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CLASS Faculty Member Selected as a NEH Summer Scholar

College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences (CLASS) faculty member Richard Flynn, Ph.D., was selected as a National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Summer Scholar.

Flynn was chosen from a national applicant pool and will be attending one of 24 seminars and institutes supported by NEH.

The Endowment is a federal agency that, each summer, supports these enrichment opportunities at colleges, universities, and cultural institutions, so that faculty can work in collaboration and study with experts in humanities disciplines.

He will participate in a seminar entitled “Elizabeth Bishop and the Literary Archive.” The 3 -week program will be held at Vassar College and directed by Bethany Hicok . The 16 teachers selected to participate in the program each receive a stipend of $ 2,700 to cover their travel, study, and living expenses.

Flynn is a Professor in the Department of Literature and Philosophy and holds a Ph.D. in American Literature from George Washington University.
The approximately 537 NEH Summer Scholars who participate in these programs of study will teach over 93,975 American students the following year.

Faculty, Students Help Local Church Find Forgotten Graves

Department of Sociology and Anthropology faculty and students helped an Effingham church, Turkey Branch United Methodist Church, located a number of forgotten graves in their graveyard.

Read the full article from the Savannah Morning News.



Alum Lee Berger and Current Graduate Student Announce New Information on Homo naledi

“Neo” skull (frontal view) of Homo naledi from the Lesedi Chamber. Photo credit: Wits University/ John Hawks

New information on Georgia Southern University alumnus Lee Berger’s, Ph.D., latest find Homo naledi was featured in four articles in eLife Journal and in major national newspapers including USA Today.

Berger and other scientists have dated the bones previously found in 2013 at the Rising Star Cave System near Johannesburg, South Africa. They determined that Homo naledi lived between 236,000 and 335,000 years ago in a similar time frame as our own descendants.

This new data has a dramatic effect on what we know about our own history.

“We can no longer assume that we know which species made which tools, or even assume that it was modern humans that were the innovators of some of these critical technological and behavioural breakthroughs in the archaeological record of Africa,” says Berger. “If there is one other species out there that shared the world with modern humans in Africa, it is very likely there are others. We just need to find them.”

Working with Berger on one of the papers is current Department of Sociology and Anthropology graduate student, Hlophe Nompumelelo.

Nompumelelo was a co-author of the article “New Fossil Remains of Homo naledi from the Lesedi Chamber, South Africa” published in eLife Journal and was one of the archaeologists who answered Berger’s call to help explore the cave system.

She is pursuing a Master of Arts in Social Sciences at Georgia Southern University and joined the program in 2016.

Berger graduated from Georgia Southern in 1989 with a bachelor of arts in anthropology and holds a Ph.D. in palaeo-anthropology from the University of Witwatersand in South Africa. He is currently a professor at the University of Witwatersand.

BFSDoArt Students Apply Real-World Design to New Industrial Park

Four groups of Betty Foy Sanders Department of Art students put their skills and education to the test designing a brand for the Effingham County Industrial Park.

The students from Santanu Majumdar’s, M.F.A., Design System class put together several different brand designs and presented them to the Effingham County Board members at the FAB Lab in downtown Statesboro in April.

The students provided several different styles and brand aesthetics allowing for the board members to choose the perfect fit.

These designs included brand guides, stationery, and road signage to help the Effingham County Industrial Park stand out.

The board members selected the Savannah Portside International Park design from Micaela Nylund, Samantha Cleveland, Wendy Blackwell, Jessica Martin, and Eric Ward.

“Development and learning through real-world design and presentations need to be introduced at various stages in the four-year career to achieve a competitive learning outcome,” Majumdar said. “Presenting the final concept design and relevant branding systems to the Effingham County board in a conference room and getting feedback has its own challenge. This kind of experience is not possible in a classroom setting.” 

The Effingham County Industrial Park is 1,560 acres located at Old River Road and I-16. The site has already undergone extensive work to ready it for new business including a $1.3 million entrance road, water piping, grading, etc.

She Kills Monsters Brings Home Numerous Awards

The Theatre and Performance Program received several national awards from the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts for “She Kills Monsters”.

“She Kills Monsters” written by Qui Nguyen and directed by Nicholas Newell, opened originally on Nov. 9, 2016, at the Black Box Theatre. The play was also one of five invited to perform at the KCACTF Regional Festival 2017, Region IV hosted by Georgia Southern Feb. 7-11.

Georgia Southern received one outstanding award for Ensemble of a Play, which recognizes the top cast, and eight distinguished awards for Production of a Play, Director of Play (Nicholas Newell), Choreography (Jake Guinn), Costume Design (Sarah McCarroll), Lighting Design (Spencer Collins), Performance by an Actress in a Play (Kelsey Alexandria and Sadie Thomas), and Performance by an Actor in a Play (Will Cox).

“We are very proud of our students and faculty who are being recognized nationally,” Lisa Abbott, Associate Chair of the Department of Communication Arts, said. “The Outstanding Ensemble award really emphasizes what we teach our students – that shows succeed when we all work together as collaborative artists.”

“She Kills Monsters” tells the story of Agnes, a young woman who is dealing with the loss of her 15-year old sister, and explores her sister’s fantasy world to discover more about her.