THE UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI
COLLEGE OF BUSINESS AND
It is my distinct privilege to serve as the next dean of
the College of Business and Economic Development
at The University of Southern Mississippi.
As an alumnus of Southern Miss, I know the business school has a long
and proud history of developing the business leaders of South Mississippi
and beyond, and it is an honor to be chosen to carry on its great tradition.
The commitment and spirit of our students, faculty and staff make this a
special place, and I am elated to be the new leader of such an important and
inspiring group of people.
As dean of the College of Business and Economic Development, I am proud
to look back with you on a successful 2018-19 academic year. I hope
you’ll take the time to look through this annual report containing the
impressive accomplishments of the past year, including impactful research
contributions, notable program rankings, critical real-world connections,
and the impressive successes and accolades of our students and faculty.
We have much to be proud of, and the future promises to be even greater!
I am incredibly grateful to serve as dean of such a dedicated community
of faculty and staff, who are so committed to building future business
leaders and positively impacting the lives of our students. I hope you enjoy
this annual report, and if you have any questions or feedback, feel free to
contact me at email@example.com.
J. Bret Becton, Ph.D.
WE INSPIRE POSITIVE CHANGE
AS WE CULTIVATE TALENT AND
CONNECT WITH ORGANIZATIONS.
WE CREATE EXCELLENCE IN THE USE OF CORE
BUSINESS CONCEPTS, BUILD KNOWLEDGE
THROUGH SCHOLARSHIP, PROMOTE PROGRESS
IN OUR PEOPLE, AND SUPPORT THE ECONOMIC
DEVELOPMENT OF OUR COMMUNITIES.
2 | C O L L E G E O F B U S I N E S S A N D E C O N O M I C D E V E L O P M E N T
IN THE SOUTHERN MISS COLLEGE
OF BUSINESS AND ECONOMIC
DEVELOPMENT, OUR VALUES
EMPHASIZE THAT WE ARE
THE INTEGRITY OF OUR
INTERACTIONS AS WE VALUE AUTHENTICITY
SYNC WITH CHANGING TIMES, RESEARCHING AND
TEACHING CONCEPTS THAT ARE APPLICABLE TO BUSINESS
AND SUPPORTIVE FOR ALL WHO WANT
TO ENHANCE THEIR BUSINESS KNOWLEDGE
PERSISTENT, DETERMINED, STEADFAST, TIRELESS AND FIRM,
HOLDING FAST TO OUR GOALS AND DREAMS FOR OURSELVES,
OUR STUDENTS AND OUR COMMUNITIES
OUR GRIT AND
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 3
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TABLE OF CONTENTS
Vision and Mission
By the Numbers
Immersed in the Field
Students to Lead
MBA at a Glance
Experiential Learning in
the School of Marketing
The Study Abroad
Hard Work Pays Off
Serving Love on a Plate
Breaking the Mold
Where Do They Go
Contributions and Impact
The Internship Experience
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 5
BY THE NUMBERS
For the first time in history, USM welcomed MORE THAN 2,000 first-time, fulltime
freshman students to the university for the 2018-19 academic year.
THIS IS AN 11% INCREASE OF ENROLLED FROM FALL 2017.
TOTAL COLLEGE OF BUSINESS AND
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT STUDENTS
“When you offer something of exceptional quality, you get noticed. When you offer something that is
both unique and of the highest quality, you win awards. Nowhere is this truer than with University
of Southern Mississippi’s MBA in Sport Event Security Management, the only MBA concentration of
its kind available anywhere in the world.” - Quote from onlinembapage.com
Top Online MBA Programs in Sport Management recognizing our MBA with Sport Event Security Management emphasis, Online MBA Page, 2019-20
of student-athletes are from the College
27% of Business and Economic Development
#36 Best Online Undergraduate Business School in the nation by College
#36 Best Online Business School in the nation by SuccessfulStudent.org, 2019
Top Universities for Professional Sales Education in the
Nation, Sales Education Foundation Annual Report, 2019
#119 Best Online MBA Program, U.S. News & World Report, 2019
#17 Best Online MBA Program, Affordable Colleges Online, 2018-19
#41 Best MBA Degree Program Online, Best College Reviews, 2018
#136 Best Online MBA Program, U.S. News & World Report, 2018
#188 in the Top 200 Best Part-Time MBA Program, U.S. News and World Report, 2018
#1 BEST ONLINE BUSINESS
SCHOOL IN MISSISSIPPI BY
#8 BEST ONLINE MASTER’S DEGREE
IN SPORT MANAGEMENT BY
#18 Most Affordable Online Master’s Degree in Sport Management, OnlineU.org, 2019
#26 Top International Business program in the country by study.com, 2019
#16 Most Affordable Online Colleges for Business
for the Business program by OnlineU.org, 2019
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ACC Advisory Board – During the 2018-19 academic year, the School
of Accountancy Advisory Board has experienced an 85% increase in
membership, welcoming 11 new members to the group. Dr. Marvin
Bouillon, director of the School of Accountancy, has worked to increase
membership and participation in the school's Advisory Board since he
began in July 2018.
"The School of Accountancy Advisory Board members’ input and
contributions are critical to the success of the school. We hope to
expand the board to include members from governmental organizations,
corporations and junior colleges. We are looking for successful
accounting executives interested in being a part of something great,"
said Bouillon. "Additionally, we have invited the president of Beta Alpha
Psi to join, as a student member."
Members of the Partner’s
Advisory Council (PAC)
Members of the Business
Advisory Council (BAC)
Friends of the BAC
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 7
ALUMNA OF THE YEAR
Joy Lightsey at
Alumna of the Year
Joy Lightsey was selected as the 2018 Alumna of the Year by the
College of Business and Economic Development. Lightsey earned her
business administration degree in accounting from Southern Miss
in 1973. She worked as the senior vice president of operations for
SunTech Inc. and served in that capacity for over 10 years before the
company was sold, and she began consulting with the new owners
over the next two years before retiring. Since retiring, she has been
actively involved with the Southern Miss community, as she currently
serves on the Board of Directors for the USM Foundation. Additionally,
Lightsey established an endowment for accounting students and
served as the chair of the Building Better Business campaign in 2015,
supporting the completion of what we now know as Scianna Hall.
Left to Right, President Rodney D. Bennett,
Robert St. John, Dr. Stacey A. Hall
ENTREPRENEUR OF THE YEAR
Robert St. John, restaurateur and author, was recognized as the 2019
Entrepreneur of the Year. St. John has spent almost 40 years in the
restaurant business, 30 of which have been as the owner of the Purple
Parrot, Crescent City Grill, Mahogany Bar, Branch, Tabella, Ed’s Burger
Joint, The Midtowner and Midtown Donut in Hattiesburg, Miss. In 2009,
St. John founded Extra Table, a statewide non-profit organization that
ships over 14 tons of healthy food to over 39 Mississippi soup kitchens
and mission pantries every month. St. John is the author of 11 books
with the 12th book, Palate to Palette: An Italian Travel Journal, in the
works. Additionally, he has written a weekly syndicated newspaper
column for over 20 years.
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CONNECTING WITH REAL-WORLD LEADERS
The college hosted its annual Experience Business
Casually event this fall, allowing students to interact
with business professionals from the community.
The event encourages students to network with
professionals in a casual, comfortable environment
by visiting stations that highlight particular topics,
such as handshake tips, résumé and cover letter
critique, financial tips, graduate school information
ARE YOU A BUSINESS PROFESSIONAL
INTERESTED IN PARTICIPATING? EMAIL
BAILEY.HARRIS@USM.EDU TO SIGN UP!
Over 300 College of Business and Economic
Development students were in attendance.
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 9
CONNECTING WITH REAL-WORLD LEADERS
ECONOMIC OUTLOOK FORUM
Experts from banking, finance, economics and academia came together
to explore research related to the economic outlook for 2019. Dr. Darrin
Webb, state economist for Mississippi, and Adrienne Slack, VP and
regional executive of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, spoke about
economic trends and forecasts for 2019.
Sponsored by the College of Business and Economic Development, the
Trent Lott National Center and The First, A National Banking Association
“THE ECONOMIC OUTLOOK
FORUM CONTINUES TO GROW EVERY YEAR.
IT GIVES US AN OPPORTUNITY TO VISIT WITH
PEOPLE FROM THE GULF SOUTH REGION, TO
FIND OUT WHAT IS GOING ON AND HOW OUR
COMPANY CAN BE OF SERVICE. WE BELIEVE THE
CONFERENCE GIVES THOSE IN ATTENDANCE A
SOLID FOUNDATION OF ECONOMIC EXPECTATIONS
UPON WHICH TO PLAN THE UPCOMING YEAR.”
Quote from M. Ray “Hoppy” Cole, President and CEO of The First,
A National Banking Association
From left to right: M Ray “Hoppy” Cole, Adrienne Slack, Dr. Darrin Webb,
President Rodney D. Bennett
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CONNECTING WITH REAL-WORLD LEADERS
INSPIRED LEADERS SERIES
The goal of the Inspired Leaders Series is to invite industry leaders to
answer the question, “What inspires you?” Over the 2018-19 academic
year, we have had the honor of hosting two executives, Ms. Maxine
Coleman and Mr. Duane Lock. During each of their visits, they were
able to engage students in large- and small-group settings through
conversations about what has inspired them in their lives and careers.
Ms. Maxine Coleman, a retired executive from Mars Inc., was chosen
as the fall 2018 Inspired Leader. Ms. Coleman served as vice president,
personnel and organization for Mars Inc., as well as an instructor
at several universities as part of the National Urban League's Black
Executive Exchange Program. Prior to working for Mars, Ms. Coleman
worked in several management positions in personnel and marketing.
Spring 2019 Inspired Leader and alumnus, Mr. Duane Lock, currently
serves as the founder and president of River Oaks Energy in Dallas,
Texas. Lock earned his undergraduate degree from Southern Miss
in 1983. Prior to becoming an entrepreneur, he worked in corporate
America for nearly 20 years. Lock used his extensive experience
from holding senior management positions for publicly traded energy
companies to become an entrepreneur and launch his own electricity
brokering and consulting company in 2003.
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CONNECTING WITH REAL-WORLD LEADERS
Companies and students turned out in record
numbers for this year’s event. A total of 81
representatives from 30 companies and 147
students participated in the 2018 Meet The Firms.
MEET THE FIRMS
Meet the Firms is an annual career fair designed to benefit
both accounting students and recruiting firms. Accounting
firms from all over the nation are invited to showcase their
organization’s attributes to undergraduate and graduate
students in the School of Accountancy. This venue provides
the business professionals an outlet to meet and connect
with potential candidates from Southern Miss to fill positions
within their companies, whether that be internships or fulltime
Hosted by College of Business and Economic Development,
School of Accountancy
100% PLACEMENT FOR
USM STUDENTS IN THE
MASTER OF PROFESSIONAL
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CONNECTING WITH REAL-WORLD LEADERS
EAGLES ENGAGED IN
With the guidance of Dr. SherRhonda Gibbs, students in the
Entrepreneurship program hosted an event to provide a venue for students
to learn more about how to succeed as an entrepreneur. Welcoming
students of all majors who aspire to be entrepreneurs, the event included
creative activities, a “shark tank” challenge, and short presentations by local
entrepreneurs on topics such as startup funding, human resources and
marketing. Additionally, they were provided information on the resources
available to them on campus and were given an opportunity to network
with seasoned entrepreneurs and business owners.
Students enrolled in the New Venture Creation
course also had the opportunity to earn
certificates in ETHICAL
ANALYTICS and ADVANCED
The event is the first of its kind to be held at Southern Miss and is part
of a class project for students in the New Venture Creation course in the
School of Management.
Over 100 participants!
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CENTER FOR ECONOMIC AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP EDUCATION
In addition to curriculum development and teacher training in entrepreneurship, economics and financial literacy,
the Southern Entrepreneurship Program (SEP) serves as the center’s flagship initiative.
SEP at a Glance The Southern Entrepreneurship Program provides Mississippi youth a head start in becoming our state’s future business
leaders and innovators through a hands-on approach to opportunity recognition and real solution development.
During the 2018-19 school year, the SEP engaged
around 700 students, hosted 8 events, coordinated
44 volunteers, and awarded $6,750 to winners.
Since 2007, the SEP has provided engaging high school
programs to over 5,500 students through a growing
statewide network of 66 schools and 110 educators.
Among SEP students interested in Southern Miss, 100%
stated SEP participation played a role in the university's
appeal, with 75% reporting this influence to be significant.
"THE SEP COMPETITION IS ONE OF THE GREATEST OPPORTUNITIES AND CONTRIBUTIONS EVER MADE TO OUR YOUTH AND TO
OUR COMMUNITIES. THIS PROGRAM REMINDS OUR STUDENTS THAT THEIR TALENTS ARE WORTHY OF FINANCIAL GAIN AND ARE
VALUABLE TO OUR ECONOMIC GROWTH. WHEN THEY WIN, WE AS A SOCIETY WIN. FUTURE BUSINESS LEADERS OF AMERICA
(FBLA) AT BILOXI HIGH SCHOOL BELIEVES SO MUCH IN THIS PROGRAM THAT WE STARTED TO SUPPORT IT FINANCIALLY THIS YEAR,
AND I PERSONALLY PLAN TO CONTINUE SUPPORTING THIS PROGRAM AFTER RETIREMENT!"
