Valdosta Daily Times

Local News

August 6, 2013

VSU convocation prepares faculty for new challenges

VALDOSTA — Valdosta State University held its annual fall convocation Monday. Each year, to celebrate the beginning of a new school year, this event is held to bring faculty and staff members together to hear words of encouragement, challenges for the new year and to honor their achievements.

This year’s convocation began with VSU President Dr. William McKinney welcoming honored guests from throughout the campus and the community. There were also special speeches from Dr. Ed Walker, with the faculty senate, and Regina Lee of the Council on Staff Affairs.

William Jimerson, VSU’s Student Government Association president, made the final presentation. Jimerson offered words of thanks and encouragement on behalf of the student body.

“I encourage all of us to dig deep inside ourselves to become the difference that we seek in this institution,” he said. “Welcome to a place of high standards, responsibility and endless possibilities. Welcome to the home of the Blazers. The Valdosta State University. Great things are happening at Valdosta State University.”

Following these speeches, McKinney shared his convocation speech. He spoke of the importance of change and how change and permanence can coexist.

“We’re not the same university as we were 20 years ago. We are not the same university as we were one year ago,” McKinney said. “We are not the same as we were yesterday.”

He spoke about the importance of recognizing VSU as a community. “Community” is this year’s homecoming theme, with an emphasis on “unity.” It was also noted that this year marks the 50th anniversary of racial integration at VSU. The university will celebrate this anniversary beginning in September.

Other points discussed by McKinney included praise for the successes and improvements made at VSU during the last year. He spoke about the football team and competition cheerleaders winning national titles. He praised the fact that eight of the university’s sports teams had GPAs of 3.0 or better, with three of these teams, the girl’s soccer, softball and girl’s cross-country, having a GPA of 3.5 or better.

McKinney also announced that VSU will extend its out-of-state waiver to more bordering Florida counties.

As for McKinney’s

vision for the university, he hopes that VSU will be the premier regional university in the United States. He also shared his strategic planning goals.

“To recruit, retain and graduate a quality, diverse student population and prepare those students for their rolls as leaders in the global society. Increase financial support for the institution,” he said. “Promote student, employee, alumni, and community engagement in our mission. Foster an environment of creativity and scholarship. Develop and enhance VSU’s human and physical resources.”

Following McKinney’s speech came the presentation of awards to faculty and staff members recognizing their successes throughout the last year. Faculty members who were honored were Dr. Mark Grozos, associate professor of geosciences, with the Excellence in Teaching Award; Dr. James “Jim” Nienow, professor of biology, with the Excellence in Professional Activity Award; Dr. Martha Leake, professor of planetary science, with the Excellence in Service Award; and Dr. Jay Rickman, professor or history, with the Excellence in Advising Award; and Kathy Sundin, instructional technology specialist, with the Excellence in Service for Classified Staff Award.

Text Only
Local News
  • Baytree Animal Hospital LB copy.JPG Animal hospital named Business of the Week

    Baytree Animal Hospital was named Leading Business of the Week by the  Valdosta-Lowndes Chamber of Commerce for July 14.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Gavel-courtroom.jpg Water treatment plant discussed

    The Lowndes County Board of Commissioners discussed purchasing two pieces of equipment for the Alapaha Water Treatment Plant and the Spring Creek System for a total of $1,638,000 during its Monday work session and is expected to vote on the issue tonight.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • education.jpg Charter school petition denied

    Both the Valdosta City and Lowndes County school boards unanimously denied the joint charter petition from Scintilla Charter Academy during their respective meetings Monday evening.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • echols_alapapa.jpg WWALS gets grant from river network

    The Willacoochee, Withlacoochee, Alapaha, and Little River Systems Watershed Coalition, Inc. (WWALS) received a $500 Alapaha Water Trail Grant from the Georgia River Network

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • 140718-ARJim2.jpg Teacher at home anywhere in the world

    Variety is the spice of life. South Georgia is home to a diverse group of people, each with a unique life story. One man with glorious tales of travel and selfless volunteer work is Jim Kokoruda.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • fire2a.jpg Blaze damages North Lowndes home

    Lowndes County Fire Rescue responded to a fire call Sunday at 3756 Cross Creek Circle near Bemiss Road.

    July 20, 2014 2 Photos

  • 140719-KidsInc3 copy.jpg Kids get a taste of retail operations

    Valdosta Mall shoppers may have noticed a few additional shopping options Saturday as they walked through center court.
    Children ranging in age from 6 to 15 years old set up booths and sold products to consumers.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • 140719-UnseenProject7 copy.jpg CrossPointe welcomes ‘Unseen’ travelers home

    CrossPointe Church members gathered Saturday to greet their pastor and fellow congregationalists returning from a filmed two-month-long motorcycle trip across the nation and back.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • election.jpg Runoff set for Tuesday

    Advanced voting ended Friday for the runoff election from the May 20 primary.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Modern Woodmen RC copy.JPG Woodmen welcomed to Valdosta

    The The Valdosta-Lowndes Chamber of Commerce and its Ambassadors welcomed the Valdosta chapter of Modern Woodmen Fraternal Financial with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Tuesday, July 15.

    July 19, 2014 1 Photo

Top News

School starts again in about two weeks. What do you think?

It's still summer. School starts too soon.
Seems like the right time to return.
Abolish summer recess. Make school year-round.
     View Results