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JANUARY 2014

THE MAGAZINE FOR ALUMNI & FRIENDS


He Shoots,

He…..!


….probably scored. Dalton State’s men’s basketball team got off to a rousing start in its inaugural season of play in 2013-2014, racking up a 21-2 record by late January. The Roadrunners will join the Southern States Athletic Conference of the NAIA this fall where they will compete in men’s basketball, volleyball, men’s and women’s cross country, men’s and women’s golf, and men’s and women’s tennis. Photograph by Arc Studios Photography


Message from the President As this issue of Dalton State magazine goes to press, we’re busy with the beginning of another spring semester at Dalton State. We had a little weather-related fun with the subfreezing temperatures and the snow-ice adventure that brought things to a brief halt in January, but we’re back up and running – and I do mean running.

Dalton State magazine is published in January, May, and September by the Dalton State Foundation for alumni and friends of Dalton State College. Editorial offices are located on campus in The James E. Brown Center, 550 College Drive, Dalton, GA 30720. Phone: 706-272-4473. Email: foundation@ daltonstate.edu. Contents © 2014 by Dalton State College Foundation, all rights reserved. President, Dalton State College John O. Schwenn Chair, Dalton State Foundation Frederick H. “Chip” Howalt III Chair, Alumni Advisory Council Nancy Stone Whaley ‘74 Director of Institutional Advancement David J. Elrod ‘88 Development Coordinator Joshua J. Wilson Writers David J. Elrod ’88, Misty Watson/The Daily Citizen, Joshua J. Wilson Reviewers Cicero Bruce, Jonathan M. Lampley Photographers Arc Studios Photography, Forwell Studios, Linda Fowler Massey ’72

Our academic programs are performing admirably this semester, with successful on-site accreditation visits that were completed recently for our Schools of Education and Health Professions. These blue-chip accreditations ensure that the Dr. John O. Schwenn high standards to which our students and regional employers have become accustomed are continuing to be met. Faculty and students in our School of Science, Technology, and Mathematics, are preparing for their move into the College’s new academic building – a facility that will showcase the newest in laboratory equipment our students will use to gain first-hand knowledge and experience in their pursuits of biology and chemistry degrees. Faculty in our School of Liberal Arts continue to publish prize-winning novels, academic studies, poetry, and plays, bringing national recognition to Dalton State. And our School of Business’s Center for Economic Research and Entrepreneurship engages with regional industries and businesses to ensure that we continue to meet the needs of area employers. Our men’s basketball team is off to a great start, too, running up an impressive 21-2 record (as of this writing) in its first year of play. We look forward to another successful season next year when the Roadrunners compete in the NAIA’s Southern States Athletic Conference in all our sports: basketball, tennis, golf, cross country, and volleyball. Our alumni continue to amaze us with the breadth of their postcollege experiences. One of them – featured in this issue – is now on a national television commercial for his company. And our donors keep inspiring us with their generosity and vision for Dalton State. We are grateful for the extraordinary ways in which our alumni and donors are making their marks on Dalton State. Thank you – all of you – for your continued interest, involvement, and investment in Dalton State. We simply couldn’t do all this without you.

Layout and Design Second Shift Design, LLC, Duluth, GA Printing Brown Industries, Dalton, GA

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Dalton State Magazine | January 2014

To read this and past issues of Dalton State magazine, go to alumni.daltonstate.edu.


JANUARY 2014

THE MAGAZINE FOR ALUMNI & FRIENDS

We take it that “OMG” doesn’t stand for “only my graduation.” Congratulations to the graduates of 2013, and welcome to our new Dalton State alumni!

Departments 6 Dalton State Alumnus Gets an Assist from NBA Star Chris Paul

Dan Combs ’72 is more than a good neighbor – now he’s in a television

ad with the NBA’s Chris Paul

8 Bridging Time: A Donor Reaches out to Touch Dalton State

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24 Hours

Dalton State student Alycia Vail is all over campus. How does she do it?

14 Scholarships Change Lives

The Dalton State Foundation’s 2013 Scholarship Recognition Dinner

Virginia Wood Alexander invests in Dalton State students even though

she’s not lived in Dalton in more than half a century

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2013 Redux

A recollection of some things that turned our heads in 2013

About the Cover: Remember the snows from 2010? This photo, taken then, shows the James A. Burran Bell Tower on campus. Photograph by Forwell Studios.