- Clementine Fantroy (Instructor, Biloxi High School)
More than 500 students and
educators attended the 2018-19
statewide kickoff event, SEP ARRIVE!
Pictured, from left to right, are young
entrepreneurs sharing their startup stories:
JJ Townsend, Citizenville.org; Nick Wallace,
Nick Wallace Culinary; Chelsey Jones,
Makeup by Chels; Josh Frazier, Torrus;
Christopher Lomax, Pearlbend; Leslie Saucier,
Leslie Saucier Art; James Wilcox, director
of the SEP and the Southern Miss Center for
Economic and Entrepreneurship Education.
(photo by Greg Campbell)
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AFFILIATED CENTER CONTRIBUTIONS
Concept division winner at the 2019 SEP
state competition, Garrett Johnson,
Madison Central High School, presents a
prototype of his new product designed
to assist amputees. (photo by Kelly Dunn)
"THIS OPPORTUNITY GAVE MY SENIORS A NEW
PERSPECTIVE ON THEIR ENGINEERING DESIGN AND
DEVELOPMENT CAPSTONE PROJECTS. INSTEAD OF
JUST DEVELOPING AND BUILDING A PRODUCT THAT
WORKS, THEY HAD TO DEVELOP SOMETHING THAT WAS
MARKETABLE. THEY QUICKLY LEARNED THAT THESE ARE
TWO VERY DIFFERENT DISTINCTIONS. SEVERAL WERE
INSPIRED TO THINK ABOUT PATENTING OR MARKETING
THEIR PRODUCTS IN THE FUTURE. WE DEFINITELY WANT
TO BE INVOLVED IN THE SEP AGAIN NEXT YEAR."
- Michelle Robinson (Instructor, Madison Central High School)
Student winners at the 2019 SEP state competition
Front row, from left: Harrison Welch, Madison Central High School; Mark Troyer, Madison Central High School;
Malcolm Bell, Gulfport High School; Second row: Erica Gates, Biloxi High School; Yasmin Colon, Leland High
School; Garrett Johnson, Madison Central High School; Rotrik Morris, New Hope High School (photo by Kelly Dunn)
Students at the 2018-19 statewide kickoff event, SEP
ARRIVE! worked in teams to identify and promote
strategies to reduce brain drain in Mississippi. Pictured
is a student team from Harrison Central High School
showcasing their campaign. (photo by Greg Campbell)
James Wilcox, the director of the Center for Economic
and Entrepreneurship Education, was selected for the 2019
Young Scholars Program awarded by the Association of Private
Enterprise Education, an association of teachers and scholars
with a common interest in studying and supporting the system of
private enterprise. The purpose of the monetary sponsorship was
to offset young scholars’ expenses while they attend and present
at the annual meeting in Nassau, Bahamas. The meeting allows
members to share their scholarly finds with one another. Wilcox
served as a discussion panelist on “Perspectives on Financial
Literacy in Economics Education.”
In March 2019, CEEE received an award from the Jimmy A.
Payne Foundation to create THE HATCHERY—a universitywide
initiative to support entrepreneurship. This strategic investment in the startup culture at
Southern Miss will ultimately help prepare students, regardless of college or degree program,
as emerging leaders and career-ready entrepreneurs who will positively impact the state
of Mississippi. The first objective of The Hatchery is to serve as the hub for the university’s
entrepreneurial ecosystem by connecting resources and identifying gaps. As additional support
is identified, The Hatchery’s services are anticipated to include student scholarships, seed funds
to assist student startups with necessary research and prototype development, and a business
residency program to offer advanced services and personalized mentorship.
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AFFILIATED CENTER CONTRIBUTIONS
Four years ago, The University of Southern Mississippi launched a Small
Business Development Center (SBDC) focused on providing comprehensive
assistance to startup companies, growing businesses and struggling
businesses, and the success of this center has been monumental.
Southern Miss created its Small Business Development Center through
a partnership with the Small Business Administration, the Mississippi
Small Business Development Center Network, the University of
Mississippi, the Trent Lott National Center and the College of Business
and Economic Development.
In its most recent fiscal year alone (Oct. 1, 2017, to Sept. 30, 2018),
the SBDC assisted approximately 200 clients,
continued to coach 74 long-term clients,
submitted applications for 17 loans totaling
$4.6 million, and achieved actual capital
infusion of $2.5 million in client projects,
beginning 12 businesses from the ground up.
In addition, over the course of this academic
year, the SBDC has offered over 40 workshops.
To say the SBDC has been an invaluable resource to the region would
be a significant understatement. What’s more, the center’s services
come free of charge.
“The combination of building better, more educated small business
owners, building more sustainable small business, providing confidential
assistance to our entrepreneurial community from sidelines to multi-milliondollar
businesses and franchises would be sterling value propositions
by themselves,” said SBDC counselor, Rita Mitchell. “Yet, we also add the
vital element of preventing an unsustainable business plan and model
from rolling out and evaporating savings, homesteads, time and effort, by
encouraging those pre-venture clients to ‘hit the pause button,’ based on
our time-honored system, databases and research analyses.”
Original story by Van Arnold, Assistant Director for News and Media
Relations, University Communications
THE USM SBDC HAD A NEW ADDITION IN 2018
OF A FULLY CREDENTIALED MS SBDC COUNSELOR,
JOMA SHELBY (USM HONOR GRADUATE).
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IN THE FIELD
Dr. Brandon Allen took a select group of students to Jackson for the
Sanderson Farms Championship PGA Tournament during the fall
semester. The students from his Introduction to Sport Management
class had the opportunity to meet with Jonah Beck, the director of
operations, and Kacie Towles, the volunteer coordinator, to discuss
sponsorship strategies, facility management and event logistics.
“For the past four years, our program has brought students to
volunteer at Sanderson Farms Championship. Students are able to
visualize the magnitude of operating a mega event while being able to
make connections with business leaders from all over the world. This
trip brings their academic studies to life,” said Dr. Allen.
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PREPARING STUDENTS TO LEAD
STUDENT ORGANIZATION HIGHLIGHTS
BETA ALPHA PSI
Twelve members of the Southern Miss Beta Alpha Psi chapter attended the
annual meeting in Washington, D.C., this year. Students had the opportunity
to tour and explore the country’s capitol, participate in a community
service project with Reading Across America, attend several seminars
given by professionals on a diverse number of topics, and network with
other chapters across the country.
Beta Alpha Psi members on a visit to Ingalls Shipbuilding,
which included a tour and short presentation given by
the vice president of finance and controller, Frank Martin.
Additionally, a mixture of members…
• attended the 2019 regional meeting in Jacksonville, Fla.;
• completed parts of the CPA Exam;
• studied abroad; and
• participated in a team-building retreat at Lake Sehoy
“THE BETA ALPHA PSI ANNUAL MEETING HEAVILY IMPACTED ME, AS AN
ACCOUNTING MAJOR AND AS A DEVELOPING YOUNG PROFESSIONAL.
BECAUSE OF THIS EVENT, I HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO MEET WITH
FELLOW CHAPTER PRESIDENTS FROM ALL OVER THE COUNTRY AND
DISCUSS OUR CHAPTER’S SUCCESSES, SHARE ADVICE AND BRING BACK
IDEAS TO SOUTHERN MISS ON HOW TO IMPROVE OUR CHAPTER.”
- Sayle Sanson, President of Beta Alpha Psi
Ashley Foley with RSM
Ray Ruiz with Surgent
Ryan Hirsch with NASBA CPT
Julie Uher with Holt & Associates
Autumn Brown and Cliff Jackson with Smith, Dukes & Bucklew
Jennifer Hilliard with Haddox, Reid, Eubanks & Betts
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PREPARING STUDENTS TO LEAD
BETA GAMMA SIGMA
Nishu Gupta and John “Trey” Haire represented our Beta Gamma Sigma chapter
at the 2018 Beta Gamma Sigma Global Leadership Summit in Chicago, Ill. The
summit is a premier annual event where hundreds of the highest achieving
students from the top five percent of business schools around the world
will gather for a unique learning experience. This year, the event focused
on “Innovative Leadership.” The students participated in activities, such as
discovering strengths and enhancing skills in teamwork, networking, ethical
leadership, time-management and communication.
In fall 2018, the organization hosted a clothing
drive for gently used clothing. The clothing
was donated to a local women’s shelter. The
organization is currently planning a fashion
show for fall 2019.
STUDENTS INTO THE
CHAPTER IN 2018-19
THE SOUTHERN MISS CHAPTER OF BETA GAMMA SIGMA
EARNED HIGHEST HONORS FROM BETA GAMMA SIGMA
INTERNATIONAL FOR THE FIFTH CONSECUTIVE YEAR.
SPORT MANAGEMENT CLUB
The Sport Management Club hosted the Sport
Management Symposium as a means for undergraduate
and graduate students to receive advice from sport
professionals. The overall theme of the symposium was
"Getting a Foot in the Door: Entering the Sports Industry."
A panel of professionals from a variety of areas within
the sports industry were asked questions by students.
From left to right: DJ Pulley (Athletic Director, William
Carey University), Deven Matthews (Director of Ticket
Sales, Southern Miss Athletics), Bryan Caldwell (Athletic
Director, Gulfport High School), Jonah Beck (Director of
Operations, Sanderson Farms PGA Championship)
In addition, approximately 10 students attended part of the National Center for
Spectator Sports Safety and Security (NCS 4 ) conference, titled Managing Crowds
at Sport and Entertainment Events Workshop. The students heard from a variety
of keynote speakers, including William Evans, the executive director of public
safety and chief of police from Boston College, and Abigail Williams, the team lead
for critical infrastructure and special events at the DHS Counterterrorism Mission
Center. The students also networked with many sport security professionals and
toured the Fallen Oaks Golf Course to gain an insight on the security measures
used for events, such as the Rapiscan Systems Classic.
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PREPARING STUDENTS TO LEAD
The Student Economic Development Association attended a roundtable
discussion hosted by the Golden Triangle Development Link. In addition, the
Golden Triangle facilitated tours of PACCAR Engine, Steel Dynamics Inc. and
Columbus Brick Company, allowing students to see the impact that these
industries have on the Golden Triangle region.
“I enjoyed seeing real-life applications for what we have learned in the classroom.
Each location was unique,” said Caleb Prine, Master of Economic Development
student and member of the SEDA.
SEDA touring PACCAR Engine
Each year, the Mississippi
Forestry Association (MFA)
hosts the SEDA students for
a tour of the GP Leaf River
Cellulose plant in Perry County.
ACCOUNTING SOCIETY OF GULF PARK
The ASGP hosted a number of local accounting professionals, who shared their
stories, information on unconventional career options available to those in
business, and opportunities for internships at their firms. Although the society
consists of accountants, a number of members and visiting supporters from
all studies of business enjoyed meeting and networking with the organization.
They hosted a representative from Wiley’s CPA review course, who raffled off
a review course, courtesy of Wiley, worth $1,800. Members also volunteered at
the MSCPA's “CPA Day of Service,” Warrior Dash for St. Jude, and USM's very own
Jazz and Blues Festival.
ETA SIGMA DELTA
Hospitality and tourism management
students attended the American Hotel
and Lodging Association HX Hotel
Experience Conference in New York.
ASSOCIATION (GULF PARK)
The Gulf Park chapter of AMA held a variety of educational events for students,
including a branding seminar with Lance Hopkins, a success seminar with
Sadie Anderson, and introduction to the Graduate School and MBA Program
with Heather Sison and Lauren Agnew. The chapter also participated in the
university’s Welcome Week Student Involvement Fair and the Homecoming
Week Lawn Banner Competition.
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MBA AT A GLANCE
The Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree is
in the top 5 master’s degrees awarded at Southern Miss
and has been for the last 5 years (IHL 2018 Degree Book).
In 5 years, MBA enrollment
has almost TRIPLED.
USM OFFERS THE ONLY MBA WITH A SPORT EVENT SECURITY EMPHASIS IN THE NATION.
THE DEGREE IN
ONE CALENDAR YEAR.
58% OF THESE
STUDENTS WERE WORKING
AS PART-TIME STUDENTS.
45 MBA STUDENTS COMPLETED THE MBA PROGRAM DURING THE 2018-19 ACADEMIC YEAR.
AVERAGE GPA AT GRADUATION:
THEY HAVE 7 YEARS
WERE ONLINE STUDENTS.
HAVE A NON-BUSINESS
AGE RANGE: 21–49 YEARS OLD
94 STUDENTS ARE CURRENTLY PURSUING AN MBA AT SOUTHERN MISS
AGE RANGE: 21–54 YEARS OLD
HAVE A NON-BUSINESS
OF CURRENT MBA
STUDENTS ARE ONLINE.
70% ARE WORKING
AS PART-TIME STUDENTS.
MORE THAN 8 YEARS
OF PROFESSIONAL WORK
EXPERIENCE, ON AVERAGE.
7% ARE INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS
FROM 6 DIFFERENT COUNTRIES
(BRAZIL, INDIA, MOROCCO, NEPAL, RUSSIA, THAILAND).
