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This item originally appeared in the Nov. 6, 2003, issue of The Tech Talk.


Staff Writer

Dr. Joe Pullis, a professor of computer information systems and analysis and a Ruston State Bank Endowed Professor in the College of Administration and Business, will speak at the 266th commencement exercise at 2 p.m. Nov. 21 in the Thomas Assembly Center, located at 1650 W. Alabama Ave.

Dr. Ken Rea, vice president for academic affairs, said the university periodically selects a faculty member to be the commencement speaker.

This quarter, Pullis was selected because of his outstanding service to the university, his contributions to his profession and his academic accomplishments.

"Dr. Pullis personifies the very qualities we seek in faculty," Rea said. "It is a privilege to have him as commencement speaker."

Pullis has taught at Tech since 1967 and in 1987 was named Tech's first distinguished professor.

He has authored more than 100 journal articles and published 13 textbooks.

Nine of the textbooks were co-authored by his wife, Cheryl Pullis.

Pullis said it is a privilege to be chosen as commencement speaker.

"It [is] indeed an honor to be asked to play a role in the recognition of the outstanding accomplishment of these Tech graduates," Pullis said.

Pullis' speech, "I Hope You Dance," will address adapting to change in a changing world.

The speech will also cover the fact that too often people hold on to the opinions and decisions of those who have gone before them in life.

Pullis said the best advice he can give to the graduates is "to always think for yourself."

Emmanuel Oriri, a senior computer information systems major who will graduate this quarter, said he believes the speech topic is appropriate for students because college graduation is one of the major changes in life.

"The only constant thing in life is change," Oriri said.

"It is important information for graduating seniors [so they will] be able to survive in this competitive world."

Pullis received his doctorate of education at the University of North Texas in Denton, Texas, in 1966.

He also received his master's of education and bachelor's of science at UNT.

He has worked extensively with the American Lung Association and was inducted into its Hall of Fame.

Pullis is a member of numerous organizations, including the Louisiana Business Teachers Association, American Education Research Association and the International Society for Business Education.

In addition to these organizations, Pullis is a nationally recognized musician.

In 1957 he won the Rudimental Drumming Championship of the United States.

Pullis also appeared as a guest soloist in 1958 with the Lawrence Welk Television Orchestra and the St. Louis Summer Pops Orchestra.

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