(Photo by Division of Communications and Marketing/HBCU Campaign Fund)

JACKSON, MS – Jackson State University appears to have come out on top after the recent Mississippi legislative session. The university scored $500,000 toward the preplanning for construction, furnishing, and equipping a new dinning facility. This is good news for JSU, whose Heritage Dinning Hall was built in 1977 and has seen little renovation or upgrades.

Other funding includes $1,175,025 toward campus construction, renovations, and repair. Another $506,111 went toward the Urban Research Center, which is an increase $55,152. JSU’s College of Health Sciences – A CEPH Accredited School of Public Health, will receive $1,500,000 for construction, furnishing, and relocation to the university’s main campus. Currently, the school is located in the Jackson Medical Mall on Woodrow Wilson St.

President Thomas K. Hudson offered special thanks to Mississippi legislators and state leaders for their investment in Jackson State.

“We appreciate the state’s contribution in helping maintain and improve JSU’s infrastructure. Our university is a community staple and economic driver for the city, county, and state,” he said. “Funding further allows us to make a significant impact on the people and communities we serve.”

Even more important, campus improvements, Hudson said, will enhance the quality of life for current students and entice potential students to enroll.

JSU’s Government Relations Directors Jacqueline Woods also extended gratitude to the Mississippi Legislature under the leadership of Philip Gunn, speaker of the House of Representatives, and Lt. Governor Delbert Hosemann. She further ackowledged the Hinds County delegation and Hudson’s leadership.

“These appropriations will allow JSU to continue to provide amazing educational opportunities to our students,” said Woods. “I look forward to continuing to focus on our legislative agenda as we work to expand programs, build out campus and bring positive change to our communities.”

Most recently, news of the state allocating $250,000 for a stadium study created quite the buzz. Mississippi Veterans Memorial Stadium has been home to the Tigers since 1970. Still, talks of a new stadium have recently resurfaced with the state again making a good-fath effort in helping make it a reality.

Hudson explained that the stadium study will help determine the overall cost for a new on-campus multi-purpose facility with modern concessions and amenities.

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About Jackson State University
Jackson State University, an HBCU and comprehensive urban research university, is to provide quality teaching, research and service at the baccalaureate, masters, specialist, and doctoral levels to diverse populations of students and communities using various modalities to enure that they are technologically-advanced, ethical, global leaders who think critically and can address societal problems and complete effectively. For more information, visit www.jsums.edu.

Thomas K. Hudson, J.D., President of Jackson State University

(JACKSON, MISS. – 11/19/20) – The Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning named Jackson State University Acting President Thomas Hudson as president of the university at its meeting held earlier in Jackson. Hudson was named acting president earlier this year.

“As a Jackson State University alumnus, I am extremely pleased that we have identified one of our own to serve as president,” said Dr. Steven Cunningham, a member of the Board of Trustees. “We have witnessed the great strides he has made over the past nine months and have full confidence that he will continue to demonstrate the great love he has for this university by providing outstanding leadership for students, faculty, staff and alumni.”

As Acting President, Hudson has provided leadership during the COVID-19 pandemic and the university’s Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges reaffirmation process. He has also helped to improve the university’s financial position.

“Naming Thomas Hudson as president provides much-needed stability in leadership at the institutions,” said Dr. Alfred Rankins Jr., Commissioner of Higher Education. “He has done an excellent job leading the university during an extraordinarily difficult time. I am pleased to continue working with him to advance Jackson State University and the university system.”

As Special Assistant to the President and Chief Diversity Officer, Hudson served on the executive cabinet and provided guidance to senior leadership on all topics related to the university’s future course and trajectory. With the Division of Human Resources and Office of the General Counsel under his purview, Hudson oversaw Institutional EEO and Title IX implementation and collaborated with other executive administrators on matters of curriculum, guidelines and practices.

