Jones College’s Concert Choir begins spring concert season

ELLISVILLE–Jones College’s Concert Choir will spend the spring performing in churches throughout Jones County. The first concert is scheduled for Sunday, March 8, at 6 p.m. at First Baptist Church of Sharon.  Additionally, the 86-member choir will be performing on Sunday, April 5, at 6:30 p.m. at West Ellisville Baptist Church and on April 19, at 6 p.m., the choir will be presenting their concert at Hebron Baptist Church in Soso at 6 p.m. The public is invited to attend these free events.

 JC Choral director, Dr. Joel Dunlap will be directing the talented members of the Concert Choir singing a varied repertoire including selections such as the spirited, “John the Revelator,” arranged by Paul Caldwell and Sean Ivory, the heart rendering “Earth Song,” by Frank Ticheli, and the roaring concert spiritual, “He’s Got the Whole World,” arranged by Ray Liebau.  Other selections include, “Sing Unto God,” by Paul Fetler, “Sleep,” by Eric Whitacre, “Homeward Bound,” by Mack Wilberg, and “Ascription of Praise,” to close the concert.

Assisting the choir is Alexandra Arnold (rehearsal assistant) and Dr. Victoria Johnson (accompanist) of the Jones Fine Arts department.  For more information contact the JC Fine Arts Department at 601-477-4203 or email

