Message from Chancellor Shirley Lawler to Faculty and Staff
Greetings to all!
Fall has arrived in the Ozarks, and the trees have been beautiful. I hope that you are taking a break from your busy schedule to get out and enjoy the gorgeous colors of the season. It is hard to believe that Thanksgiving is just around the corner.
Students started to enroll for spring semester classes this past week as we all participated in ASK Week. It was an enjoyable experience meeting the students as they walked to classes, and we handed out reminder cards of registration dates with candy attached. Many of the students informed me that they had already talked with their advisors and were working on their schedules for next semester. We are hoping for a strong spring enrollment.
I had the privilege of welcoming our first Red Carpet Day group of high school students in Melton Hall this morning. That was energizing. What a wonderful group of excited high school students! They had traveled from Dora, Lebanon, Winona, Eminence, Hartville, Houston, and Lutie. We will have several more groups visit us in the weeks to come, and we look forward to their time on campus, as well. I am always pumped after I see the excitement in their faces and sense the enthusiasm of the group. We hope they choose Missouri State-West Plains as their home next fall!
We have just had two new certificates approved by the Board of Governors at the October meeting. A Certificate in Advanced Industrial Maintenance and a Certificate in Medical Assisting will now be forwarded to MDHE for final approval. These new programs will not only enhance our current curriculum, but they will also easily transition students into our AAS degree programs. In addition to developing the two new certificates, Dr. Lancaster and his team have worked hard to complete two MoEXCEL grants to be submitted to Governor Parson’s office. We hope to tap into the $55 million dollars the Governor has set aside to fund career/technical programs. Dennis Lancaster, Amy Ackerson, Sheila Barton, Cathy Boys, and Jim Hart have worked very hard on these projects which will be used to expand the Nursing program and enhance programs at GOCAT.
I had a great luncheon meeting with a group of West Plains residents interested in promoting the Ozarks and also the history and culture of our area. This meeting was a good platform to promote our Ozarks Studies Symposium, and I look forward to meeting with this group again next month to explore ways that Missouri State-West Plains can be a part of this group.
Tuesday is Election Day. Don’t forget to vote; there are many important issues on the ballot. Encourage your students to familiarize themselves with the issues on the ballot and exercise their right to vote. In this week’s edition of Clif’s Notes, President Smart highlights some of the issues in the upcoming Nov. 6 general election and he gives his perspective on the motor fuel tax.
As always, there are many things going on around the University…
Items of Note
- Nov. 9: Learn more about the changes to the health care benefits at the Medical Plan Open Forum at 1 p.m. in T211.
- Nov. 12: Join us in honoring our area veterans at the 20th Annual Musical Salute to Veterans at 1:30 p.m. in the civic center arena.
- Nov. 13: The Grizzly Basketball team started the season with a win on Nov. 1 against Nation Wide Academy. Their next home game is Nov. 13 when they will play Three Rivers College at 7 p.m. at the civic center.
- Check out the Web Master Calendar for a full listing of upcoming events.
Dr. Phillip Howerton recently had two poems published in Intégrité: A Faith and Learning Journal, and his essay “The Poetry of Ted Kooser and the Confrontation of Diminishment” appears in the current edition of Cantos, both published by Missouri Baptist University. In addition to these publications, he has been involved in several other scholarly endeavors. Volume 10 of Cave Region Review, a literary and art journal that he co-founded and co-edits, will be released Nov. 17. He recently edited issue 8 of Elder Mountain, and much of the scholarship in issue 8 of Elder is posted on the Elder Mountain website (many thanks to Grayson Gordon). His analysis of the work of the southern writer Skip Horack will be a chapter in Contemporary Southern Writers, which is to be published by the University of Mississippi Press in 2019, and he presented “Debating Social Foundations in Parson Brooks: A Plumb Powerful Hardshell” at the Ozarks Studies Symposium in September and presented “The Poetry of Rural (Dis)order” at the Arkansas Philology Association Conference in October.
Always remember, what we do each day for students does make a difference.