School Department News

Language and Literature

Thursday, May 1, 2014 - 8:49am

Hattiesburg, Miss., May 1, 2014 - Dr. Anthony J. Harris, former Civil Rights activist, author, and professor of education at Mercer University in Macon, Ga., spoke to Dr. Josye Brookter’s African American Literature class at William Carey University on April 28. Following the lecture, he held a book signing in the Barnes and Nobles bookstore for two of his books: “Ain't Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me 'Round: A Coming of Age story and a personal account of the Civil Rights Movement in Hattiesburg, Mississippi” and “Gifts of Moments: Being Somebody to Somebody.” Dr. Harris also recently published a third book, “Fruits of a Disgraced Legacy.”

Dr. Harris, a native of Hattiesburg and a graduate of The University of Southern Mississippi, was an active participant in the local Civil Rights Movement during his teenage years. He participated in Freedom Summer, protested for voter registration rights in downtown Hattiesburg, and was among the first to desegregate W.I. Thames Junior High School in 1966. The second of three brothers, Dr. Harris grew up under the influence of their mother, who was a prominent leader of civil rights activities and secretary of the Forrest County NAACP in the 1960’s.

After graduating USM with a bachelor’s in Spanish and a master’s in counseling, he moved to Texas,  completed his doctorate degree at East Texas State University (now Texas A&M University – Commerce), and worked at the university for 17 years in various positions. In 1988, he participated in the Kellogg National Fellowship Program which allowed him to visit 17 countries, primarily in developing and Third World countries. Following the completion of the Fellowship he established Project Keep Hope Alive, a successful after school mentoring program for at-risk African American boys in the Commerce Independent School District.

Dr. Harris returned to his roots briefly, serving as executive assistant to the President at USM under the leadership of the late President Horace Fleming. After leaving USM in 2002, he returned to Texas and taught at Sam Houston State University until 2008. Since 2008, he has lived in Macon with his wife, Smithenia, and taught at Mercer University.

Monday, April 21, 2014 - 11:30am

Hattiesburg, Miss., April 21, 2014 - Four William Carey University students - Shelby Barrett of Lumberton, Erin Ford of Collins, Alyssa Keyes of Ringgold, Ga., and Nistha Pradhan of Lalitpur, Nepal - presented papers at the Alpha Chi National Honor Society Convention in St. Louis, Mo., March 27-29. Pictured are (left to right) Dolores O’Mary, administrative assistant for language and literature, and Alpha Chi co-sponsor, Nistha Pradhan, Erin Ford, Alyssa Keyes, Shelby Barrett, and Dr. Randall Harris, professor biomedical sciences and Alpha Chi advisor Alpha Chi co-sponsor.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014 - 2:03pm

Hattiesburg, Miss., April 15, 2013 - William Carey University students Megan Bourne of Columbia and Shelby Barrett of Lumberton were both awarded scholarships at the Alpha Chi National College Honor Society Convention in St. Louis, Mo., March 27-29. Bourne, a senior art major, won the National H.Y. Benedict Fellowship ($2,500) for her paper Anish Kapoor. Barrett, a senior biology major, won the Region III Scholarship ($500) for her paper The American Oyster and Its Many Roles in the Northern Gulf of Mexico. WCU’s Mississippi Beta Chapter of Alpha Chi is limited to no more than 10 percent of the junior, senior, and graduate class members, and WCU students must have at least a 3.70 Grade Point Average on the 4.0 scale to qualify. 

Wednesday, March 26, 2014 - 3:40pm

Hattiesburg, Miss., March 26, 2014 - Sisters Nancy and Autumn Barnard of Laurel, who are both students at William Carey University, recently presented conference papers at the 2014 Sigma Tau Delta Annual International Convention held February 26 - March 1 at the Savannah Marriott Riverfront in Savannah, Ga.

Nancy is a master’s student in the English program, and Autumn is a senior English and religion major. The students’ conference papers were selected from over 800 submissions. Nancy’s presentation, “Pattern and Performance,” focused on the influence of impressionistic art in Fitzgerald’s Tender is the Night. Autumn’s paper traced hubris in Shelley’s Frankenstein and Hawthorne’s short story, “The Birthmark.” In addition, WCU’s chapter of Sigma Tau Delta received special recognition and a plaque for 20 years of affiliation with Sigma Tau Delta. Dr. Marsha Newman, associate professor of English, is the faculty sponsor for WCU’s chapter.

Sigma Tau Delta was founded in May 1924 as an "order designed to promote the mastery of written expression, encourage worthwhile reading, and foster a spirit of fellowship among those specializing in the English language and literature.” The society’s first national convention was held less than a year later in April 1925. This year’s 90th birthday event, which ran from February 26-March 1, featured an exciting line up of speakers which included Justin Torres, author of We the Animals. Besides stimulating paper sessions, attendees could perform at an Open Mic poetry session or take part in a Bad Poetry Contest.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014 - 3:05pm

Hattiesburg, Miss., February 12, 2014 - The Department of Language and Literature at William Carey University has received national recognition for its programs in English and English education from the  National Council for Accreditation in Teacher Education (NCATE) and the National Council Teachers of English (NCTE).  The programs will be listed as nationally recognized through a 10-year accreditation cycle from February 1, 2014 to August 1, 2024, and will be included on the NCATE/NCTE website as nationally recognized programs.  

Carey’s English programs are built on the strengths of both the traditional curriculum of the Noonkester School of Arts and Letters and the innovative field-based experiences available in the School of Education, as well as the strong qualifications of program faculty. This national recognition from NCATE and NCTE affirms those students in the English programs who are prospective teachers and who seek to complete English language arts teacher preparation programs at the secondary level.  Such affirmation includes both a programmatic standard which assures that Carey’s programs in English and English education provide experiences and resources necessary to prepare candidates effectively. It also affirms the standards in candidate performance which focus directly on what English language arts teachers should know and be able to do In addition, the NCATE/NCTE review focused especially on the program’s assessment system for candidate performance.  

According to Dr. Thomas Richardson, chair of the department of language and literature, “This is a good time to be at Carey for prospective teachers and students interested in English.  What we have done with assessments here has made our program better and shows us the value of this national recognition. The NCATE review noted that our program is strong in content knowledge and assessing – in multiple ways.  At the same time, we are mindful of how our candidates are able to apply that knowledge in the classroom and in teaching/learning situations.”