Sarah Claire Armstrong of Gallman and Caroleah Brister of Bogue Chitto, both sophomores at Copiah-Lincoln Community College have been named a 2015 Coca-Cola Community College Academic Team Bronze Scholars. The Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation sponsors the Coca-Cola Community College Academic Team program by recognizing 50 Gold, 50 Silver and 50 Bronze Scholars, and providing nearly $200,000 in scholarships annually. Each Bronze Scholar receives a $1,000 scholarship and a special medallion.
Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society administers the Coca-Cola Community College Academic Team Program and recognizes Coca-Cola Community College scholars during All-State Community College Academic Team Recognition ceremonies held in 38 states. Student scholars also receive recognition locally during ceremonies held on campus and internationally for those who are able to attend Phi Theta Kappa’s Annual Convention.
Community college presidents or their designated nominators may submit no more than two nominations per campus for this award. An independent panel of judges considers outstanding academic rigor, grade point average, academic and leadership awards, and engagement in college and community service in the selection process.
“We thank the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation for their vote of confidence in community college students by investing in their futures,” said Dr. Rod Risley, Executive Director of Phi Theta Kappa. “Their support is especially welcome during this challenging economic climate, as more and more community college students need additional resources to help them complete their degrees.”
“The Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation has a long history of providing financial assistance to outstanding students at community colleges,” said J. Mark Davis, President of the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation. “We are proud to partner with Phi Theta Kappa and make it possible for deserving students to achieve their educational goals.”
Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, headquartered in Jackson, is the largest honor society in American higher education with more than 1,285 chapters on two-year and community college campuses in all 50 of the United States, Canada, Germany, Peru, the Republic of Palau, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, the British Virgin Islands, the United Arab Emirates and U.S. territorial possessions. More than 3 million students have been inducted since its founding in 1918, with approximately 134,000 students inducted annually.
Three Copiah-Lincoln Community College Career and Technical won awards in the annual Skills USA Competition held recently in Jackson. Winners are from left, Thomas Westrope of Wesson, Computer Numerical Control (CNC) Milling, silver medal; Ashley Bass of Sontag, Computer Numerical Control (CNC) Milling, bronze medal; and Josh Hart of Wesson, Electronics Technology, gold medal. The participating students competed in Automotive Service Technology, Architectural and Technical Drafting, Precision Machining, Precision Machining Technology (CNC Milling and CNC Turning), Electronics Technology, and HVAC. Gold medal winners are eligible to compete at the National competition in Louisville, Kentucky, this summer.
Twelve members of the college choir will have the opportunity of a lifetime by performing with other Mississippi groups at Carnegie Hall in New York on Jan. 20, 2016, Martin Luther King Jr. Weekend. The choir will participate in a performance of Dan Forrest’s Requiem for the Living and was extended the invitation by the Distinguished Concerts International New York Concert Series in New York City.
“We are excited and honored to be asked to participate in such a prestigious event,” said Denise Riley, Co-Lin’s director of choral activities.
A limited number of ensembles have been selected for this special invitation. Other local groups also invited to participate include choirs from Brookhaven High School, the Mississippi School of the Arts, and the Lincoln County Choral Society.
DCINY, a professional production company with experience presenting at venues including Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, provides a quality performance experience in collaboration with high caliber musicians and soloists. The residency includes two half-days of rehearsals and clinics, culminating in a performance with Maestro Meaders at the podium.
After rehearsals, the choir members will have the opportunity to tour The National September 11 Memorial and Museum, attend a Broadway Show, explore Times Square, 5th Avenue and Central Park, take the Staten Island Ferry across the Hudson River to view the Statue of Liberty, visit Chinatown, as well as other New York attractions.
Members of the choir will be selected by audition for the 12-member group.
The choir is currently raising funds for the trip. Anyone interested in making a contribution should contact David Campbell, Executive Director of the Co-Lin Foundation at 601.643.8332.
The Co-Lin Foundation recently inducted five new members into its Hall of Fame at a major donor appreciation dinner heldat the Thames Center on the college’s Wesson Campus. Inductees include Sonya Cowen of Wesson, David and Debbie Massey of Mendenhall, Randy and Cherry Morris of Oak Grove, Louisiana, Silver Cross Home Foundation, and Ronald and Sandra Wojcik of Brookhaven.
Sonya Cowen is being honored for her contributions to the N. B. and Catherine White and Calvin White Memorial Scholarships, established in memory of her parents and brother. Cowen is a 1963 graduate of Co-Lin High School and a 1965 graduate of the college. She received a B.S. degree in education and library science from Mississippi College and has completed additional study at Mississippi College and The University of Southern Mississippi.
Cowen established the first library at Wesson Elementary School, and worked there as a teacher and elementary and high school librarian for 30 years. She has worked as an assistant librarian in the Evelyn W. Oswalt Library at Co-Lin for the past 12 years. She is a member of the Delta Kappa Gamma Society International, where she was chosen as a Woman of Distinction in 1990.
