Gumbel's "Eye" to focus on SC State University

Friday, February 29, 2008



Gumbel's "Eye" to focus on SCSU
By LEE TANT, T&D Staff Writer | Friday, February 29, 2008


South Carolina State University will once again be in the national spotlight when it is featured on the syndicated television talk show "Eye on America," hosted by Greg Gumbel.

The university will be acknowledged as a "Hidden Gem in Higher Education" during the program. The segment on SCSU will be around five minutes in length and is set to air sometime in the spring.

SCSU trustees received good news in a number of areas during their board meeting Thursday.

The university announced it received a five-year grant totaling $654,533 from the U.S. Department of Energy to provide full scholarships for six students in hopes of recruiting them to work at the new Savannah River Site mixed oxide facility after graduation.

The university was also named the "Tom Joyner School of the Month" for March. Tom Joyner is nationally known radio personality and his show has an audience of about 8 million listeners per weekday.

Joyner will assist SCSU in getting scholarship contributions from national corporations by featuring the university on his radio program during the month.

SCSU officials also unveiled a campuswide security and surveillance system to trustees. The computer-controlled system enables first responders to make an accurate assessment of any situation that should arise on the campus.

The system cost $500,000, Vice President of Financial Affairs John Smalls said.

The university is also working to beef up campus lighting to improve safety and to help the surveillance system ide.jpgy potential criminal activity.

SCSU interim President Dr. Leonard McIntyre said there is a grave need for a comprehensive security plan. While the new system is a step in the right direction, McIntyre says the planning for handling an attack such as the ones that occurred at Virginia Tech or Northern Illinois is far from complete.

"I shudder to think if something like this should happen on this campus. I'm not sure we would be prepared," he said.

SCSU Police Chief Greg Harris said the university is as prepared as most other institutions for such an incident.

The university is looking to improve ways to n.jpgy people in case of such an event, Harris said. He said two large sirens may be placed on campus that would be activated in an emergency. Harris said the university is also developing a plan to deal with an active shooter on the grounds.

McIntyre said the university is deploying a student growth committee to deal with a projected enrollment increase in the coming year. The committee will look for ways to provide sufficient faculty, housing and financial aid, among other items.

Smalls announced that bidding for the long-awaited restoration of historic Lowman Hall will soon be underway and construction is slated to begin this summer. The budget for the project is $7.5 million.

SCSU board Chairman Maurice Washington encouraged each trustee to sign a disclosure form for the upcoming internal audit. The trustees and administrators said they will do so.

"We take very seriously our duties and responsibilities and we do so in a transparent way," Washington said.

He said that the presidential search process should be closed by in March and the target date for naming a permanent president will be July 1.

Washington said trustees already have a good pool of applicants.

"(We are) very exciting about this process," he said. The presidential search committee will meet Monday morning.

**Article retrieved from the T&D

T&D Staff Writer Lee Tant can be reached by e-mail at or by phone at 803-534-1060. Discuss this and other stories online at