Women's Equality Day
Thursday, August 28, 2014 at 5:18pm --
Columbus State University
4225 University Avenue
Columbus, GA 31907
6th Annual Day of Service
Monday, August 25, 2014 at 12:07am --
Wonderful turnout from our student/athletes in softball, men's and women's basketball, volleyball, golf, baseball, cheer, our Mascot Cody and their coaches. Also our VP for Business and Finance, Tom Helton; our VP for Student Affairs Gina Sheeks; our AVP for University Relations, John Lester; our incoming Managing Director of the Cunningham Center, Ed Helton; our Director of Intercollegiate Athletics, Todd Reeser; and many, many others participated.
My wife Lauren and I joined our Director of the Financial Literacy Center, Ginny Rae Turner and her husband Brad at a battered women's shelter in Phenix City. Alabama. The Center must open by October and the students worked wonders preparing rooms for occupancy.
Later in the day, we all joined in a terrific cookout and shared stories of the day's adventures and fellowship. Special thanks to Potiphar Alexander, Director of our Transportation System,
for assuring all ended up in the right places and eventually back on campus. This event has matured greatly over the years and the involvement by our entire campus community is reflective of a caring culture.
Move-in Day at River Park Campus
Tueday, August 12, 2014 at 1:56pm --
This can be a stressful day for students and their families but no institution handles this better than Columbus State University.
Preparing for Accreditation Visit Helps Us Focus on Progress
Thursday, July 24, 2014 at 2:36pm
Our regional accrediting agency, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, recently held its summer meeting. I was proud to join a team of Columbus State University colleagues as we prepare for our 10-year maintenance of accreditation visit.
Additionally, and as importantly, the university team is working across the institution in the development of our new Quality Enhancement Plan. The QEP, linked to our mission and strategic plan serves to galvanize the focus of our institution and give us an overriding theme that will thread through thousands of courses, student activities, staff engagement and campus life for the foreseeable future.
While I have the opportunity to serve as a member of the Board of Trustees of SACSCOC, I learn a great deal from these meetings. I do so appreciate the work of our team and look forward to reporting on our progress over the next two years.
Trombone Concert Brings Top Artists to Columbus State Stage
Monday, June 30, 2014 at 3:25pm
Saturday night, Lauren and I had the distinct pleasure of attending the Southeast Trombone Symposium Professors Choir under the direction of Professor Bradley Palmer from CSU's Schwob School of Music.
Trombone faculty from across the country were joined by artists from the New York Philharmonic, Utah Symphony, Atlanta Symphony and National Symphony, treating an enthusiastic audience to some wonderful music.
Pieces ranging from Classical Gas to the world premiere of Awakening (Anthony Barfield) reflected once again the pivotal role great faculty and great facilities can play in building reputation. We were honored to have these faculty and many of their students at our RiverPark campus and look forward to hosting the group again in the future.
CSU Connects with Students at Atlanta-Area Receptions
Friday, May 16, 2014 at 9:05pm
Over the last two nights, a great team from CSU — recruiters, financial aid and other student affairs professionals, as well as our crack logistics experts — helped deliver two very special open houses: one in Alpharetta and the other in south Fulton County for admitted and prospective students.
I was proud of our colleagues, who work so hard in communicating our "first choice" agenda with prospective students and their parents. Special thanks go to Richard Holmes, a CSU Foundation trustee and distinguished alumus, for attending the south Fulton reception. The event reflected the progress and so many great initiatives taking place at our university.
Commencement Offers Fitting Farewell to 2013-2014
Friday, May 16, 2014 at 9:02pm --
|Students hear from governor at commencement.|
And it was the greatest of honors to have Gov. Nathan Deal deliver the commencement address. We also recognized Phil Tomlinson, chairman and CEO of TSYS, with an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree.
Recognizing our graduates, from those receiving associate degrees to those donning doctoral hoods, is always an incredibly special and moving event — indeed, my favorite night of the year. We hope to see many of these graduates back on campus in the years to come.
Celebration Highlights CSU's Servant Leadership Commitment
Tueday, May 6, 2014 at 9:19pm
I had the great opportunity today to join Mr. Bill Turner, Mr. John Turner and Dr. Ron King at a luncheon with close to 200 students, community agencies and friends of our renowned Servant Leadership Program.
Dr. Stuart Rayfield, CSU's Frank Brown Distinguished Chair in Servant Leadership, emceed this marvelous event, where graduates of our Servant Leadership senior class shared with the audience their insights and observations related to experiences in the program. Of special note was this year's partnership with The Literacy Alliance and the creation of a CSU chapter of the International Justice Mission to combat human trafficking.
