Mother, daughter among nearly 800 Hinds CC graduates

Author Archives: Cathy Hayden

Full Name: Cathy Hayden Website:
Info: Cathy Hayden is a 30-year career journalist with a bachelor's degree in journalism and English from the University of Mississippi and a master of theological studies from Spring Hill College in Mobile. Hayden, who covered education at The Clarion-Ledger for 17 years, came to Hinds Community College in January 2007.
Posted by on 20 December

Mother, daughter among nearly 800 Hinds CC graduates

 The mother and daughter duo of Charlene Allen and Carla Johnson, both of Vicksburg, are particularly pleased they graduated together from Hinds Community College on Friday, Dec. 20. 

“I took extra classes so we could graduate together,” said Johnson, a business office technology major. “We’re both pretty excited.”

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Carla Johnson, Charlene Allen

Allen, Johnson’s mother, an early childhood major, was already scheduled to graduate during the fall 2013 ceremony.

On the same day, Tammie Norwood, 53, received a certificate in business office technology. She will receive another certificate next semester and then graduate with an associate degree in accounting in December 2014.

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Tammie Norwood

She started out, however, getting a General Education Development high school equivalency certificate after dropping out her senior year in high school because of family issues.

Now married with three grown children and three grandchildren, Norwood decided to return to school after an 18-year career as a floral designer. She lost her job and discovered she didn’t have the skills to get another.

“I decided it wasn’t too late to finally go to college and do what I wanted to do when I was younger,” she said. “At times it has been difficult but my family has been extremely supportive. I have been blessed. My approach has been that anything I do, I do the best I possibly can.”

Norwood decided to get the career certificates on the way to a degree because “I feel like it would look good on my resume and help my employer see the skills I have,” she said.

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Jane Flowers, Jackie Jackson

Graduation speaker Jane Flowers challenged graduates to behave like eagles, Hinds’ mascot, instead of chickens. She drew on a Blackfoot Indian story about an eagle that was raised by chickens in her remarks.

“Honored graduates, you are now eagles, and you are responsible for recognizing the potential in yourself,” said Flowers, Work-Based Learning coordinator at Hinds’ Vicksburg-Warren Campus as well as the faculty honoree for the legislative HEADWAE program in February.

Nearly 800 Hinds Community College students graduated over the two days in four ceremonies.  

Of those, a little more than 500 chose to participate in a ceremony. Twenty-eight graduates have perfect 4.0 grade point averages for summa cum laude, 63 have 3.60 to 3.99 grade point averages, magna cum laude and 160 have 3.20 to 3.59 grade point averages, cum laude.

For more information, see the Hinds website at

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Posted by
19 December

Nursing, allied health students graduate Dec. 19

Medora McNair of Brandon, who describes herself as “22 times 2,” said getting her associate degree in nursing at Hinds Community College Thursday was “a long time in coming.”

The 44-year-old wife and mother, whose daughter is a pre-law student at Mississippi College, had one degree as a certified nursing assistant and decided to return to become a nurse. Having two college students in the household at the same time made life interesting, she said.



Medora McNair

“I guess it was just my time,” said McNair, who plans to return to her former employer, Premier Medical Group in Jackson. “I’ve always wanted to do it.”

Nearly 800 Hinds students graduate Thursday and Friday, Dec. 20, in a series of four ceremonies on the Raymond Campus.

Hinds President Dr. Clyde Muse said those are record numbers for a fall ceremony. “We are pleased with the fact that we are continuing to graduate more students each year,” he said.

Of those, a little more than 500 chose to participate in a ceremony. Twenty-eight graduates have perfect 4.0 grade point averages for summa cum laude, 63 have 3.60 to 3.99 grade point averages, magna cum laude and 160 have 3.20 to 3.59 grade point averages, cum laude.

 “Only you can define your success,” said Charlotte Dupre’, chief executive officer for Central Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, who spoke Thursday to graduates of Hinds Community College’s nursing and allied health programs.

Dupre’ quizzed her staff members about what she should tell the nursing and allied health graduates about post-graduation and came up with a 12-point message

Those include learning how to handle difficult patients and family members, looking professional learning compassion and empathy.

“It is a never-ending story. As we continue to grow our services, we learn new methods and gain new experiences,” she said.