Cowen is an active member of the Co-Lin alumni association, the Band and Colette Alumni Chapter, and was chosen as Alumna of the Year in 2010. She was selected as Wesson Elementary Teacher of the Year, Wesson High School Teacher of the Year, and Wesson Chamber of Commerce Educator of the Year. She is a member of the Wesson Garden Club, the 50+ Club, and the Old Wesson School Community Center Committee. She has also been honored by the Chamber of Commerce as Wesson’s Ageless Hero. She is a member of Wesson Baptist Church, where she serves as a Sunday School teacher and a member of the choir.
She was married to the late Hollis J. Cowen, Jr. and they have two children, Hollis J. Cowen, III (Trey), of Wesson, and Katrina Smith and husband Lane, of Flagstaff, Arizona.
David and Debbie Massey
David and Debbie Massey are being honored for their contributions to the Wilson-Massey Scholarship, established in honor of their parents, Jim and Bobbie Wilson and Johnnie and Irmadine Massey.
David received a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and computer science from The University of Southern Mississippi and completed additional study at Louisiana State University, where he was a National Science Foundation Fellow, Mississippi College, and Cornell University.
He is retired after serving as chief information officer at University of Mississippi Medical Center, and served as a faculty member in the UMC School of Health Related Professions. He is a member of Association of Information Technology Professionals, Healthcare Financial Management Association and Healthcare Information Management Systems Society, and he also serves on the board of directors at Simpson General Hospital, Simpson County Economic Development District and Mendenhall Cemeteries Association.
Debbie Massey received a bachelor’s degree in elementary and special education from The University of Southern Mississippi. She is a retired special education teacher in the Simpson County School System. She serves as chairman of the Mendenhall Library board of trustees, and is involved with the Friends of The Library program.
The Masseys have two children, Leigh Ann Wallace and Gabe Massey, and two grandchildren, Anson and Valerie. They are members of Mendenhall First Baptist Church, where he serves as a trustee, and she serves in the homebound ministry.
Randy and Cherry Morris
Randy and Cherry Morris are being honored for their contributions to the Co-Lin baseball program. Randy Morris is the owner and operator of West Carroll Health Systems in Oak Grove, Louisiana. West Carroll consists of a 35-bed acute care hospital, an 80-bed nursing home, a home health agency, and five rural health clinics, meeting the healthcare needs of East and West Carroll Parishes of Louisiana.
Cherry serves as an event coordinator at West Carroll, and also enjoyed a career in insurance. The Morrises have three children, Anya Morris-Fulco, Megan Morris, and Cris Antley, and five grandchildren, Jordan, who plays on the Wolfpack baseball team, Jacob, Presley, Cambra, and Jax.
Silver Cross Home Foundation
The Silver Cross Home (SCH) Foundation is being honored for its contributions to the Silver Cross Home Scholarship. The Foundation was formed in 2014 as a non-profit organization to manage its investments. The Foundation’s members are the ladies of the Willing Hearts Circle of the International Order of King’s Daughters & Sons (IOKDS), which was organized in Brookhaven in 1894. The IOKDS is a non-denominational Christian organization whose motto is Caring for all of God’s Children through service In His Name. Willing Hearts circle was responsible for starting and now has ownership of King’s Daughters Medical Center, Silver Cross Health & Rehabilitation and Kingsborough Elderly Housing. The SCH Board is made up of seven appointed members of the Willing Hearts Circle who serve as an advisory board to Aspen Properties, the company which leases and manages the operations of Silver Cross Health and Rehabilitation. The board is also charged with managing the Foundation investments. The goal is to distribute monies yearly from investments to assist people in the Lincoln County area with an emphasis on Autism, Literacy and Education. It is the Foundation’s goal to give back to the community a portion of the blessings it has received.
Sarah Foster, chairman of the board, represented Silver Cross at the event.
Ronald and Sandra Wojcik
Ronald and Sandra Wojcik are being honored for their contributions to the Wojcik Family Scholarship. Ronald received a bachelor’s degree in engineering from Milwaukee School of Engineering and worked in the paper industry for 40 years. He has also served as a Boy Scout Leader for 25 years. Sandra attended Co-Lin, and is a graduate of Southwest Mississippi Community College Associate Degree Nursing program. She served as a hospice nurse for 36 years. The Wojciks have five children, Nan, Jodie, Robert, Denise and Ricky, 10 grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren. All five of the Wojcik children have attended Co-Lin.
The Wojciks are members of St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church in Brookhaven. They are retired and enjoy traveling all over the world.
The Co-Lin Research Group captured second place in the Mississippi Academy of Sciences Conferences for their Undergraduate Research Presentation. Their research presentation, “Conventional Strain Energies of the Oxaphosphetanes and the Oxadiphosphetanes,” was among the 200 that were presented from students at two-year and four-year colleges and universities. Members of the research group include from left, Marissa Westrope and Carey Hydrick, both of Wesson; Mason Boone of Hazlehurst, and Sam Walters of Crystal Springs. Dr. Shelley Smith serves as the advisor for the group.