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Bell’s Career-Best Finish Leads MSU To 8th At Shoal Creek Invitational

Bulldog Beat - Tue, 09/29/2015 - 6:23pm
BIRMINGHAM – Following his breakout performance during the first two rounds of the Shoal Creek Invitational, redshirt freshman Ross Bell finished in a tie for 12th to lead the Mississippi State men's golf team to an eighth-place finish.

Panola County junior at MSU authors national research study

MSU News - Tue, 09/29/2015 - 5:34pm
Lucas J. Ferguson (Photo by Tom Thompson)

Contact: Karen Templeton

Lucas J. Ferguson (Photo by Tom Thompson)

STARKVILLE, Miss—A Batesville honors student at Mississippi State is the lead author on a research study being published in the December edition of an international medical journal.

The report in Virology by university junior Lucas J. Ferguson is titled “Influenza D virus infection in Mississippi beef cattle.” A new influenza virus and its impacts on bovine production systems is the article’s focus.

Ferguson, a double-major in microbiology and biochemistry, is a graduate of the Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science in Columbus. A first-place winner earlier this year in MSU’s Undergraduate Research Symposium competition, he is a President’s List Scholar and Shackouls Honors College member.

As part of a research effort guided by Dr. Henry Wan, an associate professor with MSU’s College of Veterinary Medicine, he and others investigated a novel influenza virus distantly related to human influenza C virus to which nearly all humans have been exposed at some point.

In 2011, a related virus called IDV was found in swine in Oklahoma. Later detected in bovine in the United States, France and China, it most recently has affected cattle populations in Texas, California, Kansas, Minnesota, Nebraska and Oklahoma.

“We wanted to learn more about IDV’s epidemiology and if it was present at any point in Mississippi cattle,” Ferguson said. “We also wanted to understand the impact of beef production management on virus infection and maintenance.”

The MSU-led team included Drs. Bill Epperson, Carla Huston and David Smith, and Li-Ping Long, all with the veterinary college. Others were Drs. Richard Webby and Laura Eckard with St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee.

Ferguson said the team has determined that IDV has existed in Mississippi beef cattle since 2004. Data also suggests that weaned, comingled calves transmit the virus more rapidly than other cattle populations, he explained.

Having studied influenza viruses since his graduate work in China, Wan said this latest investigation “will help us know where to look for influenza cases.” Cattle producers also will have information “to help them better control transmission,” he said.

As an MSMS senior, Ferguson first learned basic biosafety and laboratory research skills while working in Wan’s CVM laboratory. To expand his developing scientific skills, he enrolled at MSU after graduation and continued working with the CVM’s influenza research program.

Wan established the research program in 2009 after coming to MSU from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia. He currently focuses on the ecology, evolution and host-pathogen relationship for emerging and re-emerging infectious and zoonotic diseases.

Zoonotic diseases are those communicable between animals and humans.

As a senior next year, Ferguson said he plans to continue studying the ecology of influenza viruses—that is, how they interact with their environment and spread among their hosts.

“Influenza is so versatile, so research in this area could potentially be beneficial to making better vaccines and protecting human and animal populations,” Ferguson said.

Wan said he typically recruits two to three undergraduates each year like Ferguson who have shown a strong interest in microbiology, biochemistry, engineering or related fields.

Over the past four years, more than 10 undergraduates have worked in his campus influenza research program. In addition to MSU, they attended Hiram College, Mississippi Valley State and Spring Arbor universities and the universities of Memphis, Michigan and Southern Mississippi.

To read the report by the MSU research team, see

MSU is Mississippi’s leading university, available online at

New federal policy in place for dual use research of concern

MSU News - Tue, 09/29/2015 - 4:56pm

On Sept. 24, the U.S. Government Policy for Institutional Oversight of Life Sciences Dual Use Research of Concern (DURC) went into effect. The issue of DURC is a shared responsibility between the federal government and institutions receiving funding for life science research.

Mississippi State University through the Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC) has been reviewing research using biohazardous material for dual use potential since 2011. Based on the federal DURC policy, a subset of the IBC called the Institutional Review Entity (IRE) will now officially review this type of research.

While a subset of the IBC will act in the capacity of the IRE, they are both separate and distinct with different charges, responsibilities, policies and procedures.

The 15 agents/toxins that comprise the material with dual use potential are all select agents, and 14 out of 15 require a minimum of biosafety-level 3 containment. The lone toxin, if used below a certain quantity, does not require select agent registration and may be used at biosafety level 2 if the risk assessment determines that it is safe to do so.

