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Students Volunteer for Special Olympics

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DSU students (in white t-shirts) pose with Special Olympics athletes from the Charlton School: (bottom l-r) William Walter Pepper, Aaron Watson, Brittany Alston, Jason Anthony; (top l-r) Shawn W. Gordon, Jr., Cayla Lord and Francis Washington II.

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  Delaware State University students helped make it a special day for a host of youngsters as the University once again hosted the April 1 Special Olympics Delaware’s Basketball Skills competition in the Memorial Hall Gymnasium. About 50 DSU students volunteered their time to coordinate the competition events for children from 13 different Central Delaware public schools. The Special Olympics athletes competed in the following events; the Target Pass, Ten-Meter Dribble, Spot Shot and Speed Dribble. Special Olympics Delaware is an organization that changes lives by promoting understanding, acceptance and inclusion between people with and without intellectual disabilities.    

DSU Awarded $100,000 Walmart Foundation Grant

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This DSU team -- (l-r Dr. Niklas Robinson, Phyllis Collins, Dr. Marshall Stevenson, Dr. Myrna Nurse and Frances Rogers -- will coordinate the high impact academic activities that the Walmart Foundation grant will fund.

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  Delaware State University has been selected by the Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) to receive a Walmart Minority Student Success Award – a $100,000 grant to help build on DSU’s demonstrated successes in enrolling, retaining, and graduating first-generation college students. The $100,000 grant is being made possible by a $4.2 million grant to IHEP from the Walmart Foundation. The University was selected as one of only 30 minority-serving institutions (MSIs) —Hispanic-Serving Institutions, Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Predominantly Black Institutions, and Tribal Colleges and Universities—through a highly competitive application process to strengthen efforts to support first-generation students. DSU will be attending the annual IHEP Summer Academy where they’ll be joined by representatives from 14 other minority serving institutions to establish action plans to increase capacity, share ideas to better serve first-generation college students and develop partnerships with other colleges and universities. “Delaware State University is honored to be selected as one of just several outstanding higher education institutions nationwide to receive the Walmart Minority Student Success Award,” said DSU President Harry Lee Williams. “Thanks in large part to this award, we will be able to enhance and expand our work with first-generation students.” The funding will be used at DSU to provide high impact academic activities in the general education curriculum of first-year students. The project will be coordinated by a team of faculty members in the University’s College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences as well as academic enrichment administrators – Dr. Myrna Nurse, assistant professor of English, Dr. Niklas Robinson, assistant professor of history and political science, Frances Rogers, acting director of Academic Enrichment, and Phyllis Collins, executive director of Academic Enrichment. “We are delighted and excited that DSU has received this funding,” said Dr. Marshall Stevenson, dean of the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences. “This will allow the University to provide added academic assistance to ensure that our students have every opportunity to succeed in accordance with the mission of the institution.” “The institutions in our 2010 Minority Student Success cohort broaden and deepen the pool of MSIs committed to ensuring the success of the first-generation student success both at their campuses and beyond,” said Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) President Michelle Asha Cooper, Ph.D. “We are pleased to be working with them on programs that are sure to serve as models to all of higher education.”   ”At Walmart, we understand that education is critical to the lives and well-being of all Americans. We’re proud to support giving that enables the success of first-generation college students,” said Margaret McKenna, president of the Walmart Foundation. The Walmart Foundation grants support the existing work of MSIs to strengthen first-generation student success programs, with a special focus on classroom practices and the role faculty play in their students’ academic success. Approximately 41% of students enrolled at MSIs are first-generation, compared to 30% of students at Predominantly White Institutions. The overrepresentation of first-generation students at MSIs makes them ideal to help improve retention and persistence gaps for this student population.   The other 2010 winners include: Adams State College (Colo.), Bloomfield College (N.J.), Bowie State University (Md.), Coppin State University (Md.), El Camino College (Ca,), Fort Belknap College (Mont.), Hampton University (Va.), Leech Lake Tribal College (Minn.), New Jersey City University (N.J.), United Tribes Technical College (N.D.), University of Houston- Downtown (Texas), University of New Mexico (N.M.), Valencia Community College (Fla.), and Winston-Salem State University (N.C.). For more information about the initiative and grantees, visit the IHEP Web site at www.ihep.org/walmartminoritystudents.cfm.    