Dalton State Magazine | January 2014

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alumni profile

Dalton State Alumnus Gets an Assist from NBA Star Chris Paul By Misty Watson Courtesy of The Daily Citizen

P

erhaps you think the guy who catches an umbrella from NBA star Chris Paul in the newest State Farm commercial looks familiar – well, he should. It’s Dalton State alumnus Dan Combs ’72, who has been a State Farm insurance agent in Dalton for nearly 40 years. The commercial, which first aired Christmas Day, features Paul and his fictional twin “Cliff Paul” as well as Paul’s son “Li’l Chris.” The commercial answers the question, “Where does the assist come from?” 6

Dalton State Magazine | January 2014


Dalton State Alumnus Gets an Assist from NBA Star Chris Paul

According to the commercial, in the 1920s, Paul’s ancestor “Clifford Paul, Sr. Sr. Sr.,” proprietor of Clifford & Sons General Store, inspired the new insurance company to be there for customers “like a good neighbor” by tossing an umbrella to State Farm employees, one of whom is played by Dan, as a rainstorm begins. Then “Christopher Paul, Sr. Sr. Sr.,” the brother of “Clifford Paul, Sr. Sr. Sr.,” becomes the first basketball player to make an assist, a pass that leads to a basket by another player. Chris Paul is a point guard for the NBA’s Los Angeles Clippers. “[Basketball] is not something I typically would spend a lot of time watching, but I watched a lot of basketball on Christmas Day so I could watch for my ad,” Dan says. “I like it. It’s not the typical agentinvolved commercial, not the ‘Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there’ and an agent pops up.” He was contacted by officials with State Farm last summer asking him to do a screen test for an advertisement in the Atlanta area. The ad for which he did the screen test was one featuring Aaron Rodgers, quarterback of the Green Bay Packers, and the “discount double check.” “I left there thinking, ‘Well, that will be the end of that,’” Dan confides. But a few months later, he received an email from an ad agency asking him to fly to California for filming. “I said, ‘Wow!’ I got on a plane and went out there,” he says. “It was a great experience.” “It was truly impressive,” Dan says of the three days he spent in Santa Monica for filming. “They did a great job. I was very impressed at how organized, systematic, and professional the shooting was. It was such a neat experience to see how it actually works.” Dan was put up in a nice hotel, and a car picked him up each day to take him to the production set. He and Paul were the only two in the commercial who were not professional actors.

To view Dan’s ad, go to www.alumni.daltonstate.edu/dancombs

“I got my own trailer with my name on it,” he said. “I get in my trailer, I’ve got music and all kinds of things.” The first day was dedicated to finding the right clothing and making sure everything was from the 1920s. The next day Dan spent about two hours in makeup, and then he was taken to wardrobe to get ready for the shoot. “Then I wait and I wait and I wait,” Dan remembers. “We start shooting the scene. Chris Paul was the assist.” Though he caught the umbrella from Paul the first time, the scene was shot and re-shot numerous times with different umbrellas and different tosses. “The take they used, they said they weren’t going to use,” he says. “The umbrella almost stabbed the actress beside me. I caught it just before it hit her.” Shortly after Combs catches the umbrella, it begins to rain. The rain was created in studio, not added later in post-production. “Between each shoot, they had to dry everything off,” he says. Though Combs doesn’t follow professional basketball, he said it was good to meet Paul, his son and wife. “He was a really super humble guy,” he said. “I talked to Chris a little bit on set because we were working on that umbrella thing. He has a lot of humility, and it was great getting to meet such an all-star.” d Dalton State Magazine | January 2014

