AICPA MINORITY SCHOLARSHIP
Keiyana Gaskin (Accounting, Vicksburg, Miss.) was awarded the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) Minority Scholarship for 2020-21. This scholarship is awarded to outstanding minority students across the country currently pursuing an undergraduate degree in accounting.
DR. BETH LAFLEUR
Dr. Beth LaFleur has retired as the Associate Dean of the College of Business and Economic Development and Director of the Professional MBA Program at the University of Southern Mississippi. She also served as a Full Professor of Marketing and joined the Southern Miss Gulf Coast faculty in 2004.
During her time as MBA Director, program enrollment more than tripled. Dr. LaFleur spearheaded the work done to shape the MBA program into what it is today, leading many changes to keep the program relevant over time. These improvements included reducing the number of prerequisites, creating the hybrid and online formats, developing the business foundations graduate certificate, partnering with NCS4 and the Sport Management faculty to offer an MBA with an emphasis in sport event security management, establishing waivers of the GMAT requirement, and working to have the program recognized and ranked by U.S. News and World Report. In addition, she has remained an advocate for graduate and undergraduate programs in business on the coast and was the driving force that initiated the start of Who’s Who on the Gulf Park campus.
After serving Southern Miss for 24 years, Jewel Adams has retired from the College of Business and Economic Development, School of Finance. Adams began her journey with Southern Miss by accepting a position with the National Food Service Management Institute. She then accepted a position in the School of Human Performance and Recreation where she stayed for 17 years before ultimately becoming the Administrative Specialist in the College of Business and Economic Development. She served as President for the Association of Office Professionals for two terms and served on numerous committees including the Southern Miss Diversity Committee and Staff Council.
During the 2020 Eagle Awards Ceremony, Adams was selected as the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award. This is the event’s top award and is given to one recipient each year that has dedicated their life to making an impact in the lives of others. Adams has also received the Department of Athletics Outstanding Staff award, University of Southern Miss Staff Excellence award, College of Health Distinguished Office Professional award, African American Student Organization (AASO) Outstanding Black Staff award, and the Association of Office Professional (AOP) Office Professional of the Year award.
Michelle Fleming has retired after 25 years of service to The University of Southern Mississippi. Michelle spent nearly 20 years serving as an Academic Advisor in multiple colleges over the course of her career including the College of Business and Economic Development, College of Health, and College of Nursing. Michelle shared that the role of an advisor allowed her to guide students through their degree programs and ultimately to degree completion while they balanced their classes, personal lives, and careers. She shared that she enjoys volunteering for the annual commencement ceremony held on the Gulf Park campus to watch the students she has grown to know so well walk across the stage and receive their diploma. The opportunity to celebrate those who have worked extremely hard and overcoming challenges and hardships to reach this milestone has been a driving force for Michelle and her work.