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 21
The United States Department of Defense (DoD), Office of Economic
Adjustment awarded The University of Southern Mississippi (USM)
a Phase I grant in 2016 to support national security technology
acceleration and economic diversification efforts for defense
contractor communities in Mississippi. Over the last three years, this
Mississippi Defense Diversification Initiative (MDDI), made up of the
College of Business and Economic Development and Trent Lott National
Center, developed three pilot models to aid regions whose economic
health is dependent on defense programs.
1. Goal: Incorporate defense community topics into the Master of
Science in Economic Development (MSED) program at Southern Miss.
Accomplishment: Launched in summer 2017, the Economic Development
for Defense Communities (ED 711) course educates economic developers
on how to help communities adapt to DoD program changes. The same
year, the MDDI supported USM efforts to launch a Hacking for Defense
(H4D) course that allows student groups to work on Department of
Defense (DoD)-provided problem sets. The current DoD provided problem
sets that are matched to the state’s military footprint, and the student
groups are interacting with military personnel stationed in Mississippi.
2. Goal: Provide economic diversification technical assistance for
Mississippi-based defense companies and communities.
Accomplishment: The MDDI team identified and targeted companies
likely to be innovative and technology-focused and built a network
of interrelated companies. The network is growing into a business
ecosystem capable of short- and long-term economic strategies that
advance the state’s opportunities. The network has now been expanded
to include supply chain companies, defense-dependent communities,
military installations and assets, and other defense stakeholders.
In addition, Governor Phil Bryant signed Executive Order 1401, recognizing
the need for the state to become more strategic and proactive with the
defense economy to protect, grow and diversify defense and national
security assets as an economic driver for the state. The Executive Order
created a task force to develop a statewide defense plan.
3. Goal: Create an online platform to build defense-related businessto-business
relationships and assist technology transfer and
commercialization of defense intellectual property.
Accomplishment: The team developed the MDDI website, launched
two social media platforms, and produced three videos for descriptive
communication in advancements of technology transfer and to provide
examples of partnership efforts that will continue after the OEA grant is
complete. Housed on the MDDI website are many resources to support
defense business, such as an entrepreneurial “playbook.”
Fall 2018, Southern Miss secured continued funding for Phase II,
outlining the following objectives:
• Objective 1 - Continue to incorporate defense diversification
assistance into the business development ecosystem and create
defense industry networks in Mississippi.
• Objective 2 - Continue to incorporate defense diversification into
the academic curriculum.
• Objective 3 - Develop a strategic plan for Mississippi’s Defense and
Homeland Security Economy to synchronize Mississippi’s existing
defense-related economic assets and programs in support of a
statewide defense plan for the governor.
• Objective 4 - Lead Mississippi’s MEP network in building a DFARS
Cybersecurity Requirement assistance tool for Mississippi companies.
MDDI continues to be recognized statewide as a champion for defense
diversification. The network of private sector companies, non-profits
and public-sector partners is continuing to grow.
At the 2019 International Homeland Defense and Security Summit in
March 2019, Governor Phil Bryant announced the Mississippi Defense
Dr. Chad Miller, along with fellow
members of the Mississippi Defense
Initiative Task Force and the Governor,
at the Homeland Defense and Security
Summit in Biloxi as they unveiled the
state’s defense strategic plan.
22 | C O L L E G E O F B U S I N E S S A N D E C O N O M I C D E V E L O P M E N T
The Southern Miss International Business program, housed in
the School of Management, was recently ranked among the
nation's Top 50 by online resource guide by Study.com.
Dr. John Lambert, associate professor of international business, has worked diligently
to increase awareness and engagement in the program. One of many ways he has done
so is by beginning the International Business Speakers Series, welcoming three guests
during the spring semester to campus to share their expertise with students, faculty and
In addition, Dr. Lambert’s International Business capstone students immersed themselves
into a semester-long applied learning project in collaboration with community partners.
In groups of four, students worked closely with their assigned businesses to create and
present plans to resolve their partners’ export issues. Sanderson Farms, SumaGrow and
the French American Chamber of Commerce (FACC) Gulf Coast chapter were the three
organizations to work with the students throughout the semester as they developed
international business plans.
Shelly Reboul, international sales manager, represented Sanderson Farms, while SumaGrow
was represented by Aimee Murry, public relations and marketing communications manager.
Both attended and took part in critiquing the students’ final presentations.
Students working with Sanderson Farms discussed how they could better leverage their
product in Asia. Students working with SumaGrow presented plans to break into the
“The students were eager to investigate ways to expand our
products into Brazil and dedicated to ensuring the culture
of our company was reflected throughout the report,” said
Aimee Murry. “When I showed our company president
the business plan developed by these students, he was
impressed and asked about their availability for hire.”
Aimee Murry, International
Business Series speaker
Shelly Reboul and International
Business Capstone students
Students working with the FACC Gulf Coast chapter received the opportunity to travel
to the company’s location in New Orleans to present their project, which focused on
revising the trade brochure the FACC uses to engage potential new members.
Dr. Lambert serves as the vice president for trade with the French American Chamber of
Commerce, Gulf Coast chapter, in addition to serving on the Mississippi District Export Council.
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 23
IN THE SCHOOL OF MARKETING
The College of Business and Economic Development School of Marketing faculty incorporate client-based projects
into their curriculum, allowing the students to solve real-world problems as they prepare to begin their careers.
Organizations nationwide have become clients for 300- and 400-level
courses across the curriculum in the school. To begin, companies introduce
real problems they face to the students. Students apply the skills that they
are learning in the classroom to present marketing and implementation
plans, business plans and innovative solutions to the clients.
While the organization is receiving the benefit of cost-free consulting,
the students are provided with (1) a networking opportunity and (2)
hands-on experience in developing and presenting strategic plans,
better preparing them for their future careers.
PROFESSIONAL SELLING PROGRAM
Professor Chris Balaski has integrated multiple experiential learning opportunities
into his Professional Selling course curriculum in an effort to better prepare his
students for their careers in the sales field after graduation. Students in Advanced
Professional Selling had the opportunity to present mock sales pitches to Frito-Lay
representatives Katie Frederick, Jamil Murray, Cody Self and Rachel Anthony. The
students played the role of a Frito-Lay salesman selling products and displays, while
the representatives played the role of a store owner. Following the presentations, the
students received detailed feedback from the guests on their pitch. Paige Whiting
was chosen by Frito-Lay as having the best pitch.
LISTED IN THE TOP UNIVERSITIES FOR PROFESSIONAL
SALES EDUCATION IN THE NATION, ACCORDING TO THE
2019 SALES EDUCATION FOUNDATION ANNUAL REPORT
This class also partnered with an improvisational course and put one another
to the test through role-play scenarios. The theatre students acted as potential
customers, while the professional selling students pitched their product,
Federated Insurance. This allowed both groups of students to practice the skills
they are learning in their respective courses.
SOUTHERN MISS IS THE ONLY UNIVERSITY
TO OFFER A PROFESSIONAL SELLING
CERTIFICATE PROGRAM IN THE STATE.
24 | C O L L E G E O F B U S I N E S S A N D E C O N O M I C D E V E L O P M E N T
During the fall 2018 semester, Dr. Joanne Cao's Integrated
Marketing Communications class worked with three clients
in an effort to deliver innovative solutions to marketing and
The clients included Fourth Street CrossFit, two of the
owners being Southern Miss alumni, Heather Graham and
Daryl Bosarge; Petal Excel by 5, alumna Nadine Coleman
being a board member for the organization; and Boys and
Girls Country of Houston.
The Boys and Girls Country of Houston is a nonprofit
organization licensed by the state of Texas as a residential
home. Boys and Girls Country addresses a child's wellbeing,
helping to break the cycle of poverty for children by
providing a secure, stable, Christian home environment with
an emphasis on education, building healthy relationships,
and setting goals for the future. They do this with broadbased
financial support and hundreds of volunteers.
Charles "Chuck" Scianna, a member of the Board of Directors
for Boys and Girls Country, connected the school with
the organization. Scianna is an alumnus of Southern Miss,
the College of Business and Economic Development 2018
Entrepreneur of the Year, and the namesake for Scianna
Hall, the building that houses the College of Business and
Economic Development on the Hattiesburg campus.
Sasha Smith, communications and marketing manager,
represented the Boys and Girls Country of Houston during
the presentation as students pitched ideas to increase
brand awareness, financial support and volunteers.
Boys and Girls Country of Houston has also partnered
with Dr. Gallayanee Yaoyuneyong's Apparel Product
Development course to develop welcome packages for a
new monthly donation campaign and her Digital Media
Merchandising course to work on their website, blog and
other digital presence.
THIS STORY WAS ALSO FEATURED IN THE HATTIESBURG AMERICAN.
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 25
SPORT MANAGEMENT PROGRAM
SOUTHERN MISS ATHLETICS
Dr. Chris Croft led efforts to connect his undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in
sports marketing courses with Southern Miss Athletics. His students worked with Southern
Miss basketball, baseball, volleyball and the Southern Miss Athletics Marketing team.
Collaborating closely with Murray Littlepage, director of marketing for Southern Miss
Athletics, Dr. Croft’s students assisted with marketing and promotional ideas for a variety
of sports and went on facility tours of the Reed Green Coliseum and the Payne Center.
DURING DR. BRANDON ALLEN’S SPORT SALES METHODS AND TECHNIQUES
COURSE, STUDENTS PRACTICED THEIR SKILLS BY ASSISTING THE SOUTHERN
MISS ATHLETICS TICKET OFFICE IN CONTACTING OVER 3,700 CUSTOMERS ABOUT
BASEBALL AND FOOTBALL SEASON TICKETS. THE STUDENTS LOGGED OVER 400
HOURS OF PHONE CALLS, SELLING THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS’ WORTH OF TICKETS.
Other clients that the school’s faculty and students have
partnered with this year include the following:
Randy Price and Company
The DREAM of Hattiesburg
K Pavoloni and Company
Courtyard by Marriott
Dance 4 Life Academy
Trupanion Pet Insurance
Eagle Maker Hub
Max Draughn, president of Heartwood
Capital Inc., presented to Dr. Kelli King's
Healthcare Marketing class about
keys to success in the pharmaceutical
industry. We are very grateful for
Mr. Draughn and his wife, Susan, for
their endowment that supports our
Healthcare Marketing program.
26 | C O L L E G E O F B U S I N E S S A N D E C O N O M I C D E V E L O P M E N T
The University of Southern Mississippi became the first
institution of higher education to deploy the advanced AIenabled
economic data analytics platform, Gazelle.ai, within
its curriculum in the College of Business and Economic
Development. Both graduate and undergraduate students
have access to the platform that mines and curates data
collected from millions of business establishments and uses
trained algorithms to forecast growth.
“The ability to harness and interpret the ever-increasing
amount of data available to decision-makers has become
an increasingly important differentiator in the business
world,” said Steven Jast, president of Gazelle.ai. “We’re
thrilled that The University of Southern Mississippi will be
using our tool to help equip students and prepare them
for a rapidly evolving business environment.”
ANALYTICS IN THE MPA PROGRAM
Master of Professional Accountancy courses such as Advanced Auditing,
Audit Analytics & IT Auditing and Advanced Cost/Managerial Accounting have
integrated analytics tools, such as Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Access, Sage 50
2018, General Ledger Software, CaseWare IDEA Data Analysis Software, and
Tableau Data Analytics and Visualization Software into the curriculum.
100% of MPA students achieved both
Specialist and Expert Certification in
Microsoft Excel during spring 2019.
Named for “gazelles,” a term
used to denote rapidly
growing companies, the
platform was created for
professionals whose role
is to identify and attract
growing companies that bring jobs and investment to
communities. Gazelle.ai are being integrated into courses
focusing on economic development, entrepreneurship,
marketing, marketing research and management.
Dr. Chad Miller, professor of economic development,
added, “In keeping with our mandate to innovate and
encourage fresh thinking, we are looking forward to
becoming the first college to use Gazelle.ai. I’m very
confident that our students and faculty will come to find
the platform to be an indispensable resource.”
Mr. Mike Skinner, with Horne Cyber in Memphis, spoke to MPA students during the
spring semester about data analytics, cybersecurity, big data, artificial intelligence and
automation, and other technological initiatives impacting the future of the accounting
profession. Mike was joined by Blake Pittman, a cyber risk analyst with Horne Cyber
and a 2015 graduate of the MPA program at Southern Miss.
Other guest speakers include Kyle Stoner with PWC New Orleans and Mario Perez
with Audimation Services.
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 27
THE INTERNSHIP EXPERIENCE
Eli Lilly once again selected two interns from the Southern Miss
Healthcare Marketing program for the 2019 Summer Sales Internship.
Seth Nash and Jenny Hamilton were two of 60 interns this summer.
This is the third year in a row to have two interns selected for the
internship. Currently, five Southern Miss graduates work for Lilly.
“I FEEL THAT THIS IS OUR BEST ACCOMPLISHMENT YET WITH
THIS INTERNSHIP. BECAUSE THERE WERE MORE ‘TARGET’
SCHOOLS THIS YEAR, THERE WAS A VERY HIGH LIKELIHOOD OF
ONLY GETTING ONE INTERN SELECTED FOR SOUTHERN MISS. WE
ARE BEYOND THRILLED TO HAVE TWO REPRESENTING US.”
Quote from Dr. Kelli King, professor of healthcare marketing
Paige Dillistone (accounting) was accepted into the Global Internship Program through KPMG,
one of the Big Four Accounting Firms, in Jackson, Miss. Over 200 applicants were reviewed
for the internship, and Paige was one of 20 to receive the honor. During her internship, Paige
completed a four-week rotation in Sydney, Australia.