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donor profile

Bridging Time: Virginia Wood Alexander Touches Dalton State From Afar

C

olumbia, Tennessee, in the south central part of the state, is about 180 miles and 67 years from Dalton State. The distance in miles can be verified using Google Maps; the distance in time can be measured only if you find a resident of Columbia named Virginia Wood Alexander. Alexander grew up in Dalton in the 1930’s and -40’s. She graduated from Dalton High School in 1943 and then earned her degree at the Georgia State College for Women (now Georgia College and State University) in Milledgeville, where she double-majored in chemistry and biology. When she graduated from GSCW in 1947, Alexander moved from Dalton to Columbia to work for the Tennessee Valley Authority as a chemical analyst. She later married there, built a life with her husband, Charles, and she still lives there today. A few months ago, she endowed a scholarship at Dalton State in support of the College’s chemistry and biology programs. “I wanted to do something for the students here,” she says. “I also wanted to honor my parents.” And so it is that Alexander has bridged the distance in time from Columbia to Dalton State with the Charles Edward Wood and Belle Wills Wood Memorial Scholarship. With the endowment gift Alexander made to establish it, the Wood Memorial Scholarship will be awarded in perpetuity.

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Dalton State Magazine | January 2014

As a child in Depression-era Dalton, Alexander recalls that she and her playmates would frequent a Civil War veteran’s house in town to hear his tales of the War Between the States. Later, she and one of her friends found themselves lucky enough to get jobs at local five-and-dime stores making 20 cents an hour. “We were rich!” Alexander reminisces with a laugh. “Dalton was such a lovely town then, even in the Depression.” During her years in Columbia, she has been involved in all kinds of community activities, from local politics to the American Legion Auxiliary to volunteering with the local hospital and the American Cancer Society. She also has held a number of leadership positions in local and statewide historical groups, was co-editor of a two-volume history of Maury County in World War II, and served as a docent at President James K. Polk’s house in Columbia. The dozens of plaques and certificates on the walls in her home attest to her decades of volunteer service. “If you want people to give you stuff, just be president of something,” she confides. Alexander may have called Columbia home since the 1940’s, but she has a fondness for Dalton because of her roots here, a fondness undimmed by the passage of years. “I’ve followed the growth of the College over time,” she says. “Now I’m just doing my part to help the students achieve their goals.” d


Dalton State Professor Wins William Faulkner Literary Prizes Dr. Nancy Mason, Assistant Professor of Spanish, recently won two prizes – first place for a one-act play and second place for a short story – in the William Faulkner Literary Competition. Created in 1997 to celebrate the 100th birthday of the Nobel Prize-winning author and creator of the fictional Yoknapatawpha County, the Faulkner Literary Competition is part of the Tallahatchie RiverFest that celebrates the rich literary history of New Albany, Mississippi, Faulkner’s birthplace. For Mason, news of the two awards carried special meaning since she graduated from high school in nearby Pontotoc. Mason’s “Meeting at Midnight” took first place honors in the competition’s one-act play category. It introduces the Dowis and Montgomery families, tracing the history of their family feud, and explores a love triangle that envelops the two families. “Meeting at Midnight” is a prequel to Mason’s already-presented “Muscadine Wine,” a three-act drama that premiered at Dalton State in 2012. “After Nighthawks,” Mason’s short story that won second prize in the Faulkner Literary Competition, was inspired by “Nighthawks,” a famous painting by Edward Hopper. “It’s the story of a lonely and troubled Vietnam veteran who seeks companionship at the Aragon Ballroom, a famous Chicago dance hall,” Mason says. “The story focuses on the changing times from music and customs of the 1940s and ‘50s to the chaotic era and social changes in the 1960s.” The Faulkner Literary Competition awarded Mason cash prizes for her story and play. “This was the first time I’ve been paid for any of my fiction,” she deadpans, “and I hope it won’t be my last. It’s very humbling to have the characters reach out and touch the emotions of the readers.”

Image of William Faulkner courtesy of Union County (MS) Heritage Museum.

Dalton State Magazine | January 2014

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2013 redux

Dalton State Adds Three New Degrees The Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia last year approved Dalton State’s request to begin offering three new bachelor degree programs, bringing the number of Dalton State’s bachelor degree programs up to 17. The Bachelor of Arts degree in Interdisciplinary Studies “should be particularly attractive to students who want to maximize previously earned credits or to earn credits through the use of Prior Learning Assessments,” said Dalton State Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Sandra Stone. “It will provide graduates with the communication, analytical, critical thinking, research, and writing skills so

important to today’s changing job market.” The online degree program in Organizational Leadership represents the University System’s first collaborative effort to provide a USG bachelor’s degree program delivered completely in a virtual environment. The Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology “will provide local employers with college graduates who are well versed in the basics of human cognitive and emotional processes and individual and social behavior, in addition to having a solid grounding in research, analytic, observational, learning, memory, and writing skills,” Stone said.

