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Dillard International Arts and Music Festival Set for September 13 PDF Print E-mail
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(New Orleans) Dillard University will host its second annual International Arts and Music Festival on the university’s campus on Saturday, September 13 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. The event is sponsored by the University’s Office of International Students and Study Abroad Programs and will include performances by Casa Samba Brazilian dance and music group, Bamboula 2000, Zion Trinity, and singer Michaela Harrison, to name a few.

The International Arts and Music Festival is a fund-raiser event for the Office of International Students and Study Abroad Programs that aims to promote cultural awareness among students, according to Re’Shawn Rayford, office coordinator. “We hope to raise money from this event to encourage students to study abroad as well as recruit internationally,” Rayford said.

In addition to a stellar entertainment lineup the festival will offer attendees a variety of international cuisine provided by variety of vendors including Sodexo, Boswell Jamaican Grill, Lil Dustin Italian Ice, and Crepes a la Cart. Arts and crafts vendors will also offer unique and eclectic items. 

The International Arts & Music Festival is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Rayford at  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  or call 816-4926.

Peter Stevenson elected as the new chair of the Tulane Prevention Research Center's Community Advisory Board PDF Print E-mail
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peterPeter Stevenson has worked in recreational sports, fitness and wellness
for more than 20 years across the country. So he jumped at the chance to
be more involved in community-based health work in New Orleans and
become the chair of the Tulane Prevention Research Center's (PRC)
Community Advisory Board (CAB). "So many people around the table, working on the same goal," Stevenson said of his fellow CAB members. "It's going to change the community."
This spring, Stevenson was elected the new chair of the Tulane PRC CAB, which guides the center's research and community-engagement programs in New Orleans.
Stevenson first joined the CAB in 2012. At the time, he'd recently moved to New Orleans to work as Dillard University's Director of Recreation, Health, and Wellness and serve as an adjunct professor. Prior to that, Stevenson held positions at Florida Memorial College, Central Missouri State University, Florida International University, Jackson State University and Albany State University.
He holds a Bachelor's Degree in Parks and Recreation Administration from Bethany College and a Master of
Science Degree in Physical Education, Exercise and Sports Science from Central Missouri State University. He is
currently pursuing a post-graduate Education Specialist Degree in Human Services/Educational Technology from the
University of Central Missouri.
Stevenson also is certified as a master personal trainer, sports nutritionist, health club manager, strength and
conditioning specialist, Title IX coordinator and former chief judicial officer. Throughout his career, Stevenson has
advocated for adults and children with special needs, as well as fighting childhood obesity and child abuse.
"I love working in the community," Stevenson said. "It's just my way of giving back."
Stevenson said he wanted to join Tulane PRC's CAB because of the group's focus on community-based health work
and the dedication and expertise of the members.
Stevenson said he envisions the CAB becoming a greater asset in the community, furthering its work to empower
communities to identify and address their needs. He also envisions the CAB learning from other boards around the
country and becoming a model itself.
"I want to see us go from good to great," Stevenson said. "The CAB can be the tools to help communities."

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(NEW ORLEANS, LA) – Dillard University has appointed Zella Palmer as the Director of the Ray Charles Program in African American Material Culture.  As program director, Palmer will develop, implement and oversee the university’s African American Material Culture Program will serve as the epicenter for the study, preservation and proliferation of culinary studies in the southeast United States.

ZELLA PALMERPalmer brings extensive experience to the position, having previously served as curator at the DuSable Museum of African American History and the Southern Food & Beverage Museum. She has also collaborated on projects with the Art Gallery of Ontario, Royal Ontario Museum, City of Toronto Collections and the Newcomb Art Gallery.

“We are extremely fortunate to have Zella lead the Ray Charles Program, said Yolanda Page, vice president for academic affairs at Dillard University. “Her experience at the Southern Food and Beverage Museum is a great compliment to the program's mission, and I am excited about the program's growth potential under her leadership.”

Palmer’s passion for food was born in her parents and grandmother’s house where she has fond memories of helping in the kitchen and listening to their many stories. During Palmer’s graduate studies, she turned down other internship offers for the Southern Food & Beverage Museum, which inevitably launched her career in culinary studies with a focus on Southern floodways. Palmer has collaborated on projects with Leah Chase, Chef Adolfo Garcia and many other chefs and home cooks in New Orleans.

 “Just as Ray Charles once said: ‘What is a soul? It’s like electricity – we don’t really know what it is, but it’s a force that can light a room’; so too is the food culture of southeastern United States,” said Palmer. “It is the life stream that connects the past, present and future,” she added.

