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USM inducts 2 journalists

Dixon McDowell

Steve Mims

The School of Mass Communication and Journalism at The University of Southern Mississippi have honored film director and producer Steve Mims and former faculty member Dixon McDowell with induction into its Hall of Fame.

Mims earned his bachelor’s degree from Southern Miss and his master’s degree from The University of Texas at Austin. As a writer and director, he has had an award-winning career creating commercials, music videos, short films and documentaries, and many of his works have received high praise from publications such as the New York Times, Washington Post, Variety, and Hollywood Reporter.  His latest project “Starving the Beast” is a documentary that focuses on the extreme financial and political shifts in higher education. He currently teaches at UT-Austin and will teach a course this summer for the USM film program.

McDowell joined the Southern Miss faculty of the former Department of Radio, Television and Film in 1989 as an assistant professor, teaching screenwriting and film production, and eventually served as chair of the department from 1996 to 2001. McDowell maintained an active creative and research life, and wrote several original screenplays including “In Morning Calm,” which won the MGM/UA Screenplay Competition. He produced a number of film projects including “Living with Disabilities,” a six-part series for the Mississippi Developmental Disabilities Council. He also was a successful grant writer, receiving more than $375,000 in funding for various media projects and to support indigenous filmmaking in Mississippi.

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