“I am extremely appreciative and beyond humbled for the opportunity to continue to build upon Jackson State University’s extraordinary legacy,” said Hudson. “I recognize that it is an honor to serve in a leadership role, but it is an extreme honor and privilege to serve my alma mater – Jackson State University and the community I grew up in.”

“My focus remains the same and that is to ensure the success of our students, faculty and staff and the long-term viability of JSU. I would like to thank the IHL Board of Trustees for entrusting me to lead. I want to thank my wife, daughters, mother and all of my family for their infinite love and support. I also want to thank JSU administrators, faculty, staff and alumni for their deep-rooted dedication to JSU and their immovable belief in the power of a JSU education,” Hudson continued.

He also established collaborative partnerships with the University Veterans Center and Office of Disability Services to address the underrepresentation of employees from these groups. He also served as the president’s liaison for the Division of Athletics.

“My hope is that this historical event marks the first day of many more noteworthy achievements for our beloved Jackson State University,” said Dr. Dawn Bishop McLin, President of the JSU Faculty Senate. “During this transition the Faculty Senate took special care to share areas of concern with President Hudson, now we will continue to work with him towards the realization of improvements in shared governance, faculty pay equity, improving the research infrastructure, and the overall University welfare during the current COVID-19 crisis and beyond. It is this type of collaboration that is essential to advance the mutual interests, for our students, our faculty, our alumni, and our University, so that we will share a bounty of success in our collective futures. In our aspirations to be one JSU, there are some that may not be pleased with the process in its entirety but it’s my hope that we now more than ever, galvanize our efforts in spirit and deed to fully support our University’s leader, President Thomas K. Hudson.”

A member of the Jackson State staff since 2012, Hudson has also served as Chief Operating Officer/Chief Diversity Officer, Chief Diversity and EEO Officer/Title IX Coordinator. As Chief Operating Officer, Hudson implemented cost-saving measures that resulted in a 10 percent decrease in the university’s operational budget, coordinated academic and administrative restructuring efforts, resulting in an annual savings of $4 million, and led institutional efforts that changed a projected year-end and deficit to an approximate $3 million cash balance.

Appointed as the inaugural Chief Diversity and Equal Opportunity Officer at Jackson State, Hudson received the Presidential Creative Award for efforts in designing a program to bring awareness of interpersonal violence prevention to the student body and he designed and implemented the first university-wide training designed to eliminate implicit bias for search committees. In addition, he developed strategies for increasing the number of female faculty members in STEM disciplines, resulting in a 30 percent increase in hiring of women in these disciplines over a three-year period.

Hudson holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Jackson State University and a law degree from the University of Mississippi. Before joining the staff at Jackson State, Hudson founded his own law practice and served as an EEO specialist for the Department of Homeland Security/FEMA in Clinton.

Hudson serves as Co-Chairperson of the JSU Strategic Planning Committee and Vice Chairperson of the university system’s Chief Diversity Officers’ Council. He is a member of the Margaret Walker Alexander Center Board of Directors and the JSU Athletics Hall of Fame Foundation Board of Directors. He served as the Bias and Policy Lead for the National Science Foundation Grant at Jackson State University from 2013 to 2017 and served as Chairperson of the Director of Disability Services Search Committee in 2016.

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About the Mississippi IHL Board of Trustees
The Mississippi Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning governs the public universities of Mississippi, including Alcorn State University; Delta State University; Jackson State University; Mississippi State University including the Mississippi State University Division of agriculture, Forestry and Veterinary Medicine; Mississippi University for Women; Mississippi Valley State University; the University of Mississippi including the University of Mississippi Medical Center; and the University of Southern Mississippi. For more information, visit www.mississippi.edu.

About Jackson State University
Jackson State University, an HBCU and comprehensive urban research university, is to provide quality teaching, research and service at the baccalaureate, masters, specialist, and doctoral levels to diverse populations of students and communities using various modalities to ensure that they are technologically-advanced, ethical, global leaders who think critically and can address societal problems and compete effectively. For more information, visit www.jsums.edu.

