Mark Keenum Archives

October 19, 2010

'Presidential Update' from the Research Park

Mississippi State University's Dr. Mark Keenum shares the latest success story and a little bit of history from the Thad Cochran Research, Technology and Economic Development Park during the Oct. 15 installment of "Presidential Update."

October 22, 2010

Busy, successful days: Cotton Mills, SemiSouth, homecoming


Third District Congressman Gregg Harper (left to right); Gov. Haley Barbour; former Lt. Gov. Amy Tuck, who is now executive director of Campus Operations at Mississippi State; Power Integrations CEO Balu Balakrishnan (at podium); SemiSouth CEO Kenney Roberts; and MSU President Mark Keenum. Photo: Russ Houston | University Relations

It’s been a busy — and successful — week for Mississippi State on the economic development and research fronts.

On Thursday, the Board of Trustees of the state Institutions of Higher Learning approved the university’s proposal to advance development of the Cotton Mills Marketplace project in Starkville. The Cotton Mills Development Group is working on the final stages of the financing package for the convention center development on a high-profile piece of property across Highway 12 from campus. Plans also include a 150-room hotel, restaurant and office space. You can read more about it from the University Relations news release at

And today — on a postcard-perfect Friday — a California-based “clean tech” company announced a $30-million investment in SemiSouth Laboratories Inc., a spin-off company built on technology developed by Mississippi State researchers. MSU President Mark Keenum, Gov. Haley Barbour and Congressman Gregg Harper were among the VIPs in attendance for the announcement at SemiSouth’s facility in the Thad Cochran Research, Technology and Economic Development Park.

From our perspective, that’s a pretty good start to the university’s homecoming celebration. Whether you’re on campus or celebrating being a Bulldog from afar, make sure to wrap the weekend in maroon and white.

November 23, 2010

Busy fall for research, economic development at MSU


By DAVID SHAW | Vice President for Research and Economic Development

Signs of the season are all over our campus these days. Autumn leaves are falling. The Junction has been decorated for Christmas. And students, faculty and staff are rushing to finish the semester’s business as winter break approaches. But before we get there, we take a couple of days to celebrate Thanksgiving with family and friends, and I want to take this opportunity to share several success stories we’ve seen the past few months.

The Social Science Research Center recently celebrated its 60th anniversary — an incredible milestone. The SSRC is the oldest center at Mississippi State, and one of the largest centers that focuses on social sciences in the nation. I add my congratulations for the tremendous reputation that the faculty and leadership have garnered for the SSRC and the university.

I know that many of you have been anticipating an announcement about the Cotton Mills Marketplace development in Starkville. In late October, the Board of Trustees of Mississippi's Institutions of Higher Learning gave its approval to an MSU proposal to advance development on the site that sits across Highway 12 from our campus. This project will bring a world-class conference facility to the Golden Triangle, and several of our research centers will lease space when it is complete.

One of our startup company success stories began a new chapter last month. SemiSouth, which was born from research right here at Mississippi State, and Silicon Valley-based Power Integrations have entered a strategic partnership that includes a capital infusion that will bring news jobs to the Thad Cochran, Research, Technology and Economic Development Park and provide tremendous opportunities for both companies.

And while we are in the Research Park, if you haven’t seen Dr. Mark Keenum’s “Presidential Update” from the park, I encourage you to watch it now. In it, Dr. Keenum details its history and provides a vision for the park’s future as it plays a growing role in the economic vitality of the state. There is extra activity in the Research Park this week as we prepare our new building for tenants to move in Dec. 1, and anticipate breaking ground on another building in early 2011.

As you can see, we have many achievements for which to be thankful. Mississippi State is positioning itself to continue to grow our research and economic development efforts and to provide leadership for our state, nation and world.

Happy Thanksgiving — and go Dawgs!

December 16, 2010

Federal funding for Starkville road project


Good roads have been a fundamental part of economic development since the first farmers took their products to market. Today, transportation infrastructure remains one of the key selling points communities use when marketing themselves to new businesses and residents, and in the case of college towns, students and faculty.

Funding for a new road project in Starkville came into focus this week during a roundtable discussion of city, county and university leaders, according to The Commercial Dispatch. Staff writer Tim Pratt tells readers:

The U.S. Senate's pending vote on the omnibus appropriations bill for fiscal 2011 will have a direct impact on transportation in the city of Starkville.

Included in the $1.1 trillion bill is a request for $850,000 to repave Airport Road and build a new access road from Highway 25 to George M. Bryan Field. The access road would begin across from the entrance to Cornerstone Industrial Park on Highway 25 and end on the west side of George Bryan Field, more than 200 yards away.