DSU Supports Dover's Muscular Dystrophy Fundraiser

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Carlos Holmes, DSU director of News Service, languished for about an hour in the MDA "jail" before the bail money provided by other University employees liberated him.

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  Carlos Holmes, DSU director of News Services, had to do a bit of jail time on March 31, but it was worth it as DSU faculty and staff donated $425 towards his “bail” in the annual Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) Dover Lock Up. Mr. Holmes was one of numerous representatives of businesses, state agencies, churches and other organizations to raise funds as part of the MDA Dover Lock Up.   Seventy DSU employees each contributed between $5 and $20 to go toward Mr. Holmes’ “bail.” The MDA sent a Delaware State University trooper to DSU present him with the MDS warrant for his arrest on the morning of March 31. The trooper pulled him out of his weekly Integrated Marketing meeting and took him in a patrol car to the jail site at the Buffalo Wings Restaurant in Dover.   Mr. Holmes detained in “jail” for about an hour and was released after presenting the “bail” money he raised at DSU.   The money will go toward needs for those afflicted with muscular dystrophy that are not covered by insurance, such as the upgrade of braces, as well as fund a MDA Summer Camp for kids.   On behalf of Carlos Holmes and the MDA, sincere thanks go out to all DSU faculty and staff that contributed to this fundraiser.   The MDA will continue to collect donations through the month of April as part of this fundraiser. Anyone interested in making a contribution to the MDA can contact Mr. Holmes at cholmes@desu.edu.    

DSU Sunday Best Awards 1st Place to Crossroad Choir

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The Crossroad  Christian Church Gospel Choir is the first winner of what is expected to be an annual DSU Sunday Best Gospel Extravaganza.

DVDs of "Sunday Best at DSU:  A Gospel Extravaganza" are available for $15 each (including shipping), and may be ordered today.  Click here to order DVD

Proceeds benefit student scholarships. 

 

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  CROSSROAD CHRISTIAN CHURCH CHOIR WINS DSU’s SUNDAY’S BEST GOSPEL EXTRAVAGANZA COMPETITION   DSU’s first ever “Sunday’s Best” Gospel Extravaganza Competition rocked the campus’ E&H Theatre on March 27 with the high praise and music of three outstanding music ministries, ending with the 1st place honors going to the Crossroad Christian Church Gospel Choir of Dover.   The Crossroads Choir, one of three finalist choirs, won the top spot with its powerful performance of a medley of songs that included “Something About the Name of Jesus,” “My Life is in Your Hands” and “Wrap Me in Your Arms.” The winning choir is under the direction of James Brumble.   As the 1st place winner, the Crossroad Choir took the grand prize of $1,000 check back to their church. Each of the finalists also received a $100 gift certificate.   (Story continued below slideshow...) Canaan Baptist Church Choir of Wilmington took 2nd place with its stirring performances of “Praise Ye the Lord” and the old school gospel rendition of “I’ve Got a Reason. The Canaan Choir is under the direction of Dr. Arvis Strickling-Jones.   The Straight Gate Youth Choir of Shiloh Apostolic Church of Wilmington took 3rd place with its impressive a cappella (without instrumental accompaniment) singing. Under the direction of Sherine Boswell, Straight Gate performed the songs "Jesus We Give You the Glory” and “Be Magnified O Lord.”   In the competition held exclusively for Delaware-based choirs, the three finalists were each allotted a 10-minute performance during the Saturday evening gospel extravaganza.   In addition to the competition finalist, the gospel-loving audience was brought to their feet by the featured guest artist, 2010 Stellar Award nominee Coco McMillan. Her rousing performance was highlighted by her singing, her personal testimony and heartfelt expressions of praise for what the Lord has done in her life.   The audience was also impressed by two instrumental selections by Eldré Gladney, a 10-year-old guitarist from Crossroad Christian Church, and a solo dance ministry performance by Tiffany Stokes of the Resurrection Praise Dance Team of Dover. Following the invocation prayer by Rev. John Moore, youth minister of Calvary Baptist Church of Dover, the music evening was kicked off with an opening selection by the University’s own DSU Gospel Choir.   The Sunday’s Best mistress of ceremonies was Brenda Farmer, director of DSU Events and Ceremonies.  The proceeds from the Sunday’s Best event are going toward academic scholarships for DSU students. The gospel extravaganza’s planning committee was led by Charity Shockley, director of the DSU Annual Fund.  

