POPLARVILLE - Deadline for purchasing tickets to the annual Little Black Dress Charity Luncheon at Pearl River Community College is Friday. The luncheon, sponsored by the PRCC Alumni Association, will be at 11 a.m. Saturday, April 13, at the president’s home. The luncheon and silent auction will benefit Alumni Association scholarships and Pathway2Hope, a non-profit organization focused on serving and supporting children and adolescents in South Mississippi. The long-term goal of Pathway2Hope is to establish an emergency shelter and group home for foster children and adolescents of South Mississippi who are not immediately placed with family when removed from home by the Department of Human Services. While working toward this goal, Pathway2Hope is seeking to partner with the community to support the children of South Mississippi through promoting excellence in home, school and the community. Tickets are $50 per person and availability is limited. Tickets can be purchased by credit card by calling 601-403-1193 or by check made payable to the PRCC Alumni Association, Box 5389, 101 Highway 11 North, Poplarville, MS 39470 with attention to the Little Black Dress. Deadline is April 5.
POPLARVILLE - Auditions for Pearl River Community College’s state and national champion “String of Pearls” dance team will be held at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 10 in the band hall on the Poplarville campus. For more information, contact “String of Pearls” director, Kara Fleming, at 601-347-6369 (email: email@example.com) or director of bands, Dr. Kyle Hill at 601-403-1277 (email: firstname.lastname@example.org).
POPLARVILLE - The Pearl River Community College Department of Fine Arts and Communication will present two performances next week. The Symphonic Band will present its Spring Concert at 7 p.m. Monday, April 8, in Bender Cafeteria in Crosby Hall. The theater department will stage “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged)” at 7 p.m. Thursday and Friday, April 11 and 12, also in Bender Cafeteria. The band’s program will include “A Hymn Tune Rhapsody” by Jerry Brubaker, “Brighton Beach” by William Latham, “Danny Boy” by Samuel Hazo, “And in the End, It was Earth” by Roland Barrett, “Selections from West Side Story” by Leonard Bernstein and “Shenandoah’s Simple Gifts” by Larry Clarke. Dr. Kyle Hill is director of bands, assisted by Michael Bass. The concert is free and open to the public. PRCC theater instructor Chris Flynn describes “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged)” as a hilarious romp through the intricacies and idiocies of The Bard. Cast members are Emily Murray of Bogalusa, La.; Sarah Silver of Ceasar and Micah Taylor of Hattiesburg. Stage manager is Winter Whiddon of Lumberton; assistant stage manager is Freddy Mangia of Carriere. Other crew members are Jacob Martin of Lucedale and Desmond Edmondson of Hattiesburg. Admission to the play is $5.
POPLARVILLE - The Pearl River Singers and The Voices presented their 2013 spring concert on Tuesday, April 2, at Malone Chapel on the Poplarville campus. The Pearl River Singers choir performed a selection of songs centered on the theme of home. They include Shenandoah, Homeland, That Ever I Saw, Return, Homeward Bound, Ride On, King Jesus and Somewhere. Homeland and Shenandoah featured PRCC instructor Hope McKellip Bass and student Creighton Holder on piano. The Voices, 12 students selected by audition, sang In Your Eyes, Mallory Cumberland of Picayune, soloist; Time After Time, Claire Loper of Lumberton, soloist; Lonesome Road, Frank Henry of Poplarville, soloist; True Colors, Rachel Pierce of Columbia, soloist; and How Far We’ve Come, Jonathan Morris of Brooklyn and Pierce, soloists. Other members of The Voices are Mariah LeBlanc of Purvis, Malorie Townsend and Danielle Rogers, both of Petal; Ethan Martin of Pisgah, Rhett Unbehagen of Carriere, Carl DeFrance of Vicksburg and Allen Holifield of Laurel. Both groups are conducted by LaDona Tyson, PRCC director of choral groups.
Mallory Cumberland of Picayune solos on “In Your Eyes” during The Voices spring concert April 2 at Malone Chapel. The Voices are, from left, Malorie Townsend of Petal, Ethan Martin of Pisgah, Allen Holifield of Laurel, Mariah LeBlanc of Purvis, Frank Henry of Poplarville, Claire Loper of Lumberton, Jonathan Morris of Brooklyn, Rachel Pierce of Columbia, Rhett Unbehagen of Carriere, Danielle Rogers of Petal and Carl DeFrance of Vicksburg. PRCC Public Relations photo
The PRCC Singers close the concert with Somewhere. PRCC Public Relations photo
POPLARVILLE - Auditions are being held this month by the Pearl River Community College Department of Fine Arts and Communications for several groups for the 2013-14 academic year. They include: •RiverRoad showchoir at 9 a.m. Saturday, April 13, in the choir room. Students will sing a prepared song and learn a dance. For information, contact LaDona Tyson at 601 403-1272. •PRCC Singers choir by appointment in April. Contact Tyson to schedule a tryout. • String of Pearls dance team at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 10, in the band hall. Contact String of Pearls director, Kara Fleming, at 601-347-6369 (email: email@example.com) or director of bands, Dr. Kyle Hill at 601-403-1277 (email: firstname.lastname@example.org) for more information. • Spirit of the River drum major at 8:30 a.m. Saturday, April 20, in the band hall. Contact Hill for more information. • Spirit of the River color guard at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, April 20, in the band hall. Contact Hill for more information. Scholarship are available for students selected by audition.
