Pearl River Community College

March 2018

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Jessie Besanson selected as Miss PRCC at pageant

Jessie Besanson selected as Miss PRCC at pageant

  POPLARVILLE - A freshman from Carriere who plans to become a plastic surgeon walked away with the crown Thursday night at the Miss PRCC Scholarship Pageant.
  Jessie Besanson also was named winner of the talent and evening gown portions of the pageant at Pearl River Community College. She did a jazz dance to the song “It’s About That Walk.”
  Mallori Dykes of Beaumont was named first alternate, swimsuit and interview winner; Marella Failla of Picayune, second alternate; Cammie Moree of Sumrall, third alternate and Madeline Boover of Sumrall, fourth alternate and Miss Congeniality.
  Also competing were McKinsy Harris of Poplarville, Haley Roberts of Gulfport and Taylor Gregory of Picayune, who was honored for selling the most program ads.
  Master of ceremonies was Jacob Hickman, Fellowship of Christian Athletes campus director. Judges, all experienced pageant directors, were Terry Fleming of Leakesville, Martha Lee of Hattiesburg and Dr. Carroll Pierce of Ellisville.
  Besanson received a full semester scholarship as 2018 Miss PRCC.
  The next pageant will be held in November 2018 and will be a preliminary to the 2019 Miss Mississippi pageant.

Jessie Besanson of Carriere, center, was crowned Miss PRCC (Pearl River Community College) Thursday, March 1. With her, from left, are fourth alternate and Miss Congeniality Madeline Boover of Sumrall, second alternate Marella Failla of Picayune, first alternate Mallori Dykes of Beaumont and third alternate Cammie Moree of Sumrall.
PRCC Public Relations photo

Jessie Besanson of Carriere is the 2018 Miss PRCC.
PRCC Public Relations photo

March 2, 2018 - 1:07pm
Hague honored by Mississippi Historical Society

Hague honored by Mississippi Historical Society

  POPLARVILLE - The Mississippi Historical Society presented its Award of Merit to Ronn Hague, museum director and digital media coordinator at Pearl River Community College, on Saturday, March 3.   
  He was honored for his vision and work to establish the PRCC Museum in 2001. It is believed to be one of the only, if not the only, museums in the country that chronicles the history of a two-year college.
  Hague received the award during the society’s annual meeting at the Two Mississippi Museums in Jackson. Dr. William Lewis, PRCC president emeritus, also attended the awards luncheon. He was president when Hague conceived the idea of the museum and supported it through its inception and continual growth.
  Hague holds an associate’s degree from PRCC and attended the University of Southern Mississippi. He has been employed at PRCC since 1999.
  During that time, he has documented the college’s history in writing as well as in a 71-minute DVD called “The Pearl River College Story.” He also wrote, directed and filmed 50 short films for the college’s Healthy People Now! program; conceived of and produces the college yearbook in the CD-ROM format and teaches College Publications classes, including public history and a two-year film production class.
  Hague has received numerous awards from the College Public Relations Association of Mississippi and was inducted into the Mississippi Community College Creative Writing Association Hall of Fame in 2011.

Pearl River Community College museum director Ronn Hague, left, and Dr. William Lewis, president emeritus, attended the Mississippi Historical Society meeting on March 3 when Hague received the society’s Award of Merit for his work with the college museum.