(MISSISSIPPI) – Mississippi Valley State University (Itta Bena) and Jackson State University (Jackson), both historically black colleges and universities were listed among Mississippi Public Universities that improve the lives of Mississippi’s youngest citizens in numerous ways. These Universities have programs that serve children, train teachers and other specialists who serve the health and educational needs of children. These Universities also partner with other organizations to support children and their families.

Mississippi Valley State University’s Department of Social Work prepares students to advocate for children and families. Established in 1972 as the Family and Community Service Program, it meets the needs of human services agencies in the Delta and beyond. Accredited by the Council on Social Work Education and offering a Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) degree, the program supports local social service delivery systems through faculty and student involvement in community and professional activities, including organizing an Annual Social Work Conference at MVSU, professional training workshops, and advocating at the state capitol in support of social work issues. MVSU also offers the Master of Social Work degree which opens the door to new and exciting career opportunities for social workers looking to expand their reach in the social work field.

For more information, visit www.mvsu.edu.

Jackson State University’s College of Education (COE) is using a five-year $1.25 million grant to train teachers of visually impaired students in the South. U.S. data reveal there is a critical need for certified profession-ready teachers locally, statewide and nationally in this field. The Office of Special Education Programs has a goal to produce 30 teachers as part of the federal department’s Deep South Synergy Training Teachers of the Visually Impaired Project. The COE is a leading producer of African-American graduates in education. Many graduates become k-12 educators helping to develop the minds of Mississippi’s youth. Adrienne McDowell, an alum of JSU’s COE, was named JPS Teacher of the Year in 2019. McDowell’s efforts moved her bottom 25-percentile students from minimal to passing on the 2017-2019 English state tests.

For more information, visit www.jsums.edu.

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About Mississippi Valley State University
Mississippi Valley State University,as a Carnegie Classified Master’s University, provides comprehensive undergraduate and graduate programs in education, the arts and sciences, and professional studies. MVSU is fundamentally committed to positively impacting the quality of life and creating extraordinary educational opportunities for the Mississippi Delta and beyond. For more information, visit www.mvsu.edu.

About Jackson State University
Jackson State University, an HBCU and comprehensive urban research university, is to provide quality teaching, research and service at the baccalaureate, masters, specialist, and doctoral levels to diverse populations of students and communities using various modalities to ensure that they are technologically-advanced, ethical, global leaders who think critically and can address societal problems and compete effectively. For more information, visit www.jsums.edu.

About the Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning
The Mississippi Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning governs the public universities in Mississippi, including Alcorn State University; Delta State University; Jackson State University; Mississippi State University including the Mississippi State University Division of Agriculture, Forestry and Veterinary Medicine; Mississippi University for Women; Mississippi Valley State University; the University of Mississippi including the University of Mississippi Medical Center; and the University of Southern Mississippi.

(JACKSON, MS) – Jackson State University (JSU) has announced the promotion of Jerome Tinker to the position of executive director for the JSU Development Foundation. In 2018, Tinker joined the JSUDF where he fulfilled the duties of executive assistant, account payable, donor relations, board administrator, and most recently, director.

“My diligent work ethic was not overlooked by Universiter administrators and the JSUDF Board of Directors, and for that, I am immensely grateful. I absolutely love what I do, and each day, I am motivated to go above and beyond my call of duty to ensure the BOD have what they need to exercise proper and effective governance,” said Tinker.

As Executive Director, he plans to collaborative with the executive officers of JSUDF to create an all-inclusive strategic proposal which will assist with strengthening the Board of Directors. This initiative will focus on the following sectors:

  • Diversity
  • Engagement
  • Communication
  • Policy and procedures
  • Day-to-Day operations

Tinker also wants to ensure all JSUDF University staff members receive adequate professional development to assist with enhancing internal operations.