Pearl River Community College will induct six outstanding alumni into the Lifetime Achievement Hall of Fame on April 18. The gala will be held at Southern Oaks House and Gardens in Hattiesburg. Honorees are: •Entrepreneur L.D. “Brink” Brinkman of Kerrville, Texas. •Retired bank officer Verlene Cole of Oak Grove. •Former Mississippi Insurance Commissioner George Dale of Clinton. •Retired petroleum geologist Floyd Furr of Picayune. •Businessman Mickey Hudson of Ellisville. •Retired FDIC executive Louis A. Hurst Jr. of Houston, Texas. The Lifetime Achievement Hall of Fame was established in 2012 to honor the professional accomplishments of outstanding alumni of PRCC.
POPLARVILLE — Dr. Adam Breerwood, Pearl River Community College’s Vice President for Poplarville campus and Hancock Center has been selected as one of Mississippi’s top 40 business leaders under the age of 40. The Mississippi Business Journal’s Top 40 Under 40 program seeks to identify and recognize individuals who have made significant contributions to the state’s overall economic progress, often working at their own local levels. Breerwood affiliation with PRCC started some two decades ago when he signed a scholarship with the Wildcat baseball team after his graduation from St. Stanislaus College in 1993. A Waveland native, he earned All-MACJC and All-Region 23 baseball honors the 1994 and 1995 seasons and is .416 batting average in 1995 remains the all-time record at the school. After his stint at Pearl River, Breerwood signed with the William Carey University Crusader baseball team where he earned All-Gulf South Atlantic Conference and All-Region honors in 1996 and 1997, as well as All-American status his senior season. Breerwood earned his B.S. degree in history in 1997 and his M.Ed. in education in 1999 from WCU, as well as his Ph.D. in higher education administration from the University of Southern Mississippi in 2003. He was hired as Pearl River’s assistant baseball coach in 1997 and served in that role until 2002. In addition, he was head coach of the college’s inaugural women’s and men’s soccer programs in 1999 and served in that capacity until 2003. In his final season as a coach, Breerwood’s men’s team won the MACJC and Region 23 championships, which resulted in his being named ‘Coach of the Year’ that season. In addition, he was inducted in the PRCC Sports Hall of Fame in 2005. He served as the college’s assistant director of recruitment and orientation in 2002 before being promoted to director in 2003. A year later, he was named dean of student services, while last year he was promoted to his current role.
Breerwood is a 2008 graduate of the American Association of Community Colleges Future President’s Institute and a 2010 graduate of Leadership Mississippi. He is the current President of the Rotary Club of Poplarville and serves on the Boards of Fellowship of Christian Athletes and Pearl River County Crimestoppers. He has been married to the former Shana Scarborough for 16 years and they are the parents of daughter Lexey, age 13, and son Blaise, age 12. Shana works for the college’s development foundation.
POPLARVILLE - Pearl River Community College recently partnered with Hope Adult Learning Center to increase literacy in Pearl River and Hancock counties. Founded in 2008 by Donna Daulton, the center provides volunteers to tutor clients. “We help adult low-level readers learn to read,” Daulton said. “Tutors meet one-on-one with students at times and locations that are convenient to both.” The Hope center is funded through donations and more than 20 churches and community organizations work with the program, she said. “Our goal is to provide our students with literacy for life and life forever,” Daulton said. “The tutors work with the students to achieve the students’ goals.” The most commonly-expressed goals are to get a better job, be more independent and read the Bible, she said. PRCC’s connection to the center will benefit both the students and the college, said Dr. Scott Alsobrooks, vice president for economic and community development. “We want her to prepare them to come to us,” he said. “We want them to come here and get their GED and then go on and earn a degree.” Approximately 70 percent of adults who struggle to read are dyslexic but the center’s volunteers have been trained to teach them to read, Daulton said. “We have materials strictly for the tutors to use with them,” she said. “That puts us in a unique position.” Hope Adult Learning Center currently serves students in Bay St. Louis, Waveland, Kiln, Picayune and Poplarville with plans to expand into Harrison County. For information or to get involved as a volunteer or student, contact Daulton at 228-255-1118 extension 210 or email@example.com; Kathy McNair at 601 798-5890 or Phil Pearson at 601 569-9137 in Pearl River County. The center’s website is www.hopeadultlearning.com.
