By Chris Kieffer/NEMS Daily Journal
OXFORD – George Everett Jr., a former University of Mississippi associate professor of German, is being remembered by friends and colleagues as the person who transformed the university’s honors program.
Everett died on Saturday at Baptist Memorial Hospital in Oxford. He was 68 and had been hospitalized for several weeks from complications related to diabetes.
Everett took over the former University Scholars Program in 1973 and served as its director for 21 years. In 1983, he helped transform it into the University Honors Program, a forerunner of today’s Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College. The transformation expanded the program beyond the College of Liberal Arts.
“George Everett poured himself into the honors program to help create a learning environment for our high-performing students,” said Douglass Sullivan-Gonzalez, dean of the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College. “His legacy rests in the extraordinary honors students that have made an impact in our state and nation.”
Everett was an assistant professor of German from 1970 to 1973 and associate professor from 1973 to 2004. He was also the interim chair of the university’s modern languages department from 2003 until his retirement in 2004. He was named associate professor emeritus and chairman emeritus of modern languages.
“I was quite fond of his sense of humor,” said Donald Dyer, UM’s chair of modern languages.
Dyer said that when he became chair of the department in 2005, Everett gave him a sign that sits on his desk to this day. It reads, “Old Age and Treachery Will Overcome Youth and Skill!”
UM alum Mary Jo Tate of Tupelo served as the first student director of the new honors program during the early 1980s. She remembered Everett as a mentor.
“He really had an incalculable impact on my time at Ole Miss,” she said. “He helped guide me through my education and taught me a lot about scholarship and leadership and was someone whose friendship I have treasured ever afterward.”
Funeral services for Everett will be today at 11 a.m. at First Presbyterian Church in Oxford, with a visitation from 10 a.m. until 11 in the church’s Fellowship Hall. Burial will follow in Oxford Memorial Cemetery.
Contact Chris Kieffer at (662) 678-1590 or firstname.lastname@example.org.