Student-athlete ambassadors honored during Fall Faculty Recognition Program

Faculty members that work to prepare Alcorn State University student-athletes for academic and athletic success were honored for their efforts during a recognition ceremony.

Alcorn’s Faculty Athletic Ambassador Program recognized nine faculty members selected by student-athletes during the inaugural Fall Faculty Recognition Program Tuesday, Nov. 29, at the Dr. Clinton Bristow Jr. Dining Facility, Gold Room.

The recipients are Dr. Heather Bailey, assistant professor of English; Monica Burr, instructor of biological sciences; Dr. Dongwook Cho, associate professor in the Department of Health, Physical Education, and Recreation; Sonia Eley, interim chair and instructor of chemistry; Dr. Felecia McGowan, assistant professor of English; Willie McGowan Jr., instructor, Department of Health, Physical Education, and Recreation; Larry Sanders, instructor of mass communication; Dr. Johnny Thomas, chairperson and associate professor of the Department of Health, Physical Education, and Recreation; and Sheri Wallace, instructor of English, Languages, and Mass Communication.

Dr. Melissa Mason, the faculty athletic representative at Alcorn, said that connecting faculty and student-athletes had been the Program’s goal since its inception.

“One of our main goals was to create a program where we have more communication between faculty and student-athletes,” said Mason. “We want to ensure that our student-athletes are getting the best that we have to offer.  

Raynoid Dedeaux, Alcorn’s athletic director, applauded the Program’s excellence and value to the students and the Department of Athletics.

“This program means so much to our students and department,” said Dedeaux. “I believe this ambassador program is a great addition, and I look forward to seeing how it continues.”

Dr. Ontario Wooden, provost and senior vice president for Academic Affairs, praised the students for their commitment to excellence.

“When I look at the schedules of our student-athletes, I’m amazed by their ability to get it done in their sports and the classroom,” said Wooden. “I know it’s because they're smart and have a great work ethic, but also because of our tremendous faculty. I am pleased to see this Program come together.”

President Dr. Felecia M. Nave thanked everyone for the collective effort that led to the University’s progress.

“This program was important to us because we wanted to thank our student-athletes for being an excellent representation of the University,” said Nave. “We also want to thank our coaches, faculty, and staff for what they do to support student success in and outside of the classroom and, ultimately, as they matriculate through life. It is our collective effort that makes success happen. We all work with one mind and spirit to ensure that our students are supported.”