Saturday, December 13, 2008
This year’s fall Commencement Ceremony at SC State will be held on Saturday, Dec. 13, 2008 at 9:00 a.m. in the Smith-Hammond-Middleton Memorial Center (SHM). More than 300 graduates are scheduled to participate.
The keynote address will be given by Dr. George E. Cooper, 10th President of SC State.
Prior to assuming the present position as president of SC State, Dr. Cooper worked for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) where he served as deputy administrator for Science and Education Resources Development. His broad responsibilities included the coordination of education, research and extension programs in the food and agricultural sciences and international programs.
He managed a grants portfolio of approximately $140 million dollars to support the following: The National Needs Graduate Fellowships Program; Multicultural Scholars ; Higher Education Challenge Grants Program; 1890 Universities Teaching and Research Capacity Building Grants Program; Tribal Colleges Endowment Fund; Tribal Colleges Education Equity Grants Program; Tribal Colleges Research Grants Program; Alaska Native-Serving and Native Hawaiian-Serving Institutions Challenge Grants Program; Agriculture in the Classroom Program; Evans-Allen Research Program; 1890 Cooperative Extension Program; Agriculture in the Classroom Program; 1890 Facilities Program; International Programs; and coordination of the National Awards Program for Excellence in College and University Teaching in the Food and Agricultural Sciences; the CSREES Faculty Fellows Program and the Food and Agriculture Education Information System.
Dr. Cooper’s experiences also included serving as vice president for academic affairs and professor of animal science at Alabama A&M University; associate professor and dean of the School of Applied Sciences, and the School of Agriculture and Home Economics at Tuskegee University; animal nutritionist with Winrock International Livestock Research and Training Center; and animal nutritionist with USDA’s Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service.
Dr. Cooper served on the advisory committee of the Joint Experiment Station Committee or Organization and Policy and Academic Committee on Organization and Policy Leadership Development Program, and on a number of advisory committees, serving the needs of academic, research and extension programs at land grant colleges and universities.
Dr. Cooper has many other experiences to include extensive travel to other countries - Africa, Central and South America and the Caribbean, reviewing, planning and evaluating efforts related to agriculture. He is also widely published, has membership in many professional organizations, and has completed several executive leadership programs.
Dr. Cooper earned his Ph. D. in Animal Nutrition from the University of Illinois, Urbana; a master’s degree in Animal Science from Tuskegee University; and a bachelor’s degree in Animal Husbandry from Florida A&M University.
He and his wife Diane have two children, Nikki Angela Cooper and Carey Allison Cooper.