March 5, 2018 - 10:58am
Iota Mu PTK chapter inducts new members

Iota Mu PTK chapter inducts new members

The Iota Mu chapter of Phi Theta Kappa two-year honor society inducted new members Monday, March 5. The chapter includes students on the Poplarville campus and at the Hancock Center. Advisors are Trevor Hunt, Jeff McCoy, Robin Nix and Lisa Wall. The new members include, seated, Casey Ladner and Tess Ball, both of Poplarville; first row from left, Steven Warran of Kiln, Ashley Terwilliger of Saucier, Reis Trager of Moss Point, Kylie Terrell of Hattiesburg, Elizabeth Ann Taggard of Carriere, Rylee Swilley of Kiln, Caitlin Sumrall, Kelsey Strahan and Katelyn Stuart, all of Poplarville; Kimberly Spiers of Picayune, Erin Snider of Carriere, Kenneth Smith of Laurel, Evan Smith and Addison Smith, both of Poplarville; Tia Sims of Columbia, Payton Seyfarth of Hattiesburg, Katie Rutledge of Carriere, Grace Sanders of Sumrall, Hannah Purvis and Alyssa Pinero, both of Picayune; Shemar Page of Raleigh, Laken Patrick of Foxworth; second row, Caroline Vidrine of Bay St. Louis, Tyas Owens of Columbia, Sarah Ogden of Sumrall, J.D. O’Brian III of Purvis, Magruder O’Bannon of Long Beach, Phoebe Nix of Poplarville, Madison Nobles of Columbia, Sarah Nations of Wiggins, Daniel Munyan of Saucier, Michael Mills of Picayune, Haley McSwain of Petal, Brittany McLaurin of Picayune, Neely McCleod of Lucedale, William Masters of Lumberton, Jackson Mapp of Hattiesburg, Alison Lott of Carriere, Deyton Lingle of Lake, Taylor Lee of Bay St. Louis, Trenton Lee of Picayune, Jordan Lee of Redwood, Walker Leathers of Gulfport, Christian Jordan of Poplarville; third row, Mary Grace Turner of Leakesville, Shannon Johnson of Carriere, Tyrese Jinner of Lumberton, Antwon Jefferson of Bassfield, Sierra Jarrell and Cheyenne Ingersoll, both of Carriere; Iliana Iniguez of Bay St. Louis, Connor Holston and Amber Hodnett, both of Carriere; Bryce Hall of Hattiesburg, Christine Hook of Poplarville, Angela Hembra of Lumberton, John “Jack” Hays and Cameron Hawkins, both of Picayune; Colson Harper of Meridian, Kaley Hammett of Gulfport, Madyson Turnage and Taylor Gregory, both of Picayune; Krista Foxworth of Foxworth, Derek Eberly of Blountstown, Fla.; Aaron Dusang of Picayune, Dylann Dunaway of Poplarville; fourth row, Carley Thornhill of Thornhill, Emma Culliver of Poplarville, Taia Cuevas of Picayune, Sydni Crain of Poplarville, Ryan Counts of Carriere, Ramey Cochran of Lucedale, Wiley Cleland of Columbia, Rachel Carlisle of Lumberton,  Lonnie Burrell of Brandon, Charlie Burge of Purvis, Kelsey Bullen of Lumberton, Emily Brana of Purvis, Henry Bourne III of Jackson, Madeline Boover of Sumrall, Dallas Blaker of Long Beach, Jessie Besanson and Allison Berryman, both of Carriere; Hailey Bernard of Picayune, Allison Beasley and Cole Bean, both of Carriere; Joshua Andreozzi of Picayune and Layken Alber of Poplarville.

March 8, 2018 - 10:05am
First Fine Arts Hall of Fame honorees named

First Fine Arts Hall of Fame honorees named

  POPLARVILLE - Five former students and instructors have been selected as the inaugural members of the Fine Arts Hall of Fame at Pearl River Community College.
  They are Connie Holmes and Dr. Mark Malone, both of Hattiesburg; Howell Purvis of Purvis, Archie Rawls of Poplarville and the late Michael Sprinkell of Gulfport.
  They will be honored during the PRCC Choral Concert at 7 p.m. April 17 at the Brownstone Center in Poplarville.
  “We have been wanting to start a hall of fame for several years,” said Dr. Kyle Hill, chairman of the Department of Fine Arts and Communication. “It is an opportunity to honor former students and instructors in all areas of the arts, those who have contributed to the success of the department over the years.”
  The honorees will be introduced between the performances of the RiverRoad Pop Choir and the PRCC Singers. Tickets for the concert are $5 at the door.
  Holmes taught speech and drama courses at PRCC from 1971-2001, sponsored Delta Psi Omega community college theater honor society and directed children’s theater as well as PRCC productions, including a dinner theater. She also directed the String of Pearls dance team for more than 20 years. Holmes taught part-time at the Forrest County Center after her retirement.
  For 21 years, Malone was director of choral music at PRCC where he conducted The Pearl River Singers, RiverRoad show choir and The Voices ensemble along with teaching music courses. Choirs under his direction made three concert tours of England, Wales, Scotland, and France and performed nationwide.  He is in his 12th year as coordinator of music education and professor of music in the Winters School of Music at William Carey University. He also is the curriculum designer for the Mississippi Arts Commission’s Mississippi Blues Project.
  Purvis played first trumpet at Pearl River before graduating in 1955 and entering Navy flight training. His career included 10 years as a Navy pilot and and 22 years as a member of the U.S. Secret Service. During that time, he was on the protection details of five presidents, five vice presidents and numerous foreign heads of state. Following retirement, he began playing the trumpet again. Through his association with VFW Post 3036, he has played Taps at 502 military funerals.
  Rawls not only graduated from Pearl River but returned in 1980 as band director. When he retired in 2015, he was chairman of the Department of Fine Arts and Communication and director of the Brownstone Center. He was instrumental in the planning and construction of the Brownstone Center, which opened in 2013, and also supervised reconstruction of Moody Hall following Hurricane Katrina. Rawls serves as minister of music at Sandy Hook Baptist Church and as director of the Pearl River County Community Band and frequently adjudicates regional band festivals.
  Sprinkell was a talented euphonium player who had earned numerous honors in high school, including selection through audition for the Lion’s All-State Band three years. As a music student at PRCC, he played first chair in the Community College All-State Band. Following his death in a traffic accident when he was a sophomore, his parents, Connie and Becky Sprinkell, established the Michael Sprinkell Memorial Band Scholarship at Pearl River.

