Listen more than you talk

Listening more than talking is especially hard for some.  I want to encourage you to not merely listen, but to intensely listen, fiercely listen.  Listen not just to the words being said, but to the emotions behind them, and to the choice of the words used. Ask questions to clarify, and DON’T assume anything.  Really listen until you have heard and then listen some more.


Student Handbook Updates

The Student Handbook for Belhaven University Adult Studies has been updated. The most recent version can be found on Blazenet at this LINK

I wanted to draw your attention specifically to two additions to the handbook:

First: A statement has been added which affects those who would sell or contribute content specific information to websites for student’s to use in plagiarizing, or taking an unfair advantage, e.g. papers and/or quiz or test questions.  I know we are all attempting to be people of integrity, but we have found Belhaven material on some of these sites.  While this might be portrayed as “helping” other students, the bottom line is that it is academic cheating.  Here is the addition to the Student Handbook:

“Enabling academic dishonesty (contract cheating), i.e. helping another student violate the standards on Academic Integrity, is unacceptable and could result in censure or dis-enrollment. Examples include: allowing one’s work to be copied, working together on an assignment where collaboration is not allowed (such as a quiz or exam, etc.), doing work for another student, or submitting work for a course to an internet site which other students can use to violate these standards.”

Second: While it seems rational to assume that we would all work with, and treat each other with respect, lately there have been some instances where that has not been the case. Since this trend seems to be expanding across our society it was felt that a statement should be included in the Student Handbook which reinforces appropriate behavior and speech when dealing with other students and with faculty:

“All communication between students and other students, or between students and faculty, must be conducted in a manner that is respectful, using language that is professional.”

Please let me or one of your Student Services personnel know if you have any questions.


Dr. Upchurch,
AVP Regional Campuses


Honest is the best policy

Honesty is the best policy!  In fact, it is the ONLY policy! Honesty is the most identified trait of Leaders that others want to follow. It may not be the trait which gets you promoted but it is definitely the trait that, if not practiced, will get you fired, lead to divorce, and see you alone with no friends.  Honesty does take courage, but it really is the best (and only) policy.


How to Increase Your Influence Using 5 Simple Words

This post comes from an article by Lolly Daskal by the same title:

Words have the power to build people up, hold people back, and break people down. The words you speak as a leader are especially influential, with the ability to empower or disempower others.

Of all the words you can say, five are especially meaningful in terms of influence:

How can I help you?

With those five words you communicate some important principles. Offering to help positions you as a servant leader, and asking how you can help shows respect and gives the other person ownership of their own future. The simple question “How can I help?” is at the core of the most influential things leaders do:  READ MORE

Suspect that the one you are talking to may be smarter than you are

Suspect that the one you are talking to may be smarter than you are. Always assume the person to whom you are talking is smarter than you are, or has access to more resources, or both. This is a good rule of thumb for eve3ry interaction and guarantees you won’t start the conversation by underestimating or demeaning others. Even if it is not true you might learn something that you didn’t know that will help you make better decisions.

Simple solutions are better than complex solutions

Simple solutions are better than complex solutions. The reason for this lies in two areas (1) Availability of resources, which includes time, material resources, and money.  Also included here but often overlooked is sufficient staff with the appropriate skills to make the solution work.  (2) execution, i.e., the ability and authority to follow-through to completion.  For more on this see video below.



How to get along with negative people

This post comes from an article by Lolly Daskal by the same title.

Negative people show up in our professional and personal lives on a regular basis. There never seems to be a shortage of negativity.

We all know people who are hard to deal with because of their negativity. Some are too demanding or abrasive. Others may be arrogant or emotionally abusive.

Whatever form their negativity takes, it makes communication stressful, and a wrong approach can make matters even worse.

Most of the time, we can’t choose whom we do business with. But we can choose how to interact with them. Over my three decades of experience as an executive leadership coach, I have been helping my clients learn how to get along with everyone they encounter, even those who are so negative they’re downright toxic.

READ her 8 points on specific ways to deal with negative people.

Introducing Financial Aid Lefleur Staff

The Lefleur Financial Aid Office has two passionate, well-rounded, and caring financial aid counselors who are excited to serve and assist all students. Shunice Bennett, Senior Financial Officer and Monica Wade, Financial Aid Counselor, combined have 11+ years of financial aid experience. These ladies will discuss helpful and important financial aid tips on the blog. We are here to assist in achieving your educational goal!

Financial Aid Quick Tips:

  1. Check your blazenet account daily for updates! Blazenet is “YOUR GO TO” online student information system. This is the place where a student can find information related to their grades, schedule, account information, making payment, financial aid (missing documents/awards), and so much more!
  2. Check your email account daily! Belhaven email account-we suggest that you forward your Belhaven email to your personal email if this will be easier for you.
  3. Do not hesitate to email or call our office. We can be reached at 601-968-5988 and 601-973-7243 or email

Things are rarely as they seem to be . . .

Things are rarely as they seem to be, in fact, sometimes they are RADICALLY different! So, when confronted by challenging circumstances, or people, Avoid knee-jerk reactions and snap decisions until you have a better understanding of the situation.   When you make a knee-jerk reaction or decision (emergencies excepted) it will almost always have some negative ramifications.  Take a few moments to breathe; if necessary disengage or dampen your emotions so you can think.  See the video below for more…

The Importance of Having Life Principles

This is part of a series of short videos I’ve recorded under the general title: Proverbs for Living a Fulfilling Life.  Most are less than 2 minutes in length, although this first one is approximately 4 minutes.  My purpose in recording them is to provide some mentoring thoughts for you to reflect upon and, hopefully, contribute to you having a more fulfilling life. This is the first of the series and begins on the foundation of the importance of having life principles.