Kudos go to these exceptional young men and women and their passion for service. I was so very proud of their individual and group accomplishments. They truly epitomize all that is so very impressive with today's Columbus State University graduates.
Sophomore Year Experience Helps Students Succeed
Friday, April 18, 2014 at 3:01pm
Our Sophomore Year Experience at Columbus State University is off and running.
Dubbed, Y2@CSU. The eight Y2 Ambassadors participated in more than 20 events that entail academics, leadership, professional development and student activities. They helped rebrand and expand the Y2 program and made it a safe haven for sophomores.
Some of the unique successes of the students in this year's program include:
- Shakiyla Ellis developed her leadership skills and sharpened her communication skills, which has opened doors for many leadership opportunities.
- Nadiya Johnson improved her public speaking skills and is a great mentor to freshmen students.
- Ambrionna Dallas, working with staff, organized a full week of Financial Success programs that allowed the Columbus State University community to become more fiscally conservative.
- Victoria Owens has refined her ability to form lasting relationships with her peers and has done an outstanding job in planning for her future endeavors both professionally and personally.
- Dawn Grier polished her ability to network with faculty/staff and develop her communication skills as well.
- Brittany Reeves learned the value of building relationships and boosting team morale.
- Briana Zeigler developed necessary tools to balance her time as a very busy student.
- Chaiya Thomas’ willingness to pursue all aspects of the Y2 program is an indicator of her dedication as a student to Columbus State University.
Leesburg Unites with CSU to Empower Educators
Thursday, April 17, 2014 at 8:17pm --
Cougarthon Gets Students Moving for American Cancer Society
Thursday, April 17, 2014 at 7:48pm -- I am so very proud of student co-chairs Ravhen Maddox, Akilah Anderson and Kameron Griffin and their team of 16 colleagues for the launch of our first-ever Cougarthon dance event to support the American Cancer Society. This year's inaugural event, in our Student Recreation Center, honored CSU colleague Rex Whiddon and his wife, Lynne. Joined by hundreds of students, the six-hour event was a great social and service success. Our Center for Career Development colleague, volunteerism director Anne Brown provided exceptional staff support. We're so proud of CSU's enormous commitment to servant leadership.
Saturday Gives Columbus State a Chance to Truly Shine
Monday, April 14, 2014 at 1:24pm
Saturday was a magnificent day on the Columbus State University campus. We started at 9 a.m. with a Discovery Day designed for admitted freshmen and transfer students.
The energy was palpable. Students were joined by family members for an immersion into campus life, course selection and an incredibly energetic introduction to CSU. My thanks to Amy Clines and her entire recruiting team for orchestrating a truly powerful day.
At 1 p.m., Lauren and I hosted Columbus State's Peach Belt champion women's basketball team, coaches Jonathan Norton and Quacy Timmons, and their children. Our student-athletes are exceptional. This is a wonderful group of women who had an exceptionally wonderful season ending in the NCAA regionals. Lauren and I were so very proud of them and honored to host the celebration at our home.
Saturday night at RiverCenter, our Schwob School of Music held its annual Kaleidoscope concert. This unbelievable event features every student in every studio in the Schwob school. For 70 minutes, the audience was mesmerized by the talent of our students and the leadership of our faculty.
It's amazing how, all in a single day, anyone can see why Columbus State is a First Choice university.
One CSU Events Demonstrate Commitment to Sustainability
Wednesday, April 9, 2014 at 7:17pm -- I am so very proud of our students, faculty and staff for planning another round of One CSU events on April 18-26. So many have worked diligently to support a week-long commitment to sustainability. As a university, we are committed to reducing the university's ecological footprint through the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions campus wide, to enhancing university environmental stewardship efforts and to fostering the concepts of sustainability and environmental ethics in the curriculum. Please go to the One CSU sustainability page and join us in some of these incredibly important events, activities and programs.
CSU Shines with Day at the Capitol
Monday, March 10, 2014 at 6:15pm --
Our Student Musicians Continue to Amaze Me
Monday, February 17, 2014 at 6:44pm
On Thursday, Feb. 13, I watched an amazing concert by the Columbus State University Singers and Choral Union, conducted by visiting professor Frode Gundersen and accompanied by Janie Lee Bullock and Susan Hoskins. What a show! From Greek folk songs to Brahms, the performance filled Legacy Hall with incredible sound and reflected the great partnership between the Schwob School and the community, with a number of friends of CSU performing in the Choral Union.