“My goal is to develop Dillard University’s African American Material Culture Program by going into the kitchens, the communities, the classrooms, the farms and the organizations to bring into the light the living culinary arts and traditions of the south.”

Palmer has published a documentary cookbook entitled New Orleans con Sabor Latino: The History and Passion of Latino Cooking (2013), and has been featured in Louisiana Kitchen & Culture Magazine and the University of Toronto Alumni Magazine. She was also a guest on WWOZ Tiene Sabor with Yolanda Estrada, Tom Fitzmorris and Chef John Folse New Orleans radio shows.  Currently, Palmer is the co-producer for a PBS documentary about Latin American cuisine in New Orleans for WYES-TV set to release in the fall of 2014. She has presented in numerous symposiums as a guest lecturer in the United States, Canada and Nigeria.

Palmer received her Bachelor’s Degree in Bilingual/Bicultural Education from Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago, Illinois and a Master’s Degree in Museum Studies from the University of Toronto, Canada. She also studied Cuban History and Spanish at the University of Havana, Cuba.

The Ray Charles Foundation supports the University’s program in African American Material Culture.

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Dr. Christopher Jeffries Appointed Associate Vice President Academic Affairs; Academic Deans Announced


Untitled4Dr. Christopher N. Jeffries has been appointed Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs at Dillard University. He has previously served as Chief Economist for Foundation Economics Services Incorporated. Dr. Jeffries is the former Provost/Vice President for Academic Affairs at Talladega College and has served as Provost/Vice President for Academic Affairs at Texas College. He also served as Executive Vice President, Vice President for Academic Affairs, and Chair, Department of Business Administration at Stillman College.

Dr. Jeffries received his Ph.D. in Economics from Florida State University, M.A. degree in Economics from Ohio University, and B.S. degree in Economics from North Carolina Central University. He has taught at several colleges and universities in the Southeast. Dr. Jeffries is an award-winning professor, including Professor of the Year.

Dr. Jeffries is a former recipient of a Fulbright Lecturer Award to the People’s Republic of China. In addition to two visits to China, Dr. Jeffries has professionally related travel to Japan, South Korea, South Africa and Brazil. Dr. Jeffries is the author of four books and has more than 28 economics articles published in books, proceedings, and journals.

Untitled3Dr. Richard S. Igwike has been appointed Interim Dean of the School of Business.  Dr. Igwike started teaching at Dillard University in 1982. He received his Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A.) in Management, Master of Arts (M.A.) in International Relations, and Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) in Management from the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss). He received his Ph.D. in Political Science with concentrations in International Relations, Comparative Politics, and Public Law from the University of New Orleans. He completed a post doctorate at Tulane University and received certification from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) in Management and Marketing.

Dr. Igwike is the Gloria and Lester B. Kabacoff Endowed Professor of Business Administration and has served the university in several administrative capacities, including Chair of the School of Business Administration, Chair of the Department of Management and Marketing, and Coordinator of Management in the Division of Business.

Dr. Igwike’s research interests are centered on minority business, and international studies. Recently, his article on “Assessing the Extent of Globalization among 100 Largest African American Businesses” was published in Northern State University’s Proceedings of the 19th Annual Conference on International Business and Contemporary Issues in Business. Collaborating with Dr. Mohammed E. Hussain.  He recently published the following articles: “The Impact of Corruption in Economic Development: A Panel Data Analysis “, in Review of International Business Research; “Examining the Impact of HIV-Prevalence on the Economic Growth in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Panel Data Analysis”, in The Global Journal of Finance and Economics; and “Relationship between Economic Growth and Debt”, in Southwest Review of International Research.

Dr. Igwike is married to Lara J. Igwike who graduated from Dillard University. They are blessed with four children who also graduated from Dillard University. Dr. Igwike is a member of the board of directors of World Igbo Congress, and Anambra State Association in the United States of America. Dr. Igwike is bestowed with an Nze Traditional Title – Nzeadachie 1 of Nkerehi and his wife Lolo Nzeadachie, in his hometown, Nkerehi in Anambra State, Nigeria.


Dr. Dorothy Vick Smith has been reappointed Dean of the College of General Studies.  Dr. Smith was born in New Orleans, LA but reared in McComb, MS. She graduated from C.D. Higgins High school, Jackson State University (BS and MA) in history and later earned both a M.Phil. and Ph.D. in American History from the University of Kansas.  Dr. Smith is the Conrad Hilton Endowed Professor of History.  

