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Where academics and athletics come together

November 28, 2017

By Jackie Todd, Clemson University Relations

Pic of Jeffrey Jospeh, his dad, Mark, and Pres ClementsAmazing. That’s how seven-year-old Jeffrey Joseph described his time on the field in front of 85,000 cheering football fans in Death Valley. The Green Charter School second-grader accompanied his dad, who was honored as Staff Member of the Game during Clemson’s first home football game of the season.

Jeffrey’s dad, Mark Joseph works as a coordinator for Clemson’s Call Me MISTER program – and was himself a Call Me MISTER student. The Clemson-founded nationally recognized program provides educational opportunities for minority education students and places graduates in underserved educational districts.

Joseph said that the experience of being on the field was empowering and he was excited to see the Call Me MISTER program get attention.

Pic of Prof/staff member of the game on the field“At first I was taken aback at the sight of so many people,” he said. “But I heard the cheers and was so empowered to see the support for education.”

Joseph was equally thrilled to share the experience with Jeffrey.

“When my son was able to see himself on the jumbotron, I believe it heightened his experience,” he explained. “Sharing that experience broadens his horizon and helps him understand that there are no limits to what he wants to accomplish. It speaks volumes to what we do as a university.”

Pic of Pres Clements and Sarah WhiteSarah White was on vacation when she learned that she was going to be honored as the Professor of the Nov. 18 football game against the Citadel – the last home game of the season. An associate professor of horticulture and participant in the President’s Leadership Institute, White conducts research related to water conservation and how to use plant-based technologies to cleanse water runoff. White was part of a team of scientists who, the week before the game, received a Multistate Research Award for their collaboration in researching ways to treat and recycle water.

“It’s nice to feel appreciated for the work that I do,” she said. “And I appreciate that others who wouldn’t normally know about our work can hear about it.”

White said that the on-field recognition brings attention to Clemson’s commitment to academics and research.

“I’m excited about about what we do at Clemson,” she explained. “This program is a wonderful opportunity to let fans know about Clemson  – beyond that we have a great football team.”

Pic of Prof/Staff members of the game on the fieldAll in all, seven faculty and seven staff members were recognized during the university’s home football games this season. Honorees are nominated by their areas to serve in this role not only for their career achievements, but also for going the extra mile to better the community. President Jim Clements and Provost Bob Jones initiated the program, supported by Athletics, as a way to highlight the positive impact that Clemson’s faculty and staff have on the university.

The practice of honoring faculty and staff during Clemson football home games began in 2015. These representatives are guests of President and Mrs. Clements in their suite and are recognized in the president’s pre-game remarks, on the field and in the game-day program.

Other game honorees included:

Clemson v. Kent State

Celeste Bates, associate professor of literacy in the College of Education and director of the Clemson University Reading Recovery and Early Literacy Training Center for South Carolina

Clemson v. Auburn

Delphine Dean, associate professor in the department of bioengineering

Aubrey Baldwin, director of the Residents in Science and Engineering program

Clemson v. Boston College

Amber Porter, lecturer in the department of physics and astronomy

Lynn Fisher, Clemson’s Emergency Preparedness Coordinator

Clemson v. Wake Forest

Ray Huff, director of the Clemson Architecture Center in Charleston

Susan Kaplar, business manager of the Brooks Center for the Performing Arts

Clemson v. Georgia Tech

Steven Miller, assistant professor in the department of political science

Janet Evatt, program coordinator for Clemson’s Center for Research on Health Disparities

Clemson v. Florida State

Erica Walker, assistant professor in the graphic communications department

Charleen Fitzgerald, student services program coordinator for the College of Business

Clemson V. Citadel

Paula Beecher, director of the Bookhart Student Services Center for the College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences.



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