Jane Flowers, Work-Based Learning coordinator at Hinds’ Vicksburg-Warren Campus as well as the faculty honoree for the legislative HEADWAE program in February, is the speaker on Dec. 20 for students whose last names begin with A to J at 10 a.m. and those whose last names begin with K to Z at 2 p.m.

For more information, see the Hinds website at


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Posted by on 16 December

Utica Campus inducts PTK members

The Utica Campus Alpha Beta Xi Chapter of Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) held its 39th induction ceremony recently that included five student and five honorary inductees. The ceremonial theme was “The Culture of Competition.”



Honorees and advisers include, front from left, Christine Councell of Vicksburg, an early childhood education major; Kimwanna Terry of Utica, a general studies/medical assistant technology major; Beverly Trimble, PTK adviser; Kenjamin Newsome of Hazlehurst, an electronics technology major; Mildred Davis of Raymond, an early childhood education major; Von Shinnie of Jackson, Alpha Beta Xi president, a computer technology major; PTK adviser Denise Taylor and LeKeyo Tyler of Port Gibson, an electronics technology major; back, honorary members Dr. Bobby Cooper, Humanities Division chair; Deborah Danner, computer science instructor; Dr. Mae C. Jackson, Math and Science Division chair, Dr. Debra Mays-Jackson, vice president for Utica and Vicksburg-Warren campuses/Administrative Services, and former PTK president Ollie Riley Jr.

Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society serves to recognize and encourage the academic achievement of two-year college students and provide opportunities for individual growth and development through honors, leadership and service programming. Today, Phi Theta Kappa is the largest honor society in American higher education with more than 2.5 million members and 1,275 chapters worldwide. In 1929, the American Association of Community Colleges recognized Phi Theta Kappa as the official honor society for two-year colleges.

For more information, see

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Posted by on 16 December

Onezime dances his way through Hinds

Editor’s Note: The following story was written by a staff member of The Hindsonian student newspaper produced on the Raymond Campus.

By Kimberly Stampley

Marcus John Onezime Jr., a dance performance and education major on the Raymond Campus, is involved in so many campus activities, you never know where you might see him next.

Onezime is a member of the Montage Theater of Dance, plays the clarinet in the Wind Ensemble for the Hinds band, is a member of Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society and he also serves as a note-taker through Disability Support Services on the Raymond Campus.

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Photo by Kim Stampley

Marcus Onezime, left, performs at a half-time show with Hi-Stepper Kayla Mullen.


Onezime said he had never taken dance lessons until he took his first dance class at Hinds during the fall 2012 semester. “I have always had a love for dance, because I could not sing, and so I decided to move my body to the music,” said Onezime, a Terry resident and graduate of Jackson’s Hillcrest Christian School.

He participated in the Montage fall 2012 concert, “The Dance of Oz,” where he performed as the scarecrow.

He also performed in several dance numbers in the fall 2013 Montage fall concert, held in October on the Raymond Campus. He also performed in the lead role as Moses in the 2012 “Dance of Egypt.”

Dance Department Director Tiffany Jefferson had good things to say about Onezime as her student. She described him as well-rounded – from his intellect, humor and professionalism to his leadership skills.

Some advice she has given Onezime is, “Don’t go through life with regrets. Count your blessings, cut your losses and follow the yellow brick road.”

Onezime plans to apply for the new Jeffrey Gibbs Memorial Scholarship, which was named after a former Hinds student who died in a car wreck.

Gibbs was also a member of Montage. “I will be applying for the scholarship, if possible, in the spring of 2014,” he said.

Onezime is set to graduate in spring 2014 and plans to attend Kennesaw State University in Kennesaw, Ga., to pursue his dance emphasis in jazz and modern.

“I love the upbeat intensity that comes from the jazz genre and the ability to express myself and my personality in a fun, energetic way,” he said. “On the other hand, the modern genre allows me to express a more earthy, low and deep tone that is sometime required to convey an idea.”

Mackenzie Maslanka, a general studies major, said she has been friends with Marcus since her junior year in high school.

 “Marcus has inspired me by his amazing work ethic and his passion for what he does,” Maslanka said. “He is a very talented performer, and I am glad that being a part of this activity brought us together as friends.”

During Onezime’s spare time, he is most likely in Bee Hall or the Muse Band Hall playing with different dance combinations or creating color guard work. He always seems to be on the move. He has proven that you can do anything if you go after your calling and follow your dreams.