“DURING MY INTERNSHIP, I WAS ABLE TO EXPERIENCE AUDITING FOR BOTH PUBLIC AND PRIVATE
COMPANIES IN THREE DIFFERENT INDUSTRIES. IN ADDITION TO WORK, I TRAVELED WITH OTHER INTERNS
TO THE BLUE MOUNTAINS, THE GREAT BARRIER REEF, THE TARONGA ZOO AND BONDI BEACH. WE HELD
KOALA BEARS, GOT TANS IN FEBRUARY, AND ENJOYED THE CITY AS MUCH AS WE COULD, ALL WHILE
WORKING FOR ONE OF THE BIGGEST PUBLIC ACCOUNTING FIRMS IN THE WORLD. PARTICIPATING IN AN
INTERNSHIP HAS BEEN ONE OF THE BEST CHOICES I HAVE MADE AS A STUDENT, AND I WOULD ENCOURAGE
ANYONE LOOKING INTO AN INTERNSHIP TO MAKE THE LEAP AND GET THE EXPERIENCE NOW!”
Quote from Paige Dillistone
In addition, Jonathan Brent (accounting) accepted a 10-week internship with KPMG in Dallas, Texas.
“MY INTERNSHIP WAS SUCH AN EXTRAORDINARY EXPERIENCE AND GAVE ME THE CHANCE TO IMPLEMENT THE FOUNDATION OF SKILLS AND LESSONS I HAVE LEARNED
HERE AT THE UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI. HATTIESBURG HAS ALWAYS BEEN MY HOME, AND INTERNING IN SUCH A BIG CITY SO FAR AWAY WAS QUITE
CHALLENGING BUT COMPLETELY WORTH IT. NOT ONLY DID I LEARN SO MUCH IN MY FIELD OF WORK, BUT I ALSO GOT THE OPPORTUNITY TO MEET SO MANY NEW
PEOPLE IN AN EXCITING CITY. AT THE END OF MY INTERNSHIP, I WAS OFFERED A FULL-TIME JOB IN THE DALLAS OFFICE AND WILL PLAN TO START IN SEPTEMBER OF
2020 AFTER MY YEAR OF GRADUATE SCHOOL IN THE MPA PROGRAM HERE AT SOUTHERN MISS.”
28 | C O L L E G E O F B U S I N E S S A N D E C O N O M I C D E V E L O P M E N T
YMCA - WORKING ON WALL STREET
Cole Engle (accounting) interned this summer in the Finance department with the YMCA Retirement
Fund in Manhattan. The fund is located at the Equitable Building in the Financial District. During
the previous semester, Cole worked for the USM Foundation Office as a student worker in
Financial Services. He is a member of Beta Gamma Sigma, the vice president of scholarship and
educational programming for the Interfraternity Council at Southern Miss, and the 2018-19 Dr.
Joe Paul Male Participant of the Year for Intramural Sports. Additionally, he has served as the
recruitment chairman, fundraising chairman and vice president for his fraternity, Kappa Sigma.
“WHILE INTERNING THIS SUMMER, I LEARNED HOW THE FUND OPERATES, THE PLAN REGULATIONS, AND HOW THE REPORTING IS
ACCOMPLISHED. THE COURSES THAT I HAVE TAKEN AT SOUTHERN MISS PREPARED ME FOR THIS CHALLENGE, NOT ONLY IN CONTENT,
BUT I WAS ALSO TRAINED TO PERSEVERE WHEN SOLVING PROBLEMS. THIS EXPERIENCE ALLOWED ME TO PRACTICE LEARNED SKILLS
FROM THE CLASSROOM WHILE OBTAINING NEW ONES.” – COLE ENGLE
“I WILL BE INTERNING WITH FDIC IN THE DIVISION OF RISK
MANAGEMENT SUPERVISION IN JACKSON, MISS., FOLLOWING
ORIENTATION IN DALLAS, TEXAS. I HOPE TO GAIN WORK
EXPERIENCE AND INSIGHT INTO THE WORLD OF ACCOUNTING AND
BANK EXAMINATION. THIS IS ALSO AN OPPORTUNITY FOR ME TO
EXPLORE MY LIKES AND DISLIKES IN ACCOUNTING AND ULTIMATELY
LAND A GREAT JOB AND JUMPSTART MY FUTURE CAREER!”
Quote from Matthew Odom, Intern for FDIC, Anticipated Graduation – May 2020
Other companies who hired accounting
interns in 2019 include:
Robert E Donnell III, CPA
Clinton CPA Firm
Coast Electric Power Association
Haddox Reid Eubank Betts, PLLC
Hieronymus CPAs, LLC
Holt & Associates, PLLC
Topp McWhorter Harvey, PLLC
Wm F. Horne & Company, PLLC
Jon Ryan Fennell (general business) will be participating in an
internship with Nova Ivica, a small business consulting agency
in Bar, Montenegro. His focus is to revitalize the image of their
business by producing a range of digital media content for the
firm. In addition, he will be assisting with business workshops
on topics ranging from simple business success to advanced
video-graphic techniques and marketing.
“MY GOAL IS TO HELP BUSINESSES LIKE NOVA IVICA PRODUCE
INCREDIBLE MARKETING CONTENT THAT TRANSFORMS THE IMAGE
OF THEIR PRODUCT, SERVICE, MISSION AND GOALS. THE UNIVERSITY
OF SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI HAS BROUGHT ME TO A STATE OF WELL-
ROUNDEDNESS IN MY UNDERSTANDING OF BUSINESS. WITH THIS WELL-
ROUNDEDNESS, I AM ABLE TO BE AN EFFECTIVE AND IMPACTFUL PART
OF A BUSINESS TEAM, WHICH IS, PERSONALLY, THE BEST FEELING IN
THE WORLD. I AM GRATEFUL FOR THE FACULTY MEMBERS WHO HAVE
HELPED ME GET TO THE POINT WHERE I AM NOW.” – JON RYAN FENNELL
Jessica Foreman (accounting) is
interning with mBlue, a human
resource outsourcing company
located in Prague, Czech Republic.
Using digital marketing and
professional social media platforms,
Jessica assists their clients in finding
the perfect, qualified individual for
an open position.
“MY EDUCATIONAL EXPERIENCES AT SOUTHERN MISS HAVE HELPED PREPARE ME
FOR THIS INTERNSHIP IN MORE SUBTLE WAYS THAN I HAD ORIGINALLY THOUGHT.
THE COLLEGE OF BUSINESS AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT DOES SUCH A GOOD
JOB OF GIVING ITS STUDENTS A WELL-ROUNDED BUSINESS EDUCATION. ALTHOUGH
I AM AN ACCOUNTING MAJOR, MY MANAGEMENT AND BUSINESS TECHNOLOGY
CLASSES HAVE PREPARED ME IMMENSELY BY GIVING ME A SOLID FOUNDATION
THAT I'M ABLE TO BUILD OFF OF AT WORK.” – JESSICA FOREMAN
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 29
THE STUDY ABROAD EXPERIENCE
Some of our students went from finals to flights just days after the semester ended as they began to study abroad
on one of our three business study-abroad programs: Italian Studies, British Studies and Asian Studies.
While in Milan and Florence, students had the opportunity
to meet with executives from local companies and immerse
themselves in the professional culture of Italy. Some of
the businesses they interacted with included the oldest
chocolate company in Italy (Guido Gobino), one of the most
prestigious gold leaf companies in the world (Manetti
Battiloro), and an international paper company with ties
to Hattiesburg (Sofidel). Their experiences also included
spending a day in the Tuscan countryside to learn about how
some of the highest quality olive oil and wine in the world is
created (Frantoio dei Colli Toscani) and attending a cooking
class where they made pasta from scratch! Students were
also taught how to make an authentic cappuccino at a local
barista school in Florence (Mokaflor Espresso Academy).
While at the espresso academy, Mr. Russ Willis placed a
pin on their map of visitors, making Southern Miss the first
official visitors from Mississippi! Students took advantage
of their free weekends by exploring places such as Rome,
Pisa, Cinque Terre and Venice.
22% OF STUDENTS WHO STUDY ABROAD
ARE FROM THE COLLEGE OF BUSINESS
AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT.
30 | C O L L E G E O F B U S I N E S S A N D E C O N O M I C D E V E L O P M E N T
This summer, students on the Asian Studies program got to experience business
and culture in Tokyo and Hong Kong. In Japan, they visited the Tokyo Development
Authority, Nissan Global Headquarters, Uchida Yoko and the Mississippi Development
Authority. The students got a big welcome during their tour of the Tokyo Stock
Exchange. They also visited the Meiji Palace and Imperial Gardens and Epson Digital
Arts museum and got to try sushi at the fish market in Tokyo. In Hong Kong, students
saw the Hong Kong Trade Development Center and Hong Kong Science Park and tried
traditional Chinese food. One of the highlights of the trip was visiting students at
Kaetsu University in Japan. Southern Miss Business students assisted in a few English
language classes, dressed in yukuta, tried traditional Japanese calligraphy, and
played video games with Japanese college students. Students from Kaetsu University
will be visiting Southern Miss in spring 2020.
While in London, students were able to visit some of the most iconic businesses in
Britain, including Lloyd’s of London, the oldest and largest insurance brokerage firm in
the world; Jaguar, the world-renowned auto luxury maker; Twinings Tea, the oldest tea
purveyor in England, having occupied the same premises on the Strand since 1706; and
a behind-the-scenes look at arguably the most well-known sporting event in the world—
The Championships at the All England Club—more commonly known as Wimbledon.
Additionally, students visited smaller, family-owned business, including both
a winery and cheese maker in Kent, the agricultural belt of England.
Students immersed themselves in British history and culture,
including a river cruise down the River Thames to Greenwich,
England, home to Royal Naval Observatory and the Prime
Meridian, a private meeting with Charles Walker, a member of
Parliament inside the Palace of Westminster, and attendance
at musical shows in London’s famed theatre district of the
West End. Of course, no visit to London would be complete
without visiting Buckingham Palace, Covent Garden,
Westminster Abbey and St. Paul’s Cathedral. During the
students’ mini-break, they were able to travel to the
continent to such cities as Paris, Rome, Amsterdam,
Barcelona and Madrid.
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 31
HARD WORK PAYS OFF
EAGLE SCHOLARS PROGRAM
This year, David Jones, Jeremiah Willis, Elizabeth Rivera-Vega and Hayes Thompson joined the Eagle Scholars Program.
“I HAVE ALWAYS WORKED HARD, AND THANKS TO SOUTHERN MISS AND THE FOUNDATION, I HAVE AN
OPPORTUNITY TO WORK SMART. I REMAIN GRATEFUL FOR EVERY OPPORTUNITY AFFORDED TO ME. THE EAGLE
SCHOLARS PROGRAM WILL PROVIDE THE SAFETY, FREEDOM AND PROTECTION I NEED TO REACH GRADUATION
BY PROVIDING FUNDS FOR MY EDUCATION NOW AND LEADERSHIP SKILLS FOR MY CAREER AHEAD.”
C. David Jones, Accounting | Biloxi, Miss.
“AS A THIRD-GENERATION GRADUATE OF SOUTHERN MISS, THE EAGLE SCHOLARS PROGRAM
SCHOLARSHIP HAS ALLOWED ME TO GROW AND DEVELOP AS A STUDENT, BUSINESS PERSON
AND INDIVIDUAL. THE FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE HAS BEEN A TRUE BLESSING TO MY FAMILY
AND ME, BUT MORE IMPORTANTLY THE KNOWLEDGE SHARED WILL LAST A LIFETIME.”
S. Hayes Thompson, General Business | Summit, Miss.
“BEING CHOSEN AS AN EAGLE SCHOLAR HAS OPENED MANY DOORS AND CONTINUES TO OPEN DOORS
TO OPPORTUNITIES FOR ME. IT HAS HELPED ME GROW PROFESSIONALLY, AND IT HAS CHALLENGED ME
ACADEMICALLY. I AM TRULY GRATEFUL AND PROUD TO HAVE BEEN CHOSEN AS AN EAGLE SCHOLAR.”
Elizabeth Rivera-Vega, Finance | Biloxi, Miss.
“TO KNOW THAT PEOPLE BELIEVE IN ME ENOUGH
TO PROVIDE ME WITH THE EAGLE SCHOLARS
PROGRAM SCHOLARSHIP HAS ENCOURAGED
ME EVEN MORE TO MAKE MY DREAM OF
COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT A REALITY.”
Jeremiah Willis, Marketing | Jackson, Miss.
being a part of
We have an endowment fund where you can make your
gift, of any amount, to support the Eagle Scholars. If
you are interested in leaving a lasting legacy, consider
changing lives by establishing an Eagle Scholars Program
Scholarship. For more information about contributing,
contact J.T. Tisdale at 601.266.6824.
32 | C O L L E G E O F B U S I N E S S A N D E C O N O M I C D E V E L O P M E N T
HARD WORK PAYS OFF
RHYNE E. NEUBERT SCHOLARSHIP
Aubrey Sanders (MPA, Hattiesburg, Miss.) and Jenna VanDan (Accounting,
Summit, Miss.) were awarded the Rhyne E. Neubert Scholarship by the
Mississippi Society of Certified Public Accountants (MSCPA) Foundation. The
$2,500 scholarship was established in 2016 to honor Neubert, who had served
as a trustee of the MSCPA Education Foundation since its inception.