New Scholarships Established for Dalton State Students

Working with generous donors who want to invest in the transformative power of higher education, the Dalton State Foundation awarded a record number of scholarships in the 2013-2014 academic year. The Bunco Babes of Dalton, shown here, present their scholarship gift to David Elrod, Dalton State’s Director of Institutional Advancement. Representing the club were (l-r) Angie Palmer, Nancy Whaley ’74, and Shellie Reid.

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Dalton State Magazine | January 2014

Dalton State Named among Nation’s Most Affordable Colleges For the third consecutive year, Dalton State was named one of the nation’s most affordable four-year colleges by the U.S. Department of Education. “We are delighted that Dalton State appears on the affordability lists yet again, demonstrating that a Dalton State education remains a great value,” said Dr. John Schwenn, President of Dalton State. “We know that our affordability is a key reason students choose to come here. Low costs make college education accessible to more Georgians. “What’s even more gratifying is that we have high quality programs that are recognized throughout the state and the nation,” Schwenn said, citing the top-tier accreditations earned by programs in Dalton State’s Schools of Business, Education, and Health Professions, as well as the broad array of awards and recognition earned by students and faculty in the Schools of Liberal Arts and Science, Technology, and Mathematics. “I am personally convinced that you cannot get a better value on a college education anywhere in the world,” Schwenn said.


2013 redux

Dalton State’s Economic Impact Exceeds $112 Million $112,753,350 in 2012, and the total number of full- and part-time jobs sustained by Dalton State either through direct employment or through the College’s extended economic impact was 1,392. To put this number into some historical perspective, the first economic impact study in 1999 tagged Dalton State’s annual impact at $55,142,940. The new value represents a 104 percent growth rate.

The measure of a college like Dalton State can be taken in many ways: number of graduates in the workforce, number of students on campus, number of academic programs offered, and so on. One of the key indicators of Dalton State’s effect on the Northwest Georgia region is its annual economic impact – the total financial outputs by the College and its students and employees, and the value-added nature of these contributions to the region’s overall financial health. A recent study by the Selig Center for Economic Growth at the University of Georgia’s Terry College of Business found that Dalton State’s total economic impact on Northwest Georgia was

Of Dalton State’s total economic impact, $10,428,254 was created by re-spending, or the multiplier effect of dollars as they are spent again throughout the region of the study that included Whitfield, Murray, Catoosa, Gordon, Walker, and Gilmer Counties. Statewide, the University System of Georgia – of which Dalton State is a part – had a $14.1 billion impact during the same period, generating 139,263 full- and part-time jobs. Approximately one-third of these jobs were campus positions, and twothirds were off-campus jobs. Thought not measured in the study, Dalton State also has significant impact on the quality of life in Northwest Georgia through the creation of a highly educated workforce, the offering of cultural opportunities such as free lectures and concerts, and student life initiatives that encourage students to volunteer throughout the region.

Jerry Drye Wins 2013 Dalton State Foundation Award for Excellence in Teaching To be around him is to be amused and amazed that one person could have so much energy and keep expending more. Whether he’s lecturing in front of a classroom full of undergraduates or exchanging ideas with colleagues, you’ll find Assistant Professor of Communication Mr. Jerry Drye with

a smile on his face and enthusiasm in his voice. One of Dalton State’s funniest – and most popular – classroom instructors, he is one of Dalton State’s best, and he was the 2013 recipient of the Dalton State Foundation Excellence in Teaching Award. Continued on next page

See Professor Drye’s speech at Dalton State’s 2013 winter commencement exercises at www.alumni.daltonstate.edu/ jerrydrye

Dalton State Magazine | January 2014

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2013 redux

Drye (continued from previous page)

Shortly after he was presented with the award in front of the spring semester faculty meeting, Drye sent us a note of appreciation. It gives a sense of the quality found among the faculty and staff at Dalton State. Jerry wrote: “I was blown away when my name was called to receive the award. I am humbled, gratified, and excited. It is a thrill and a privilege just to be working at Dalton State and doing my small part in the overall mission of the College to transform lives and make our region a better place. I love students. I love my colleagues. I love the institution. I love teaching. I often say that I do not teach classes, I teach people. I really believe that. It is the great joy of my life to do what I do. I hope and pray that Dalton State shines higher and brighter today and for many years to come. Thank you for the award. I feel like a winner every day working here.” Thank YOU, Jerry, and our other distinguished faculty and hardworking staff for your many contributions to Dalton State.

