STARKVILLE, Miss.—A 17-year faculty member at Mississippi State University has been named interim administrative dean for the institution’s Meridian Campus.
Meghan Millea, professor of economics and former Holland Faculty Senate president, fills the MSU-Meridian role most recently held by interim administrative co-deans Julia Hodges and Allison Pearson. Hodges serves the university as associate vice president for academic affairs, and Pearson works as special assistant to the provost and executive vice president, and is a William L. Giles Distinguished Professor of Management.
In her new role, Millea manages a student body of 584 and a staff of 73 at two locations, the College Park Campus on Highway 19 North and the Riley Campus on Fifth St. in the city’s downtown.
“Mississippi State University-Meridian’s outstanding College Park and Riley campuses remain an integral part of the university’s overarching teaching, research and service missions,” said MSU President Mark E. Keenum. “Dr. Meghan Millea will bring outstanding leadership to our students, faculty and staff as we continue our mission to be an educational and economic development catalyst for east central Mississippi in cooperation with our community partners.”
Millea has been honored over the years for her work, including recognition as a 2014 John Grisham Master Teacher for her teaching excellence and mentoring. In 2012, she was selected as the university’s HEADWAE faculty honoree. An acronym for Higher Education Appreciation Day, Working for Academic Excellence, the program annually spotlights those making outstanding contributions in promoting academic excellence.
Employed by MSU in 1998, she also has received the business college’s Louis A. Hurst Outstanding Faculty, Thomas W. Hinkle Outstanding Teaching, and Outstanding Service awards. A University of Nebraska-Lincoln doctoral graduate, her areas of academic specialization include international and labor economics.
“We’re very grateful for the exceptional work done by former interim co-deans Dr. Allison Pearson and Dr. Julia Hodges in leading MSU-Meridian,” said MSU Provost Jerome A. Gilbert. “I have great confidence that Dr. Millea will build on the solid foundation that these outstanding educators forged during their tenure in Meridian.”
Millea joins MSU-Meridian during a time of expansion. In February, MSU-Meridian’s Riley Campus dedicated the renovated, 20,000-square-foot Newberry Building as the Robert B. Deen Jr. Building in honor of the longtime philanthropist. He is chairman, president and CEO of the local Riley Foundation, which has greatly impacted the growth of MSU’s educational offerings in the region.
While the Deen Building is home to the Division of Business, the adjacent Kress Building is currently being renovated to house MSU-Meridian’s newest academic program in kinesiology. The new degree program, with an emphasis in clinical physiology, is supported by an $11 million Riley Foundation grant.
In 2013, the new Phil Hardin Foundation Library opened at the MSU-Meridian College Park Campus. A $1.25 million gift by this foundation made possible the new 1,860 square-foot facility created through renovation of existing space.
MSU-Meridian is a non-residential campus, which serves students in East Mississippi and West Alabama.
MSU, the Magnolia State's flagship research university, is online at www.msstate.edu, facebook.com/msstate, instagram.com/msstate and twitter.com/msstate.