Connie Holmes

Dr. Mark Malone

Howell Purvis

Archie Rawls

Michael Sprinkell

March 22, 2018 - 9:04am
Mr. and Miss PRCC, class favorites selected

Mr. and Miss PRCC, class favorites selected

  POPLARVILLE - Two Picayune students will be featured in Pearl River Community College’s 2018 Wildcat year disk as Mr. and Miss PRCC.
  Lucas Williams and Marella Failla were elected by fellow students.
  Class favorites on the Poplarville campus are sophomores Olivia Conley of Gulfport and Stanton Ladner of Necaise and freshmen Addison Smith of Poplarville and Trenton Lee of Picayune.
  Forrest County Center favorites are sophomores Rosheda Harrington of Hattiesburg and Cody Hudson of Oak Grove and freshmen Alexandria Raven Sterling of Oak Grove and Thaddeus Barncastle of Hattiesburg.
  Hancock Center class favorites are sophomores Haley Roberts of Gulfport and Nicholas Breland of Slidell, La., and freshmen Shaniya Jarreau and Gavin Cuevas, both of Bay St. Louis.
  Williams, 20, is the son of Lisa Lymuel and a graduate of Picayune Memorial High School. He is a member of The Voices ensemble, PRCC Singers choir and the Student Government Association and plays the lead role of Huck in PRCC’s musical Big River: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.
  He plans to study clinical psychology at the University of Southern Mississippi.
  Failla, the 21-year-old daughter of David and Cindy Failla, graduated from Mother of Divine Grace. She is president of the Iota Mu chapter of Phi Theta Kappa honor society, the Student Government Association and the STEM Club and a member of the Dr. William A. Lewis Honors Institute and the Student Alumni Association. She was second alternate in the 2018 Miss PRCC Wildcat pageant and the winner of the 2017 PRCC Talent Show.
  A mechanical engineering major, she plans to attend Mississippi State University.
  Conley, 19, is the daughter of Linda and Howard Conley. She plays flute in the PRCC Wind Ensemble, was head drum major for the Spirit of the River marching band and a maid in the 2017 Homecoming court. She plans to study biochemistry at MSU.
  Ladner, 20, is the son of Sherwin and Sissy Ladner. He is a member of the Honors Institute, PTK, STEM Club, SGA and the Student Alumni Association. He plans to study mechanical engineering at MSU.
  The daughter of Tony and Angie Smith, Smith, 18, is a graduate of Picayune Memorial High School. She is a PRCC cheerleader, a member of the FCA Leadership Team and PTK and a Dean’s List scholar. She was a maid in the 2017 Homecoming court.
  Lee, 18, also graduated from Picayune Memorial High School and is the son of Jill and Russell Lee. He is a pitcher and infielder on the Wildcat baseball team and a member of PTK.
  Harrington, 35, is the single mother of three sons and two daughters ranging in age from 15 to 8. A graduate of South Jones High School, she is a member of the Science Club, Travel Club, History and Humanities Club and Computer Science Club and secretary of the Student Government Association. She intends to study forensics at USM.
  Hudson, 23, is the son of Stacy Hudson and Stephen Hudson and a graduate of Oak Grove High School. An Honors Institute student, he is a member of PTK, Sigma Kappa Delta, Mu Alpha Theta and the History and Humanities Club. He is a President’s List scholar and hopes to transfer to Cornell University to study electrical engineering.
  Sterling, the 19-year-old daughter of Shannon and Bobby Sterling, is a graduate of Oak Grove High School. She is president of the Social Sciences Club and a member of PTK and the Travel Club.
  Barncastle, 20, is the son of Karen Y. Barncastle and a graduate of Hattiesburg High School. He is an officer in PTK and the Video Club and a member of the History and Humanities Club and the Social Sciences Club.
  Roberts, 20, is the daughter of John and Gina Roberts and a graduate of Douglas County High School in Colorado. She has been involved in the St. Patrick’s Day party, trunk-or-treat, the Hancock County Food Pantry, the Halloween party and was a maid in the 2017 Homecoming Court. She plans to study funeral home directing at a university.
  Breland, the 20-year-old son of Kenzi Breland and Travis Bath, is a graduate of Northshore High School. He is a member of PTK and enjoys botany exploration. He plans to study wildlife conservation and management.
  Jarreau, 20, is the daughter of Kenja Jarreau of Atlanta, Ga. She is a graduate of Hancock High School.
  Cuevas, 21, is the son of Krasinda Cuevas and is also a graduate of Hancock High School.