“I WAS AT A LOSS FOR THE ADEQUATE WORDS TO THANK THE SCHOOL OF ACCOUNTANCY
AT USM, NOT ONLY FOR THE NOMINATION, BUT ALSO FOR ITS INVESTMENT IN ME.
MOREOVER, I WAS AND STILL AM INCREDIBLY GRATEFUL FOR THE MSPCA, MR. NEUBERT
AND THE SELECTION COMMITTEE FOR THIS HONOR.” – AUBREY SANDERS
VanDan echoed those sentiments. “I was ecstatic and honestly in disbelief that
I was being awarded this scholarship,” she said. “Receiving this scholarship
reaffirmed that hard work and determination will be recognized and rewarded.”
MISSISSIPPI YOUNG BANKERS
Brandon Cade (Finance, Brookhaven, Miss.) was awarded the 2018 Mississippi
Young Bankers (MYB) Leadership Scholarship. Only one student in the state is
chosen to receive the scholarship. Cade is the sixth USM student to win the
$2,000 scholarship in the last eight years.
"I AM EXTREMELY HONORED TO RECEIVE THIS AWARD FROM THE MISSISSIPPI BANKING
ASSOCIATION AND THE MISSISSIPPI YOUNG BANKERS. THIS AWARD IS IMPORTANT TO
ME BECAUSE IT WILL HELP TO CONTINUE MY EDUCATION AT SOUTHERN MISS. I WOULD
LIKE TO THANK DR. (MARVIN) BOUILLON FOR SEEING ENOUGH POTENTIAL IN ME TO
NOMINATE ME FOR THE AWARD.” – BRANDON CADE
In addition, John Trey Haire was recognized as an MYB Scholar at the
Mississippi Young Bankers Scholar Study Conference and Convention. As a
finalist for the 2019 Mississippi Young Bankers Swayze Scholarship, he was
awarded a $1,500 scholarship.
PUBLIC COMPANY ACCOUNTING OVERSIGHT BOARD SCHOLARSHIP
Kameshia Mays (MPA, Greenville, Miss.) was awarded the $10,000 merit-based scholarship from the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB)
for 2018-19. A single student is chosen from 332 colleges and universities nationwide. Mays is the first USM student to earn the honor in six years.
“I WAS ELATED WHEN I LEARNED THAT I HAD WON THE SCHOLARSHIP. USM HAS BEEN A SIGNIFICANT PART OF MY SUCCESS. THE UNIVERSITY ALWAYS GOES BEYOND TO ENSURE
THAT EACH STUDENT HAS WHAT IS NEEDED TO SUCCEED, AND FOR ME THAT INCLUDES MAKING THE OPPORTUNITY TO OBTAIN AN EDUCATION AFFORDABLE.” – KAMESHIA MAYS
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 33
ON A PLATE
LOVE. NOURISH. INSPIRE.
This is the vision alumna Katie Dixon has for her restaurant,
Birdhouse Café in Hattiesburg. Miss. Dixon, a 2005 graduate from our
BSBA Marketing program, desires to serve nutrient-rich food to the South. She
does so through her diverse and healthy menu.
When entering her restaurant, it is far from a
traditional dining experience. Instead, it feels as
though you are walking right into a home. The
“kitchen” is actually an island in the center of the
room with fresh tea brewing on the stovetop. “We
want to show people it is not as complicated as
people make it, that healthy eating can be easy
and fun,” said Katie as we explored the layout of
her restaurant. Each meal is cooked to order right
in front of the guests’ eyes.
Katie’s passions are far greater than just adding nutritional value to food. In addition, she wants
to add value in the lives of those around her. She has personal relationships with each of her
seven employees, five of which are Southern Miss students or alumni. “I want to know what
their vision is, where they want to see themselves in a year,” Katie said thoughtfully.
She invests in her employees, empowering them to be creative within the business. She
encouraged her restaurant manager, Lydia, to use her talent for design and art. “I asked her,
while you are here, what can we do to make your work environment more fun? You’re creative,
and you are not getting to use that talent. This summer, she will sew aprons, and we will use all
of our excess fruits and vegetables, like avocado cores and strawberries, to naturally tie-dye
the aprons to give to children while we teach them a cooking class.” She also encouraged her
former head chef, who had dreams of traveling, to accept a position as a chef in New York City.
Katie’s love for food was inspired by her grandmother. “My grandmother and grandfather had a
farmhouse with chickens and cows and a fresh vegetable garden. My grandmother cooked every
day for a large family. On the weekends, my family and I spent a lot of time at the farm. I learned
from my grandmother. Both of our hearts wanted to serve love on a plate, food for the soul. I can
still vividly see the flour on my grandmother’s hands as she was making fresh biscuits.”
I TELL PEOPLE ALL THE TIME THAT WE ARE SOME OF THE LUCKIEST PEOPLE IN THE
WORLD LIVING IN MISSISSIPPI, WITH ALL OF THE FARM LAND WE HAVE. WE HAVE
SOME OF THE FRESHEST AND BEST PRODUCE RIGHT HERE AT OUR DOORSTEP.”
34 | C O L L E G E O F B U S I N E S S A N D E C O N O M I C D E V E L O P M E N T
CONTESTANT ON MASTERCHEF
In 2016, Katie appeared as a contestant on MasterChef. After applying on a whim, she was
immediately asked to audition in Jackson, Miss. Katie is self-taught and has no formal
training;however, she does enjoy taking cooking classes while traveling, learning to cook
international dishes, and putting her own healthy, Southern spin on them.
“For my audition, I made a salmon burger with a sweet potato mash. I brought along one of my
raw desserts for each judge, and they loved it! I swear that is what sealed the deal that day.”
Out of 22,000 applicants nationwide, Katie ultimately finished in the Top 6. She describes her
experience on MasterChef “like living in a dream. I still have a great relationship with Gordon
[Ramsey] and his team.” While on MasterChef, Katie made lamb curry for one of her challenges.
One of the judges was Edward Lee, a chef out of Louisville, Kentucky. “Chef Edward Lee told me
that my curry was one of the best he had ever had!”
In 2018, she competed once again, this time on Food Network Star and is currently under a
signed contract with Food Network.
I THINK THE NUMBER ONE THING I ATTRIBUTE
A LOT OF MY SUCCESS TO IS MY PROFESSORS.”
COMING HOME TO SOUTHERN MISS
During Katie’s collegiate career, she was very involved in campus life. She was a member of
Greek life, Southern Style and a cheerleader, while holding a full-time job as a waitress.
When asked who her favorite professor was, she stated that former marketing professor, Dr.
Bill Smith, and his wife, Ginger, are still close friends of hers. She explained that the principles
she learned throughout college have proven useful in owning her own business. While taking
his class, Dr. Smith told her, “If you meet the need of your customer, you will succeed.” She has
lived up to this advice by providing nutrient-rich food to Hattiesburg.
The Dixon family stays engaged with Southern Miss. “At USM, there is something for
everyone.” Coming back to campus as a family has become a bonding experience. She and
her husband Todd, who also graduated from USM, enjoy cheering for the Southern Miss
football team during the fall. The family attends beach volleyball games regularly because
of her 13-year-old daughter, Stevee Kate’s, interest in volleyball, and they enjoy coming to
plays performed by the Theatre department because of her seven-year-old daughter, Risi’s,
passion for theatre and dance. “We recently went and saw The Three Musketeers two nights
in a row on Southern Miss’ campus.”
Katie also visited Scianna Hall this spring to speak at the USM School of Marketing Major
Confidential, sharing her story with the students and encouraging them to follow their passions.
Katie’s future looks bright as she writes her first cookbook, travels for international catering
jobs, and searches for her second restaurant location.
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 35
THE COLLEGE’S FIRST FEMALE
In 1952, Miriam Moore Adamson became the first woman to graduate from the Accounting program at
The University of Southern Mississippi. In addition to her undergraduate degree in accounting, Miriam
also received a minor in business administration.
Born in House, Mississippi, she led a life full of adventure as she often
moved to new cities. Miriam rarely stayed in one place for long due
to her father’s position in the Navy. Little did she know, she would
continue to move frequently until retirement.
After graduating high school in a class of only 13, Miriam later attended
East Central Junior College in Decatur, Mississippi. Majoring in secretarial
studies, she explained that at that time, women normally prepared
to be a secretary/bookkeeper, teacher or nurse. Upon completion at
East Central, she began working for Mississippi Paint and Glass as a
secretary and bookkeeper. There, she realized that bookkeeping was
much more enjoyable for her than secretarial work, and that began her
pursuit of an accounting degree. She saved up her money, bought a car,
and drove it down to Hattiesburg.
When asked about her college experience, she described Southern
Miss as a supportive, friendly campus. She and her friends would often
attend football games, go see plays put on by the Theatre department,
36 | C O L L E G E O F B U S I N E S S A N D E C O N O M I C D E V E L O P M E N T
and go to the beach for the day. She and her roommate, Bernice
Snowden, who had also attended East Central with Miriam, remained
friends until Bernice passed away a few years ago.
While reminiscing on her time in the Accounting program, Miriam
told stories about her favorite professors and classes. “Mr. Scott
would put a copy of our exam, turned upside down, on each student’s
desk. There were a couple times in Cost Accounting that Mr. Scott
said, ‘Thanks to Miss Moore, I had to change this exam.’ He would
say it with a grin.” Mr. Scott was making changes to the exam so
that the questions were also relatable for Miriam, as all were geared
specifically toward men at the time.
“I LOVED MY ACCOUNTING CLASSES AND TOOK EVERY
ADVANCED CLASS THAT THEY TAUGHT IN MY TWO YEARS AT
SOUTHERN MISS. EVEN THOUGH I WAS THE ONLY FEMALE
IN MY CLASSES, MY MALE CLASSMATES WERE VERY
SUPPORTIVE AND ALWAYS TREATED ME WITH RESPECT.”
“When I was about ready to graduate, Dr. Joe Greene, the dean of the
Business School, said he had checked the records back as far as he
could, and as far as he could tell, I was the first female to graduate from
[Southern Miss] in accounting.”
Once she graduated from Southern Miss, Miriam followed in her father’s
footsteps and joined the Navy in 1953. She was the only female in her
company of 30. “They took good care of me, treated me like they would
have their little sister. One of the guys in my company gave me the
Mim worked as a disbursing officer for two years in San Diego before leaving
to marry her husband, Don Adamson. A few years later, Don secured a
position at IBM, which they jokingly said stood for “I’ve Been Moved.” The
Adamson family moved 15 times over a 30-year period, living in places such
as Michigan, Louisiana, New York, Connecticut, Georgia and Mississippi.
In each new location, Mim would quickly find an accounting position
and begin work again. Due to these frequent moves, Mim had the
opportunity to work for quite a few interesting companies.
While the family lived in New York during the late ‘60s, Mim worked
as a bookkeeper for Mr. Ed Jurist, who owned Vintage Car Store, and
the name says it all. “At the time, it was the largest vintage car dealer
in the country. He always had a showroom filled with cars that men
drooled over.” Mim mentions Jurist owning and selling vehicles, such as
Phantom IV Rolls and Excalibur cars.
When the family moved to Boca Raton, Florida, in the mid ‘70s, Mim
accepted a position at Creative Ceramics working for Elliott Mackle.
The company was transitioning into a ceramics manufacturer, building
a factory, hiring employees and starting production, and Mim was
hired to set up and run an accounting system for the growing business.
In Connecticut, Mim secured a job as an accountant for Mr. Scott Savage,
the owner of Savage Eye Wear and other businesses. Scott invented certain
swim goggles and nylon frames for eye glasses and different types of ski
goggles. “His goggles were used in the Winter Olympics at least one year.”
Miriam also secured jobs through various CPA firms, being assigned
to work temporarily for companies in need. “Without my degree
in accounting from USM, I could never have held the jobs that I did.
Professor Robert Scott did a great job of preparing the accounting
majors for life outside of college.” She described her courses as being
taught by professors that cared about and assisted with her success.
In addition to Mim’s career, she has always been very involved in volunteer
work. She set the books up for Boca Raton Methodist Church in Florida
while living there. She was elected president of the Board of Trustees at
Long Ridge Methodist Church in Connecticut, where she led the initiative
to renovate their Fellowship Hall. She was on the Finance Committee at the
First Methodist Church in Greensboro. She started a coffee club of 10 ladies,
which grew to over 350 members who lead many volunteer projects. She
joined the Missions Committee at her church in Hattiesburg.
Mim and her husband of 65 years have three children (Debbie, Doug and
Cindy), six grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. She is known by the
family as a “self-taught technology whiz.” In fact, while her granddaughter
was in graduate school a few years ago, Mim was called for assistance
with a group project involving Excel. Shocking the fellow group members,
Mim immediately knew how to solve the problem they were experiencing!
Mim and Don retired in Georgia
before moving to Hattiesburg
in 1997. “We just decided we
wanted to be some place with a
college campus and in a city that
has what Hattiesburg has.”
They have travelled the world
to places, such as Hong Kong,
Australia, Switzerland, Ireland,
China, Scandinavia, Thailand,
England, Italy, Austria, Russia
and many, many more.