In order for research to be considered DURC, two conditions must be met:

* The research involves one of the 15 listed agents/toxin; and,

* Can produce one or more of the effects listed in the seven experimental categories described in the U.S. government policy.

Mississippi State's Institutional Review Entity will review all research identified by the principal investigator as having dual use potential following the procedure outlined in IRE-SOP-001.

Please direct any questions to Patricia Cox at 662-325-0620 or

California artist named new MSU-Refuge artist-in-residence

MSU News - Tue, 09/29/2015 - 4:52pm
“Vulnerability Rocks!” by Nancy Mizuno Elliott

Contact: Sasha Steinberg

“Vulnerability Rocks!” by Nancy Mizuno Elliott

STARKVILLE, Miss.—Mississippi State’s newest artist-in-residence is beginning her 11-day stay at the Sam D. Hamilton Noxubee National Wildlife Refuge.

Through her scheduled October 6 departure date, watercolor artist Nancy Mizuno Elliott plans to conduct research and host small discussions on her artwork. She also will visit classes and interact with art students at the university.

Located 12 miles south of the Starkville campus, the more than 48,000-acre federal land reserve spanning Oktibbeha, Noxubee and Winston counties was established in 1940. It serves as a feeding and resting area for migratory birds and resident wildlife, including white-tailed deer, alligators and beaver. Wetlands, cypress groves, prairie grasslands and forest also are among its many features.

A watercolor instructor at City College of San Francisco, Elliott attempts to create personal urban folk art through the use of common materials and discussions of everyday situations that make up a life.

“In general, my work examines intimacy, power and human behavior,” she said. “I confront embarrassing moments, unpleasant feelings and difficult situations, while maintaining a wry humor that tempers the discomfort of my subject matter.”

Elliott said images often come to her in the form of reactionary flashes to what she has heard, seen or experienced.

“My work is a visual diary, brimming with suffering and sap that rests in the space between memory and imagination,” she said. “Through the use of confessing characters and tattletale personas, I guide the viewer down a multi-layered narrative path.”

Currently residing in Oakland, California, Elliott holds a Master of Fine Arts with Distinction from the University of Georgia, as well as bachelor’s degrees in psychology and art from University of California at Berkeley. For more biographical information, visit

In addition to the MSU art department, the Sam D. Hamilton Noxubee National Wildlife artist-in-residence program is a collaborative effort of the refuge and its Friends organization, along with the Starkville Area Arts Council.

Previous participants in the artist-in-residence program have included painter and Webster County native William “Bill” Dunlap; printmaker Kathryn Hunter of Decatur, Alabama; Pennsylvania ceramicist Lilly Zuckerman; mural artist and illustrator Michael Roy of Jackson County; New Orleans artist and critic Marian S. McLellan; New York artists Caetlynn Booth and Tyson Washburn; Mississippi Audubon Master Naturalist and artist Robin Whitfield of Grenada; Iowa artist Barbara Fedeler; MSU fine arts/sculpture graduate Shelby Nichols of Aberdeen; and San Francisco artist and curator Jenny Balisle.

Complete refuge information is found at,, and

Part of the College of Architecture, Art and Design, the art department offers a bachelor of fine arts degree, with concentrations in graphic design, photography and fine art (ceramics, drawing, painting, printmaking and sculpture). For more information, visit, and

MSU is Mississippi’s leading university, available online at

Residence hall construction to close parking spaces temporarily

MSU News - Tue, 09/29/2015 - 3:30pm

The ongoing construction of new residence halls at Mississippi State will temporarily close several parking spaces.

Beginning Friday [Oct. 2] at 8 a.m., approximately four parking spaces in the Memorial Hall parking lot will be closed until Wednesday [Oct. 7] at 8 a.m. No thru-traffic will be allowed during the closure. Please see the accompanying map for details.

Thank you for your patience during this temporary closure.

Meet Your Diamond Dawgs: Jake Mangum

Bulldog Beat - Tue, 09/29/2015 - 3:25pm
STARKVILLE, Miss. – During the fall, will interview select Mississippi State newcomers as an introduction to the MSU fanbase.

Oktibbeha Countian assumes MSU Foundation leadership role

MSU News - Tue, 09/29/2015 - 3:08pm
Ally Walker (Photo by Russ Houston)

Contact: Amy Cagle

Ally Walker (Photo by Russ Houston)

STARKVILLE, Miss.—Sidney A. “Ally” Walker is Mississippi State’s new associate director of annual giving.

