Posts Tagged LSU

Baton Rouge Still Has a Place in My Heart

During the past couple of weeks I have been grieving and praying for the people of Baton Rouge. Liz and I spent four years there and I went back for another summer to study German. Our children, Suzanne and Michael, were born in Baptist Hospital there. Baton Rouge is a beautiful, friendly city. The staff at the Cerebral Palsy Center and the folks at Goodwood Baptist Church, where I taught an adult Sunday school class, opened their hearts to us. The faculty of the Speech Department at LSU were some of the finest people I have had the privilege of knowing. You cannot imagine the friendliness and the professionalism of that department.

We were there during the anxious days of the Cuban Missile Crisis and I was asked to teach oral English to many of the Cuban refugees. It was during the time that “Sing Along with Mitch Miller” was on television and my course quickly became known as Speak Akong with Mitch. Paula Eagle, director of the Cerebral Palsy Center, Sally Coperthwait, occupational therapists and I were in Dallas the weekend that President Kennedy was assassinated and Jack Ruby shot Lee Harvey Oswald. We were attending the convention of the National Cerebral Palsy Association.

We were very tempted to stay in Baton Rouge. We had developed so many friendships. I also had a private practice and was teaching in the Speech Department in addition to being a graduate student. The invitation to come to Charleston was too challenging to pass up. It was the right move for us, but Baton Rouge and its wonderful people still have a place in my heart.

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Power of Words – Charleston Post and Courier Letters

July 13, 2014

I was working toward my master’s degree when I first heard a professor use profanity directed at a student.

In undergraduate school, I was a member of the debate team; therefore, I traveled to numerous colleges, universities, tournaments and conventions. I interacted with hundreds of professors.

While working toward my doctorate at LSU, I never heard a professor use inappropriate language toward a student.

During a lifetime of teaching, I have never heard a professor savagely attack a student, the student’s parents or the university that pays his or her salary.

Student athletes have far more exposure to coaches than the regular students have to their professors.

Students attend college to prepare for a career and to help them develop into productive adults. It is a crucial time in their lives.

Why would an educational institution employ someone who destroys the self-esteem of those students or undercuts their self-confidence? How much is the mental health of a student worth?

Words are powerful. They have the power to hurt or heal. That words are more powerful than the sword is more than a cliché. Most of us carry scars from some long ago unkind remark from someone important to our lives.

If a professor or coach hit a student there would be no debate. Bullying is counterproductive where ever and whenever it occurs.

Mitch Carnell

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Thankful Thursday – Suzie Redd

On this Thankful Thursday, I am blessed by the gifts that Suzie Redd brings to my life. Suzie is a native of Picayune, Mississippi and a graduate of Mississippi State College for Women; however, she is an ardent LSU fan. She moved to Charleston with her late husband David from Orangeburg, SC. She and David met in New Orleans where she was in nursing school at the Baptist Hospital and he was studying at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. Suzie sings in the choir at First Baptist Church of Charleston where David was organist and Minister of Worship for more than 30 years. David and the late Dr. John Hamrick taught me how to worship. Suzie has so many talents that it is difficult to know where to start. She was a great nurse for years for her mother and David’s mother. She keeps all the music organized for the choir. She is an outstanding hostess and a wonderful cook. Of course, she loves Louisiana Cajun food. She brightens any occasion by just being there. On this Thankful Thursday, I am grateful that Suzie Redd is part of my life. Anne Cheek pictured along with Suzie has also been featured on this Thankful Thursday blog.

            Thankful Thursday is a day set aside to recognize the importance of someone to our lives and to let her or him know of our gratitude. Develop an attitude of gratitude. Say Something Nice; Be a Lifter. You will be glad that you did.

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Get the Job Done on the Gulf

             I spent four wonderful years in Baton Rouge. Both Suzanne and Michael were born in Baptist Hospital there. We had great friends at LSU, the Cerebral Palsy Center and Goodwood Baptist Church. We went to New Orleans as often as possible mainly to take the children to Audubon Park. We spent many Saturday or Sunday afternoons driving through the countryside. If we had not been on such a tight shoestring we would have done more. Louisiana is a beautiful place with two distinct areas much like South Carolina.

            What I remember most are the wonderful people we met. Families brought lots of fresh vegetables to the staff at the Cerebral Palsy Center. There were hot tamale vendors on the streets. The folks in the speech department at LSU were like one great big family. I have never regretted moving to Charleston, but it was very hard to leave Baton Rouge.

            I am absolutely heartsick about the tragedy on the Gulf and even sicker about the ineptness or unwillingness of BP and the federal government to act cohesively and decisively to get things done. I know that it is much harder than I realize but I also know how ingenious ordinary citizens can be when given an opportunity. I know also that the politicians will use every opportunity to criticize the other party, but much more is at stake than any one person’s career. President Obama should put one person at the helm whose word is law. Declare a national emergency if that is what it takes. Do whatever is necessary to get the job done. There will be years to point fingers, but right now get the job done.

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