Radiologic Technologists Still Head of the Class For the fifteenth consecutive year, all of the spring graduates of Dalton State’s Radiologic Technology program passed the national certification examination administered by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists. For program director Susan West, the record is 30 consecutive years of perfect pass rates beginning at the Medical College of Georgia and then Hamilton Medical Center before she and the program moved to Dalton State in 1998. Dalton State’s Radiologic Technology program is accredited by the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology. Radiologic technologists are trained to use ionizing radiation for the purpose of creating x-rays or other medical images and therapeutic procedures for the diagnosis or treatment of illness or injury. The

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Dalton State Magazine | January 2014

ARRT states that “patients need to have confidence that the technologists caring for them have the credentials and qualifications to safely administer radiation and that the equipment they are using is properly calibrated and maintained to deliver radiation safely and within the proper dose parameters.” Last spring, Dalton State graduated all 16 Radiologic Technology students who sat for the 200-question national exam. “We are proud of our unbroken record of perfect pass rates,” says West. “We believe it speaks to the preparedness of the graduates of our program and of their ability to perform competently and professionally in the workplace.” We are, too, Susan. Congratulations to you and these distinguished Dalton State alumni!


With Alycia Vail Dalton State senior history major Alycia Vail is at least as fast as a speeding bullet, has got more energy than a locomotive, and probably could leap tall buildings in a single bound if she put her mind to it. And still there’s time to do…well, to do all kinds of things, as her daily schedule will attest. The commuter student from Varnell is a little (she’s a petite 5-feet-2-inches) human dynamo with a brilliant smile, a charming demeanor, and an enthusiasm for life that attracts everyone she meets. She let us follow her around recently to see what a typical day is like. The alarm goes off, and I read a daily devotional I get on my phone. Spending the first minutes of my day this way inspires me to have a great day. I feed my red-eared slider turtle named Benjamin, scratch my Siamese cat Morgan, and then have my first of three cups of coffee a day – I’m a coffee addict. In the car on the way to campus I play Christian pop or rap, or country music, and sing my head off. I’m sure people in the cars around me wonder “what’s wrong with that girl?” I have five classes this semester: 19th-century Europe, the Civil War & Reconstruction, Modern Russia, the Jefferson-Jackson Era, and a research seminar where I’m working on a paper that explores the economic status effect on educational outcomes. I majored in history because I’m interested in my own roots, and I want to go to law school. If I’m not in class, I’m in the Student Life office working on an event or something with the Campus Activities Board. I’m assistant director of CAB and the campus spirit and traditions chair, so there’s always something going on. I’m either reading something for class during lunch, or I’m meeting with CAB. Every Friday we have our “CAB family lunch” with our six members, and that’s always fun. I’m a

foodie: I love food, no matter what it is or where it’s from; I especially like soul food and barbecue. Afternoons typically are spent in the library where I seek out a study carrel or in Pope Student Center where I’m involved in a group activity or helping another student. Sometimes I help one of our First Year Experience students; that’s very rewarding. As a history major, I have a lot of reading to do, so I spend many afternoons working on assignments or papers. Thankfully, Roberts Library has everything I need for research, so I spend a lot of time in the stacks. I’m a commuter student, so I get to go home for dinner. My mom is a fantastic cook, which is why I don’t eat out much, and my dad [Rob Wingfield] is Dalton State’s registrar, so we spend some family time catching up on the day’s events. I still have some reading to do for classes, so I catch up on that after dinner. I am also studying to take the LSAT in February. Lights out, but not before a cup of warm tea and honey and a good book to help me wind down for the night. I’m a grandmotherly type with respect to my bedtime and the way I drive, but I like it this way.