DSU Choir performs at Legislative Hall

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The DSU Concert Choir made an impressive mark at the Delaware General Assembly on March 23 when it performed before legislators in the House of Representatives Chamber. Directed by Dr. Curtis Everett Powell, the choir sang “In Bright Mansions” by Roland Carter, “In His Care-O” by William Dawson, and “The Battle of Jericho” by Moses Hogan. The legislators responded with a standing ovation. DSU President Harry Lee Williams was in attendance and sat with Speaker of the House Robert F. Gilligan during the performance.  

DSU Establishes Program with Jishou University of China

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(Seated l-r) DSU President Harry Williams and Jishou President You June; (standing) Dr. Fengshan Liu, DSU interim asst. v.p. International Affairs, Dr. Bradley Skelcher, DSU assoc. provost, Dr. Ronald Blackmon acting DSU provost, Dr. Youngski Kwak, DSU College of Business acting dean, Long Xianqiong, JSU Academic Affairs dean, Dr. Li Chen, DSU Dept. Sport Sciences chair, Dai Linfu, JSU Higher Education Institute dean, and Luo Jianping, JSU International Office director.

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  Delaware State University has expanded its collaboration with institutions in the People’s Republic of China with the signing this week of a new agreement with Jishou University. DSU President Harry Lee Williams and Jishou University President You June signed the agreement on March 22 during a meeting on the DSU campus. The agreement establishes a “2 plus 2” program, in which Chinese students will complete their first two years of undergraduate studies at Jishou University and then finish their last two years at DSU. The agreement will involve students majoring in business and management related disciplines. The accord between the two countries specifies 20 courses Chinese students must complete at Jishou University as well as the courses that they will take at DSU. Many of the courses will come under DSU’s College of Business. Before enrolling at DSU, the Chinese students must successfully complete an English training class at Jishou University. “It is another step in the right direction for DSU in terms of global outreach,” said Dr. Williams. “In addition to benefiting Jishou University, it will benefit our faculty, staff and students as well as the state of Delaware.”    

DSU to Hold Public Forums for University's Vision

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DSU President Harry L. Williams says the public forums are important because the public's input is essential in the development of a fresh new vision for the University

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  Delaware State University’s Blue Ribbon Commission will hold a series of public forums in each of the state’s three counties to help it develop a fresh new vision for the University’s future. DSU President Harry Lee Williams says that it is important for the citizens of Delaware to embrace and participate in this new DSU initiative that will lay a roadmap for its future success. “Delaware State University belongs to the state of Delaware, and it is therefore important for the institution to have the input of its citizenry to help it become a premier institution of higher education in the country,” Dr. Williams said. “In doing so, the residents of the state will also share in the greatness that will result from DSU’s earnest work to become one of the best universities for students to fulfill their academic and professional aspirations.” The public can attend any of the forums, which will be held from 6-8 p.m. on the following dates: Kent County – Monday, March 29 in Parlours A-C of the Martin Luther King Student Center on the DSU campus, 1200 N. DuPont Highway in Dover Sussex County – Tuesday, April 13 at the Warren L. and Charles Allen Jr. CHEER Community Center, 20520 Sand Hill Road, Georgetown. New Castle County – Thursday, April 15 at the NCCo Chamber of Commerce, 12 Penns Way, New Castle. Persons interested in attending are asked to register in advanced either online at www.desu.edu/BRC-forum or by calling the Office of the President at (302) 857-6001 President Williams established the Blue Ribbon Commission in January and has directed the group to complete is work in crafting a new vision for the University by the end of May 2010. The group is also charged with developing a set of values to help drive excellence. The co-chairs of the 14-member commission are Dr. Dyremple B. Marsh, dean of the DSU College of Agriculture and Related Sciences, and Wayne Gilchrest, a retired U.S. Congressman from Maryland. They are joined by a diverse group that represents the faculty, staff, students and alumni of DSU, as well as state and federal government, public school system and the business community. In addition, each member of Delaware’s Congressional Delegation – U.S. Sen. Thomas R. Carper, U.S. Sen. Ted Kaufman and U.S. Rep. Michael N. Castle – is serving as honorary co-chairs of the Commission. For more information on the Blue Ribbon Commission and the full list of its members, go to www.desu.edu/dsu-president-names-blue-ribbon-commission.      

DSU Presents "Crumbs from the Table of Joy" March 24-26

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Ernestine Crump, played by DSU student Jacqueline Smith (right), converses with Gerte (played by Dragana Jankovic), during scene of Crumbs from the Table of Joy that will be performed March 24-26.