3 + 2 = ?
FEMALE ACCOUNTANT, DOG MATHEMATICIAN
Miriam owned a dog that could do simple addition problems. Kuddles, the peek-a-poo, could be asked to add two
single-digit numbers together and tap out the correct answer with her paw in the palm of your hand. She eventually
got so good, she could tap out the family’s zip code. She was featured in multiple newspaper articles, performed for
schools and churches, and became a sensation in each of the towns the Adamson family moved to.
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 37
WHERE DO THEY GO AFTER GRADUATION?
Three Master of Science in Economic
Development alumni were recognized in
the 2019 Mississippi Business Journal Top 50
under 40. Congratulations to Chelsey Everett,
research director for economic development
of the ADP of Hattiesburg; Matthew Harrison,
executive director of the Grenada County
Economic Development District and Grenada
Area Chamber of Commerce; Blaine LaFontaine,
candidate for the Mississippi State Senate
District 46 and president of the Hancock
County Board of Supervisors.
OUR GRADUATES LIVE IN
MANY DIFFERENT COUNTRIES
Albania 1 • Aruba 1 • Australia 4 • Bangladesh 2 • Belarus 1 • Bolivia 3 • Botswana 1 • Brazil 15 • Canada 24 • Chile 1 • China 19
Colombia 12 • Cyprus 2 • Denmark 1 • Dominican Republic 1 • Ecuador 10 • El Salvador 11 • Finland 1 • France 3 • Germany 11 • Ghana 2
Guatemala 2 • Guinea 1 • Honduras 7 • Hong Kong 8 • India 26 • Indonesia 1 • Ireland 1 • Italy 2 • Jamaica 3 • Japan 31 • Jordan 1
Kenya 1 • Republic of Korea 4 • Kuwait 2 • Kyrgyzstan 1 • Lebanon 1 • Macedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic 1 • Madagascar 1
38 | C O L L E G E O F B U S I N E S S A N D E C O N O M I C D E V E L O P M E N T
TOTAL OF 26,197 LIVING BUSINESS ALUMNI.
P A C I F I C
Malaysia 54 • Mexico 4 • Nepal 5 • Netherlands 2 • New Zealand 2 • Nicaragua 5 • Nigeria 3
Panama 7 • Peru 5 • Poland 1 • Romania 1 • Russian Federation 6 • Saudi Arabia 6 • Singapore 10
Slovakia 3 • Spain 2 • Sweden 6 • Syrian Arab Republic 2 • Taiwan, Province of China 23
Thailand 13 • Trinidad and Tobago 1 • Turkey 1 • United Kingdom 9 • United Arab Emirates 1
P A C I F
I C O C E A N
L A N T
I C O C E A N
L A N T
I C O C E A N
I N D I A N
O C E A N
I N D I A N
O C E A N
O C E A N
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 39
NEW COURSES AND CERTIFICATES
CURRENT ISSUES IN PROFESSIONAL
ACCOUNTANCY (ACC 690)
The Current Issues in Professional Accountancy graduate course has
formally gained approval from the Graduate Council and is officially being
taught in summer 2019. The School of Accountancy has been pilot-testing
the course with great success, as many MPA students have successfully
completed parts or all of the CPA exam during the MPA program. The
course was developed to support the process of students beginning
their CPA exam while still in the master’s program. During the course,
students review issues related to professional accountancy, including
financial accounting and reporting, regulation, auditing and attestation,
and business environment and concepts.
FOR ACCOUNTING (BA 211)
The Professional Business Standards of Accounting course, taught
by Ms. Amber Hatten and Ms. Valerie Simmons, was pilot-tested
during the spring 2019 semester with great results. The course
focuses on preparing accounting students for entering the
accounting profession, with topics including interviews, recruiting
for internships and full-time positions, graduate school, the CPA
exam, etc. A variety of guest speakers and members from the
accounting profession joined class each week to discuss topics, such
as appropriate professional dress, résumés, and the importance of
academic and professional organization involvement.
EVAN PEELER, DECEMBER 2018 MPA GRADUATE, SUCCESSFULLY
COMPLETED ALL FOUR PARTS OF THE CPA EXAM DURING HIS YEAR
IN THE MPA PROGRAM, PASSING EACH SECTION ON HIS FIRST
ATTEMPT. UPON GRADUATION, HE BEGAN HIS PROFESSIONAL
CAREER WITH KPMG LLP IN JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA.
Karen Moody and Lydia Windam
from the Mississippi Society of CPAs
Amber Hatten invited Dr. Holly Syrdal and her Social Media Marketing and Merchandising students
to lead a workshop focused on teaching the Professional Business Standards for Accounting
students how to optimize their LinkedIn profiles for personal branding. Dr. Syrdal's students
have been working on a semester-long task to optimize their own personal LinkedIn profiles and
provided many expert tips on how to network effectively through the social media platform.
MERCHANDISING (MKT 478)
Dr. Holly Syrdal taught a new course titled Social
Media Marketing and Merchandising during spring
2019. The course takes a practical approach by
gaining hands-on experiences using social media
strategically when developing a social media
plan. One of the group projects allowed students
to assist an assigned non-profit community
partner by creating social media marketing plans
and presenting their successful execution results.
Students also earned a social media certification,
providing tangible evidence of the digital skills
acquired during the course.
UNDERGRADUATE BUSINESS ESSENTIALS CERTIFICATE
A new undergraduate Certificate in Business Essentials will launch fall 2019. The 12- hour program was created specifically for non-business students,
allowing those pursuing their dreams in other fields of study the opportunity to learn the fundamentals of business skills valued in every industry.
40 | C O L L E G E O F B U S I N E S S A N D E C O N O M I C D E V E L O P M E N T
Two of our accounting students, Rachel
Green and Tyler Pittman, received the
opportunity to attend a three-day event
held by Chick-fil-A Corporate in Atlanta,
Ga. Fifty-eight students from all over
the country were selected to attend the
leadership program, designed for those
pursuing careers in accounting and IT.
Dr. Megan Leach is a graduate of our MPA program and
recently became a visiting assistant faculty member in the
School of Accountancy in Hattiesburg. While earning her
Master of Professional Accountancy degree, Dr. Leach was
selected to attend the AICPA Accounting Scholars Leadership
Workshop, a prestigious and competitive program for minority
accounting students pursuing the CPA designation. The event,
hosted in Atlanta, helps to strengthen students’ professional
skills and provide guidance for understanding the possibilities
and benefits of earning the CPA credential. Speakers, panel
discussions and interactive programs provide participants
an opportunity to gain confidence, improve leadership skills,
develop tools to pass the CPA exam, and enhance understanding
of a career path within the accounting profession.
While working on completing her MPA degree, Dr. Leach also
completed the University of Florida's Post-Doctoral Bridge to
Business Program (PDBP). The PDBP is an AACSB-endorsed
program aimed at bridging the gap of doctoral faculty
shortages faced by many business schools. The program
provides a bridge for non-business disciplines to teach in areas
of business, including accounting and finance. By completing
the PDBP, Dr. Leach was able to successfully make the
transition from student to faculty member and join our team
in the School of Accountancy in fall 2018.
NATIONAL COLLEGIATE SALES COMPETITION
Gabriela Alongia and Trey Pittman, students from Professor Chris Balaski’s
professional sales course, represented our college at the National Collegiate
Sales Competition in Kennesaw, Georgia. Over 140 students participated in
the undergraduate competition. Each team had 20 minutes to close a sale for
Gartner with a fictitious CIO from a university. Each role play was judged by
both academics and corporate sponsors. Mr. Balaski served as a judge and
coach for the competition.
“The NCSC Sales Competition was an
amazing experience that I am honored I
was able to participate in! At first, I was
very nervous to do this competition,
by then I thought to myself, ‘Nothing
good will ever happen if I don’t take a
chance.’ Now I can say that I am glad I
stepped out of my comfort zone and
took that chance. The competition
was beneficial because we used our
‘SPIN’ selling skills that we learned
in MKT 400 to handle each role play
we participated in,” said Pittman,
who is currently working toward a
professional selling certificate.
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 41
TRAVELING TO SUCCESS
HONORS COLLEGE UNDERGRADUATE SYMPOSIUM
Seven of our College of Business and Economic Development honors students
presented at the 2019 Undergraduate Symposium. Additionally, Dr. John Miller, Dr.
Wei Wang, Dr. Joanne Cao and Dr. Gallayanee Yaoyuneyong volunteered as judges
for the presentations.
• CAMERON KENNEY – Marketing
Does It Just Mean More? An Investigation Into the Involvement and Motivations
of College Football Fans at The University of Southern Mississippi
• TREVOR TERRY – Marketing
Integrated Marketing Communications: Boys and Girls Country of Houston
• AUDREY KELLY – Accounting
The Impact of State Political Party Association on the Gender Pay Gap
• MATTHEW KELLER – Finance
What Community Bank Ads Are Actually Saying: A Content Analysis of Community
Banking Advertisement Materials in Southern Mississippi and Southern Louisiana
• BEN MILAM – Finance
Exploring Financial Literacy of Independent Musicians in the Gig Economy
• EVELYN LAWSON – Marketing
Integrated Marketing Communications Plan for Boys and Girls Country of Houston
• PARKER WILKINS – Marketing
4th Street Crossfit: An Integrated Marketing Plan
HONORS THESIS ADVISORS INCLUDED DR. JAMYE FOSTER, DR. MELINDA
MCLELLAND, DR. REGINALD WILSON AND DR. JOANNE CAO.
Cameron Kenney won the $500 prize for first place in his
category, “Local/Regional Topics.” Trevor Terry also won the
first place prize in his category, “Business or Public Policy.”
Aubrey Kelly was selected to present her honors thesis
research at the annual Society of Business, Industry
and Economics (SOBIE) Conference in Sandestin, Florida.
Aubrey’s research focused on the correlation between
political party association by state on the gender wage
gap in that respective state.
Matthew Keller and Ben Milam
also presented their thesis
research at the Association of
Marketing Theory and Practice
Conference in Charleston,
South Carolina. Presenting at
an academic conference is uncommon for business
undergraduate students, as most presenters are
professors and Ph.D. students. Both students
worked with Dr. Jamye Foster, associate professor
of marketing, as their thesis advisor during their
interdisciplinary research, both of which brought
together marketing and finance concepts.
Two recent marketing graduates also presented
at the conference. Alumna Michelle Le presented
her interdisciplinary research on “The Impact of
Brand Love, Brand Attachment and Electronic
Shopping Experiences Satisfaction on Consumer
Willingness to Write Reviews.” Her thesis advisors
were Dr. Joanne T. Cao, assistant professor of
marketing, and Dr. Gallayanee Yaoyuneyong,
professor of merchandising. Alumnus Tally Shaw
examined social media likes/shares impact on key
marketing outcomes with the help of his thesis
advisor, Dr. Melinda McLelland, associate professor
of marketing. Through an experimental design, he
compared the outcomes in both a local/small market
and a large/national market. Tally is currently
employed as an account representative with Howard
42 | C O L L E G E O F B U S I N E S S A N D E C O N O M I C D E V E L O P M E N T
CONTRIBUTIONS AND IMPACT
PEER-REVIEWED JOURNAL ARTICLES - 2018-19
Abdurakhmonov, M., Bolton, J. F., & Ridge, J.
W. (In press). When the Cat’s Away, the Mice
Will Play: A Model of Corporate Regulatory
Compliance. Journal of Managerial Issues.
B. F., Y. Q., & Collins, B. J. (2018). A dynamic
model of electric vehicle adoption: The role
of social commerce in new transportation.
Information & Management.
Cao, J. T., Foster, J. K., Yaoyuneyong, G., & Krey,
N. (In press). Hedonic and Utilitarian Value:
The Role of Shared Responsibility in Higher
Education Services. Journal of Marketing for
Chen, L., Wu, F.-M., Feng, F., Lai, F., & Wang,
Y.-M. (2018). A Common Set of Weights
for Ranking Decision-Making Units with
Undesirable Outputs: A Double Frontiers Data
Envelopment Analysis Approach. Asia-Pacific
Journal of Operational Research, 35(6), 1-25.
Chen, L., Lai, F., Wang, Y.-M., Huang, Y., &
Wu, F.-M. (2018). A two-stage network data
envelopment analysis approach for measuring
and decomposing environmental efficiency.
Computer & Industrial Engineering, 119, 388-403.
Chu, Z., Xu, J., Lai, F., & Collins, B. J. (2018).
Institutional Theory and Environmental
Pressures: The Moderating Effect of Market
Uncertainty on Innovation and Firm
Performance. IEEE Transactions on Engineering
Management, 65(3), 392-403.
Chu, Z., Feng, B., & Lai, F. (2018). Logistics
service innovation by third party logistics
providers in China: Aligning guanxi and
organizational structure. Transportation
Research Part E-Logistics and Transportation
Review, 118(10), 291-307.
Cole, S., Zhang, Y., Wang, W., & Hu, C. (2019).
The influence of accessibility and motivation
on travel participation of people with mobility
impairment. Journal of Travel and Tourism
Marketing. 36(1). 119-130.
Collins, B. J., Galvin, B. M., & Meyer, R. D.
(2019). Situational Strength as a Moderator
of the Relationship Between Organizational
Identification and Work Outcomes. Journal of
Leadership & Organizational Studies, 26(1), 87-97.
