The start of a new semester has brought new positions and promotions for various Grambling employees.
David ‘Rusty’ Ponton
David “Rusty” Ponton has managed to store his sneakers for a fresh pair of oxford shoes. Ponton was recently selected as the Director of the Favrot Student Union. He stated, “I am an advocate for the students.”
The former head coach for Grambling’s women basketball team has decided to extend his helping hand to more than student athletes; he is aiming towards the entire student body.
“I am here to learn what students want. I am very student oriented and want to enrich the student body,” said Ponton. Ponton also wants the student body to use campus activities as an outlet. Among upcoming events is the annual coronation in which LaKesha Ross will be crowned Miss Grambling State University. “I would like more participation from the students,” said Ponton. “With such great student leaders and staff members, together we will met and exceed our goals.”
Ponton plans on bridging the gaps between students and people with leadership positions. “I want every student to have the best experience while here at Grambling State University,” said Ponton. “We are here for the students.”
With all the excitement evolving around the Favrot Student Union, does Ponton miss anything about coaching? “I miss my student athletes or should I say my kids,” said Ponton. “I miss competing and just interacting from an athletic standpoint.”
While currently pursing a doctoral degree in Developmental Education at Grambling State University, the Southern graduate plans on using this educational background to thrive into a Vice President or President position. Looking up to late Coaches Eddie G. Robinson and Fred Hobdy, Ponton uses his admiration for them as his book of success. He stated, “I anxiously await a great year and welcome any input at anytime.”
Jackie Greer is the newly selected Interim Financial Aid Director. This Grambling graduate is a long time employee here at GSU and has held other positions such as Secretary for the Department of Educational Leadership, Transcript Analyst in the School of Graduate Studies, Assistant Director of Scholarships, and Special Assistant to the Dean of Graduate Studies and Research, Dr. Janet Guyden.
“I am always up for a challenge,” said Greer. She explained that working with undergraduates is more challenging than working with graduate students. “Graduate students do not need much assistance,” said Greer.
When asked who her motivation was for her recent accomplishments, Greer answered, “Dr. Guyden was my motivation. Dr. Guyden always expressed her concern for me moving on, however, she always encouraged me to excel and I do aspire to become President of a University.”
Meanwhile, Greer’s outlook for this semester is to get students to become more familiar with online registration. “The lines in Financial Aid should disappear,” said Greer. “All the forms are online and can be filled out from your home.”
Greer also stated within the next five years, her goal is for the Financial Aid Process to be paperless. “Customer service will also be Top Notch,” said Greer. “We are here to assist the students. I am only about business, not foolishness.”
Greer also feels her campus-wide experiences gave her an advantage with this position. Greer stated, “I am only here to make things easier, and if the student body cooperate and turn in their information on time, I promise to get it processed on time.”
Whether you have seen him patrolling or know him on a professional level, Sergeant Freddie Peterson is a familiar face on campus. The graduate of Platt College is currently serving as Interim Chief of Police and has a mindset of interacting more with the student body.
Peterson stated his goal for this semester is student safety. “I plan on interacting with students on better securing their rooms, understanding identity theft, becoming more aware of their environments, and learning more about general safety,” said Peterson.
With no added stress, Peterson said he has more time to focus on the student body. “I love what I do which is being at Grambling State University protecting everyone, but especially the students,” said Peterson.
Peterson has plans of bringing the Blue Light System on campus. This 911 Box Station will be placed in several locations on campus designed to give students access to immediate help. “My goal as Interim Chief is to make the University a better and safer environment for everyone,” stated Peterson.
With much respect for his heavenly father and President Horace A. Judson, Peterson plans to pursue a master’s degree in Criminal Justice and possibly teaching on a college level. Peterson also stated his only weakness is his love for the students.
“The Children of today are the future of tomorrow, and I want to be a part of it,” said Peterson.
Peterson strongly feels his aggressive patrolling skills and tremendous amount of training is what set him apart from others. When asked his mission for the semester, Peterson answered, “To get more manpower, better equipment, and more professional and proactive members of Grambling State University Police Department.”
Another familiar face on campus is that of Katina Crowe. The former Administrator Coordinator for the Office of Admissions was recently appointed to Special Assistant to the Graduate Dean, Dr. Janet Guyden. This Grambling Graduate is no stranger with the student body and serves as the advisor for The Society of Distinguished Black Women.
Crowe has also worked hand-in-hand with Admissions Recruiters in major events such as planning previous “High School Day” activities. “I helped with the smooth flow of the Admissions Office, and I also traveled with recruiters to various places,” said Crowe.
When asked if the current position is different from the previous, Crowe replied, “There isn’t much of a change, just more detailed information. My availability is crucial and I deal with more out-of-state students. I must also stand-in for Dr. Guyden in her time of absence.”
With nine master programs and three doctoral programs, Crowed said, “I would like to bring more Graduate Programs to the School of Graduate Studies. My goal for the Office of Graduate Studies and Research is to build up the enrollment.”
Crowe also mentioned she is fully devoting herself to the Graduate Program and is willing to help any student who needs one-on-one advice.