Bowling Green game also are available to faculty and staff.
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2022 MSU Excellence in Community Engagement Award nominations now open
The Mississippi State Center for Community-Engaged Learning encourages your department faculty, staff and students to apply for a 2022 MSU Excellence in Community Engagement Award. Any MSU faculty, staff, or student can apply on behalf of a project in the following categories: Community-Engaged Service, Community-Engaged Research, Community-Engaged Teaching and Learning, and Scholarship of Engagement. A $3,000 award will be given in each of those areas to recognize outstanding work and support its continuation. Projects that achieve honorable mention in each category will receive $750. The submission deadline is 11:59 p.m. on Oct. 17.
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Bicycle and scooter safety reminders
Mississippi State has seen a tremendous increase in bike and scooter use on campus, and the university continues to make the campus as friendly to bicycles as possible. Not only are bicycles a healthy alternative to a car, but they also help alleviate traffic and parking on campus. To help keep our campus safe, visit www.police.msstate.edu/videos/campus-bike-safety for a two-minute video on bicycle safety. Additionally, cyclists and scooter riders should use extreme caution and slow down or walk their bicycle or scooter when interacting with pedestrians. Cyclists and riders should not use sidewalks and walkways when pedestrians are present. Vehicle drivers are required by state law to give bikes a minimum of three feet of distance.
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MSU offers smoking cessation programs to students and employees
In 2016, Mississippi State University became a smoke-free campus. Smoking cessation programs are offered to students and employees who wish to stop using tobacco products through the Longest Student Health Center and the Department of Health Promotion and Wellness. We are focusing on positive intervention and peer enforcement to promote our smoke-free campus. While the university does not require faculty, staff and students to quit smoking or using tobacco products, we do expect policy to be followed while on university property. We offer support to our students and employees who wish to stop smoking or using tobacco products. These programs are free of charge except for prescribed medications that may be required.
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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
resource for Mississippi State University employees.

Web links are subject to change. Submit news, questions or comments to Jim Laird.
Keenum discusses research accomplishments, student success during general faculty meeting
Mississippi State’s fall semester is “off and running,” and President Mark E. Keenum gave extensive university updates during the annual Fall General Faculty Meeting last week. Keenum said he is proud of MSU’s monumental research output. Keenum emphasized the fundamental importance of student success as a top university priority across all colleges and departments. “We want to do everything we can to help a student be successful when they step foot on this campus until they graduate,” said Keenum, who also discussed how MSU students and graduates “are seeing great success.” Keenum cited a statewide focus with Extension, outreach and service work in all 82 counties of the state, four Extension and research centers, CAVS Extension center in Canton, and the centers operated by the College of Veterinary Medicine.
University earns ‘Great College to Work For’ status for seventh consecutive year
For the seventh consecutive year, Mississippi State University has reaffirmed its national status as a top campus workplace in the Great Colleges to Work For recognition program. The latest results released last week in a special insert of The Chronicle of Higher Education are based on positive feedback from faculty and staff. Out of 212 colleges and universities surveyed, only 46 applicants representing four-year institutions achieved Great Colleges to Work For status. Results are reported for small, medium and large institutions, with Mississippi State included among large universities with 10,000 or more students. Also, for the seventh consecutive year, MSU was named to the Great Colleges Honor Roll, which recognizes colleges that achieve outstanding results in multiple recognition categories.
MSU among select colleges and universities winning national diversity award
Mississippi State is among a select group of 102 colleges and universities across the U.S. receiving national recognition for their ongoing commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion. A 2022 recipient of the Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award, MSU is the only Mississippi postsecondary institution -- and one of only 10 land-grant universities nationwide -- garnering the achievement given by INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine. “It is an honor for Mississippi State to be selected again for this prestigious award. This speaks to the collective effort across our institution to foster a diverse and inclusive campus environment and is a testament to how inclusive excellence is being embedded into the work of our faculty, staff and students, ” MSU Division of Access, Diversity and Inclusion Vice President Ra’Sheda Forbes said.
FIRE ranks MSU in top 5 nationally for support of student free speech
A top 5 national ranking for support of free speech on campus places Mississippi State among the most supportive university climates in the U.S. for student expression. Rated No. 4 in the third annual College Free Speech Rankings released this month by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, MSU is the only SEC and Magnolia State school in the list’s top 20. MSU Vice President for Student Affairs Regina Hyatt said, “Freedom of expression is a fundamental right afforded to all of us. We strive to create a campus environment where students, employees and visitors can share their ideas freely and engage in civil dialogue about important topics, even when there are disagreements about those ideas. I am proud of the types of engagement our students seek out in sharing their viewpoints and appreciate the supportive campus climate that allows them to do so.”
Mississippi State University  •  Mississippi State, MS 39762  •  Main Telephone: (662) 325-2323  •   Contact: The Editor  |  The Webmaster  •   Updated: September 19, 2022Facebook Twitter