Sunday, May 29, 2016

Rattler Battalion cadets begin service as Army Officers

Leading with character was a point of emphasis during the Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU) Army ROTC Commissioning Ceremony on April 29.

Eight cadets were commissioned as second lieutenants during the ceremony, officially signaling a start to their careers as officers in the United States Army.

Lt. Col. Edwin Escobar, commander of the Rattler Battalion, reminded the cadets and family members in attendance that he was surrounded by a great team at FAMU, to include his cadre, Department of the Army Civilians and the University’s faculty and staff.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

FAMU alumni president: Lawson is best choice for FAMU chair

Today, the Tallahassee Democrat published an op-ed by Lt. Col. Gregory L. Clark, president of the FAMU National Alumni Association. Clark urges the FAMU Board of Trustees (BOT) to elect Interim Chairman Kelvin Lawson to a full term as its chair. The BOT is scheduled to hold its officer elections during its meeting on June 10th in Tallahassee.

From Clark’s op-ed:

As president of the National Alumni Association of Florida A&M University, I urge your attention to the matter of the formal appointment of the current interim FAMU Board of Trustees chair and former vice-chair Kelvin Lawson.

In my role as a leader and as an alumnus, I urge the appointment of Interim Chair Lawson and strongly encourage all alumni and citizens who care about higher education to support him as well…

Shelby R. Chipman named new FAMU director of bands

Yesterday evening, during the Florida A&M University National Alumni Association’s Annual Distinguished Alumni Awards Gala, FAMU President Elmira Mangum, Ph.D., announced Shelby R. Chipman, Ph.D., as the new director of the University’s Marching Band and Pep Bands. Chipman is a FAMU alumnus, and currently serves as associate music professor and director of symphonic bands.

Sylvester Young, Ph.D., who has led the band program since May 2013, has decided to return to the classroom full time. He said he will continue to provide support to the band, but explained that the time is right for Chipman to lead the program.

Friday, May 27, 2016

FAMU alumnus highlights fun in fundraising

By Jasmine Thomas

Alumnus Ron Fry has mastered the art of partying with a purpose.

Fry has successfully turned entertaining fellow alumni and friends into an annual fundraising project. Each year, on his birthday, Fry uses his special day as a platform to give back to his alma mater by selflessly sharing his birthday celebration with Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU) in 2001.

“We have been doing the birthday party fundraiser for over 15 years now,” Fry said. “It’s a five-day weekend with people flying in from all over D.C., Atlanta, Houston, Charlotte, Tallahassee and more.”

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Ammons appointed provost at Delaware State University

Yesterday, Delaware State University announced the appointment of James H. Ammons, Ph.D., as its new Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs after months of searching and days of campus interviews with various stakeholders.

Ammons – a native of Winter Haven, Fla. – is currently a professor of political science at Florida A&M University (FAMU), his alma mater. His career at FAMU spanned two separate tenures totaling 27 years as a tenured professor and executive administrator – including serving as that institution’s 10th president from 2007-2012 and as its provost and vice president of Academic Affairs from 1995-2001.

Lawson, Proctor two of the last strong political voices for FAMU in Tallahassee

FAMU has received poor representation from its alumni in the Florida Legislature since 2015. They chose to keep silent as the state of FAMU’s administration went downhill.

Two of the last strong political voices for FAMU in Tallahassee are Alfred “Al” Lawson and William C. “Bill” Proctor, Jr. 

Back in July of 2015, FAMU lost budget authority for the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering (COE) after 28 years. FAMU President Elmira Mangum supported the changes that led to this.

Lawson, a FAMU alumnus and former Florida Senate Minority Leader, told a reporter the next month that he had offered his help to Mangum a number of times but she wasn’t interested in hearing what he had to say.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

FAMU baseball season ends with 4-2 loss to Norfolk State

Florida A&M (31-21, 19-5 MEAC) got a strong pitching performance from Chase Jarrell, but was unable to get the offense going in a 4-2 loss to Norfolk State (29-20, 19-5 MEAC) on Monday night at the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) Baseball Tournament.

The offense scattered eight hits, but couldn’t get that timely hit when they needed it most. Jarrell (6-4) pitched six solid innings and allowed three runs (one earned) on six hits with four strikeouts and one walk. MEAC Player of the Year Dylan Dillard recorded his eighth home run of the season in his final career at bat in the eighth inning.

Alec Wong (2-for-4) and Dillard (2-for-4) had the only two multi-hit games for the Rattlers against the Spartans. Kendal Weeks came in to pitch the final three innings of relief and allowed just one run on three hits with one strikeout.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

FAMU BOT moves from chair who didn’t understand COE budget shift to one who does

The ouster of former FAMU Board of Trustees (BOT) Chairman Cleve Warren has now led to the university having an acting chair who understands what really happened with the budget authority shift at the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering (COE).

Warren showed that he didn’t understand the issue back when the BOT met on July 21, 2015. He asked President Elmira Mangum if FAMU had controlled the budget for the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering (COE) before the creation of the Joint College of Engineering Governance Council in 2015. The Joint College of Engineering Governance Council started to claim that it is in charge of the $12.9M budget that year. It is setup in a way that makes it possible for the FSU representatives and Board of Governors (BOG) Chancellor Marshall Criser, III to outvote FAMU on budget decisions.

“For clarity purposes, before the creation of this joint committee, did A&M have control of the budget?” Warren asked.

“My opinion would be that the dean controlled the expenditures of the College of Engineering; FAMU kept account of them,” Mangum said.