“We have limited amount of team members who all have to perform variety of duties. I believe by empowering my staff and ensuring they have all the necessary resources to be successful, they will in turn, produce an astounding work product for the JSUDF.”

Tinker is a native of Sawyerville, Alabama. He is a cum laude graduate of Stillman College where he received a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with a focus in Operations Management. He also has a Master of Community Development in Housing with a certification in Community Planning from Prairie View A&M University.

He is a student member of the Mississippi Economic Development Council, the American Planning Association (MS Chapter), the Council of Advancement and Support of Education, wand was recently appointed as chairman of the Scholarship and Student Engagement Committee for the PVAMU Atlanta Metro Alumni Chapter.

Tinker is a proud member of the Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grant Lodge of Alabama and is a 2006 initiate of the Gamma Phi Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Incorporated.

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About the JSU Development Foundation
The Jackson State University Foundation was established as a private, nonprofit organization in 1977 specifically to increase private gift support for Jackson State University. Since its inception, the JSUDF has been committed to establishing the best possible relationship with its benefactors based on trust by operating with the highest ethical standards and providing excellent performance. For more information, visit www.jsums.edu/jsudf.

Maxine R. Greenleaf

Mississippi Valley State University (MVSU) alumna Maxine R. Greenleaf has earned an appointment to the Strategic Communications Executive Committee for the Association of Public and Land Grant Universities (APLU). It’s the oldest higher education association in the country and aims to strengthen and advance public universities’ work in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico.

Greenleaf currently serves as the Executive Director of Communications and Marketing in Jackson State University’s Division of Institutional Advancement. She graduated from MVSU in 2007 with a degree in Mass Communications. From 2008 to 2012, Greenleaf worked in MVSU’s Office of Communications and Marketing. She held the position of director in the same department from 2013-2017.

As an executive committee member on APLU’s Council on Strategic Communications (CSC), Greenleaf will work with other professionals throughout the country to provide a forum that will bolster senior leaders’ work in communications and public affairs, as well as public relations.

“It is an honor to be appointed to APLU’s Council on Strategic Communications,” said Greenleaf. “I’ve spent over 14 years of my career in higher education because I believe in its transformational power. I am excited to contribute to conversations on this level to assist with improving access and communicating the public good benefits of higher ed.”

“We are pleased to learn of Mrs. Maxine Greenleaf’s appointment by the APLU, one of the country’s oldest higher education associations. It is an honor in which she should be proud.” said Thomas K. Hudson, acting president of JSU.

The council works to create coherent messaging and practical strategies that communicates public higher education value to key constituencies. The CSC also works closely with the Council on Government Affairs (CGA) on messages of importance to federal and state policymakers and the Commission on Economic and Community Engagement (CECE) to communicate issues about economic development.

APLU’s membershi[ consists of 246 public research universities, land-grant institutions, state university systems, and affiliated organizations. Its core mission is to build a greater future for everyone through the following methods:

  • Expand access and improve student success to deliver the innovative workforce of tomorrow
  • Advance and promote research and discovery to improve society
  • Foster economic growth and address global challenges
  • Build healthy, prosperous, equitable, vibrant communities locally and globally

MEMPHIS, TN – Fans of the Southern Heritage Classic (SHC) presented by FedEx will be thrilled to know that a game between Tennessee State University vs. Jackson State University is being played on Saturday, September 12th at 7:00 pm CDT. What has been appropriately dubbed the REWIND will feature an encore presentation of the 2017 Southern Heritage Classic (SHC) football game between the long-time rivals and all the excitement that comes with it. SHC teamed up with SCS Telecommunications Center to make this possible, and the SHC Rewind will stream with multiple platforms that include Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Roku, and Amazon Fire TV. Also, in true SHC fashion, it will stream during prime time.

