Category Archives: Campus and Student Life

Let Us Give Thanks

Good Day!
In a very short time, many families across the country will be celebrating an American tradition, as well as one of my favorite holidays, Thanksgiving.  This is such a wonderful time of year filled with family, friends and delicious food.  It is a time when we take a moment out of our busy lives, give thanks for all that we have and for the people we hold close in our thoughts.  Thanksgiving is about giving thanks for the people and blessings of the past year.  From pre-meal prayers to providing meals to the homeless, the holiday is truly a celebration of praise and thanking.  I made a promise to myself several years ago to say thank you more often, to let people know that they have made a difference in my life and since I can’t do that in person I wanted to send my gratitude through this letter.
This year, I want to take a moment to thank you. I want to thank every Stetson student for their leadership, commitment and pride in Stetson University.  Of course, I have not met every student on the Stetson University campus, but the student population is what makes Stetson so special.
I am honored to serve Stetson University as the Vice President of Student Affairs and I appreciate all of the students that I have had the opportunity to work with.  However, I have realized that I need to be more diligent in thanking not only the students, but also their families, who have guided and supported these young adults.

Please accept my fond appreciation and thanks for your efforts and achievements on making this community a wonderful place. I hope you have a wonderful holiday season.
Dr. Christopher Kandus-Fisher
Vice President of Student Affairs
Stetson University


“Ghouls” for Halloween


  1. Watch out for your friends, and don’t be afraid to intervene if a situation appears to be scaring your friend or is frightening you. Agree on a secret “butt in” signal for uncomfortable situations, such as “Ghost” or “Ghoul!”
  2. Keep track of how much potion you are consuming, set a limit before you evaporate, have a sober broomstick handler and don’t let that potion out of your sight.  
  3. Check in with your friends throughout All Hallow’s Eve. Form a buddy system so that no one wanders off alone.
  4. For the safety of yourself and others, don’t wear a costume that includes anything that could be confused with a real weapon.
  5. Put emergency numbers in your cell phone, such as public safety.
  6. If your fiendish friend seems too drunk or is acting abnormally, get them to a safe place immediately.
  7. Do not assume that the mummies, witches, and wizards you meet will look out for your best interests! Know who you are talking to.
  8. Don’t eat too much candy! Okay, so it isn’t a real danger, but it is definitely a precaution to take for Halloween.  Enjoy your sweets, but don’t overload.

What You Need to Know About the Ebola Virus

Extensive media attention has been given to the epidemic called Ebola Virus Disease, or EVD, which has caused significant numbers of deaths in West Africa. The first Ebola case in this epidemic surfaced in late 2013 in Guinea close to borders with Liberia and Sierra Leone, where the epidemic continues.

The disease entered the United States recently when a traveler infected with Ebola arrived in Dallas from West Africa. The patient was admitted to the hospital on September 28 and died on October 8. Two nurses who cared for the deceased patient during the severe part of his illness have been diagnosed with Ebola. All others who were in contact with the patient who had been previously quarantined have been cleared.

We want our students, faculty, staff, parents and community partners to know that Stetson’s emergency management and holistic wellness teams are closely monitoring the recommendations by the nation’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). According to health professionals, although many members of the general public in the United States have become anxious, the risk to most Americans who have not traveled to West Africa is almost non-existent. However, public health activities, such as surveillance, patient identification and contact tracing are critical parts of the response to control the spread of disease.

Again, according to health officials, Ebola patients are not contagious until they begin to show symptoms such as fever, headache, weakness, muscle pain, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain or hemorrhage. The number of viral particles in the patient’s body dramatically increases as the patient becomes progressively ill.

According to health officials who advise us, Ebola is much less contagious than measles or influenza. It has NOT been demonstrated to be an airborne virus; it is transmitted through direct contact with the blood, secretions, organs or other bodily fluids of infected people, and with surfaces and materials (e.g. bedding, clothing) contaminated with these fluids.

The overwhelming majority of people who have been infected with Ebola are those who have directly cared for a person who is actively sick with the disease or have handled the body of someone who has died from this illness. For this reason, health care providers who care for Ebola patients are at the greatest risk, along with the family members and close friends of a patient, because they have had direct contact with the patient’s bodily fluids that contain virus particles.

Therefore, let me add this statement, as a reminder: One of the best defenses for many diseases, especially with the flu season now upon us, is frequent hand washing.

I will convey updates as information pertinent to the Stetson community becomes available. I have listed several websites that have additional information for your review and education.

Extensive information can be found at the following websites:

Student Leadership Redefined

Strategies to Capitalize on Your Leadership Skills and Experiences That Will Assist You In Securing Your First Job!