In a new role that began earlier this month, the Starkville native is working to secure major annual giving commitments, assist with special campaigns and focus on specific university programs such as the Compass Scholarships.

Walker is a 2009 MSU communication/public relations graduate with a minor in marketing.

Focusing on business development, outside sales, and project management, she worked previously at Beech Street Capital in Bethesda, Maryland, and Skyline DFW Exhibits and Events in Grand Prairie, Texas.

“Ally brings knowledge and a lot of enthusiasm to this position, and I am confident she will be a strong asset to the Annual Giving team,” said Jana Berkery, director of annual giving for the MSU Foundation. “Her skillset and passion make her an excellent addition to our professional staff.”

As a fourth-generation MSU graduate, Walker said she is excited “to be working for the university I love."

“I’m looking forward to partnering with many dedicated alumni and friends to advance Mississippi State for its students, faculty and programs,” she added.

The MSU Annual Fund provides an avenue for donors to support any area of the 137-year-old land-grant institution. Gifts may be designated specifically for a college or school, academic department, scholarship fund or any other area.

The program also includes a telefunding center employing more than 50 students that make telephone solicitations of alumni and friends. In addition to solicitations, center staff members work to update MSU Alumni Association records during the contact process.

Mississippi State currently has more than 132,000 living alumni.

Offices for the MSU Foundation are located in the Hunter Henry Center. For more information on campus fundraising activities, visit Walker may be contacted at or 662-325-5977.

MSU is Mississippi’s leading university, available online at

'Avoiding Trouble with International Travel' seminar set for Wednesday afternoon

MSU News - Tue, 09/29/2015 - 11:56am

As a globally engaged institution, Mississippi State encourages its students, faculty and staff to pursue research and academic opportunities around the world. While there is an inherent risk associated with all travel, certain destinations call for heightened caution and additional preparation.

Join the university's Office of Research and Economic Development for an "Avoiding Trouble with International Travel" seminar on Wednesday [Sept. 30] from 1:30-3 p.m. in the Bost Extension Center theater.

Session topics include:

* The U.S. Passport — Your Most Valuable Travel Document

* Do's and Don'ts of Photography

* Legal and Illegal Gifts

* Ins and Outs of Hotels

* Traveling with Medications

* And more.

Neal Lewis, director of the Office of Research Security at Mississippi State, will lead the presentation.

Online registration for this session and others is available at

Registration open for October legal continuing ed seminar

MSU News - Tue, 09/29/2015 - 11:38am

For the fifth year, Mississippi State’s political science and public administration department is sponsoring the Bulldog Lawyer Continuing Legal Education Seminar. 

The daylong Oct. 9 program for university alumni will take place in Ballroom C of The Mill at MSU. Those interested in attending should be aware that the event occurs a day prior to the Bulldogs’ Saturday [the 10th] home football game with the Troy University Trojans.

The seminar offers six hours of continuing legal education credit, including one credit hour in ethics. The flat-rate registration fee is $225, and early sign-ups are encouraged.

In addition to various sessions, the provided lunch will feature remarks by MSU Men’s Head Basketball Coach Ben Howland.

Complete seminar details, including a registration form, are available at

Whit Waide, an attorney now serving as an MSU political science instructor, said his department established the seminar in an effort to “create a network of MSU alumni attorneys and use that network to enhance our pre-law advising efforts.”

For more information, contact Waide at 662-325-7860 or

MSU Bulldogs In The NFL: Week 3

Bulldog Beat - Tue, 09/29/2015 - 10:38am
Below is a list of former Mississippi State student-athletes who are currently on NFL rosters.

Howland, Players Talk About Practice Beginning

Bulldog Beat - Mon, 09/28/2015 - 9:30pm
STARKVILLE, Miss. - On Monday, first-year coach Ben Howland and select players met with the media to talk about the start of practice.

Updated Stats: 26 Diamond Dawgs In Professional Baseball

Bulldog Beat - Mon, 09/28/2015 - 8:26pm
STARKVILLE, Miss. - Twenty-six former Mississippi State baseball players are currently in professional baseball, including four currently playing in Major League Baseball. Below are their updated stats following games that ended Sunday, September 27, 2015. Please tweet any corrections to @HailStateBB.

Bell Tied For Eighth After 36 Holes at Shoal Creek Invitational

Bulldog Beat - Mon, 09/28/2015 - 8:00pm
BIRMINGHAM – On a wet course due to light rain throughout the day, redshirt freshman Ross Bell's play shined bright enough to be tied for eighth after 36 holes Monday at the Shoal Creek Invitational.

