September 28, 2016  

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University of Southern Mississippi graduate student Laura Whitmore stands outside the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Healy upon arrival at the North Pole earlier this month. Whitmore, a native of Palmer, Alaska, is a second-year master’s student in the Department of Marine Science (chemistry emphasis) conducting experiments as part of a unique 65-day research cruise sponsored by GEOTRACES. Her research focus involves the study of dissolved methane distribution and transport in the Bering Sea and Arctic Ocean. The research cruise will conclude in late October.

(Submitted photo)

Miss Mississippi Hannah Roberts did not capture the coveted crown of Miss America 2016 Sunday night, but the University of Southern Mississippi graduate certainly won over the crowd on hand in Atlantic City and millions of others around the globe who watched the telecast with her poise, personality and extraordinary musical talent.

In an effort to broaden opportunities for budding marine biologists, the Gulf Coast Research Laboratory’s Marine Education Center has expanded its popular After School Marine Biologist program to include 7th and 8th grade students.

 

The University of Southern Mississippi has enrolled more new students than in 2014, including a freshman class that defies national trends as the most academically prepared in the University’s recorded history.

 

For the sixth straight year, the average grade point average (GPA) for USM’s first-time, full-time freshmen is the highest ever recorded. New freshmen in Fall 2015 have an average GPA of 3.27, up from 3.26 in Fall 2014 and 3.06 in Fall 2009, when the six-year streak began. The average ACT score of new freshmen is 22.7, the highest known in University history.

University of Southern Mississippi graduate student Laura Whitmore and a team of fellow researchers arrived at the North Pole on Saturday, Sept. 5 aboard the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Healy, the first U.S. surface ship to reach that destination unaccompanied.

Miss Mississippi Hannah Roberts, a recent University of Southern Mississippi graduate, has been named a finalist in both the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) scholarship competition and Quality of Life category at the Miss America Pageant.

 

USM ‘s “Chemistry Queen” is a biochemistry graduate, national Goldwater Scholarship winner and a former Honors College student at Southern Miss.

The University of Southern Mississippi celebrated continued recovery from Hurricane Katrina with a groundbreaking on Wednesday, Aug. 26 for the Gulf Coast Research Laboratory’s (GCRL) new Marine Education Center (MEC) in Ocean Springs. The facility replaces the J.L. Scott Marine Education Center destroyed by Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

 

The groundbreaking event comes during the week of the 10-year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina hitting the Mississippi Gulf Coast. Common themes during the official groundbreaking ceremony included resilience, restoration, recovery, and continued rebuilding.

 

A new Title IX Office, consistent policy protocols, and heightened awareness have placed The University of Southern Mississippi at the forefront of collegiate institutions confronting the issues of sexual harassment and misconduct.

Success is hard to come by — it isn’t a given in any field. Harder, perhaps, is continuing an elevated level of success. In football, for instance, only a few quarterbacks have followed Super Bowl-winning quarterbacks with a Super Bowl victory of their own. More often than not, replacing a legend in the field is a difficult, almost impossible task.

 

Such is the challenge facing Dr. Jeffrey Wiggins, director of The University of Southern Mississippi’s School of Polymers and High Performance Materials. Wiggins and fellow faculty members follow in the footsteps of academic giants who built USM polymer science into one of the world’s best.

After the Deepwater Horizon incident, the coastline oiling that occurred raised questions about oil movement and impact. For example, before a surface slick reached land, was there oil below the surface waters and how might that affect coastal environments and organisms?

 

The Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative recently awarded CONCORDE a grant to study nearshore currents and circulation flows and their potential role in creating sub-surface oil exposure pathways.

Thirteen graduates of the Joint International Hydrographic Applied Science Program (JIHASP) at The University of Southern Mississippi were recognized during a special ceremony held by the Department of Marine Sciences (DMS) at John C. Stennis Space Center.

Balloons filled the sky and the smell of freshly boiled seafood filled the air, as the ribbon was cut to officially introduce MBK South, a new My Brother’s Keeper, Inc. wellness center, to the Mississippi Gulf Coast on Friday, July 24.

University of Southern Mississippi graduate student Laura Whitmore hopes to discover a bit of magic at the North Pole this summer, whether she detects any signs of Santa’s workshop or not.

 

Whitmore, a second-year master’s student in the Department of Marine Science (chemistry emphasis), will participate in a unique 65-day research cruise to the top of the world aboard the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter “Healy.” Her Arctic Ocean adventure begins Aug. 9 with departure from Dutch Harbor, Alaska.

The University of Southern Mississippi is on a seven-year roll when it comes to producing Phi Kappa Phi National Fellows. And with the steady influx of high-achieving Honors College students, the trend shows no signs of slowing down.

 

The seven-year streak began with Justin Poelma in 2009 and continued this year with Stephanie McCracken’s selection.

The green light has been given to begin work on the Marine Education Center (MEC) at The University of Southern Mississippi’s Cedar Point Teaching Site in Ocean Springs, replacing the J.L. Scott Marine Education Center destroyed by Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

The University of Southern Mississippi Thad Cochran Center was recently filled with people from all over the campus who assisted the Mississippi IDeA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence (Mississippi INBRE) program over the last year.

Gary Cook, senior laboratory coordinator and equipment manager in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at The University of Southern Mississippi, is hanging up his lab coat after 35 years.

Kristen Dupard of New Orleans was crowned Miss University of Southern Mississippi during a ceremony Monday, July 13 in the President’s Conference Room of the Lucas Administration Building on the Hattiesburg campus. Dupard ascended to the role in place of Hannah Roberts, who won the Miss Mississippi Pageant in June.
 

The University of Southern Mississippi research community applauded the news today that Mississippi has reached an agreement in principle with British Petroleum (BP) to settle claims related to the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster.

The University of Southern Mississippi will honor Hannah Roberts, 2015 Miss Mississippi, with a welcome home reception at the Trent Lott Center on the Hattiesburg Campus on Saturday, July 11, at 2 p.m.

 

Roberts, who is a May 2015 Southern Miss graduate, was crowned Miss Mississippi last Saturday in Vicksburg. Remarks from University President Rodney D. Bennett and Roberts will be made at 3:15 p.m. The reception is open to the public.

The Thad Cochran Marine Aquaculture Center at The University of Southern Mississippi’s Gulf Coast Research Laboratory in Ocean Springs made a donation of live seatrout this week to the Scranton Museum in Pascagoula.

 

Former astronaut Bernard A. Harris Jr., reminded a group of attendees at a summer camp bearing his name that the same wide-eyed wonder they exhibit today helped catapult him to heights he once considered unrealistic.

 

Harris addressed a group of 46 elementary and middle school students on Friday, June 26 to close out the ExxonMobil Bernard Harris Summer Science Camp at The University of Southern Mississippi. The Southern Miss camp, held June 14-27, featured rising 6th, 7th and 8th grade students from 33 different schools in 21 cities across the state.

Dr. Davin Wallace, an assistant professor in the Department of Marine Science at The University of Southern Mississippi, has been awarded a prestigious Early-Career Research Fellowship by the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) Gulf Research Program.

The 2015 edition of The University of Southern Mississippi’s Summer Math Institute will hold its closing program Friday, June 26 from 1-3:30 p.m. in rooms 101-102 of the Trent Lott National Center on the Hattiesburg campus.