Donna Daulton, founder of the Hope Adult Learning Center, and Dr. Scott Alsobrooks, Pearl River Community College vice president for economic and community development, sign a memo of understanding outlining the collaboration between the center and the college. PRCC Public Relations photo
The Pearl River Community College String of Pearls dance team recently was named national champion in the large ensemble category at the American Dance and Drill Team competition in Dallas and runner up in the jazz category. Dancers are, front row from left, Bridgette Patterson of Picayune, Meghan Varnado and Brooke Wactor, both of Carriere; Reanna Reese of Picayune, Brooke Loftin of Bay St. Louis; second row, Caitlyn Herrin of Carriere, Stevany Jackson of Hattiesburg, Betsy Seal, Melissa Dragon and Sandy Sheffield, all of Picayune; Taylor Turcotte of Waveland; third row, Lacey Hampton of Carriere; Carolyn Shaw of Necaise, Meghan Whitworth of Poplarville, Victoria Farmer of Picayune, Kelcey Whitfield of Carriere, Breanna Peters of Brandon, Carley Harrell of Poplarville, Liz Smith of Carriere, Darion Matthews of Richton and Alex Samford of Picayune. Kara Fleming is String of Pearls director.
POPLARVILLE - The student body at Pearl River Community College elected 20-year-old sophomores from Hattiesburg as Mr. and Miss PRCC 2013. Chosen were Zaccheus Husband and Stevany Jackson. Class favorites on the Poplarville campus are sophomores Presley Stiglets, 20, of Hattiesburg and Colton Turnage, 20, of Sandy Hook and freshmen Desmond Edmondson, 19, of Hattiesburg and Breanna Peters, 18, of Brandon. Forrest County Center class favorites are George E. Curtis, 23, of Glendale and Tiffany Moreno, 29, of Columbia, sophomores; and Chris Harris, 19, and Tiffany Lee, 24, both of Hattiesburg, freshmen. Hancock Center favorites are Shantel Zar, 34, and Jarrod Wilson, 21, both of Waveland, sophomores; and Miranda Rutherford, 25, of Bay St. Louis and Micah Steiner, 18, of Pass Christian, freshmen. Husband, a graduate of Hattiesburg High School, is the son of Geraldine Husband and Juan Husband, both of Hattiesburg. He is executive vice president of the Student Government Association, a member of the athletic training staff and a resident assistant. A history and sports/coaching education major, Husband plans to attend the University of Southern Mississippi. The daughter of Stevenson and Louise Jackson of Hattiesburg, Jackson is a graduate of North Forrest High School and a chemistry major. She is SGA sophomore vice president, secretary of Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society, a member of the String of Pearls dance team and an athletic trainer. She plans to attend Mississippi State University and then the University of Mississippi Medical Center to become a pediatrician or sports medicine physician. Stiglets is the daughter of Tracy and Stacey Stiglets of Hattiesburg and the late Gidget Necaise. A graduate of Oak Grove High School, she is a business marketing major and plans to attend Belhaven University where she will play soccer. She is captain of the Lady Wildcat soccer team, SGA executive president, a Fellowship of Christian Athletes leader, Miss PRCC Wildcat and a member of PTK and the Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges All-State soccer team. Turnage, the son of Chris and Rachel Turnage of Sandy Hook, is a a graduate of West Marion High School and an instrumentation technology major. He is captain of the PRCC cheerleading squad and a works in the student activities office. He plans a career as an instrumentalist in the oil industry. A graduate of Hattiesburg High School, Edmondson is the son of Cleveland Edmondson of Hattiesburg. He is SGA freshman class president, a member of the Spirit of the River marching band and a social work major. He plans to attend MSU and earn a master’s degree in social work. Peters, a graduate of Northwest Rankin High School, is the daughter of Sherita Peters and Brian Crumb, both of Brandon. A kinesiology major, she is a member of the String of Pearls and is SGA freshman class secretary. She plans to attend USM. Forrest County Center Curtis, a graduate of Tabb High School in Yorktown, Va., is the son of Malcom and Gwendolyn Curtis Jr. of Glendale. He is a physical therapist assistant major and a member of the History and Humanities Club and the Forrest County Center SGA. He plans to purchase a barbershop and explore the world after graduating. Moreno, a Spanish major, is the daughter of Gwen Taylor and Tim Culpepper of Columbia. She is secretary of the Forrest County Center SGA and president of the History and Humanities Club. A graduate of the Mississippi Challenge Academy, she plans to attend USM. Harris is the son of Cathy Harris and a graduate of Petal High School. He is majoring in criminal justice and plans to attend USM. A graduate of Forrest County Agricultural High School, Lee is the daughter of Bobby and Ponda Lee. She plans to pursue a career in mortuary science/funeral service technology. Hancock Center Wilson is the son of Don and Sheila Wilson and a graduate of Bay High School. He plans to transfer to the University of South Alabama to major in physical therapy. Zar, a graduate of East Jefferson High School, is the daughter of Lisa M. Zar and Darryl J. Zar. She is a general studies major who plans to attend USM Gulf Coast. She is a member of the Bay Soccer Club and assistant coach for an under-12 team. Rutherford is the daughter of Denise Rutherford and the late Woody Rutherford. She graduated from Hancock High School and plans to transfer to USM after finishing her studies at PRCC. Steiner is the son of Mike and Linda Steiner and a graduate of Pass Christian High School. A history major, he plans to teach and coach baseball at his former high school.