Last night, 17 students in professor Sergiu Schwartz's Violin Studio mesmerized an audience with their Spotlight on Violin! Studio Gala. The students from eight countries and five U.S. states, both undergraduate and graduate, were absolutely superb, and again Susan Hoskins and a very talented graduate student, Alina Sarkisyan, accompanied these students. Professor Schwartz's graduates go on to attend great music graduate programs and perform professionally around the world. A great night for CSU.
Cougar Leadership Conference Holds Promise for Students
Thursday, February 13, 2014 at 7:23pm
Thanks to the leadership of Dr. Gina Sheeks, our vice president for Student Affairs; Collins Brown, assistant director for Student Life and Development; and student leaders OluwaKemi OluwaDamilola Faderin, Mallery Spinks and Victoria Weaver, the Cougar Leadership Conference, with the theme of "Stir Up the Leader in You," is off and running.
Well over 100 CSU students participated in the inaugural event, comprised of a series of engaging workshops and an after-dinner keynote address by acclaimed speaker Justin Jones-Fosu.
This is a most important initiative at our university focused exclusively on developing student leadership talent. In March, participants will have the great pleasure of attending a speech by Dan Amos, chairman and CEO of Aflac. All told, this represents a terrific series of programs for our students.
Regent Kessel Stelling Tells Business Students, Faculty about Progress at Synovus
Thursday, February 13, 2014 at 2:05pm
Our Turner College of Business hosted a terrific lecture this week by Kessel Stelling, chairman and CEO of Synovus, as well as a member of our state Board of Regents.
Regent Stelling gave a fantastic overview of the enormous progress made by Synovus over the past few years. He discussed the TARP repayment, the "ringing of the bell" at the New York Stock Exchange by the Synovus team and the culture that has been so unique and impressive at Synovus.
Former Synovus executive and CSU Foundation trustee Jimmy Yancey was in attendance, as was Gardiner Garrad, CSU Foundation trustee and former Synovus board member. The students and faculty heard great lessons from a great leader. Kudos to Dean Hadley and team.
Governor Offers Vivid Tribute to CSU's Command College
Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 6:05pm --
Columbus State has been home to the Command College since 1995, when the university formalized a partnership with the Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police. Since then, more than 1,200 law enforcement managers from throughout Georgia and beyond have gone through extensive coursework here to obtain a master's degree specifically tailored to help them do their jobs better.
Command College Director Archie Rainey, a longtime CSU professor of criminal justice, presented the distinctive jacket to the governor in 2011, shortly after he took office. As you can see on the Command College's homepage, Dr. Rainey (standing just to the right of the governor in that photo) was among 15 state law enforcement leaders meeting with the governor at the Capitol that day.
We're proud of the level of professionalism among Georgia law enforcement that our Command College has been able to help foster over the years. The governor's red Command College jacket offers a vivid reminder of the work they do during times of crisis and beyond.
Faculty Artists Offer Gold Medal Performance
Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 4:18pm
Sunday: I joined a packed audience at Legacy Hall to witness a spellbinding concert by professors Alexander Kobrin (piano), Sergiu Schwartz (violin) and Wendy Warner (cello). These three faculty, each holding an endowed distinguished chair in our Schwob School of Music, performed Schubert and Mendelssohn pieces that enthralled an incredibly enthusiastic audience for two hours.
These faculty attract from around the world best-of-class students who enhance our university population and add incredible diversity to our student body. Endowments create a much-needed competitive advantage for public universities, providing a competitive edge in recruiting outstanding faculty.
Of course, our Saunders Center for Music Studies, thanks to the generosity of the Schiffman family, is an "All-Steinway" facility, and this too is so very important. In the midst of all the Olympic excitement in Sochi, it was incredibly gratifying to see a gold medal performance from our faculty in Uptown Columbus at the RiverCenter's Legacy Hall.
CSU Theatre Offers Powerful Drama in Stop Kiss
Monday, February 3, 2014 at 6:34pm --
Congratulations are in order for these Columbus State University theatre students:
- Quanesha Wilson
- Brooke Pulaski
- Danny Blanda
- Matthew Scott
- Alden Burroughs
- Kayla Reid
- Rachel Wolovick
They all offer compelling performances in CSU Theatre's latest production, Stop Kiss. This powerful drama is directed by professor Becky Becker; professor Sam Renner handles scene and technical design; lighting is the work of professor Scott Parker; sound is by professor Krystal Kennel; and costumes are by professor Steven Graver.
All contributions were exceptional. As I looked at how students in various classes contributed to this production, it reinforced how very fortunate we are to have such a compelling and engaged theatre program at our university.