According to SHC Founder, Fred Jones, the REWIND is the answer to the most common question he’s received since June 17th when he announced that the 31st Southern Heritage Classic was canceled due to COVID-19. “Everyone wanted to know, ‘What are we going to do?’. I knew we had to do something. The fans wanted it, and they deserve it. So, I’m pleased to announce that we are going to watch great HBCU football on our electronic devices in the comfort of our homes or wherever we are. Fans can get together to watch the game, following recommended social distancing guidelines, and cheer for their favorite team, groove to the bands, and enjoy a spectacular half-time show,” said Jones.

The featured REWIND game as one of the most exciting games in SHC history with great plays being made until the very end. “We would love to be in the Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium together this year but since we can’t, the REWIND is the next best thing. We hope that everyone will support us by spreading the word and watching the game,” added Jones.

The REWIND is sponsored by Memphis Tourism, BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, and MLGW. Visit www.SouthernHeritageClassic.com for more information and streaming links as we approach game day on September 12, 2020.

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About the Southern Heritage Classic (SHC)
Each year, the Southern Heritage Classic presented by FedEx is one of the country’s most anticipated HBCU football classics. Since 1990, thousands of fans have gathered at the Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium in Memphis to see the long-time rival football teams at Jackson State University and Tennessee State University battle for bragging rights and for victory.

JACKSON, MS – The Division I Football Championship Subdivision Athletics Directors Association (FCS ADA) has selected Ashley Robinson, vice president and director of athletics at Jackson State University (JSU), to serve as President for the 2020-21 membership year.

Robinson is the first African American to serve as FCS ADA President. He takes over for Kent Haslam, director of athletics at the University of Montana, who served for the 19-20 year and will transition to Immediate Past President. In addition to Robinson, the following athletics directors will serve as FCS ADA Officers for the 2020-21 membership year: 1st Vice President Nicki Moore, director of athletics at Colgate University; 2nd Vice President Tom Michael, director of athletics at Eastern Illinois University and 3rd Vice President Milton Overton, director of athletics at Kennesaw State University.

“It’s an honor to serve as the President of the FCS ADA for the upcoming year,” said Robinson, who begins his second year at the helm at JSU. “Our highest priorities remain giving voice to our membership while supporting both the incredible sport of football and the FCS brand. We are dedicated to building upon the outstanding work of the FCS ADA and ensuring our student-athletes have the first-class academic and athletics experiences they so deserve.”

Robinson is a Mississippi Valley State University graduate. As a four-year letterman in basketbal at MVSU where he is the single-season and career record-holder in assists after playing point guard for the Delta Devils. An MVSU Athletics Hall of Fame inductee in 2011, Robinson also was named MVSU Athlete of the Year in 2002, receiving the President’s Scholar Award in that same year. He served as the Athletic Director for MVSU during the 2012-13 academic year.

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About the FCS ADA

Now in its 27 year, the Football Championship Subdivision Athletics Directors Association’s mission is to enhance Football Championship Subdivision football. For more information on the FCS ADA, please visit www.fcsada.com. The FCS ADA is administered by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA), which is in its 56th year. For more information on NACDA and the 17 professional associations that fall under its umbrella, please visit www.nacda.com.

MEMPHIS, TN – The 31st Southern Heritage Classic (SHC) has announced its cancellation of events due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The decision to cancel all events was made after SHC’s management reviewed a copy of the Shelby County Health Department’s Health Directive No. 6 detailing emergency management relief efforts put in place to address COVID-19, specifically those regarding recreational or athletic activities. On average, over 75,000 people attend the SHC annually and individual events such as the tailgate in Tiger Lane, the football game between Jackson State University and Tennessee State University, the parade in Orange Mound, and others draw massive crowds which have the potential to increase the spread of the novel coronavirus. After careful consideration, all Southern Heritage Classic events that were scheduled for September 10-12, 2020 will no longer be held. Those who have purchased tickets for the football game can receive refunds at the point of purchase.