Mr. and Miss PRCC at Pearl River Community College are, seated, Zaccheus Husband and Stevany Jackson, both of Hattiesburg. With them are, from left, Sophomore Class Favorites Presley Stiglets of Hattiesburg and Colton Turnage of Sandy Hook; and Freshman Class Favorites Desmond Edmondson of Hattiesburg and Breanna Peters of Brandon.
Class favorites at PRCC’s Forrest County Center are Chris Harris, from left, and Tiffany Lee, both of Hattiesburg, freshmen; and George E. Curtis of Glendale, sophomore. Not pictured is sophomore class favorite Tiffany Moreno of Columbia.
Jarrod Wilson of Waveland is sophomore class favorite at the Pearl River Community College Hancock Center. Not pictured is class favorite Shantel Zar, also of Waveland.
Freshmen class favorites at the Hancock Center of Pearl River Community College are Miranda Rutherford of Bay St. Louis and Micah Steiner of Pass Christian. PRCC Public Relations photos
Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society awarded five prestigious honors to Pearl River Community College at the organization’s recent convention in San Jose, Calif. The Beta Tau Gamma chapter at the Forrest County Center was named a Distinguished Chapter and one of its advisors, Dr. Terri Smith Ruckel, received the Paragon Award for advisors with less than four years of experience. Dr. William Lewis, PRCC president, received the Shirley B. Gordon Award of Distinction, student Andy Sims of Petal received a $1,000 Coca-Cola Bronze Scholarship, Beta Tau Gamma received a Distinguished College Project award for its campus voter registration drive and was named a Top 100 Chapter. As a Distinguished Chapter, Beta Tau Gamma is ranked among the top 10 percent of PTK’s 1,325 chapters in the United States and abroad. The chapter was formed only two years ago. “It is an extremely big deal,” Ruckel said. The honor is based on the chapter’s scores on written reports on its College Project and Honors in Action Project, which was a political forum. “They really liked that we had a voter registration drive on our campus,” she said. The Paragon Award recognizes the work of advisors for new chapters. Ruckel was unable to accept the award in person because the chapter did not have enough money for seven students to attend and she forfeited her share. “Dr. Terri Ruckel is an inspiration to us,” said Melissa Fahrenbruch of Hattiesburg, the chapter’s vice president for communication. “She works hard for our college, chapter and us individually. She is compassionate, intelligent, and a leader that we trust. She has mentored the majority of us at one time or another; she makes us strive to exceed our goals. She is our watershed moment.” Ruckel teaches English and also advised the Sigma Kappa Delta English honor society. “We are extremely proud of our chapter’s accomplishments,” said Dr. Cecil Burt, PRCC vice president for Forrest County operations. “All of our advisors are outstanding, but we are so pleased that Dr. Terri Ruckel received the Paragon Award for her service as advisor to this club. Sims received the Coca-Cola Scholarship after being named to the PTK Mississippi All-Academic Team in March. Only eight students in Mississippi received the scholarships, Ruckel said. “Phi Theta Kappa is a wonderful organization for outstanding students,” Burt said. “There are tremendous opportunities for scholarships for club members.” Lewis was one of only 21 college presidents or chief executive officers to receive the Shirley B. Gordon Award of Distinction based on their efforts in promoting the goals of Phi Theta Kappa. “I am most humbled by the recognition from Phi Theta Kappa,” Lewis said. “I have great respect for this historic academic honorary society and for the work they do in community colleges internationally. PTK is a true difference-maker in the molding of lives for our high achieving students.” The award is named for the late Dr. Shirley B. Gordon, PTK’s longest serving chair of the board of directors and president emeritus of Highline Community College in Washington. The PRCC students at the conference were thrilled to see Lewis receive the award, said Dr. Ryan Ruckel, one of the chapter’s advisors. “They all held their phones up to try to take a picture of him,” he said. “They were so excited for him.” He described the convention as 3,500 screaming nerds with laser light shows and fog machines and the awards ceremonies as a lot of fun. “We’re just sitting there waiting as they call out each college that got an award,” he said. “For them to call our name was very exciting. I think I jumped about 10 feet.” Fahrenbruch accepted the Distinguished Chapter Award. “I was stunned at first, when our chapter’s name was called and showed on the screen,” she said. “I was honored and humbled that they chose me to go receive it on stage. I’m so proud to be a part of this chapter.” In addition to Sims and Fahrenbruch, students who attended are Will Smith of Hattiesburg; Carolyn Lucus and Louie Forsmark, both of Petal; Hope Lucas of Sumrall and Tiffany Gragg of Lumberton. The Beta Tau Gamma chapter and the Iota Mu chapter in Poplarville were also recognized as Five Star Chapters. Stephanie Lee is advisor for the Iota Mu chapter.