Dalton State Magazine | January 2014

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Scholarships Change Lives

2013 Scholarship Recognition Dinner

Dalton State Foundation scholarship recipients Sarah Nichols, left, and Hilary Mellon, and previous scholarship recipient and alumnus Patton Hunt ‘12, spoke at the Foundation’s 2013 Scholarship Recognition Dinner. To see clips from their speeches, go to www.giving.daltonstate.edu/2013dinner.

Since its founding in 1967, one of the primary aims of the Dalton State Foundation has been to provide scholarships for hard-working students demonstrating financial need or academic merit. The tradition continues today as the Foundation continually adds to its scholarship offerings for Dalton State students, and as it gathers each October at the Scholarship Recognition Dinner to celebrate the generosity of our scholarship donors and the achievements of our scholarship recipients. The Foundation thanks the donors of the following scholarships that were awarded in 2013-2014: (An asterisk * denotes an endowed scholarship.)

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Arthur B.E. Lauman Scholarship in Nursing* Arvine Phelps Memorial Scholarship* Azeez Shaheen Foundation Scholarship Beatrice P. & Emory B. Grant Memorial Scholarship* Beta Gamma Sigma Scholarship Bitsy & Stuart McFarland Scholarship* Bob E. Knisley Scholarship* Brown Industries Family Scholarship Buchanan Family Scholarship* Bunco for the Cure Radiologic Technology Scholarship Carlton Candler McCamy Memorial Scholarship* Dalton Parks & Recreation Scholarship Dalton State Foundation Summer Research Stipend Dalton State Foundation Study Abroad Scholarship Dalton State Magazine | January 2014

David E. Pennington III ‘74 Scholarship* Derrell C. Roberts Memorial Scholarship* Dixie Hasty Kinard Scholarship* Donald E. Davis Environmental Studies Scholarship* Fincher-Loughridge Foundation Teacher Education Scholarship George L. Jones Scholarship in History* Gibb Watts Memorial Scholarship* Goizueta Foundation Scholarship* Hispanic/Latino Social Work Scholarship* J&J Industries Scholarship J. Donald Bowen Scholarship in Management* J. Mason & Jacqueline Treadwell Scholarship* James E. Brown Scholarship* Jerry Phifer ‘73 Scholarship


Scholarships Change Lives

John A. Hutcheson, Jr., Scholarship in History* Johnnie & Peter Bakkum Scholarship* Jolly Family Scholarship in Science & Mathematics* Kate McMillan Daniel Memorial Scholarship for Teachers* Ken & Lori Cyree Scholarship in Business Ken White Scholarship* Kenneth E. & Dottie S. Boring Healthcare Scholarship* Kevin R. Doheny Memorial Scholarship in Mathematics & Science* Kiwanis Club of Dalton / Dr. Earl McGhee Scholarship* Leon Bouckaert Scholarship* Mayor’s Scholarship Medical Laboratory Technology Scholarship Micah Dembele Scholarship in Nursing Minor Family Nursing Scholarship Murray Scholarship* MWE Scholarship in Education Norris & Billie Little Scholarship* Northwest Georgia Chapter of the Georgia Society

of CPA’s Scholarship Patricia McGuire White Memorial Scholarship in Biology* Price-Werling Scholarship in Education RAHYE Foundation Scholarship in Nursing* Ratner Foundation Scholarship* Rita Salazar Scholarship* Robert W. Kinard Scholarship* Ronald S. Taylor Memorial Nursing Scholarship Rotary Club of Dalton Scholarship Roy Barrett Scholarship Ruth C. Boyle Scholarship in Social Work* Ryan Allan Acree Memorial Scholarship* School of Liberal Arts Scholarship Stan & Janet Goodroe Scholarship* Tom Deaton Scholarship* Walter M. & Fannie B.H. Jones Scholarship* Wayne E. Bell Memorial Scholarship Wells Fargo Scholarship* W.W. Fincher Scholarship Yvonne Hill Hawkins Memorial Scholarship in Nursing

Dalton State Magazine | January 2014

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650 College Drive | Dalton, GA 30720

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Almost Ready Dalton State’s new academic building is slated to open later this semester. Biology and chemistry classes will be offered in the building beginning in the fall. Follow a pictorial history of the building’s construction at www. flickr.com/photos/daltonstatealumni.


Dalton State Magazine January 2014