Tenhet takes reins of child care center


Melissa Tenhet

An experienced leader in the child development field has been named the new director of the Child Development and Family Studies Center at Mississippi State University.

Melissa Tenhet accepted the permanent position in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences after serving as the center’s interim director for three months. She will also teach part-time as an instructor of human development and family studies in the School of Human Sciences.

MSU’s Child Development and Family Studies Center offers full-day child care services for children from the age of 6 weeks through preschool. The center also serves as a laboratory school for MSU students pursuing careers in child development and family services.

“Melissa brings a wealth of experience to the position, but most importantly, she knows the center and wants it to be the very best place for both the early care and education of the children enrolled, but also for the students who will be future leaders in the field,” said Michael Newman, director of MSU’s School of Human Sciences. “We’re excited about the opportunities for new collaborations with departments across campus.”

Tenhet’s experience includes working as a program director for the Mississippi Child Care Resource and Referral Network, directing the Division of Early Childhood Education for the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians, serving as a Child Life Coordinator for the University Medical Center in Jackson and coordinating projects for MSU’s Early Childhood Institute.

She has served as president of the Mississippi Early Childhood Association.

She holds a bachelor’s degree in human development and family studies with an emphasis in child development and a master’s degree in counseling with an emphasis in child development, both from MSU.

Tenhet also has 12 years of child development teaching experience with college students at East Central Community College, Pearl River Community College and MSU.

Keri Collins Lewis | MSU Ag Communications

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