The BFG (Big Friendly Giant) family show comes to MSU Riley Center

MSU News - Mon, 09/28/2015 - 6:12pm

A little orphan girl and her supersize pal will join forces to save the world’s children when The BFG (Big Friendly Giant) comes to the MSU Riley Center in downtown Meridian as a family show Oct. 16 at 7 p.m.

The Dallas Children’s Theater On Tour production was adapted for the stage by David Wood from the book by Roald Dahl.

Beloved children’s author Dahl -- Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Fantastic Mr. Fox -- said this was his favorite of all his books. Wood, Britain’s most popular children’s playwright, adapted it with nonstop fantasy action to please children and plenty of cleverness to delight adults. The production involves actors, gigantic puppets, special effects, and hilarious dialogue featuring some gloriumptiously creative words.

Sophie the orphan and the Big Friendly Giant do eventually triumph over evil, with a little help from the Queen of England. Douglass Burks, the play’s director, promises “a very visually dynamic and thoughtful production appealing to a broad age range.”

The show is recommended for children age 7 or older.

“We are attempting to capture the wildly colorful world that is uniquely Dahl’s, but also explore the story’s sensitive themes of diversity and unexpected friendships, societal outcasts, and surprising heroes,” Burks said.

Tickets are $18 for adults and $10 for students at the MSU Riley Center Box Office, which is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Tickets can be purchased online at or by calling the box office at 601-696-2200.

Works by MSU English faculty featured in national anthologies

MSU News - Mon, 09/28/2015 - 5:36pm

Contact: Sasha Steinberg

Becky Hagenston (Photo by Megan Bean)

STARKVILLE, Miss.—Works by two Mississippi State English faculty members are being featured in two of the nation’s most prestigious anthologies.

“The Upside-Down World,” a 2013 short story by Becky Hagenston, is among 20 included in The O. Henry Prize Stories 2015.

“Relevant Details,” a poem by Catherine Pierce, was chosen for The Best American Poetry 2015.

Both are associate professors at the university.

In addition to teaching creative writing and fiction courses, Hagenston serves as faculty editor and adviser to the semi-annual campus literary journal, Jabberwock Review (

Her previous recognitions include a 1996 O. Henry Award, as well as special mentions in Pushcart anthologies and Best American Short Stories. A story titled “Midnight, Licorice, Shadow” also was included as a Distinguished Mystery Story in the 2008 Best American Mysteries list.

Hagenston, whose works have appeared in numerous journals, is the author of three award-winning short-story collections. They include Permafrost Book Prize in Fiction winner “Scavengers” (University of Alaska Press, 2016); Spokane Prize for Short Fiction winner “Strange Weather” (Press 53, 2010); and Mary McCarthy Prize winner “A Gram of Mars” (Sarabande Books, 1998).

Catherine Pierce (Photo by Megan Bean)

A Maryland native, she is an Elizabethtown College graduate who holds master’s degrees from the University of Arizona and New Mexico State University. For more, see

Pierce co-directs the university’s creative writing program and teaches creative writing and American literature courses. Among others, she has authored two award-winning books of poems, “Famous Last Words” and “The Girls of Peculiar” (Saturnalia, 2008 and 2012, respectively). The former received the Saturnalia Books Poetry Prize in 2007; the latter, Mississippi Institute of Arts and Letters Award for Poetry in 2013.

Additionally, Pierce was honored in 2013 with the MSU College of Arts and Sciences’ Faculty Teaching Award in the Humanities.

Originally from Delaware, she is a Susquehanna University graduate with a master’s degree from Ohio State University and doctorate from the University of Missouri. For more, see

Editions of the O. Henry collection are available for purchase at; the poetry collection, at

For more about MSU’s English department and its creative writing program, visit

MSU is Mississippi’s leading university, available online at

Staff Council taking limited pre-orders, planning campus sale dates

MSU News - Mon, 09/28/2015 - 5:36pm

Staff Council at Mississippi State reminds staff members that annual homecoming sale pre-orders are only being accepted for the new long sleeve t-shirts from the following areas until Oct. 2: county offices, research and extension centers, College of Veterinary Medicine, Meridian campus, Animal and Dairy Sciences farm workers and laborers, and Stennis Space Center.

Staff Council will not be accepting pre-orders for the additional sale items listed below. Any pre-orders for these items will be returned. The items will be available at the sale on a first-come, first-serve basis until they are sold out.

