Monday, August 2, 2021

EMCC Conducts Graduation Ceremony for Practical Nursing Students

Eighteen students graduated from East Mississippi Community College’s Practical Nursing program in a pinning ceremony July 30 in the Lyceum Auditorium on the college’s Golden Triangle campus.

Graduate Mya Guyness, president of EMCC’s chapter of the Student Practical Nurses Association, gave the invocation. Guyness spoke about the difficulties she and her classmates encountered and how they leaned on each other for support.

“When it is all said and done, we were able to push through the obstacles and win the race,” Guyness said. “I am thankful for the relationships, memories and experiences we have all shared as a class and I cannot wait to see where we go next.”

EMCC Vice President of Operations Dr. Paul Miller talked about his mother, a practical nurse who answered the call to serve the elderly, caring for patients in a convalescence home during her long and successful career.

“I admired her for the work that she did and the service she provided to those folks,” Miller said. “I feel the same way about you. I admire you for the long journey you have come through and the hard times you have dealt with to get this far. I admire you for the good work you are going to do from this point forward.”

Sam Ivy, director of both the EMCC and the Mississippi University for Women Baptist Student Union, was the guest speaker.

“What you will be doing, no one else can do,” Ivy told the graduates. “You will be the nurses who are there in the hospitals when tears are flowing and you are the only hand to hold ... A family member may not even be able to get through the door, but they’ve got that connection to you.”

Several awards were presented next, with Steens resident Daria Latham garnering the Florence Nightingale Award, which is presented to the student who most embodies the spirit of nursing.

Marsha Friesen and McKenzie Ellis tied for the highest-grade point average and were each presented with Scholastic Achievement Awards. Friesen was also named the Outstanding Student Award recipient and was among six students presented with a Clinical Excellence Award, which is granted to those who show outstanding clinical skills and excellence in communication, documentation and patient education.

Ellis and Latham were also presented with Clinical Excellence Awards, as were Shumata Evans, Hartley Files and Deidre Lott. Evans was also presented with the Leadership and Service Award for, among other things, demonstrating leadership qualities throughout the program.

EMCC Director of Nursing and Allied Health Dr. Tonsha Emerson conducted the formal presentation of the graduates.

“Welcome to the most trusted profession in America,” Emerson said. “Our faculty and I are so proud of you. Congratulations.”

One family member of each graduate was allowed to come on stage and assist with the ceremonial pinning ceremony, which concluded the event.

The Practical Nursing program is a 12-month course of study designed to prepare students to become licensed practical nurses. Students are taught nursing skills, nutrition, anatomy and physiology, human growth and development, pharmacology, maternal child nursing, emotional and mental illness, and medical/surgical nursing.

The 2021 graduates of EMCC’s Practical Nursing program are Unisa Bell of West Point, Tyra Blevins of Columbus, Carson Collier of Louisville, Samantha Davis of Prairie, Mattie Edwards of West Point, McKenzie Ellis of Columbus, Shumata Evans of West Point, Hartley Files of Mathiston, Marsha Friesen of Macon, Mya Guyness of Columbus, Alexandria Hunt of Louisville, Kia Jones of Columbus, Daria Latham of Steens, Emilee Latham of Caledonia, Deidre Lott of Mathiston, Diamond Mundy of Columbus, Allison Nichols of Starkville and Breanna Odom of DeKalb.

Submitted by: Michael Lee Stewart

(Do not have the students’ names from left to right.)

Wednesday, July 28, 2021

ECCC Practical Nursing Program Graduates

Graduates of East Central Community College’s Practical Nursing Program received special recognition at the annual pinning ceremony held recently on the Decatur campus. Students who completed the 12-month program and their respective hometowns include (first row, from left) Krystle Goforth, Tabatha McGee, and Layne Lepard, all of Philadephia; Cortland Baker of Carthage, Tanisha McMullan of Decatur, Jessica Richardson of Louisville, Tori Jones of Walnut Grove, and Jabrshia Ickom of Lake; and (back row, from left) Brandi McDill of Conehatta, Ashley Kennedy of Philadelphia, Ashia Harris and Patricia Bang, both of Lake; Anitra Spencer of Enterprise, Natasha McCarty of Philadelphia, Jamea Nelson of Forest, Ashley Smith of Philadelphia, and Acie Leach of Union. Not pictured is Alicia McLain of Forest. Jones was also selected Practical Nursing Student of the Year and gave the address to graduates. For more information contact Dr. Sheryl Allen, dean of healthcare education, at 601-635-6294, or email (EC Photo)

Friday, July 16, 2021

Noah’s Ark Stuffed Animal Kit Program

The Winston County Library hosted a Noah’s Ark Stuffed Animal Kit Program as part of their Summer Library Program.

One year-old Lon’dynn Houston checks out the flowers at the Winston County Library after receiving her Noah’s Ark Stuffed Animal Kit. She is the daughter of Ti’ja Houston and Justin Jones.