JC Concert Choir

 Acosta, Sarah  Hattiesburg

Adkins, Olivia Laurel

Allen, Dailen   Liberty

Allen, Zailen   Liberty

Altman, Keara Quitman

Beasley, Sharityn Waynesboro

Biglane, Erin   Ellisville

Boykin, Layne Waynesboro

Bray, McKaylee Leakesville

Brown, Vincent Moselle

Brownlee, Sarah Laurel

Brunty, Desi Laurel

Butler, Josh Ellisville,

Byrd, Hannah  Laurel

Byrd, ZiKeya Saraland, AL

Callen, Patrick Laurel

Carmichael, Coriana Laurel

Clark, Jada Waynesboro

Collins, Chicago Brookhaven

Cooley, Erica Waynesboro

Cooley, Jalen Quitman

Crowder, Caidyn Ellisville

Dailey, Alex Buckatunna

DeCastro, Faith Tamuning, Guam

Evans, Ty Laurel

Floyd, Lexie Qutiman

Fortenberry, Kaneisha, Laurel

Gable, Haley Laurel

Garick, Alyssa Laurel

Gibson, Allison Lucedale

Goff, Cortland Ellisville

Griffin, Peyton Ellisville

Guy, Haley Laurel

Hannah, Kayla Byram

Heath, Hunter Ellisville

Henderson, Hannah Millry, AL

Henry, Rondaisha Bay Springs

Herron, Khalil Laurel

Hoffman, Mackenzie Laurel

Hoffman, Madison Laurel

Holifield, Haley Laurel

Johns, Chandon Ellisville

Johnson, Dariyel Leakesville

Johnson, Rayshawn Laurel

Joshua, Jourdon Laurel

King, Peyton Petal

Lampley, Kyra Petal

Lee, Jada Sumrall

Lee-McSwain, Shara Sumrall

Lewis, Janna Enterprise

Lott, Madeline Columbia

Malone, Kelsey Richton

Manning, Kaylee Laurel

Mason, Hunter Laurel

McClendon, Clairrease Ellisville

McDonald, Bryce Richton

McKellar, Anna-Claire Vicksburg

McMillan, Sarah Millry, AL

Meadows, Hallie Piave

Miller, Somya Mt. Olive

Mims, Makaila Laurel

Murphy, Eden Petal

Musgrove, Chelsea Soso

Nobles, Stuyuncey Laurel

Pearce, Caleb  Ellisville

Phillips, Jalin   Waynesboro

Pippin, Olivia  Laurel

Pittman, Zyion Soso

Sanford, Larsen Seminary

Shivers, Connor Lena

Slover, Josarah Laurel

Smith, James   Hattiesburg

Smith, Savanah Raleigh

Smith, Tellas   Laurel

Snowdy, Alex Madison

Sumrall, Jenna Kate Laurel

Swanner, Janna Taylorsville

Taylor, Grace  Magee

Thomas, Jesse Smithdale

Thompson, Michael Laurel

Todd, Reagan  Laurel

Ulmer, Karsyn Laurel

Welch, Bonner Moselle

Wells, Jasmine Mendenhall

Westmoreland, Alex Laurel

Zickus, Chaz Ellisville

Mississippi State University Wind Ensemble performs at Jones College

ELLISVILLE – Jones College’s Fine Arts Department invites the public to hear the Mississippi State University Wind Ensemble perform on Tuesday, March 3, at noon in the M.P. Bush Fine Arts Auditorium.  Jorge Castillo, a 2019 Jones College graduate from Ellisville, is a member of the Wind Ensemble at MSU. The group’s performance at Jones College is an opportunity for the Ensemble to inspire future MSU musicians as they travel to the American School Band Symposium on the Mississippi Coast.

The 75-member Wind Ensemble is the premiere instrumental student ensemble at Mississippi State University and is under the direction of Elva Kay Lance, the Director of Bands at Mississippi State. Membership is extended to the most advanced musicians by competitive audition, regardless of university major. This select group represents the musical student leadership of the band program and performs in both the Fall and Spring semesters. Members aspire to elevate individual and collective musicianship and strengthen performance skills. The ensemble has a tradition of musical excellence and is committed to playing the finest new works along with the traditional masterpieces from the past.

The band has been the featured university band at the Mississippi Bandmaster’s Convention and for the Mississippi All-State Concert Band on several occasions and will perform for the American Bandmasters Association convention in 2020. In addition to regular performances in the Mid-South, the Wind Ensemble conducted a performance tour of the British Isles in 2008, Germany and Austria in 2011, Italy in 2014, and Austria and the Czech Republic in 2019.

In addition to their concert appearances, Lance and the Wind Ensemble embrace a mission to advance the wind ensemble literature while preparing future musical leaders. They regularly participate in the commissioning of new literature and through this process ensemble members are exposed to a diverse repertoire and a variety of compositional techniques that challenge each student to further develop their musicianship skills.

Jones College engineering students earn MS Engineering Society scholarships

ELLISVILLE –Jones College sophomores, Harrison Hartzog of Tylertown and Brandon Waldrup of Ellisville were each awarded a $1,500 tuition scholarship from the Southeast Area Chapter of the Mississippi Engineering Society as part of National Engineering Week.  They were selected from a pool of applicants from a nine-county area with the MES scholarship committee making the final selections according to Steven Parker, MES President. Scholarship recipients are chosen based on several parameters including, character, integrity, an essay, and the application.

“All of the applicants were very deserving making it difficult to choose this year’s recipients,” said Parker. “I look forward to working with them in the future and after they become engineers.”

Since 1995, the Southeast Chapter of MES has distributed more than $40,000 in financial assistance to students pursuing their engineering degrees at a Mississippi IHL Accredited College of Engineering. Hartzog, a Columbia Academy graduate is thinking about being a mechanical engineer and possibly working for Chevron in the future. West Jones High School graduate, Waldrup has chosen to specialize as an electrical engineer with aspirations of working with a power company.

“Receiving this scholarship inspires me to work even harder,” said Waldrup.  “I appreciate the MPES for recognizing students who work hard to accomplish their goals.”

Hartzog said receiving the scholarship has also motivated him to continue working hard. Both scholarship recipients plan on attending Mississippi State University after graduating from Jones.

“My parents have always supported me and I’m glad this scholarship will help us pay for tuition. The MES Scholarship will definitely help me when I transfer,” said Hartzog.

Students receiving a scholarship from the MES are required to be members of the Jones College’s Engineering Society and have a GPA ranging from 3.5 to 4.0.  JC Engineering Society sponsor and physics instructor, Mary Boleware said the partnership with the MES plays an important role in better preparing our engineering majors.

“We appreciate area professionals mentoring our students and providing opportunities to continue their education through these scholarships,” said Boleware.