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  Delaware State University will present the Lynn Nottage play Crumbs From The Table Of Joy during three 7:30 p.m. performances Wednesday thru Friday, March 24-26 in the Education & Humanities Building on campus. The 1950s-period two-act play is free and open to the public.   Directed by Dr. Donald Brown, the production features a five-member cast – a mix of DSU students, staff and community actors. The story takes place during the 1950s in Brooklyn and follows a year in the life of the Crump family – a religious widower and his two daughters – after they moved to the Big Apple from Florida.   Godfrey "Goodness" Crumb, played by Carlos Holmes (top), and Ermina Crump, played by DSU student Crystal Ingram, rehearse a scene from Crumbs from the Table of Joy. While still dealing with the culture shock of living in the populous New York City, the family’s life is further complicated by the arrival of the deceased mother’s sister – the militant and amoral Lily, creating an unwanted sexual tension for Godfrey “Goodness” Crump, the widowed family patriarch.   The family is thrown for an additional loop when Godfrey suddenly enters into an unlikely marriage that provokes the ire of Lily and the discomfort of his daughters. The story is told through the eyes and narration of the oldest daughter Ernestine, who is to become the first Crump family high school graduate that year.   “The play tells a story that takes place just after War World II and just prior to the initial push of the civil rights movement,” said Dr. Brown. “The plot deals with pointed issues in race relations.”   The play features Carlos Holmes as Godfrey “Goodness” Crump, Sylvia Carson as his sister-in-law Lily and Dragana Jankovic as his wife, Gerte. DSU students Jacqueline Smith and Crystal Ingram portray his daughters “Darling” Ernestine and “Devout” Ermina, respectively.  

DSU Offers Master's of Arts in Teaching English as a 2nd Language

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  The English and Foreign Languages Department at Delaware State University is now offering a Master of Arts Degree in Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL). Classes are now being offered at the main campus in Dover.  The university also invites prospective students to apply for the TESL program that will be available at the DSU Georgetown site beginning fall 2010.   The program, which was approved last year by the Delaware Department of Education and the Delaware State University Board of Trustees, is designed specifically for teachers interested in giving instruction in English as a second language.   “The Master of Arts in TESL Program promises to be another locus of productive partnership between DSU, the state, and the region,” said Dr. Abdul Aziz-Diop, former chair of the Department of English and Foreign Languages   Teachers and non-teachers interested in the program can register for two courses in the fall, two courses in the spring, two courses for summer session I, and two courses for summer session II. The program leads to certification and is designed for completion in two years. It prepares candidates to teach English as a second language in many settings, including K-12 schools, colleges and universities in the United States and abroad, and adult education programs anywhere in the world.    Limited scholarships are available through the Department of English and Foreign Languages. Prospective candidates can also apply for the Teach Grant scholarship program that awards up to $4,000 a year to students seeking degrees to teach in high-need fields. For more information on the Teach Grant program, please contact Michelle Rush at (302) 857-6742, or email her at drush@desu.edu. . For more information on the TESL program, contact Dr. Andrew Blake at (302) 857-6566 or e-mail him at ablake@desu.edu. .  

Standard and Poor's Affirms DSU's A+ Credit Rating

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  Standard & Poor’s, a top national credit rating agency, has affirmed that Delaware State University continues to maintain an A+ credit rating.  According to Standard & Poor’s recent assessment of the institution, the A+ rating reflects that DSU has a strong leadership team that keeps the University focused on its strategic plan. The assessment also noted the University’s modest debt burden of 3.5% of 2009 expenses with no addition debt planned.   “It signifies the confidence of people who conduct an extensive evaluation on our financial management,” said DSU President Harry L. Williams. “To get an A+ rating in these tough economic times says a lot about our financial managers and the transparency of the institution.”   Marvin Lawrence, DSU Board of Trustees member and chair of the board’s Finance Committee, said that while the University works hard to continually assess its financial system, it is also great encouragement to receive such validation from a top outside agency.   “We are elated to have received this credit rating, and it is really a reflection of DSU’s financial staff,” Mr. Lawrence said. “They work hard to manage the financial aspects of the University and keep the institution on point.”   Standard & Poor’s has been designated by the U.S. Security and Exchange Commission as a nationally recognized statistical rating organization.  

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