College News

Allen E. Paulson College of Engineering and Computing

New Degree Programs

The College of Engineering and Computing is offering six new degree programs. They include undergraduate degrees in both computer and construction engineering, and graduate degrees in civil, electrical and mechanical engineering, and information technology. Dean Mohammad Davoud explained the programs not only will expand the College’s offerings but also will produce students qualified to fill in-demand engineering jobs. Projections show more than 1,000 jobs created in Georgia over the next three years will require people with computer engineering backgrounds. In proposing the new programs, the College also cited projections showing more than 17,000 jobs will open for construction engineers during the 12-year period from 2012-24. Davoud said employers are starving for these types of graduates and his college intends to be at the forefront of graduating students who will be able to fill these highly specialized industry positions.


College of Arts and Humanities

Winning­ Performance

The Theatre and Performance program’s production of “She Kills Monsters” won nine national awards from the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival, Region IV hosted by Georgia Southern last year. The University received an 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).


College of Behavioral and Social Sciences

John Kraft, First Dean

John Kraft, Ph.D., was named interim and the first dean of the College of Behavioral and Social Sciences. Kraft will serve in the position until a national search for the permanent dean has been completed. He has served as the department head for psychology at Armstrong State University and previously served as interim assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs. Kraft has been a member of the faculty on the Armstrong Campus since receiving his doctorate in psychology from the University of New Hampshire in 1999.


College of Education

Eagle Academy Opens

Last fall, EAGLE Academy welcomed its first two students as fully enrolled Georgia Southern University undergraduates. An inclusive post-secondary education (IPSE) program, the Academy offers Equal Access to Gainful Learning and Employment (EAGLE) for those with mild intellectual disabilities. EAGLE Academy is currently a third- and fourth-year program, allowing students to transfer after completing an initial two-year IPSE program, such as CHOICE at East Georgia State College. Unique to most programs of their kind, Georgia Southern EAGLE Academy students are given a custom-built academic program based on their interests, giving the students the same opportunity that others on campus have to take courses for credit and work towards their career goals. Students also live on campus, allowing them to become fully immersed in campus life and have easy access to all campus amenities. Finally, students enrolled in the program are also trained for employment through internships or paid jobs which are secured with the assistance of the Academy’s team. Current team members of the EAGLE Academy include Founding Executive Director Shelley Woodward, Program Director Karen Phipps and Graduate Assistant Emily Lewis.


College of Business

Measuring Business Conditions

The College of Business has partnered with Georgia CEO, through the Bureau of Business Research and Economic Development (BBRED), for the second year, to conduct quarterly surveys of Georgia CEO newsletter readers. The survey measures the impact of current and future business conditions in Georgia. It is emailed to subscribers in each of the nine Georgia CEO daily newsletters which includes Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Middle Georgia, Newnan, Savannah and Valdosta. To participate in the quarterly Business Index Survey, visit and subscribe to your local Georgia CEO newsletter.


College of Science and Mathematics

Student Wins Fellowship

Department of Biology graduate student Jose Sanchez won a highly competitive National Science Foundation (NSF) fellowship to conduct ecological research in South America. Sanchez is one of only three students selected to participate from a competitive, nationwide search. The fellowship is funded by a NSF International Research Experience for Students grant.

The grant allowed Sanchez to travel to the Cape Horn Biosphere Reserve in southern Chile in December for a two-month research expedition. This was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to work with international collaborators to conduct cutting-edge research in a unique setting. Sanchez conducted independent research on the ecology of freshwater streams and the importance of these aquatic ecosystems to local people.

“I’m proud to represent Georgia Southern University as part of this program,” said Sanchez, adding that he had the chance to apply his research to the conservation of an important ecosystem and the local culture that depends on this system.

“Being awarded this prestigious fellowship will contribute to Sanchez’s development as a scientist,” said Checo Colon-Gaud, Ph.D., director of the Department of Biology graduate program. “I’m proud of him for pursuing this opportunity and thrilled that he is representing not only the Biology Graduate Program, but the University as a whole.”


Jiann-Ping Hsu College of Public Health

New Public Health Track

The Master of Public Health (MPH) program within the Jiann-Ping Hsu College of Public Health (JPHCOPH) will be expanding to include a new generalist track as a result of the consolidation between Georgia Southern and Armstrong State. The new concentration will join the existing five specialty tracks available to MPH students. This track provides students with the opportunity to complete a more broad-based program of study, along with the flexibility to tailor their individual focus with more guided elective options. Once completed, they will have the applied skills and knowledge required for the front-line public health practitioner.  In addition, the Bachelor of Science in Public Health (BSPH) program currently offered by JPHCOPH will be available on the Armstrong and Statesboro campuses in the near future.


Waters College of Health Professions

$5.2 Million Grant for Students

Donna Brooks, Ph.D., associate provost for Academic Affairs and Graduate Studies and associate professor in the Department of Rehabilitation Sciences, has received a Health Resources and Services Administration grant for $5.2 million. The funds are for the Scholarships for Disadvantaged Students grant program, which supports scholarships for students from disadvantaged backgrounds who are enrolled in health profession programs. Brooks, along with co-investigators Sara Plaspohl, Dr.P.H., assistant professor in the Jiann-Ping Hsu College of Public Health and Douglas Masini, Ed.D., department head and associate professor in the Department of Diagnostic and Therapeutic Sciences, designed the grant for eligible students seeking a Master of Public Health or a Bachelor of Science in medical laboratory science at Georgia Southern University. Each degree program was awarded $650,000 over the next four years, totaling $5.2 million.