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School Department News

Noonkester School of Arts and Letters

Thursday, August 14, 2014 - 8:43am

Chatham Meade Kemp, assistant professor of art at William Carey University, recently received an Artist Fellowship grant from the Mississippi Arts Commission (MAC).

The MAC grant of $4,500 was awarded to Kemp based on her exemplary work in her chosen field of painting. The Artist Fellowship program is highly competitive, with only a small number of the total applicants each year receiving an award of up to $5,000. The award is based solely on merit with the requirement that the funds be used to expand the artist’s ability to create new work.

“I will be using the MAC grant to create my next series of paintings, including materials, transport, framing and promotion of work,” said Kemp.

The grant is a portion of the $1.34 million in grants MAC awarded in 2014-2015. The grants are made possible by continued funding from the Mississippi Legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts.

“The arts in Mississippi are now being recognized as a key component to economic development and as a driver for creative strategies for the growth of our communities,” said Dr. Tom Pearson, executive director of MAC. “Individual artists play a vital role as really the backbone of this movement, and it is an honor for this agency to be a part of their professional growth.”

According to Kemp, her paintings celebrate her “love of making discoveries with the expressive power of color and the physical process of layering paint on canvas.” Her work walks a line between representation and abstraction, suggesting natural forms such as plants, trees and flowers, along with weather patterns and other natural world references.

Kemp’s work has also been selected to be displayed at the bi-annual Mississippi Invitational Juried Exhibition at the Mississippi Museum of Art from November 1 until January 25, 2015. Through this exhibition, Kemp has also applied for a $15,000 travel/study grant. The winner of the grant will be announced in October.

“Going through the selection process for the exhibition was a great learning experience,” said Kemp. “The events for the exhibition, including the opening reception, will allow me to meet artists from all areas of the state.”

The Mississippi Museum of Art will also produce a full color catalog of all of the artists involved, including statements about the artwork and biographical information.

“It is a great honor to be included in this exhibit,” she said.

Kemp is the daughter of James W. Meade, an art faculty member at the University of Southern Mississippi for over 40 years, and local artist and teacher Myra Meade. She has taught at WCU since 2007.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014 - 8:40am
Friday, July 25, 2014 - 2:15pm

Dr. Rafael Sanchez, a native of Spain and a respected educator of the Spanish language, has joined the faculty of William Carey University as professor of Spanish.

Dr. Sanchez will provide senior faculty leadership for the new Spanish major, which launches in the 2014-2015 school year. He will also work to develop and strengthen study abroad programs in Spanish in both Spain and Latin America.

Dr. Sanchez previously taught Spanish at The University of Southern Mississippi. He began his employment with USM in January 1981 and served as chairman of the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures from 1995-2004. He has also worked with USM’s Office of International Programs, where he was heavily involved in creating and managing study abroad programs since 1997. He served as both director of international programs and director of the Center for International Education.

Dr. Sanchez has worked with the Mississippi Foreign Language Association in various capacities and served as president from 1998-2000. He is the developer of CATPRI (Computer Aided Total Physical Response Instruction), an interactive computer program to enhance foreign language teaching. He has also worked as director of liturgical ministries and director of Hispanic ministry at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Hattiesburg. Prior to coming to the United States, Dr. Sanchez worked as a missionary in Uganda for 12 years.

He received his Ph.D. in Spanish Language and Literature from Tulane University in 1992 and his M.A. in Liturgy at the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., in 1978.

Thursday, November 21, 2013 - 3:39pm

Hattiesburg, Miss., November 21, 2013 - Three William Carey University students were formally inducted into the WCU Chapter of Sigma Tau Delta International English Honor Society on November 15 on WCU’s Hattiesburg campus. Established in 1924 to confer distinction for high achievement in English language, literature, and writing, Sigma Tau Delta invites members to join based on academic excellence.

The 2013 Sigma Tau Delta Fall 2013 inductees were Lauran Burham of Laurel, Megan Bourne of Columbia, and Lauren Golson of Hattiesburg.  Faculty sponsor is Marsha Newman, associate professor of English, and co-sponsor is Dolores O’Mary, administrative assistant for language and literature. Sigma Tau Delta president is Alyssa Keyes of Ringgold, Ga.

A reception followed the ceremony.

Monday, November 4, 2013 - 1:27pm

Hattiesburg, Miss., November 4, 2013 - Dr. Myron Noonkester, dean of the Noonkester School of Arts and Letters, has recently been named as the 2013 Mississippi Humanities Teacher of the Year for William Carey University. A faculty member from each of the community and senior colleges in the state is chosen for this recognition each year.

Dr. Noonkester presented his humanities lecture titled, “The Last Shoe to Drop: The Educational Foundations of William Carey (1761-1834) and William Thames (1866-1942)” on October 30 in the lecture auditorium of Fail-Asbury Hall. His lecture focused on parallels in the lives and educational backgrounds and methods of William Carey, the “Father of Modern Missions” and the university’s namesake, and William Thames, the educator who founded the institution that evolved into WCU.

Dr. Noonkester has taught at WCU for 30 years. He obtained his bachelor’s degree in history at Duke University before earning his master’s and Ph.D. at the University of Chicago.

The Mississippi Humanities Council is a private nonprofit corporation funded by Congress through the National Endowment for the Humanities to provide public programs in traditional liberal arts disciplines to serve nonprofit groups in Mississippi. MHC sponsors, supports, and conducts a wide range of programs designed to promote understanding of our cultural heritage, interpret our own experience, foster critical thinking, encourage reasonable public discourse, strengthen our sense of community, and thus empower Mississippi's people with a vision for the future.