“We're hoping this will pass," Mississippi State President Dr. Mark Keenum said…

Starkville’s airport, roadways and location are important economic development assets, and it’s good to read the news about the possibility of enhancing all three.

UPDATE, 12/17/10 — The omnibus spending bill was abandoned Thursday night after Democratic leaders in the Senate conceded that they could not overcome Republican opposition and a filibuster. The Washington Post reports that a slimmed-down resolution that would fund the federal government mostly at current levels will come before the Senate, and Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said it would pass by Saturday.

The future of local funding requests contained in the omnibus bill is unclear.

Additional details are available in today's edition of the Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal.

June 2, 2015

National, international attention for major research wins

What a month we had in May. Two major aerospace-related research announcements continue to garner national and international attention, and they further affirm Mississippi State's role as our state's flagship research university. On May 8, the FAA announced that our ASSURE team will lead the new National Center of Excellence for Unmanned Aircraft Systems, and a few weeks later on May 28, U.S. Sens. Thad Cochran and Roger Wicker and Gov. Phil Bryant jointly announced Boeing's decision to relocate its Stitched Resin Infused Composite Research Center to the Raspet Flight Research Lab.


David Shaw is vice president for research and economic development at Mississippi State University.

Read more about the FAA's announcement at and see for additional information about our collaboration with Boeing.

I could not be more proud of the tremendous effort many of you put forth to achieve this unparalleled success for our university. This Friday [June 5], I hope everyone can join us at 11 a.m. at the A.B. McKay Food and Enology Laboratory for a news conference with President Mark E. Keenum, Gov. Bryant and MDA Executive Director Glenn McCullough about the new UAS center of excellence and for a demonstration of an unmanned aerial vehicle in flight.

S.P.A. concludes D.A.W.G. program's third year
Congratulations to the 13 Mississippi State staff members who graduated on May 28 from the professional development program offered by Sponsored Programs Administration: Amanda Baine, Center for Advanced Vehicular Systems; Shonda Cumberland, Computer Science and Engineering; Kimberly Dickey, Sponsored Programs Accounting; Lynn Eiland, Research and Curriculum Unit; Heriberto Gonzalez Lozano, International Institute; Merri Kilpatrick, Civil and Environmental Engineering; Jada McMullen, Sponsored Programs Accounting; Katheryn McTaggart, Human Sciences; Nicole Medeiros, Wildlife, Fisheries and Aquaculture; Dianne Phillips, Mechanical Engineering; Mashala Pulliam, High Performance Computing Collaboratory; Erin Ray, Human Sciences; and Katie Sisk, MAFES/FWRC Administration. Year three of the Departmental Administrator Working Group — D.A.W.G., for short — provided participants a nine-month curriculum designed to develop sponsored-project administration skills and foster networking opportunities with their campus peers.

Save the date: Joint Center for Energy Storage Research symposium
In mid-August, we will host a regional symposium in conjunction with the Argonne National Laboratory-led Joint Center for Energy Storage Research examining the challenges and opportunities of energy storage technology for the electric grid in the Southeast. The event will serve as a forum for industry, utility companies, academic and government researchers, and policymakers to discuss energy storage and major applications in the region at both the transmission and distribution level. Learn more about the symposium at

Kudos and congratulations
Every month, I look forward to sharing success stories about our faculty and staff with you, and here are a few that have crossed my desk recently:

* Congratulations to Matthew Berg, an assistant professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy, who has been awarded a prestigious NSF Faculty Early Career Development Program Award. In addition to his teaching, Dr. Berg works with the Center for Computational Sciences at the High Performance Computing Collaboratory. Read more about his research at

* Kudos to Roger King, director of the Institute for Computational Research in Engineering and Science and Giles Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and Richard Weed, Center for Advanced Vehicular Systems associate research professor, and David Thompson, who holds the Airbus Helicopters Inc. Endowed Professorship in the Department of Aerospace Engineering, whose work is featured in a recent NATO publication. Read more about this international recognition at

* Congratulations to Kari Babski-Reeves, an associate professor in the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, who has been elected as a director of the Board of Certification in Professional Ergonomics. During her three-year term, she will assist the BCPE president with forging new directions for the certification organization, identifying and testing applications in core competencies, and communicating ergonomics-related issues to the public and within the profession.

Final words
Thank you for taking the time to read this month’s letter. If you have any questions, suggestions or concerns about research and economic development at Mississippi State, please feel free to contact me at

Go Dawgs!

— David

About Mark Keenum

This page contains an archive of all entries posted to Maroon Research Blog in the Mark Keenum category. They are listed from oldest to newest.

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