 Pictured here with their stuffed animals are (l-r) Brix and Hadleigh Boler, son and daughter of Jeremy and Samantha Boler.

Another participant in the Winston County Library’s Noah’s Ark Stuffed Animal Kit Program was five year-old Killian Pace, son of Cody and Krystin Pace.

Thursday, July 15, 2021

Local DAR Gets New Member

The Nanih Waiya Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution welcomes Kathy Woodruff Sones as its newest member. She is a graduate of Louisville High School and has moved back to Louisville after being away for many years.

The DAR is one of the largest women’s lineagebased, patriotic nonprofits in the world, with 185,000 members and approximately 3,000 local chapters in the United States and abroad. Since our founding in 1890, close to one million members have carried out our mission which is to promote historic preservation, education, and patriotism. We are an organization rich in history recognized around the world. The women who make up our membership are varied and come from all walks of life, yet we share a common bond of tracing our ancestry back to those who helped gain our nation’s independence.

Founded in 1890, the DAR is committed to preserving the memory and spirit of those who contributed to American independence. Although our founding principles remain true today, the DAR has evolved to accommodate today’s women and serve communities domestically and abroad. For more contact Regent Theresa Bridges at

Submitted by: Gwynn Hall

Tuesday, July 13, 2021

ECCC Presents HSE Diplomas

Thirty-seven students received their High School Equivalency (formerly GED) diplomas during graduation ceremonies July 8 at East Central Community College in Decatur. Graduates included (first row, from left) Hannah Eubanks of Standing Pine, Deborah Pearson of Decatur, Ashley McLaurin of Philadelphia, Robin Langston of Carthage, Sarah Moss of Ackerman, Jessica Rushing and Sierra Bryan, both of Louisville, and Alaina Robinson and Heather Creason, both of Forest; (second row, from left) Gabreanna Fernandez of Raleigh, Bailey Bilodeau of Conehatta, Chelsea Posey of Forest, Tatiana Roberson of Louisville, Brittany Graham of Conehatta, Kyron Artis of Union, Phoebe Fulton of Philadelphia, Destiny Creason of Forest, and Christina Lillis of Philadelphia; (third row, from left) Codi Ray of Philadelphia, Johnathon Fults of Tracy City, Tenn., Damian Bell of Philadelphia, Xavier Dubose and Nikolas Artis, both of Union, Brooklyn Barnes, Krisler Barnes and Wendy Ferreras, all of Forest, John Knochenmuss of Little Rock, and Shirley Thornton of Madden; and (back row, from left) Jade Walker of Decatur, Graci Copeland of Conehatta, Kee’Wan Burnside of Philadelphia, Tristan Gregory of Union, Arizona Edmonds of Ackerman, Lauren Shaw of Decatur, Stormy Copeland of Philadelphia, Conesha Ealy of Forest, and Emily Thornton of Madden. Not pictured are Marissa Ferguson of Forest, Richard Kilgore of Louisville, and Teresa Talbert of Conehatta. Carla Causey, assistant director of adult education for assessment and program support with the Mississippi Community College Board, was the guest speaker at the event held in Huff Auditorium. For more information on ECCC’s High School Equivalency program, contact Alfreda Thompson, director of adult basic education and high school equivalency, at 601-635-6387 or (EC Photo)

Monday, July 12, 2021

Carl Jackson Home for Christmas Concerts to Resume in December in Louisville

The Red Hills Art Foundation has announced the resumption of a special holiday tradition for Louisville, Winston County and country music lovers all across the south. Two “Carl Jackson ‘Home for Christmas’” concerts will be held on Saturday, December 18. A matinee performance at 4 p.m. and an evening performance at 7 p.m. will be held. Full details about the two concerts will be announced at a later date including the venue, ticket pricing and purchase information.

Jackson is a multi-Grammy award winning artist born on the third floor of the historic Strand Theater in Louisville. He gained world-wide fame touring and playing banjo for Jim and Jesse McReynolds and later, with Glen Campbell. He is a member of the elite Mississippi Country Music Hall of Fame. In addition to being what Campbell described as “the world’s greatest banjo player,” Carl is equally recognized for his talents as a songwriter and vocalist.

The concerts also feature several of Carl’s closest Nashville friends and entertainers who have adopted the Home for Christmas concerts as an essential part of their own family’s Christmas celebrations as they have evolved over the last two decades.
Red Hills Arts Foundation is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization which has, among other things, used proceeds from these concerts to preserve the historic Strand Theater in downtown Louisville which is now undergoing major renovations.

There were no concerts held last Christmas due to the COVID pandemic. “Carl’s ‘Home for Christmas’ concerts have become a Louisville Christmas tradition,” RHAF president Mary Snow said. “We are thrilled to be able to resume our sponsorship of this outstanding entertainment and feel certain that when tickets go on sale, both concerts will sell-out in a very short time. Mark your calendars and be watching for more information,” Snow added.