“I know this is a great disappointment to many who consider the SHC as one of the major highlights of the year. The health and safety of our attendees along with that of our staff, sponsors, and others is a top priority. I encourage everyone to keep practicing recommended safety and social distancing measures so that we can return to our social activities as soon as possible,” said Fred Jones, Founder of the Southern Heritage Classic.

SHC is grateful for Jackson State University, Tennessee State University, the fans, sponsors, and the SHC ambassadors, who have supported the classic throughout the years, and looks forward to your continued support. This isn’t the first challenge faced by SHC, and will overcome this one as have the others.

For more information, contact the Southern Heritage Classic Headquarters at 901-398-6655, 1-800-332-1991, or smc@smcentertainment.net.

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JACKSON, MS – ValueColleges.com has named Jackson State University one of the best online colleges in Mississippi for 2020, according to the University.

Offering five online bachelor degree programs – criminal justice, childcare and family education, healthcare administration, technology (emergency management technology) and professional interdisciplinary studies, JSU’s online program is designed to accommodate non-traditional students. JSU touts itself as being committed to making education accessibility to all.

The rankings are based on cost, reputability, and return on investment. According to the rankings website, their goal is to help college-bound individuals choose an institution that fits their academic needs.

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About Jackson State University

A Historically Black Carnegie Doctoral/Research Intensive public institution of higher learning located in the metropolitan area of Jackson, Mississippi, Jackson State University educates a diverse student population from Mississippi, most other states and many foreign countries by providing a broad range of baccalaureate programs and a variety of masters and doctoral programs in its six Colleges: Business; Education and Human Development; Liberal Arts; Lifelong Learning; Public Service; and Science, Engineering and Technology. The learning process at Jackson State is enhance through experiential learning in urban and rural areas throughout the city, state, nation, and global communities. Jackson State is a learning community for highly capable, as well as capable but under prepared students who require a nurturing academic environment.

For more information about Jackson State University, visit www.jsums.edu.

The campus of Jackson State University. Photo by Demetrius Johnson, Jr.

JACKSON, MS – Jackson State University’s out-of-state fees will be “significantly reduced” to $500 per semester starting in fall 2019 after approval from the Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning (IHL).

Associate Vice President and Dean of Enrollment Management Warren B. Johnson said JSU’s flat fee amounts to $1,000 per year. Previously, the out-of-state fee was $11,228 per year, and then students had to apply for a possible fee wavier.

Johnson said, “Because there is a flat fee, our out of state students will be charged $500 per semester. There is no application or wavier process anymore. The reduced amount will be automatically address for all out-of-state incoming and returning students – grads and undergrads – beginning in fall 2019.”

Other officials at JSU say admitted out-of-state students will now be able to persist through graduation, with the goal that many of those graduate will reside in Mississippi to help boost economic and workforce development initiatives by filling professional jobs.

Meanwhile, JSU hopes the new fee will help mitigate financial issues with affordability by reducing financial impediments and help the institution retain more students.

JSU students who enroll in summer classes in May and June will not receive the reduced fee since the new change won’t take effect until fall 2019.

In addition, the reduced fee does not apply to JSU Online program participants, since they are not charged the out-of-state fee.

About Jackson State University

A Historically Black Carnegie Doctoral/Research Intensive public institution of higher learning located in the metropolitan area of Jackson, Mississippi, Jackson State University educates a diverse student population from Mississippi, most other states and many foreign countries by providing a broad range of baccalaureate programs and a variety of masters and doctoral programs in its six Colleges: Business; Education and Human Development; Liberal Arts; Lifelong Learning; Public Service; and Science, Engineering and Technology. The learning process at Jackson State is enhance through experiential learning in urban and rural areas throughout the city, state, nation, and global communities. Jackson State is a learning community for highly capable, as well as capable but under prepared students who require a nurturing academic environment.

For more information about Jackson State University, visit www.jsums.edu.

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