Values Day Presentation

Values Day Presentation

Workforce development conflicts, as it relates to post-secondary institutions ability to adequately prepare students prior to graduation, has become a topic of national conversation. College readiness is the combination of skills, knowledge and habits of the mind that is necessary to fully participate in collegiate level courses. These learned skills will be used to enhance  workforce preparedness. According to the Association of American Colleges and Universities (2013), and a recent study that they conducted regarding employers’ views of student learning in college, employers seek graduates who have broad knowledge and skills that emphasize crosscutting outcomes and are able to think critically and creatively to solve problems. This session will allow students to realize that student leadership is not just something to add to their resume, but allow them to communicate the experiences as valuable skills for the future of the workforce.

Values Day Presentation


Values Day is one of my favorite events at Stetson! One of the university’s strategic goals is to increase awareness and understanding of Stetson University’s core values, and the strategic map’s foundation rests on “deepening the way we live our core values.” Values Day is designed to continue dialogue and develop a stronger appreciation and understanding of the university’s core values. It’s a day of celebration, learning and growing. Classes are cancelled for the day, so please highly encourage your student to attend.

Note for Students

Stetson University students can earn three cultural credits by participating in any three sessions throughout the day (the keynote address, any of the workshop sessions and the recommendation session). There are no options for earning one or two credits. Students themselves will be responsible for awarding their own three cultural credits by signing and turning in their program. Such trust is possible since the university has embraced an academic environment that assumes the integrity of its students. The Honors System Council, a student group dedicated to academic honesty, will be directing the distribution and collection of the Values Day programs where student signatures will signify their participation.

Schedule of Events

Values Day will take place on Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2013. Classes will be cancelled on Values Day; all students, faculty and staff are encouraged to attend.

10:30 a.m. – Noon

Keynote Address – Walter M. Kimbrough | Lee Chapel

A native of Atlanta, Walter M. Kimbrough, Ph.D., was his high school salutatorian and student body president in 1985, and went on to earn degrees from the University of Georgia, Miami University in Ohio, and a doctorate in higher education from Georgia State University. He has enjoyed a fulfilling career in student affairs, serving at Emory University, Georgia State University, Old Dominion University, and finally Albany State University in 2000 where he became the Vice President for Student Affairs at the age of 32. In October of 2004, at the age of 37, he was named the 12th president of Philander Smith College. In 2012 he became the seventh president of Dillard University in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Photo of keynote speaker Dr. Walter Kimbrough

Keynote speaker Dr. Walter M. Kimbrough

Kimbrough has been recognized for his research and writings on HBCUs and African American men in college. Kimbrough also has been noted for his active use of social media to engage students in articles by The Chronicle of Higher Education, CASE Currents, and Arkansas Life. He was cited in 2010 by Bachelors as one of 25 college presidents you should follow on Twitter (@HipHopPrez).

A 1986 initiate of the Zeta Pi chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity at the University of Georgia, Kimbrough was the Alpha Phi Alpha College Brother of the Year for the Southern Region and served as the Southern Region Assistant Vice President. Kimbrough has forged a national reputation as an expert on fraternities and sororities, with specific expertise regarding historically Black, Latin and Asian groups. He is the author of the book, Black Greek 101: The Culture, Customs and Challenges of Black Fraternities and Sororities.

Kimbrough was named the 1994 New Professional of the Year for the Association of Fraternity Advisors. In 2009, he was named by Diverse Issues in Higher Education as one of 25 To Watch. In 2010, he made the covetedEbony Magazine Power 100 list of the doers and influencers in the African American community, joining the likes of President and Mrs. Obama, Jay-Z, Richard Parsons, Tyler Perry, Debra Lee, Michael Jordan, and Tom Joyner. Most recently, he has been selected by The for their 100 history makers in the making.

Kimbrough and his wife Adria Nobles Kimbrough, an attorney with the Kullman Firm in New Orleans, are the proud parents of two children: Lydia Nicole, 7, and Benjamin Barack, 4.

Noon – 1 p.m.

Lunch Break | Carlton Union Building

1 – 3:50 p.m.

Breakout Sessions | Various Locations

Please refer to the Values Day Workshops page for a comprehensive look at the workshops that will be taking place.

4:15 – 5:15 p.m.

Values Brainstorming and Reflection | Stetson Room (Carlton Union Building)



UCF recovering from student death

The University of Central Florida is in the process of recovering from a recent tragedy that involved the death of a student. Initial reports have indicated that they may have avoided a major campus crisis, due to the prompt reactions by community members to what they saw as unusual behavior, and by enacting the university emergency response protocols.

While the nation continues to deal with major tragedies at schools and campuses, please remember that reporting alarming behavior could help prevent further tragic events from occurring. Our hearts and well wishes go out to the entire UCF community as they begin the healing process. It is my hope that we can learn from these events and continue to improve our own campus procedures to help keep our community safe.

Below you will find our campus resources and ways to report unusual or alarming behavior, either from our own community members or visitors to our campus. Please do your part to help us keep our community safe.

  • Public Safety: 386-822-7300
  • Student Affairs: 386-822-7200
  • Counseling Center: 386-822-8900
  • DeLand Police Department: 911