POPLARVILLE - The Pearl River Community College Symphonic Band presented its 2013 Spring Concert on April 8 in Bender Cafeteria in Crosby Hall. With the Ethel Holden Brownstone Center for the Performing Arts nearing completion, the concert marked the last the band will play in the cafeteria. The program included “A Hymn Tune Rhapsody” by Jerry Brubaker, “Brighton Beach” by William Latham, “Danny Boy” by Samuel Hazo, “And in the End, It was Earth” by Roland Barrett, “Selections from West Side Story” by Leonard Bernstein and “Shenandoah’s Simple Gifts” by Larry Clarke. Dr. Kyle Hill, director of bands, recognized the students who were selected by auditon for the 2013 Community College All-State Band - Kelcey Whitfield of Carriere, Kimberly Arnold of D’Iberville, Danielle Rogers and Taylor Trigg, both of Petal; Kristy Noble of Gulfport, Adam Mixon of Sumrall, Allen Grace of Hattiesburg, Brandon Hutchison of Picayune, Chris Fletcher of Columbia and Eusebio Medina of Oak Grove. Michael Bass is assistant band director.
Ramsey Hunt , back row from left, and John Fisher, both of Poplarville and Jaylene Funches of Columbia
and, front row from left, Matt Walters of Hattiesburg and Jesse Bourgeois of Bay St. Louis play percussion
instruments during the Spring Concert. (PRCC Public Relations photo)
Taylor Trigg of Petal, left, plays bass clarinet and Brandon Edenfield of Diamondhead contra bass clarinet
during the Pearl River Community College Symphonic Band Spring Concert on April 8. Behind them is tenor
saxophone player Eusebio Medina of Oak Grove. (PRCC Public Relations photo)
POPLARVILLE - High school seniors can start college practical nursing classes early through a program beginning in August 2013 at Pearl River Community College. The dual enrollment program allows students to attend high school in the morning and PRCC in the afternoon during the fall and spring semesters. After high school graduation in May 2014, they will attend PRCC full-time during the summer and fall semesters and graduate in December 2014. “We want to have a least 10,” said Barbara Whiddon, director of the practical nursing program on the Poplarville campus. “We’re wanting to reach out to Marion County and Lumberton as well as Pearl River County, Poplarville and Picayune.” An informational meeting for interested students and parents will be held at 6 p.m. Monday, April 22, in the Nursing Building on the PRCC campus. Information has been sent to area high schools about the program. Students from any high school can participate as long as they can travel from their high school to PRCC in time for afternoon classes, Whiddon said. “We’re excited to be offering more career-ready programs,” said Dr. Scott Alsobrooks, PRCC vice president for economic and community development. The dual enrollment program at PRCC began at the Forrest County Center in Hattiesburg as a pilot program in 2008.
POPLARVILLE - Former Pearl River Community College football great Steve Regan will be inducted into the Mississippi Community and Junior College Sports Hall of Fame during ceremonies Tuesday (April 23) in Jackson. Regan, who lives in Dubach, La., is one of 15 inductees into the class. Regan was a standout football player at PRCC from 1960-62. “This is one of the greatest honors an athlete could have,” said Regan. “I’m so humbled by the selection.” During his freshman year in 1961, under legendary Coach Dobie Holden, the Wildcats posted a 10-0 record and captured not only the state crown, but also the national championship. As a freshman, he played defensive end and was named honorable mention all-state on one of the best teams ever assembled in the junior college ranks. He scored three touchdowns that year as a defensive player, recovering three fumbles in the end zone. The Wildcats scored 446 points in 1961 and allowed only 47 points in 10 games. In 1962, Regan was a two-way starter at tight end-defensive end and was the team punter, averaging 41 yards per kick. He also caught 33 passes for four touchdowns. With only six returning players from the national championship team, Pearl River finished the season 6_4 overall and tied for the second place in the state. “If you did your job, coach Holden didn’t say much to you,” said Regan. “If you didn’t, he would call you a lot of things. But you wanted to show him you could do what he wanted done. He used his psychology background on the players who needed it most. “During the games, he would chart plays to see what was going to work. Then we would come out the second half and be very good. We ran the pro offense. We ran a lot of the same plays all the time, so we did not have that much to learn as far as offense.” Regan was named first-team all-state, most outstanding lineman in Mississippi, and was second team All-American on two grid wires as a defensive end. He was also selected as Pearl River College's Best Athlete in 1962. “Pearl River is a special place,” said Regan. “My dreams started and were fulfilled there. Pearl River is always with me.” Before coming to Pearl River, Regan was an all-state player at Columbia High School under coach Charles Martin, where he played tight end-defensive end and also logged time as a fullback. He also lettered in basketball and track while receiving Columbia High School’s Athletic Award. After playing at Pearl River, Regan signed with Northeast Louisiana in Monroe, La. In 1963, he played offensive and defensive end and was the team's punter. During his junior year, he scored three touchdowns and averaged 21 yards per catch. His 1964 season at Northeast was shortened by an injury that required surgery. Regan signed a free-agent contract with the St. Louis Cardinals but he didn’t make the team. After a few years of semipro ball, he returned to Northeast to finish his degree. Today, he is retired after working 35 years at the paper mill in Monroe, La. He is married to Martha Jane Regan. They have three children: daughters Rhonda of Highland Village, Tex., and Hannah of Harrisonburg, La., one son, Ryle of West Monroe, La., one step son Gatlin Hedgepeth of Dubach, La.; three grandchildren, two step-grandchildren.