Dr. Smith has taught at Dillard, Southern University at New Orleans, Jackson State University, Tougaloo College and the University of Kansas.  She has earned additional continuing education hours in archival preparation from McGill University in Montreal, Canada.  She has done research in Austria, China, and Africa (Ghana). Additionally, Dr. Smith has studied the Russian language at the University of Iowa, and conducted research in Russia and Ukraine.  She has also served as Visiting Senior Research Professor at Princeton University. Some of her publications appear in African and Asian Studies, Greenwood Press, Beacon Press, World Press/Red Sea Press, Black Issues in Higher Education, The Chronicle of Higher Education, and the Journal of Southern History.  Dr. Smith has also served as Director of the Daniel C. Thompson - Samuel DuBois Cook Honors Program and as Outreach Coordinator at the National Endowment for the Humanities, Washington, D.C.

UntitledDr. John E. Wilson has been appointed as Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.  Prior to this appointment, Dr. Wilson served as Director of the Minority Health Disparities Exploratory Research Center, a $5.4M funded initiative by the National Institute of Health Disparities, where he oversaw the development and implementation of the Research, Training and Community Engagement Cores. He also has served as Dean, Division of the Natural Sciences and Public Health that included the departments of biology, chemistry, computer science, mathematics, physics and public health.  During his tenure as Dean, Dr. Wilson secured over $10M in extramural funding support for academic programs enhancement, faculty development and implementation of a Summer Bridge Program for high school students (10th-12th grade) interested in majoring in the sciences, public health and or nursing at Dillard. He established dual degree and early admissions program collaborations with other academic institutions school of engineering, medicine, dentistry, and graduate studies.

Prior to joining the faculty at Dillard, Dr. Wilson served as the associate dean in the School of Graduate Studies and Research (SOGSR) at Meharry Medical College.  He was an associate professor in the Departments of Anatomy and Physiology and Foundation Sciences and director of the Summer Biomedical Sciences Program.  Dr. Wilson also served as the senior administrator for the SOGSR Office of Academic and Student Affairs with primary responsibilities for student recruitment, admissions, and directing the awarding of graduate student assistantships, fellowships and scholarships for which he secured over $3M in extramural funding.  He also served as a member on the Admissions Committee for the school of medicine and dentistry.

Dr. Wilson’s career interests have focused on academic advisement, career counseling and advancing academic outreach and support programs that encourage underrepresented students to pursue careers in science and public health. His research interest focuses on the assessment of science teaching and learning and curriculum design.  Dr. Wilson earned a B.S. in Biology from Clark College, a M.S in Biology form Atlanta University, and a Ph.D. in Cell Biology from Tulane University where he was a recipient of a National Institutes of Health-Pre-doctoral Fellowship.  He completed postdoctoral research training in Science Education at Stanford University and the Institute for Research on Learning, where he was a recipient of a Carnegie Foundation Fellowship. Dr. Wilson is married to Cassandra Nelson Wilson and is the proud father of Morgan Inez Wilson, a 2014 graduate of Dillard University.

TRIO Celebrates 50 Years! How You can be a part of the Story... PDF Print E-mail
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This year the U.S. Department of Education (Department) is commemorating a half a century of changing lives through education with the Federal TRIO Programs!  The theme for the 50th anniversary celebration is TRIO: Celebrating 50 Years of Promoting Excellence by Providing Hope and Opportunity for Success.


To offer special recognition to the TRIO alumni who have participated in our programs (Upward Bound (UB)), UB Math and Science, Veterans UB, Talent Search, Student Support Services, McNair and or Educational Opportunity Centers) the Department has added a new page to its website entitled," Be a Part of the TRIO Story.  On behalf of the Department, we would be honored to include and share your story!


To share your TRIO story please send it to us at  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , in one paragraph format, by Friday July 11, 2014 and include:


● Your full name


● The name of the Federal TRIO Program(s) you participated in


● A brief statement on How TRIO impacted my life


● Current Achievements


● Photo


(If you are a Department of Education employee.)


Please also feel free to follow us on Twitter at" @EDPostsecondary and share your story using the hashtag #TRIO50.  

For any questions or assistance, please contact Craig Pooler at 202-502-7640 or at  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  

or Chaz Gipson at202-502-7637 or  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


Thank you for joining us as we celebrate how 50 years of TRIO has had a positive impact on the lives of the youth it serves!

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