Davis, M. & Miller, J. J. (2019). A conceptual
analysis of the theory of consumer choice
on NBA attendance. Journal of Applied Sport
Management, 11(2), 1-10.
Davis, M. & Miller, J. J. (2019). A fan’s choice: The
application of the theory of consumer choice
to Major League Baseball. Applied Research in
Coaching and Athletics Annuals, 34, 146-175.
Dogru, A. K. & Melouk, S. H. (2018). Adaptive
appointment scheduling for patient-centered
medical homes. Omega: The International
Journal of Management Science, 85, 166-181.
Ehoff, Jr., C. & Bouillon, M. (In press). Accounting
for Goodwill: Still Crazy after All These Years.
Journal of Accounting, Ethics and Public Policy.
Galvin, B. M., Randel, A. E., Collins, B. J., &
Johnson, R. E. (2018). Changing the focus of
locus (of control): A targeted review of the
locus of control literature and agenda for future
research. Journal of Organizational Behavior.
Goodwin, K. R., Waller, B., & Weeks, S. (2018).
Connotation and Textual Analysis in Real
Estate Listings. Journal of Housing Research.
Dr. Fujun Lai was a guest editor
for the March 2019 special issue of
Information and Management (impact
factor = 3.890; acceptance rate = 8%).
In addition, Dr. Lai and Dr. Brian Collins
each contributed an article to the issue.
Dr. SherRhonda Gibbs was the
managing guest editor for the special
issue of the New England Journal of
Entrepreneurship (acceptance rate =
20%) and became associate editor of
Management Decision (impact factor =
1.53; acceptance rate = 12%). Dr. Gibbs
also had a published paper in the Journal
of Small Business Strategy (acceptance
rate = 18%) that was later featured by
Society for Industrial and Organizational
Psychology (SIOP) News online.
Dr. Kimberly Goodwin had an
acceptance in the Journal of Housing
Research for her paper, titled “Measures
of Real Estate Market Sentiment and
Their Relationship with U.S. Home
Prices.” Dr. Goodwin presented this work
at the Asian Real Estate Society meeting
in Incheon, South Korea. Additionally,
Dr. Goodwin was interviewed for two
separate online articles: The Mississippi
Business Journal, discussing how climate
change and changing weather patterns
could impact insurance rates; and the
LendingTree, discussing how gender may
affect one’s credit score.
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 43
FACULTY INTELLECTUAL CONTRIBUTIONS AND IMPACT
PEER-REVIEWED JOURNAL ARTICLES - CONTINUED
Goodwin, K. R. (In press). Measures of Real Estate Market Sentiment and
Their Relationship with U.S. Home Prices. Journal of Housing Research.
Hall, S., Manning, D., Keiper, M., Jenny, S., & Allen, B. (2019). Stakeholders’
Perception of Critical Risks and Challenges Hosting Marathon Events:
An Exploratory Study. Journal of Contemporary Athletics, 13(1), 11-22.
Hubbard, J., Mitra, S., & Miller, C. R. (2019). Analyzing Human Capital
as a Component of the Aerotropolis Model. Journal of Air Transport
Management, 78, 63-70.
Kanuri, S. & Malm, J. (2018). Performance of Female CEOs. Journal of
Investing, 27(1), 135-142.
Kanuri, S. & Johnson, W. (2018). Is Target Date Mutual Fund
Underperformance Rational? Journal of Investing, 27(1), 87-97.
Lai, F. & Luo, X. (2019). Social Commerce and Social Media: Behaviors in
the New Service Economy. Information & Management, 56(2), 141-142.
Lambert, J. T., Weber, M. J., Conrad, K. A., & Jennings, S. S. (In press).
Consumer Ethnocentrism in the USA and Wine Choice. Journal of
Business Management and Change.
Lambert, J. T., Weber, M. J., Conrad, K. A., & Jennings, S. S. (2018).
Managing Amid Perception: Wine Price-Point Considerations in Several
States in the USA. Journal of Business Management and Change, 12-30.
Leach, M. A., Leach, M. M., & Lee, E. (2019). Culture Convergence of
Manufacturing Managers in Mexico, Korea, Hong Kong, and USA.
Journal of Research in Emerging Markets 1(2), 16-32.
Leach, M. A., Lee, E., & Leach, M. M. (2019). Is There a Relationship
between VARK Learning Styles and the Perceived Usefulness of Online
Learning Tools in Accounting Principles Courses? Korean Accounting
Review, 44(2), 133-163.
Leach, M. A., Stammerjohan, C. A., Stammerjohan, W. W., & Leach,
M. M. (2018). Ethical Decision Making of Future Mexican Managers.
International Review of Advances in Business, Management, and Law,
Lewis, S. X., Magruder, J. S., Mitchell, D. S., Smolinski, C., & Burks, E.
J. (2018). Redefining ‘Useful Life’ -- An Energy Consumption Method
Emerges from the CC/DS Environment. Journal of Accounting and
Finance, 18(5), 105-112.
Li, X., Lai, F., & Yuan, Y. (In press). Understanding Adoption and
Continuance of Online Direct Sales Channel. Journal of Computer
Miller, J., Gillentine, A., Olinger, A., & Vogt, S. (2019). A content analysis
of the Journal of Legal Aspects of Sport: 1992-2016. Journal of Legal
Aspects of Sport, 29, 139-151.
Dr. SherRhonda Gibbs was awarded the
Educator’s Changemaker Award at the 2019
Diana International Research Institute Impact
Day at Babson College in Wellesley, Mass. One
award from six categories is given out each
year. The awards are granted to individuals
whose efforts in the entrepreneurial ecosystem,
through research, advocacy and other essential forms
of support, have advanced women’s access to resources
that are critical to launching and scaling successful ventures.
Dr. Gibbs serves as the interim director of the School of Management
and senior vice president of membership on the board of the United
States Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship.
USM RECENTLY ACHIEVED
“R1: DOCTORAL UNIVERSITIES –
VERY HIGH RESEARCH ACTIVITY”
STATUS IN THE CARNEGIE CLASSIFICATION
OF INSTITUTIONS OF HIGHER EDUCATION.
Only 130 institutions in the nation are classified as R1.
USM’s inclusion in this elite group of universities recognizes the
quality research enterprise created by our faculty, staff and students.
44 | C O L L E G E O F B U S I N E S S A N D E C O N O M I C D E V E L O P M E N T
FACULTY INTELLECTUAL CONTRIBUTIONS AND IMPACT
Miller, J., Vogt, S., Scroggins, C., & Gillentine, A. (2019). A content analysis of
tailgating alcohol policies at NCAA Division I football games. International Journal
of Sport Management, 20, 1-16.
Parker, P. D. & Swanson, N. J. (2018). Black and Green Vehicle Dealership, LLP - Fraud
Case. The South East Case Research Association, 15(1), 91-100.
Ritz, W., Wolf, M., & McQuitty, S. (2019). Digital Marketing Adoption and Success for
Small Businesses: The Application of the Do-it-Yourself and Technology Acceptance
Models. Journal of Research in Interactive Marketing.
Sequeira, J., Weeks, K., Bell, M., & Gibbs, S. (2018). Making the case for diversity as a
strategic business tool in small firm survival and success. Journal of Small Business
Strategy, 28(3), 31-47.
Stelk, S. J., Park, S.-H., Medcalfe, S., & Dugan, M. T. (2018). An additional analysis
of estimation techniques for the degree of financial leverage. Review of Financial
Economics, 36(3), 220—231.
Syrdal, H. A. & Briggs, E. (2018). Engagement with Social Media Content: A Qualitative
Exploration. Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice, 26(2-1), 4-22.
VanMeter, R., Syrdal, H. A., Powell-Mantel, S., Grisaffe, D. B., & Nesson, E. T. (2018).
Don’t Just ‘Like’ Me, Promote Me: How Attachment and Attitude Influence Brandrelated
Behaviors on Social Media. Journal of Interactive Marketing, 43, 83-97.
Van Mullem, P. & Croft, J. C. (2018). Developing Under the Guidance of a Mentor: Five
Strategies for Coaches. Strategies: A Journal for Physical and Sport Educators, 31(6), 16-25.
Wang, L., Chu, Z., & Lai, F. (2019). Customer pressure and green innovations at third
party logistics providers in China: The moderation effect of organizational culture.
International Journal of Logistics Management, 30(1), 57-75.
Wang, S., Wang, W., & Lee, S. (2018). Interactive roles of social identity and
evaluative attitudes in sports events participation. Journal of Convention & Event
Tourism. 19(4-5), 327-346.
USM’s Association of College and University
Educators (ACUE) Faculty Development
Institute is an innovative initiative focused
on expanding the use of effective teaching
practices in higher education. Southern Miss
began its partnership with ACUE, which was
founded in 2016 by leaders in higher education
to advance instruction, support college
educators, and promote student success.
The program consists of three courses over
three semesters, beginning with Active
Learning, followed by Assessment of
Teaching and Learning, and culminating with
Effective Course Design. Each intensive, 10-
week program focuses on research-based
techniques for promoting active learning,
improving assessment techniques and
designing effective courses.
Five of our very own, Dr. Reginald Wilson,
Dr. Joanne Cao, Chris Croft, Russ Willis
and Chris Balaski, are one course away
from earning the Certificate in Effective
College Instruction and the title of “ACUE
Distinguished Teaching Scholar.”
Currently, we have three professors that
have already earned the title: Dr. Gallayanee
Yaoyuneyong, Dr. Steven Stelk and Dr.
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 45
FACULTY INTELLECTUAL CONTRIBUTIONS AND IMPACT
GRENADA SPORTS COMPLEX
The University of Southern Mississippi’s College of Business and
Economic Development collaborated across three business programs
-- Economic Development, Hospitality and Tourism Management, and
Sport Management -- to assist the city of Grenada on a sport’s complex
Matthew Harrison, the economic developer from Grenada County and
a Master of Science Economic Development program alumnus, initiated
the study in conjunction with Southern Miss, saying he was confident
that our expert faculty could provide him with valuable knowledge and
resources to create a well-developed feasibility study. Dr. Sungsoo Kim,
Dr. Brandon Allen, Dr. Chris Croft and Dr. Chad Miller traveled to Grenada
County multiple times throughout the summer to collect primary data
through intercept surveys and secondary data from a variety of sources.
Upon completion of their research, the team gave a presentation to
community leaders and citizens showcasing their ideas for the city. The
collaboration resulted in two reports: Sports Complex Feasibility Study
for Grenada County, Miss., and a Preliminary Economic Impact Study.
These reports made it possible for local leaders to make more informed
decisions concerning their investment of the new sports complex.
Harrison stated that the feasibility study ultimately became the
foundation for their success. “We used the data to build awareness and
educate the community about the economic impact, which allowed our
support to gain in momentum. The vote was held on October 2 and passed
with a whopping 86 percent. We could not have had this type of success
without the feasibility study prepared by Dr. Sungsoo Kim and his expert
team at the USM College of Business and Economic Development."
The new, 170-acre complex is currently in the engineering design phase,
with indoor and outdoor developments. The completed complex will
include 12 baseball/softball fields and five multi-use fields, along with
an indoor track, bowling lanes, fitness and training areas, basketball/
volleyball courts and a natatorium.
THE GRENADA SPORT COMPLEX WON THE 2018
COMMUNITY ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AWARD,
GIVEN BY THE MISSISSIPPI ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL.
The award is intended to recognize exceptional contributions of communities in
the state of Mississippi for efforts, such as business retention and expansion,
business recruitment, community development and community involvement.
ARTICLES - CONTINUED
Wang, T., Wang, W., Wu, Z., Su, C., & Chen, M., (2019).
Understanding farm household’s participation in “Nong jia
le” in China. Sustainability, 11(5), 1282.
Wang, W. (2019). The influence of perceived technological
congruence on consumers’ attitudes toward price change
and adoption of smartphone application in air travel.
Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Technology, 10(2). 122-135.
Wang, W. & Wang, S. (2019). Urban Residents’ Place-Based
Perceptions and Attitudes toward Tourism Development: A
Comparison between the United States and China. Journal
of Quality Assurance in Hospitality and Tourism, 20(2).
Wang, W., Yaoyuneyong, G., Sullivan, P., & Burgess, B. (2018). A
model for perceived destination value and tourists’ souvenir
intentions. Journal of Applied Marketing Theory, 8(2), 1-23.
Wang, W., Chen, J. S., & Prebensen, N. K. (2018). Market
analysis of value-minded tourists: Nature-based tourism
in the Arctic. Journal of Destination Marketing and
Management, 8(June), 82-89.
Wang, W., Cole, S., & Chen, J. S. (2018). Tourist innovation in
air travel. Journal of Travel Research, 57(2), 164-177.
Weber, M. J., Lambert, J. T., Conrad, K. A., Jennings, S. S.,
& Adams, Jennifer R. M. (2018). Discovering a Cultural
System Using Consumer Ethnocentrism Theory. Systemic
Practice and Action Research, 31(6), 617-636.
Wilson, R. (2018). Juror Bias and Auditor Negligence:
Evidence Using the Social Identity Theory. Journal of
Business, Industry, and Economics, 23.
Yang, Y., Lai, F., & Chu, Z. (In press). Continuous Usage
Intention of Internet Banking: A Commitment-Trust Model.