POPLARVILLE — New Pearl River Community College head coach William Jones will kick off his Wildcat football tenure versus a program he is quite familiar with come Aug. 29. Jones, a former PRCC defensive coordinator who was hired earlier this year after 11-year head coach Tim Hatten resigned the position in November, will face off with East Mississippi — the same school he left The River for in 2008 to serve as its DC. Pearl River’s 2013 schedule includes five home and four away contests. Six games will be played on Thursday, including its opener against North Division foe East Miss on Aug. 29; while three are set for Saturdays. All the Wildcats’ home games see a 7 p.m. kickoff time with the exception of their Homecoming battle with MACJC South Division rival East Central on Saturday, Oct. 29, which starts at 2 p.m. Following its opener against EMCC, PRCC hosts Mississippi Delta (North Division) on Thursday, Sept. 5, before opening its South Division schedule at Jones County in Ellisville Saturday, Sept. 14, at 7 p.m. North foe Coahoma plays host in Clarksdale Thursday, Sept. 19, at 6:30 p.m., setting the stage for five straight South Division contests to wrap the regular season. Southwest Mississippi visits Dobie Holden Stadium Thursday, Sept. 26; Mississippi Gulf Coast visits Thursday, Oct. 3; and reigning state champion Copiah-Lincoln plays host Saturday, Oct. 12, at 3 p.m. in Wesson before East Central arrives in Poplarville. Hinds will host Pearl River Thursday, Oct. 24, in Raymond to wrap the regular season. The top two finishers in the North and South divisions earn berths in the MACJC state playoffs. First-round playoff action is set for Saturday, Nov. 2, with North No. 1 hosting South No. 2 and South No. 1 hosting North No. 2; while the two games’ winners square off for the state title bout Saturday, Nov. 9. If a North Division playoff team cops a state championship berth, the game will be played in the North. If two South Division teams get berths, the game will be played at the higher-seeded school’s home field.
The 2013 Lifetime Achievement Hall of Fame honorees at Pearl River Community College were inducted on April 18 at a gala in Hattiesburg. They are, seated from left, Louis A. Hurst Jr. of Houston, Texas; and Verlene Norton Cole of Oak Grove; standing, PRCC President Dr. WIlliam Lewis, Mickey Hudson of Ellisville, Floyd Furr of Picayune, George Dale of Clinton and L.D. Brinkman of Kerrville, Texas.
Pearl River Community College honored six outstanding alumni Thursday, April 18, with induction into the PRCC Lifetime Achievement Hall of Fame. Recognized for their accomplishments were L.D. Brinkman of Kerrville, Texas; Verlene Norton Cole of Oak Grove, George Dale of Clinton, Floyd Furr of Picayune, Mickey Hudson of Ellisville and Louis A. Hurst Jr. of Houston. “This is a really, really special class,” said Dr. William Lewis, PRCC president. “When you hear about some of the things they’ve done, it’s amazing that they passed through Pearl River Community College.” The alumni were honored with a reception and dinner at Southern Oaks House and Gardens in Hattiesburg. “Never in my wildest dreams did I think an old country girl from Oak Grove would receive such an award,” Cole said. Cole, the first female officer of what is now Bancorp South, received the college’s Citizenship Award when she graduated in 1951 and since her retirement in 1989 has been active in the PRCC Alumni Association, Development Foundation and Wildcat Club. Hudson, chief executive officer of Hudson’s Inc., was a Pearl River student in the early 1960s. “I did have a great experience at Pearl River a long time ago,” he said. “Pearl River has been good to me. It’s great to be a Wildcat.” A retired petroleum geologist, Furr counts four major decisions that led to his successful professional and personal life. “The first was when I decided to go to Pearl River Junior College,” he said. “After that, all the other decisions fell into place. I want to thank Pearl River college for putting me on the right road.” Dale, who served 32 years as Mississippi’s elected insurance commissioner, was Baptist Student Union president and played on one of Pearl River’s 13 state championship basketball teams. “During the 51 years of my professional career, I’ve received a number of awards,” he said. “I have to say being a member of the ‘59-‘60 state championship basketball team has got to top them all.” But his time at the college provided more than a sports thrill, he said. “In 1958-1960 when I was a Pearl River College ... we all knew that two years at junior college would give us a better opportunity in this world,” he said. A Poplarville native, Hurst attended college at Pearl River for one year before serving in the Navy during World War II. H retired from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation in 1982 as assistant director of the four-state Memphis region. “I have many fond memories of Pearl River College and what I was taught there has served me very well in countless ways,” he said. An entrepreneur, cattle rancher and collector of western art, Brinkman came to Pearl River as manager of the football team under the late coach Dobie Holden. He credits Holden with teaching him to do things right the first time, a foundation of his success. “The Mississippi community college organization is the best organization in the state,” he said. “They don’t get credit for it. They didn’t get credit 60 years ago. Just think of all the kids who wouldn’t go to college without it.” As part of a continuing partnership between the Lifetime Achievement Hall of Fame and PRCC’s Honors Institute, students videotaped conversations with each of the honorees, asking them for advice. “The folks that we induct tonight are setting the stage for these students,” Lewis said.
