Meridian Star

March 23, 2014

Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc., Delta Nu Zeta's annual salute....

Program to honor 150 graduating high school minority students

By Ida Brown /
The Meridian Star

MERIDIAN —     For more than three decades, the members of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc. Delta Nu Zeta Chapter, have recognized the accomplishments of select graduating high school seniors representing East Mississippi and West Alabama during their annual Salute to Outstanding Minority Youth Program.

    Each year, the number of students recognized has grown – as evidence by this year's program, which will honor 150 students.

    "We want to show these outstanding students that we are proud of their accomplishments, and look forward to their future success," said Jaclyn Buford, president of Meridian's Delta Nu Zeta chapter.

    The Salute to Outstanding Minority Students Program places emphasis on the Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc.'s founding principles of scholarship and community service. Many of the youth who will be honored are leaders in their community and schools.

    "These recipients are future doctors, lawyers, educators, engineers, and other related professionals," Buford said.

    In addition to highlighting the accomplishments of outstanding minority students, the program also places emphasis on Zeta Phi Beta Sorority's founding principles of scholarship and community service.  

    The afternoon program will also feature a special tribute to a longtime supporter of the Salute to Outstanding Minority Students Program.

Dr. Stacy Jones,

keynote speaker

    During its 32-year history, the Salute to Outstanding Minority Students Program has a history of phenomenal keynote speakers – from college presidents, lawyers, doctors, elected officials and inspirational ministers and community leaders. Dr. Stacy Jones, assistant dean of students at the University of Alabama, will take the podium at this year's event.

    At UA, Jones is responsible for student care and well-being, judicial affairs and the national student exchange. In addition to her primary responsibilities, Jones serves as an adjunct professor who teaches classes related to black Greek life, leadership development, and the freshman experience. She also advises the National Society of Collegiate Scholars and the Black Student Union. In her current position, she works with a broad range of students from all walks of life.

    As committed as Jones is to the University of Alabama, she is equally as involved with her community both locally and nationally. She serves as a motivational speaker and facilitator for a variety of organizations as well as member of several national, regional, and state boards of directors.

    Jones has been a dedicated member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc. for more than 26 years. Through her sorority, she serves her community by working with The Stork’s Nest, a prenatal education program for low income mothers. She was a co-revenue chair for the March of Dimes, 2013 March for Babies event. She serves as the State of Alabama Conference and Meeting planner. She was recently appointed national programming chair for the National Pan-Hellenic Council.

Delta Nu Zeta Chapter,

Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc.

    Founded on Dec. 17, 1950, Delta Nu Zeta Chapter, Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc. has been committed to community service, beginning with a dental program for indigent children as well as free lunches for students attending West End Elementary, Mount Barton and East End schools.

    Other projects of Delta Nu Zeta have included purchasing eyeglasses, cheerleading uniforms, and choir uniforms for needy students, working with Pepsi Cola and the Red Cross in preparing identification cards which included pictures and any identifying marks for young children.

    Delta Nu Zeta participates and has participated in the March of Dimes Walk for Babies, The American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life, The Martin Luther King Parade, the Black History Program at Meridian Museum of Art, voter registration drives, the 2000 and 2010 Census, “Cans for Kids,” volunteers with youth at Wesley House, LOVE's Kitchen, Habitat for Humanity, Meridian Parks and Recreation Annual Easter Egg Hunt and St. Patrick’s Fall Fest. Members volunteer at Care Lodge Domestic Violence Shelter, have sponsored a “Wig and Scarf” campaign as a Christmas project for the Anderson Cancer Center and sponsored a health fair at the Boys and Girls Club

      Delta Nu Chapter has received recognition for numerous projects in the state, regional and in 2009 on the National Relay for Life Web site was recognized as the No. 1 contributor in the state of Mississippi for donations. The chapter has been awarded Premier Chapter Status for the state of Mississippi for participation on all levels within the state, and served as host of the 2010 Mississippi Youth Summit.