 For more information on The Hindsonian student newspaper, see

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Caring attitude shown in early years by nursing graduate
Posted by
13 December

Caring attitude shown in early years by nursing graduate

A dozen years ago, after the 9/11 attacks and the collapse of the Twin Towers, 12-year-old Amy Dykman worried about hurting and grieving children ­– and did something about it.

The little Brandon girl started an initiative called “Amy’s Bears Care – And So Do We,” collecting 12,000 bears for children affected by the terrorist attacks.  KLLM Transports in Richland, a trucking firm that currently has a partnership with Hinds Community College to teach truck driving, transported Amy Dykman’s bears to a New Jersey elementary school for distribution to children.

“I knew teddy bears had always given me comfort,” Dykman recalls now.

On Thursday, Dec. 19, Dykman, now 24, continues her quest to help others when she walks across the stage at Cain-Cochran Hall on the Raymond Campus of Hinds Community College to receive an Associate Degree in Nursing, or ADN. She’s a student at Hinds’ Jackson Campus-Nursing/Allied Health Center.

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Amy Dykman

 “I always had a notion that I wanted to be in a field where I could help people. I hate to see people hurting or in pain. I want to be the person who is there for you and relieve some of the pain,” she said.

Those traits mean Dykman is exactly where she needs to be, said Cynthia Casey, learning lab manager and co-adviser for the Omega chapter of Alpha Delta Nu honor society that Dykman is president of.

Dykman “exemplifies all of the characteristics that we expect from our nursing students,” Casey said. “She has a very caring spirit, not only with her patients but with her classmates. She demonstrates leadership but in an unassuming way. She actively seeks to help others and is always professional and gracious.”

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Amy Dykman, Cynthia Casey


Among family members who will see her graduate are mom Jennifer Dykman, who says Amy has always had a streak of compassion for others. She believes the reason is “without sounding cliché because it’s the truth – the Lord,” said Jennifer Dykman, who attending Hinds in the 1970s.

It’ll be Amy Dykman’s third degree from Hinds. She received a degree in medical office technology in May 2010 and a business accounting degree in December 2010. And she worked more than 20 hours a week in the River Oaks Hospital accounting department the whole time she was in nursing school.

She decided to come to Hinds after asking people she worked with at River Oaks in Flowood where she should enroll. “I’ve been told that people are more likely to hire a Hinds graduate than they are other graduates,” she said.

It’s easy for Dykman to sympathize with others. She’s had her share of troubles. As a young child, she required extensive speech therapy from age 3 to second grade. Then at age 16, serious headaches led to the discovery of a cyst in a sinus cavity. Surgery caused continuing short-term memory issues that Dykman has worked hard to combat throughout her college career.

Nursing school “has definitely been the toughest thing I’ve ever done in my life. It’s all the knowledge that we have to acquire to know how to treat our patients safely and effectively,” she said.

Her technique for remembering material: Relate a topic to someone she knows. For instance, she related the study of hypertension to her dad, who has hypertension, and pretended she was talking to him about it.

She and her study group partners would meet over the weekend and text or call instructors any time they had a question. “They were always there for us,” she said. “Even if you didn’t have an instructor personally, you could go to any instructor and they would explain things to you.”

Her next step will be to study for the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX®) for registered nurses and seek a job at an area hospital. She has her eye on Jackson’s Baptist Medical Center.

Dykman was recognized a number of times as a child for her Amy’s Bears project, including receiving the USA Today Make A Difference Day award, the Baptist Strong Woman award, and the Mayor’s Humanitarian of the Year award from former Mayor Roe Grubbs.

At Hinds, she was named to Who’s Who and was a 3E winner, in addition to being president of Alpha Delta Nu.


Hinds has four graduation ceremonies on Dec. 19 and 20. More than 700 students are expected to graduate.

Charlotte Dupre’, chief executive officer for Central Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, is the speaker on Dec. 19 for the 10 a.m. allied health and practical nursing graduation ceremony as well as the 2 p.m. Associate Degree Nursing ceremony.

Jane Flowers, Work-Based Learning coordinator at Hinds’ Vicksburg-Warren Campus as well as the faculty honoree for the legislative HEADWAE program in February, is the speaker on Dec. 20 for students whose last names begin with A to J at 10 a.m. and those whose last names begin with K to Z at 2 p.m.