POPLARVILLE - Art students at Pearl River Community College are displaying their works in the Moody Hall gallery through Friday, May 3. The work includes drawings and needlework done by students in the drawing and special studio courses taught by PRCC art instructor Charleen Null. “It’s open to the students,” she said. “If they’ve done work, the can contribute to the show.” Approximately 50 pieces are on display, including a drawing of purple and white pansies by Mariah LeBlanc, a general studies major from Purvis. “It was winter when I started, and I wanted some spring,” she said. Christine Ladner of Poplarville, who plans to major in landscape architecture, is displaying a drawing of a bright red cardinal. “I just enjoy animals,” she said in explaining why she chose to draw a redbird. Other students who are exhibiting work include Julia Ferguson, a PRCC English instructor; Sandra Booker, Kim Sones, Summer Ard, Jaylen Funches, Tony Garretson, Edward King, Leeanne Knight, Cara Larsen, Kayla Lee, Deana Holifield, also a PRCC English instructor; Amber Coello, Rocklin Gaudin, Katie Prevot, Jeronda Beason and Tom Bichell. The gallery is located on the first floor of the Moody Hall addition and is open during regular business hours Monday-Friday.
Students exhibiting work in the Spring Art Show at Pearl River Community College include, seated from left, Lee Anne Knight of Slidell, La., and Jeronda Beason of Poplarville; standing, Edward King of Lumberton, Kayla Lee of Picayune, Christine Ladner of Poplarville and Mariah LeBlanc of Purvis. The art can be viewed through May 3 in the Moody Hall gallery on the Poplarville campus.
POPLARVILLE - Pearl River Community College recently received Fit-Friendly Company Recognition from the American Heart Association. The program recognizes employers who champion the health of their employees and work to create a culture of physical activity and health in the workplace. Tara Rouse, director of the PRCC Wellness Center, completed the college’s application for the designation. Among the items she listed were the physical fitness assessments for students that are also available for faculty, staff and community members of the Wellness Center and the $286,270 Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi Foundation grant that allowed purchase of new Wellness Center equipment and construction of an outdoor track. “I told them about the exercise records that are available for all our employees - Fast Track for faculty and staff,” Rouse said. “Any of our employees who reach 40 workouts gets a prize.” Employees who work out 15 times during the spring semester get free summer semester membership and those with 20 workouts get the fall semester free, she said. “We have an indoor walking track plus we’re building an outdoor one,” she said. “Our campus cafeteria always offers healthy options. Nutritional information is available on request on all items offered in our cafeteria.” The Wellness Center will sponsor a Heart Association Heart Walk on April 25. Dr. Adam Breerwood, vice president for the Poplarville campus and Hancock Center, accepted the award at a meeting at the Great Southern Club in Gulfport. “We were recognized along with several other companies as a Fit-Friendly company,” he said.
POPLARVILLE - Pearl River Community College will offer a summer welding course on the Poplarville campus. The course will meet from 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, beginning May 20 and ending July 31. Cost is $475, and completion includes NCCER certification in the core curriculum and Level 1 welding and a 10-hour OSHA card. Instructor is Leland Kennedy. Students must be 18 years old or older and provide a copy of a Mississippi state-issued ID and a current drug screen. The drug screen results will be required the first week of class. They must also have their own personal protective equipment - steel-toed shoes, safety glasses, ear plugs, cap, welding gloves, welding shield and long sleeve shirt. Applications can be obtained by calling Gloria Wasmund at 601 403-1241, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or at the Career Education Office on Wildcat Drive on campus. Applications and fees must be submitted to Pearl River Community College, Career Education Building, 101 Highway 11 North, Box 5010, Poplarville MS 39470 by May 15.
POPLARVILLE - Pearl River Community College raised $3,672 for the American Heart Association on Thursday, April 25, with a Heart Walk at the college’s new walking track. Fifteen teams participated in the fund-raising challenge and numerous individuals joined the two-mile walk for an estimated 175 walkers. “This is our first event on our new walking track,” PRCC President Dr. William Lewis said. “We’ve got big plans out here.” The lighted, paved track was funded by grants from the Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi Foundation and the Lower Pearl River Valley Foundation as well as the college. “We’re really, really proud of what’s happened out here,” Lewis said. Heart Walk organizers will continue raising money through the end of the month and with a Zumbathon on May 16.