The annual meeting, which was hosted at Howard Industries with MES included about 50 college and high school students from the Pine Belt exposing them to job opportunities and academic advice. JC’s Engineering Society co-hosted the event which included presentations from the University of Mississippi and Mississippi State University’s colleges of engineering.

Jones College’s A.T. Bassett Memorial Scholarship Awarded

ELLISVILLE–Six Smith County students were recently awarded the Jones College A.T. Bassett Memorial Scholarship. From Mize, 1st place went to Eli Evans and Mason Anglin earned 2nd place. Raleigh’s Haylee Sims received 1st place with Christian Shaw taking 2nd place. Taylorsville’s Austin Stringer earned 1st place and Taikya Ducksworth received 2nd place.

English teachers from the three Smith County schools were asked to choose several students to compete by writing an essay on various topics for the Writing Competition facilitated by Jones College’s English department. Thirteen students competed for the A.T. Bassett Memorial Scholarship with first and second place winners earning tuition scholarships.  The A.T. Bassett Scholarship was established in memory of A.T. Bassett by his wife Sue, and daughters, Lona Bassett and Morrett Ellzey of Moselle.

 Winners of the A.T. Bassett Scholarships

Mize High School: Competitors from Mize for the Jones College’s A.T. Bassett Memorial Scholarship are standing left to right: Mason Anglin, Montana Middleton, Jacie Dickerson, Ashtin Beltran, Eli Evans and Jacob Dickerson.

1st place:  Eli Evans        2nd place: Mason Anglin

Raleigh High School: Competitors from Raleigh for Jones College’s A.T. Bassett Memorial Scholarship are standing left to right are Chloe Easterling, Haylee Sims and Christian Shaw.

1st place: Haylee Sims

2nd place: Christian Shaw

Taylorsville High School: Competitors from Taylorsville for Jones College’s A.T. Bassett Memorial Scholarship are standing left to right Austin Stringer, Matthew Upchurch, Kailey Butler and Taikya Ducksworth.

1st place: Austin Stringer

2nd place:  Taikya Ducksworth

Ceramic artist encourages Jones College students to experiment while creating

ELLISVILLE – Art instructor and ceramic artist, Janet Smith spent an afternoon with aspiring Jones College artists sharing her secrets to creating. For the most part, Smith said she doesn’t have a plan when she begins creating. In fact, many of her pieces on display at the Jones College Eula Bass Lewis Art Gallery this month, are a result of teaching her students at Co-Lin Community College over the last 32 years.

“A lot of pieces come out of teaching my students how to be more experimental,” said Smith. “I was teaching the slab method to students and I began to work along with them, exploring the simplicity of the box. I would usually only half construct a box as an example and throw mine in the slip bucket, but these were saved, and I enjoyed the process and found such satisfaction in their completion.”

As a potter, Smith said she loves to touch everything. Working with clay as a tactile artist gives her creative freedom to “lose” herself. Playing around with textures and experimenting with shapes is important but more importantly, Smith said she likes her art to have some functionality. Most of her work has lids for example, which can be used as a keepsake box or a canister.

“I like playing with handles and lids, concentrating on smaller pieces and textures to make something functionally creative,” said Smith.

Teapots are another favorite creation for Smith because they have personality. Smith explained to Jones students she also liked experimenting with tissue paper transfer. However, she said she likes finding ways to make the tissue paper transfer more expressive and uncontrolled. Probably the biggest question Jones students had for Smith was her secret for not breaking pottery in the kiln as it heats up.

“I don’t make fragile stuff. I love to touch everything,” Smith explained. “I fire up things so slow and hold it there for hours to make sure all the moisture is out of it so it doesn’t break.”

For more information about the JC art show contact the gallery at 601-477-4148 or visit the gallery which is open Monday through Thursday, 8:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m., and Friday from 8:00 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. The gallery is closed for lunch daily from 11:30 until noon. If you want to know more about the Jones College Fine Arts Department check out the JC Fine Arts Facebook page at JCJCFineArts.