For more information, see the Hinds website at or


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Posted by on 12 December

Rankin County physician establishes scholarship

Brandon physician Dr. C. Ron Cannon has recently established a scholarship at Hinds Community College in memory of his late wife, Sharon Strickland Cannon, who died in May 2012, to benefit a Rankin County student who exemplifies her attributes.

Sharon and Ron Cannon_web

Mrs. Cannon graduated from Brandon High School in 1971 and was a second-generation Hinds student. Her father, the late Louis Gene Strickland, also attended Hinds.

“Louis Gene was a personal friend of mine. He and I were classmates at Delta State University. When I first came here he was coaching at Brandon High school,” said Hinds President Dr. Clyde Muse. “He had a great love for Hinds. When he came to Hinds, Hinds really took him in, gave him a job and helped him through school. He was a good football player here.

“I was so pleased to hear about Dr. Cannon setting up the scholarship for his wife because it enables us to keep that kind of tradition going. Her daddy would have needed a scholarship like that when he was a student here at Hinds,” Muse said.

Preference will be given to a student majoring in special education, child development or a related area as well as a student who has membership or affiliation with the Daughters of the American Revolution or Children of the American Revolution.

Mrs. Cannon also attended Mississippi State University, graduating with a degree in special education.

She was instrumental in the formation of the Rankin Chapter of the Hinds Alumni Association, serving as its president in 1983 through 1984. She devoted much time to the Louis Gene Strickland Golf Tournament for Rankin County to raise funds for the college.

Her husband describes her as a “loving and devoted Christian daughter, wife, mother, sister and friend to many.”

“She was my very best friend. She made me a better person than I actually am,” Cannon said. “I value what she valued. She really loved Hinds. The scholarship is a way for some students to be able to further their education. Through that effort Sharon’s memory will live on.”

She was very involved in her church and her community, having served in the nursery ministry, teaching Sunday school and hosting church events. Additionally, she participated in many international mission trips and served as the president of several PTO organizations.

“She was a fine person. She loved people. She never met a stranger. She had a number of people that she helped. She thought God put them in her path, so she would do whatever she could to help them and encourage them,” Cannon said.

She was also very involved in the Daughters of the American Revolution and the Children of the American Revolution, serving in numerous capacities and offices over the years in both state and national chapters. On a national level she served as chairperson of the Platform Committee and served as the personal page to the president and general of the DAR, traveling extensively both nationally and internationally.

She and Dr. Cannon have three grown sons and two granddaughters.


At Hinds Community College, scholarships are awarded on the basis of a student’s desire for achievement, involvement in extracurricular activities, financial need, grades and letters of recommendation.

Endowed scholarships may be established with a minimum gift of $15,000 donated to the Hinds Community College Foundation. The gift will constitute the initial principal for the endowment. The principal will be maintained and only the income earned will be awarded in the form of scholarships.

Non-endowed scholarships may be established with a minimum gift of $500. All gifts of cash and/or stocks are fully tax deductible.

For more information about establishing a scholarship at Hinds Community College, contact Betty Carraway, 601.857.3800,

See the Hinds website at

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Posted by on 02 December

Speakers named for Dec. 19-20 graduation

Hinds Community College has selected two graduation speakers for ceremonies on Dec. 19 and 20 at Cain-Cochran Hall on the Raymond Campus.

Charlotte Dupre’, chief executive officer for Central Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, is the speaker on Dec. 19 for the 10 a.m. allied health and practical nursing graduation ceremony as well as the 2 p.m. Associate Degree Nursing ceremony. Jane Flowers, Work-Based Learning coordinator at Hinds’ Vicksburg-Warren Campus as well as the faculty honoree for the legislative HEADWAE program in February, is the speaker on Dec. 20 for students whose last names begin with A to J at 10 a.m. and those whose last names begin with K to Z at 2 p.m.

Dupre’ has been at Central Mississippi Medical Center since January 2011. She has a Bachelor of Science degree with a major in business education and a minor in journalism from Louisiana State University and a Master of Business Administration from Tulane University in New Orleans.

Charlotte Dupre'_web

She has continued her professional development over the years with a variety of business-related conferences and symposiums.

Among her positions, Dupre’ was executive director for Women’s Health Services at Woman’s Hospital Foundation in Baton Rouge from October 1994 to March 1997, administrator for the Duke Center for Living at Duke University Medical Center from March 1997 to June 2002 and held three different positions with LifePoint Hospitals including chief executive officer for River Parishes Hospital from July 2002 to July 2010.