Walkers wait for the signal to start the Heart Walk on Thursday, April 25, at Pearl River Community College. PRCC Public Relations photo
POPLARVILLE - The first Pearl River Community College students to graduate from the Honors Institute were honored with a Medallion Ceremony on Monday, April 29. Family and friends of Honors Institute students on both the Poplarville and Forrest County Center campuses were invited to commemorate their upcoming graduation on May 15. “I want you to know how very proud we are of these students and what they’ve accomplished,” said PRCC President Dr. William Lewis. “These are the cream of the crop.” The Honors Institute was created in 2011 under the direction of Dr. Stephen Black to provide intensive and innovative classes for academically-advanced students. “This is our first graduating class,” Black said. “We’re very proud of that.” White Hall is being renovated as headquarters for the institute in part with a $120,000 grant from the Lower Pearl River Valley Foundation for furnishings in the Honors Institute Library. A portion of the grant will also support the Honors Institute Lyceum speaker series. Through the institute, PRCC students have the opportunity for internships with the Gulf of Mexico Program of the Environmental Protection Agency at Stennis Space Center. Sofia Tent of Carriere and Kevin Grzenia of Hattiesburg completed the first two internships. “I learned so much,” Tent said. “I highly recommend it for any student, not just science majors.” The Honors Institute also is the first community college to participate in Mississippi’s REACH (Research and Education to Advance Conservation and Habitat) program, which showcases farmer conservation practices that work well for both agriculture and the environment. The partnership is expected to be in full swing by fall semester with the first course in a new environmental science curriculum. Two Honors students will be able to take advantage of study abroad programs later this year through a $6,600 grant received recently from a donor who wants to remain anonymous. In addition to Tent, the first PRCC Honors Institute graduates are Chastitie Polk and Noel Bennett, both of Sumrall; Will Walley and Elizabeth Gomez, both of Picayune; Shelby Sattler of Kiln, Nick Aube and Sean Stasny, both of Poplarville; Kevin Grzenia and Karina Hernandez, both of Hattiesburg; Rachel Raynes of Purvis and Allison McDaniel of Columbia.
The inaugural class of the Pearl River Community College Honors Institute received medallions in a ceremony attended by family and friends on Monday, April 29. They are, from left, Honors Council president Chastitie Polk of Sumrall, vice president Will Walley of Picayune, treasurer Shelby Sattler of Kiln, representatives Nick Aube of Poplarville and Sofia Tent of Carriere, Noel Bennett of Sumrall, Elizabeth Gomez of Picayune, Kevin Grzenia and Karina Hernandez, both of Hattiesburg; Rachel Raynes of Purvis, Allison McDaniel of Columbia and Sean Stasny of Poplarville. They will graduate on May 15. PRCC Public Relations photo
POPLARVILLE - A Hattiesburg student was named Miss PRCC Wildcat Monday, April 29, at the conclusion of the annual scholarship pageant at Pearl River Community College. Sarah Friday is a dental hygiene major at PRCC’s Forrest County Center. First alternate is Shelby Ashton of Purvis, a math and natural sciences major. Second alternate is Debra Ellis of Petal, also a dental hygiene major. Breanna Peters of Brandon, a kinesiology major, was chosen by her fellow contestants as the most congenial. Twelve young women competed in interview, physical fitness and presence and composure categories. As Miss PRCC Wildcat, Friday receives a one-semester, full-tuition scholarship. She is the daughter of Cheryl Friday of St. Martin and an honor graduate of St. Martin High School. She was 2011 PRCC homecoming queen, vice president of the sophomore class, co-captain of the String of Pearls dance squad and 2012 Miss PRCC while a student at the Poplarville campus. She is a member of the New Orleans Saintsations. Winners in the competition categories were dental hygiene major Miranda Fazende of Poplarville, interview; physical therapy major Darion Matthews of Richton, physical fitness; and nursing major Shaquell Thomas of Hattiesburg, presence and composure. Thomas also received the fundraising award for the most ads sold in the pageant program. Judges were Lauren Baker and Shana Breerwood, both of Poplarville, and Dawn Smith of Hattiesburg. Doug Rowell was master of ceremonies.
Sarah Friday of Hattiesburg, center, was crowned Miss PRCC Wildcat following the annual scholarship pageant Monday, April 29, at Pearl River Community College. Other winners, from left, are Breanna Peters of Brandon, most congenial; Darion Mathews of Richton, physical fitness award; second alternate Debra Ellis of Petal, first alternate Shelby Holliday of Purvis, Miranda Fazende of Poplarville, interview award; and Shaquell Thomas of Hattiesburg, presence and composure and fundraising awards. PRCC Public Relations photo