Information Systems and e-Business Management.
Yuan, Y., Feng, B., Lai, F., & Collins, B. J. (2018). The role of trust,
commitment, and learning orientation on logistic service
effectiveness. Journal of Business Research, 93(12), 37-50.
Zaplac, R., Miller, J., & Miller, K. (In press). A case when you
can’t fool Mother Nature: Understanding and addressing
stakeholder reactions linked to organizational decisions
stemming from a natural disaster. Journal of Case Studies
in Sport Management.
46 | C O L L E G E O F B U S I N E S S A N D E C O N O M I C D E V E L O P M E N T
JACOB MATTHEW MEEK
(1999 – 2019) ETHEL, LA.
LAUREN ANN LONGINO
(1991 – 2019) BILOXI, MISS.
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 47
HONORS AND AWARDS
FALL 2018 AND SPRING 2019
COMMUNITY AND FACULTY AWARDS
BOARDMAN ENTREPRENEUR OF THE YEAR
Robert St. John
Restaurateur and Author
DISTINGUISHED ALUMNA OF THE YEAR
Senior VP of Operations, SunTech Inc. (Retired)
LOUIS K. BRANDT PUBLICATION AWARD
Dr. Srinidhi Kanuri
Assistant Professor, School of Finance
JOSEPH A. GREENE EXCELLENCE IN TEACHING AWARD
Dr. Brigitte Burgess
Associate Professor, School of Marketing
BUSINESS ADVISORY COUNCIL (BAC) RESEARCH AWARD
Dr. Reginald Wilson
Assistant Professor, School of Accountancy
Dr. Wei Wang
Assistant Professor, School of Marketing
Dr. Fujun Lai
BUSINESS AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT SERVICE AWARD
Dr. Gallayanee Yaoyuneyong
Associate Professor, School of Marketing
Dr. Jacob Breland
Associate Professor, School of Management
SCHOOL OF ACCOUNTANCY AWARDS
OUTSTANDING ACCOUNTING STUDENT
Kirkland McCarty, Hattiesburg, MS
POSEY-MUNN BOOK AWARDS (SPONSORED BY MCGRAW HILL PUBLISHING)
Ryan Sherrer, Picayune, MS
Charles Overby, Brandon, MS
Joseph Kirkland, West Monroe, LA
Lainey Aenchbacher, Savannah, GA
48 | C O L L E G E O F B U S I N E S S A N D E C O N O M I C D E V E L O P M E N T
RECOGNIZING EXTRAORDINARY STUDENT EFFORTS
JARVIS MAXEY AWARD
Keiyanna Gaskin, Vicksburg, MS
CHARLES JORDAN AWARD
Mahum Caudhry, Lahore, Pakistan
MISSISSIPPI SOCIETY OF CPAS AWARD
Paige Dillistone, Hattiesburg, MS
HADDOX REID EUBANK BETTS AWARD
Brady Anderson, Purvis, MS
Jenna Van Dan, Summit, MS
Brooke Hodges, Clinton, MS
Sayle Sanson, Gonzales, LA
BETA ALPHA PSI AWARD
Erin Howell, Gulfport, MS
FEDERATION OF SCHOOLS OF ACCOUNTANCY AWARD
Josh Spivey, Lake, MS
SCHOOL OF FINANCE AWARDS
FINANCE FACULTY AWARDS
Faiyaz Hussain, Dhaka, Bangladesh
Matthew Keller, Metairie, LA
John Haire, Clarksdale, MS
OUTSTANDING STUDENT IN FINANCE
Gregory Anderson, Perkinston, MS
Ronald Tyler Russel, Niceville, FL
SCHOOL OF MANAGEMENT AWARDS
MOST ENTREPRENEURIAL SPIRIT STUDENT
Gabrielle Morgan, Laurel, MS
OUTSTANDING STUDENT IN BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION
Christian Mason, Seminary, MS
Chandler Bingham, Pascagoula, MS
OUTSTANDING STUDENT IN HUMAN RESOURCES
Emily Johnson, Carriere, MS
OUTSTANDING STUDENT IN ENTREPRENEURSHIP
Lauren Haley Brown, Petal, MS
Loida Ventura Paz, Lempira, Honduras
OUTSTANDING STUDENT IN INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS
Tjasa Jerse, Medvode, Slovenia
OUTSTANDING STUDENT IN MANAGEMENT
Sharon Hughes, Moselle, MS
Clayton Franklin, Jackson, LA
STANLEY BROOKING MEMORIAL AWARD IN PRODUCTION AND
Robert Norsworthy, Florence, MS
HONORING DR. JOSEPH A. GREENE
During the spring semester, the late Dr. Joseph A. Greene was honored by a
reception for his children, Kathy, Jackie, Mike and Alan. Dr. Greene was the first
dean of the College of Business and served in that role for 36 years, upholding
principles that still serve as a driving force behind our college today. Additionally,
Dr. Greene is the namesake for Joseph Greene Hall, an academic building on the
Hattiesburg campus. To find out more about the legacy of Dr. Joseph A. Greene,
visit our website: usm.edu/business/legacy-dr-joseph-greene.
The Greene children (Alan, Jackie, Kathy, Mike) posing with Dr. Greene's portrait,
which proudly hangs in the Scianna Hall business building.
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 49
RECOGNIZING EXTRAORDINARY STUDENT EFFORTS
MARTIN STEGENGA ACADEMIC AWARD IN MANAGEMENT AND
Christopher Reeves, Laurel, MS
SCHOOL OF MARKETING AWARDS
OUTSTANDING STUDENT IN SALES AWARDS
Josh Sullivan, Laurel, MS
Gabriela Alongia, Metairie, LA
DOLLY LOYD SPIRIT OF MARKETING AWARD
Rebekah Besselman, New Orleans, LA
OUTSTANDING STUDENT IN MARKETING
Michelle Le, Biloxi, MS
Elizabeth Snyder, Waveland, MS
DAVID E. FORD MARKETING LEADERSHIP AWARD
Cameron Kenny, Mobile, AL
MERCHANDISING FACULTY AWARD
KiAndre McMillian, Picayune, MS
PASSION FOR FASHION AWARD
Quadriyyah Russell, Jackson, MS
OUTSTANDING STUDENT IN MERCHANDISING
Crystal Toole, Merdian, MS
OUTSTANDING STUDENT IN HEALTHCARE MARKETING
Caitlin Halsey, Gulfport, MS
Alexandria Nguyen, Hattiesburg, MS
SPIRIT OF HOSPITALITY
Shelby Vibbert, West Lafayette, IN
OUTSTANDING STUDENT IN HOSPITALITY AND TOURISM
Ashley Duncan, Lexington, KY
Sabrina Darby, Slidell, LA
LEADERSHIP IN SPORT MANAGEMENT AWARD
Valentia Haupt, Santiago, Chile
OUTSTANDING STUDENT IN SPORT MANAGEMENT
Andrew O’Dell, Columbia City, IN
Rikeetha Pereira, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
GULF PARK CAMPUS STUDENT AWARDS
OUTSTANDING ACCOUNTING STUDENT
Nhiem Nguyen, Ocean Springs, MS
OUTSTANDING BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION STUDENT
Orlando Bradford, Gautier, MS
OUTSTANDING MANAGEMENT STUDENT
Dejan Duric, Biloxi, MS
OUTSTANDING MARKETING STUDENT
Elizabeth Snyder, Waveland, MS
OUTSTANDING GRADUATE STUDENT
David Domonkos, D’Iberville, MS
GRADUATE STUDENT AWARDS
OUTSTANDING GRADUATE STUDENT IN PROFESSIONAL ACCOUNTANCY
Sheri Lowery, Sumrall, MS
Aubrey Sanders, Hattiesburg, MS
OUTSTANDING MASTER OF SCIENCE IN SPORT MANAGEMENT AWARD
Carly Della Sala, Mcungie, PA
Adam Boardman, Sun Prairie, WI
GRADUATE SPORT MANAGEMENT LEADERSHIP AWARD
Leah Williams, Waynesboro, MS
OUTSTANDING MASTER OF SCIENCE IN ECONOMIC
Dr. J. Reid Cummings, Mobile, AL
Jennifer Hooper, Mobile, AL
OUTSTANDING MASTER OF BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION AWARD
Charles “Alden” Bennett, Hattiesburg, MS
Susan O’Basuyi, Saint Louis, MO
OUTSTANDING COAST BUSINESS STUDENT AWARD
Elizabeth Snyder, Waveland, MS
50 | C O L L E G E O F B U S I N E S S A N D E C O N O M I C D E V E L O P M E N T
RECOGNIZING EXTRAORDINARY STUDENT EFFORTS
OUTSTANDING ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT AWARD (UNDERGRADUATE)
Lakesha Pittman, Byram, MS
Brooke Hodges, Clinton, MS
Kirkland McCarty, Hattiesburg, MS
OUTSTANDING ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT AWARD (GRADUATE)
Nishu Gupta, Punjab, India
Joshua Dove, Louisville, KY
BUSINESS AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT LEADERSHIP AWARD
Matthew Keller, Metairie, LA
DELTA SIGMA PI SCHOLARSHIP KEY AWARD
Ronald Tyler Russell, Niceville, FL
CITIZEN SCHOLAR AWARD
Ronald Tyler Russell, Niceville, FL
SPIRIT OF BUSINESS AWARD
Kirkland McCarty, Hattiesburg, MS
Michelle Le, Biloxi, MS
THE FUTURE IS BRIGHT FOR THESE
GOLDEN EAGLE GRADUATES
TOP (LEFT TO RIGHT)
Jenna Van Dan – BKD Award Recipient; Accounting; Accepted position
with HORNE LLP
Trey Haire – Finance Faculty Student Award Recipient; Finance; Accepted
position as a bank examiner for the Mississippi Department of Banking and
BOTTOM (LEFT TO RIGHT)
Joshua Spivey – Federation of Schools of Accountancy Award Recipient;
MPA; Accepted position with Ernst and Young
Paige Dillistone – Mississippi Society of Certified Public Accountants Award
Recipient; Accounting; Accepted position with KPMG upon completion of MPA
Brady Anderson – Haddox Reid Eubank Betts Award Recipient; MPA;
Accepted auditing position with Haddox Reid Eubanks Betts PLLC
Cameron Kenny – David E. Ford Marketing Award Recipient; Marketing;
Accepted management trainee position with Cintas
LEAVING SOUTHERN MISS
BETTER THAN THEY FOUND IT
Joshua Spivey and Leah Williams were two of 13 students inducted into
the 2019 Graduate Student Hall of Fame. Joshua Spivey is in the Master
of Professional Accountancy program and will graduate in summer 2019.
During his last semester, he traveled abroad with the Southern Miss Asian
Studies Program to Tokyo, Japan, and Hong Kong. Upon graduation and
completion of the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) exam, Spivey will be
a tax associate with Ernst and Young, one of the “Big 4” accounting firms.
Leah Williams is currently in the Master of Science in Sport Management
program and plans to pursue a career in collegiate sports marketing
within a university athletic marketing department.
A N N U A L R E P O R T 2 0 1 8 - 1 9 | 51
52 | C O L L E G E O F B U S I N E S S A N D E C O N O M I C D E V E L O P M E N T
ENROLLMENT FALL 2014 FALL 2015 FALL 2016 FALL 2017 FALL 2018
Accounting 420 373 394 347 367
Finance 141 127 125 120 110
Entrepreneurship 156 145 116 146 155
General Business 372 520 625 666 726
International Business 64 62 68 61 41
Management 296 259 218 188 141
Healthcare Marketing 40 39 35 41 45
Marketing 221 209 212 231 237
Hospitality and Tourism Management 113 103 112 89 63
Merchandising 67 79 54 47 35
Sport Management 105 98 92 109 116
TOTAL UNDERGRADUATE ENROLLMENT 1,995 2,014 2,051 2,045 2,036
Sport Management MS 55 58 54 48 55
Economic Development MS 17 17 16 16 13
MPA 25 25 32 34 21
MBA 73 95 110 104 105
TOTAL GRADUATE ENROLLMENT 170 195 212 202 194
Casino Management 2 3 2 2 1
Sport Security Management 3 4 5 3 3
Business Foundations 7 10 9 11 5
Source: USM Institutional Research, Enrollment Dashboards
DEGREES CONFERRED 2013 - 14 2014 - 15 2015 - 16 2016 - 17 2017 - 18
Accounting 77 89 97 82 75
Finance 18 30 33 31 25
Entrepreneurship 19 17 16 26 15
General Business 81 70 82 100 131
International Business 14 12 11 12 15
Management 83 72 72 57 66
Healthcare Marketing 6 9 12 7 11
Marketing 47 58 54 55 55
Hospitality and Tourism Management 28 22 19 26 27
Merchandising 8 9 13 10 15
Sport Management 19 11 18 23 19
TOTAL UNDERGRADUATE DEGREES AWARDED 400 399 427 429 454
Sport Management MS 35 17 37 20 30
Economic Development MS 8 10 12 12 14
MPA 20 22 26 25 23
MBA 19 25 38 49 45
TOTAL GRADUATE DEGREES AWARDED 82 74 113 106 112
TOTAL DEGREES AWARDED 482 473 540 535 566
Source: USM Institutional Research, Degrees Awarded Dashboards
COLLEGE OF BUSINESS AND