GSSM Kicks Off 30th Anniversary with a Special Convocation Ceremony

Hartsville, SC – The South Carolina Governor’s School for Science & Mathematics (GSSM) Convocation Ceremony will be held Thursday, October 11, at 2 p.m. at the Center Theater in Hartsville. Dr. Leland H. Cox, the School’s first presiding president, will deliver the Convocation address.

Cox is a graduate of Wake Forest University and holds an M.A. and a Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina. In a career spanning thirty-five years, he has held leadership positions as executive director of the South Carolina Humanities Council, president of GSSM, and headmaster of Christ Church Episcopal School. He has also served as an interim head at independent schools in South Carolina, Georgia, Louisiana, and Texas and continues to work as a consultant in the areas of institutional governance and strategic planning.

Cox and his wife, Jo, live in Charleston, where he serves on the vestry at St. Michael’s Anglican Church. He is a member of the Order of the Palmetto, has served as a volunteer pilot for Angel Flight, which provides transportation to people in need across the Southeast, and is an active volunteer in men’s prison ministries. He and Jo enjoy the blessings of a blended family comprising four children and six grandchildren, of whom they are "inordinately and justifiably" proud.

GSSM’s Convocation is a formal ceremony held annually to welcome the newest class of students and present the seniors with academic letters. This year’s Convocation launches the School’s 30th anniversary celebration with two special recognitions by GSSM’s Board of Trustees. Dr. Leland Cox, who served as GSSM President for 10 years, will be named President Emeritus, and Dr. Leroy Davis, who served over 20 years on the Board of Trustees and many years as Board Chair, will be named Board Chair Emeritus.

"In this very special year for GSSM, it is an honor to have our celebrations led off by Dr. Cox, the first presiding president of the School, whose leadership laid the foundation for who we are today and what we strive to become in the next 30 years," said Dr. Hector Flores, GSSM President.

About GSSM
Founded in 1988 as a model for advanced STEM education in South Carolina, GSSM is a nationally recognized school serving about five hundred of the state's most accomplished scholars in the 10th through 12th grades through its residential and virtual programs. The school offers unique advanced courses in science, mathematics, and engineering at its campus in Hartsville and virtually to partner school districts across the state. Learn more by visiting

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