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WHITE COAT CEREMONY: First-year College of Pharmacy students (from left) Courtney LeBlanc of Marrero LA, Teekay Nguyen of Baton Rouge LA and David Wilson of Englewood NJ sign their professional oaths at the 10th annual White Coat Ceremony, during which the neophyte students received their first professional uniform - the white jacket - symbolizing ethical practice and signifying the beginning of their professional pharmacy educations. Volume 14 – Fall 2011 Did you know? - Post-Hurricane Katrina enrollment has hit yet another new high again this fall, thanks to a solid freshman class of 786 that met projected levels and 150 new transfer students. That pushed the university’s current overall enrollment to 3,399 students – ever so slightly higher than last fall’s figures. It continues a trend that has seen enrollment grow at a slow but steady pace in the six years since Katrina knocked down the student population to around three-quarters of its best pre-storm figures. - Xavier and Delgado Community College have signed a formal agreement of cooperation to work together to develop academic programs and other collaborations that would be of mutual benefit to both institutions. - University officials have met with representatives of the Universite NotreDame d’Haiti to explore ideas for a proposed collaboration that could involve exchanges of students and professors as well as the creation of a school of pharmacy and an expanded teacher certification program in Haiti. - Xavier and Hebei Normal University of Science and Technology (HNUST) have signed a cooperation agreement to promote Mandarin instruction at Xavier and support faculty and student exchanges between the two institutions. The agreement is an important milestone in the university’s efforts to establish a Confucius Institute at Xavier. continued on page 2 A publication for parents, students and prospective students of Xavier University of Louisiana City girl travels the world Sometimes you just have to go with the flow. Just ask Markita Harris ’08, the self—proclaimed city girl from Buffalo NY whose has seen her life take some rather unexpected turns. Harris entered Xavier in 2004, just one year before Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans. She was undeterred by the six-month setback and returned to campus to help with the recovery of both the city and the University. After earning her political science degree, Harris’ first stop was Baton Rouge LA, where she taught for three years at Brookstone Elementary and the Inspire Charter School under the Teach for America program. While there she simultaneously completed her master’s degree program in public administration at LSU. But Harris, who describes herself as “a bit daring, nomadic and curious”, was looking for much more. She hitched herself to star that would take her to faraway India, where she planned to teach at an International Charter school and explore “every inch of Asia from Thailand to Tokyo”, not to mention getting herself a taste of Europe and Africa as well. But after months of trying to make the dream happen – which saw her filling out mounds Markita Harris ’08 with her class in Qatar of paper work, coughing up a goodly sum of cash, and spending countless hours trying to make sense of Indian bureaucracy – the wheels abruptly came off of her carefully laid plans. The company arranging the teaching assignments pulled the plug on the whole venture, leaving Harris jobless, homeless, and clueless. But just as quickly as the clouds of despair began to close in, another opportunity fell into her lap. Doha came calling. That’s the city of Doha, as in the Middle Eastern nation of Qatar, where she continued on page 3

Eye on Xavier - Fall 2011

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