She is a member of the advisory board for Hinds’ Jackson Campus-Nursing/Allied Health Center.

Flowers began her education as a student at Hinds, graduating in 1973 with a degree in distribution and marketing technology. She went on to Mississippi State University to obtain her bachelor’s degree in distributive education and her Master of Education in industrial education.


But in the meantime, she taught at Hinds as an adjunct instructor beginning in 1975, working as a secondary cooperative distributive education instructor and coordinator, as well as a marketing and fashion merchandising instructor. She left the Hinds secondary program from 1981 to 1990 to raise her children, returning to the college campus in 1990.

During her 29 years of Hinds service, Flowers has served in a number of roles and on numerous committees. She is a member of the Mississippi and National Association of Developmental Education Teachers.

Flowers has been named a Hinds Hero, received the 3E Award (Emphasis on Excellence and Enrichment), the college’s highest honor, and has been awarded numerous instructor of the year awards, among many other awards.

For more information about graduation, see the website at

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Posted by on 26 November

Utica Campus receives mini-grant for healthy living

Approximately four years ago, the Hinds Utica Campus Division of Social Sciences/Education began a peer educators initiative that sought to provide activities specific to the behavioral health needs of the student population. The initiative was designed to identify behavior or health needs, intervene when necessary, and refer treatment for those who needed it.

As a result of the initiative, a mini grant was written through the Utica Campus Title III program and has been funded in the amount of $7,500 to continue in that effort. The Title III proposal, U-HELP: Utica Healthy Engagement Leads to Prevention, is now a collaborative project between the Social Sciences/Education Division and the Health and Wellness Program.

The aim of U-HELP is to strengthen the social, emotional and reasoning skills of the students in an effort to aid them in making wise choices. The main focus of the project is geared toward prevention of substance abuse through early intervention and clinical referrals. The mission of the project is to recruit and train student leaders to become peer educators. These students will then coordinate activities supported by the behavioral health component of the Health and Wellness Center on the Utica Campus.

The projects will provide opportunities for the peer educators to strengthen their leadership skills, become student mentors and role models, assist their peers in recognizing when help and change are needed, and assist their peers in locating services and activities that are available when needed.

Students who are particularly encouraged to become peer educators are those whose majors are in the area of social work/sociology, psychology, education and science. The requirements for becoming a peer educator include a faculty recommendation, a clean disciplinary record, an essay on “Why I Am a Suitable Candidate for the U-HELP Project” and at least a 2.2 GPA that leads to transferring to a four- year institution.

The project was funded by the Historically Black Colleges and Universities Center for Excellence (HBCU-CFE) in Behavioral Health. The directors of the project are Dr. Gloria Daniels, chairperson of the Social Sciences Division and Lena Mason, director of the Health and Wellness program. Dr. Tiffany Anderson is coordinator of the Title III-Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act (SAFRA) program.

Utica Wellness Treadmills

The Wellness Complex on the Utica Campus


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Posted by on 22 November

Utica Campus inducts its first NTHS members

The Utica Campus Career and Technical Education (CTE) Department held its first National Technical Honor Society (NTHS) induction recently. Thirteen members from various career and technical programs were recognized for their outstanding academic achievement. Each of the honorees were recommended by an instructor, had earned at least 12 semester hours and had an overall grade point average of 3.0 or better. The Utica Campus Career and Technical Education Department strives to prepare students with marketable work skills that will equip the graduate to compete in this rapidly changing world of work.

CTE Honor Society_web

Pictured are inductees, front row from left, Mariah Good of Utica, office systems technology major; Angela Hall of Vicksburg, radio/television production major; Tracy Romo of Utica, cosmetology major; Keara Shannon of Hazlehurst, cosmetology major; Landria Myles of Edwards, cosmetology major, and Thessalonia Bingham of Jackson, clothing & textiles services major; back from left, are Willie Barnes of Hazlehurst, residential carpentry major; Christopher McCaskill of Jackson, residential carpentry major; Bridget Brown of Crystal Springs, clothing & textiles services major, and Anthony Shelby of Canton, food production management major.

NTHS was established in 1984 as a non-profit organization to recognize outstanding students in vocational education. Its mission is to honor student achievement and leadership, promote educational excellence, award scholarships, and enhance career opportunities for the NTHS membership.

For more information, see the Hinds website at or

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