Sale dates on campus are scheduled for Oct. 9 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Bost Extension Center breezeway, and on Oct. 15 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Allen Hall.

Additional sale items available during the campus sales include:

* 2015 Staff Appreciation Day t-shirts, small and medium only, $5

* 2014 homecoming jacket, quarter-zip only, $10

* 2014 Staff Appreciation Day t-shirts, $1

Find more information, a pre-order form, and view the shirt and logo at

MSU Bulldogs In The NFL

Bulldog Beat - Mon, 09/28/2015 - 5:23pm
Below is a list of former Mississippi State student-athletes who are currently on NFL rosters.

MSU Wind Ensemble fall concert takes place Thursday

MSU News - Mon, 09/28/2015 - 4:55pm
Under the direction of Elva Kaye Lance, MSU’s Wind Ensemble presents its first concert of the fall semester Thursday [Oct. 1] in the McComas Hall theater. (Photo by Megan Bean)

Contact: Sasha Steinberg

Under the direction of Elva Kaye Lance, MSU’s Wind Ensemble presents its first concert of the fall semester Thursday [Oct. 1] in the McComas Hall theater. (Photo by Megan Bean)

STARKVILLE, Miss.—Mississippi State’s Wind Ensemble presents its first concert of the 2015 fall semester Thursday [Oct. 1] in the university’s McComas Hall theater.

Free to all, the 7:30 p.m. performance is directed by Elva Kaye Lance, MSU director of bands and an instructor in the music department, which is sponsoring the event.

The evening’s selections will include a movement from Robert Buckley’s “Portrait of the North,” Franco Cesarini’s “Bulgarian Dances,” musical depiction of Aldo Forte’s “Van Gogh Portraits” and Roger Cichy’s “Maestro!”

A tribute to the heritage of band repertoire, Karl King’s “Kentucky Sunrise,” will close the program.

The university’s Flute Ensemble conducted by lecturer Jessica Banks also will be featured.

The MSU Wind Ensemble is the university band program’s premier instrumental group. As the result of a series of 2008-2014 European concerts, it has earned an international reputation for its mastery of contemporary and traditional band literature.

Selected through competitive auditions, this year’s ensemble members represent Mississippi and seven other states, as well as a range of academic disciplines across campus. For more, visit

Additional concert information is available from Lance at 662-325-3070 or Craig Aarhus, MSU associate professor of music and associate director of bands, also may be reached at

Accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music, MSU’s music department offers a bachelor’s degree in four areas of music education, as well as a bachelor of arts in music. Learn more at, and

MSU is Mississippi’s leading university, available online at

Mullen, Prescott, Brown Speak At Weekly Football Press Conference

Bulldog Beat - Mon, 09/28/2015 - 4:30pm
STARKVILLE, Miss. – Mississippi State head coach Dan Mullen, quarterback Dak Prescott and linebacker Richie Brown previewed the Bulldogs' upcoming SEC road contest against Texas A&M at MSU's weekly press conference on Monday.

Register today for Safe Zone awareness training

MSU News - Mon, 09/28/2015 - 4:22pm

Mississippi State University’s Safe Zone Advisory Board encourages interested students, as well as faculty and staff members who have not previously attended, to register now for the Safe Zone LGBTQ Ally Training on Oct. 19 from 5:30-8:30 p.m. at the Colvard Student Union’s Bill R. Foster Ballroom.

Safe Zone is a campus-wide program that promotes a welcoming and safe community for LGBTQ students, faculty and staff. Safe Zone Allies, who have completed awareness training, are any individuals committed to providing and maintaining a safe and supportive campus environment.

Food will be provided. Participants also will receive a certificate, resource manual and Safe Zone sticker upon completion of the training.

Since space is limited, early registration is encouraged. The deadline to register is Oct. 14 by 5 p.m. To register, visit

In addition to the Safe Zone Advisory Board, the training is being sponsored by the Richard E. Holmes Cultural Diversity Center, LGBTQ + Union, Spectrum, Delta Omega Lambda, Gender Studies Program, Department of Recreational Sports and Student Counseling Services.

For more information about this and other Safe Zone events, please email the Safe Zone Advisory Board at

The Borger cross country teams competed at the Rebel Run in Amarill this past Saturday. See full...
The Borger Bulldogs football team had a tough night at Bulldog Stadium losing to Perryton 44-19....
The 2015 West Texas Comanche football team.


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