Class favorites elected by fellow students at Pearl River Community College are, seated from left, Forrest County Center freshman class favorite Alexandria Raven Sterling of Oak Grove, Miss PRCC Marella Failla of Picayune, Poplarville sophomore class favorite Olivia Conley of Gulfport; standing, Forrest County Center sophomore class favorite Cody Hudson of Oak Grove, Hancock Center freshman class favorites Gavin Cuevas and Shaniya Jarreau, both of Bay St. Louis; Mr. PRCC Lucas Williams of Picayune, Hancock Center sophomore class favorites Haley Roberts of Gulfport and Nicholas Breland of Slidell, La.; Poplarville sophomore class favorite Stanton Ladner of Necaise and Forrest County Center freshman class favorite Thaddeus Barncastle. Not pictured are Forrest County Center sophomore class favorite Rosheda Harrington, Poplarville campus freshman class favorites Addison Smith of Poplarville and Trenton Lee of Picayune.
PRCC Public Relations photo

Addison Smith of Poplarville and Trenton Lee of Picayune are freshman class favorites on the Poplarville campus of Pearl River Community College.
PRCC Public Relations photo

Rosheda Harrington

March 23, 2018 - 10:26am
Outstanding alumni to be honored April 12

Outstanding alumni to be honored April 12

  Five alumni will be inducted into the Pearl River Community College Lifetime Achievement Hall of Fame on April 12.
  The induction will follow a 6:30 p.m. dinner at the Southern Oaks House and Gardens in Hattiesburg.
  They are former Rep. J. P. Compretta of Bay St. Louis, PRCC retired instructor Dr. Benny Hornsby of Hattiesburg, retired coach and college professor J. Larry Ladner of Kiln, Picayune native and nursing professor Dr. Pamela Johnson Rowsey of Durham, N.C., and Forrest-Perry County Circuit Judge Jon Mark Weathers of Hattiesburg.
  Individual tickets are $100. The deadline to purchase is Thursday, April 5, by telephoning 601 403-1191.
  PRCC established tThe Lifetime Achievement Hall of Fame in 2012 to honor outstanding alumni.    

J.P. Compretta

Dr. Benny Hornsby

J. Larry Ladner

Dr. Pamela Johnson Rowsey

Jon Mark Weathers

March 26, 2018 - 10:36am
Big River musical set for April 5 and 6

Big River musical set for April 5 and 6

  POPLARVILLE _ The escapades of two young boys and a slave come to life when Pearl River Community College presents Big River: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.
  Curtain time for the Tony-Award winning musical will be 7 p.m. on Thursday and Friday, April 5 and 6, in the Brownstone Center for the Arts on the Poplarville campus.
  Lucas Williams of Picayune plays the lead role of Huck with DeAndre Finley of Pontotoc as his pal Tom Sawyer and Hunter King of Picayune as the slave Jim.
  The roles of the con men Huck encounters on the river are played by Matthew Thigpen of Columbia as Duke and science instructor Robert Maynard of Hattiesburg as King.
  Big River is based on Mark Twain’s classic novel, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, published in 1884. The music and lyrics were written by Roger Miller, perhaps best known for his song King of the Road.
  Others in the cast are Taylor Graham of Picayune, Alice; Jenna Lee of Lumberton, servant; Sadie Kesler of Poplarville, Sally; Madeline Boover of Sumrall, Mary Jane Wilkes; Jackie Neal of Wiggins, JoAnna Wilkes; Cammie Moree of Sumrall, Miss Watson; Courtney Sones of Carriere, Widow Douglas; Haylee Herrin of Picayune, second man; and Sarah Ogden of Sumrall, strange woman.
  Playing multiple roles are Jonathan Dixon of Petal - Ben and young fool; Ricardo January of Laurel - Silas, counselor Robinson, Harvey Wilkes and Judge Thatcher; and Austin Warner of Franklinton, La. - Harper, first man and Sheriff Bell.
  Theater instructor Christopher Flynn is the director.
  Tickets are $20 and $15 and are available by telephoning 601 403-1180 or online at

March 27, 2018 - 10:02am
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