Mississippi State University
Mississippi State University is a land-grant university located in north east-central Mississippi in the town of Starkville and is situated 125 miles northeast of Jackson and 23 miles west of Columbus. It is the largest public university in the state.
The University began as The Agricultural and Mechanical College of the State of Mississippi (or Mississippi A&M), one of the national Land-Grant Colleges established after Congress passed the Morrill Act in 1862. It was created by the Mississippi Legislature on February 28, 1878, to fulfill the mission of offering training in "agriculture, horticulture and the mechanical arts . . . without excluding other scientific and classical studies, including military tactics." The university received its first students in the fall of 1880 in the presidency of General Stephen D. Lee. In 1887 Congress passed the Hatch Act, which provided for the establishment of the Agricultural Experiment Station in 1888. The university has since had its mission expanded and redefined by the Legislature.
By 1932, when the Legislature renamed the university as Mississippi State College, it consisted of:
- the Agricultural Experiment Station (1887)
- the College of Engineering (1902)
- the College of Agriculture (1903)
- the School of Industrial Pedagogy (1909)
- the School of General Science (1911)
- the College of Business and Industry (1915)
- the Mississippi Agricultural Extension Service (1915)
- and the Division of Continuing Education, (1919).
Further, in 1926 the university had received its first accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.
By 1958, when the Legislature again renamed the university as Mississippi State University, the Graduate School had been organized (1936), doctoral degree programs had begun (1951), the School of Forest Resources had been established (1954), and the College of Arts and Sciences had replaced the General Science School (1956).
The School of Architecture admitted its first students in 1973, the College of Veterinary Medicine admitted its first class in 1977, and the School of Accountancy was established in 1979, rounding out the present structure.
Mississippi State University is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award baccalaureate, master's, specialist, and doctoral degrees. Today, the university has the following colleges: Agriculture and Life Sciences, Architecture Art and Design, Arts and Sciences, Business and Industry, Education, Engineering, Forest Resources, and Veterinary Medicine.
As of 2004, the current total enrollment of Mississippi State is 16,561. The university contains 160 buildings, and the grounds of the university comprise about 4,200 acres (17 km²), including farms, pastures, and woodlands of the Experiment Station.
Mississippi State University also operates an off-campus, degree-granting center in Meridian where both undergraduate and graduate programs are offered. In cooperation with the U.S. Army Engineer Waterways Experiment Station, the College of Engineering offers the Master of Science degree to students in Vicksburg.
The university's athletic teams participate in NCAA's Division I in the competitive 12-member Southeastern Conference (West Division) under the mascot Bulldog, and its colors are maroon and white. Mississippi State competes in the NCAA in football, basketball (men's and women's), baseball, softball, tennis, golf, soccer, volleyball, track and field, and cross country running.
- Marsha Blackburn Tennessee Congressman
- Fred Carl Founder and CEO of Viking Range
- Will Clark, Former 1st Baseman for S.F. Giants and St. Louis Cardinals
- Jerry Clower Comedian
- Johnie Cooks, Former NFL Star
- Hugh Critz, Notable 2nd Basemen for Cincinnati Reds (1920s) and the New York Giants (1930s)
- Erick Dampier, Dallas Mavericks Center
- Dave Ferriss, Former Major League Baseball Player
- James L. Flanagan (1948), technical pioneer in speech transmission and acoustics
- John Grisham, Author
- Toxey Haas Founder and CEO, Mossy Oak Outdoors
- Bill Hawks USDA Undersecretary, Marketing and Regulatory Programs
- Bailey Howell, Former NBA Star
- Rhonda Keenum Director General of the U.S. and Foreign Commercial Service
- Gregory Keyes, Author
- G.V. "Sonny" Montgomery Former U.S. Representative and author of the Montgomery G.I. Bill
- Rafael Palmeiro Major League Baseball Player
- Ronnie Parker Founder of Pizza Inn
- Hartley Peavey Founder of Peavey Electronics
- Buck Showalter, Manager, Texas Rangers
- John C. Stennis Former U.S. Senator and "Father of the Modern Navy"
- Bobby Thigpen Former Major League Relief Pitcher
- Amy Tuck Mississippi Lt. Governor
- Bill Waller Jr. MS Supreme Court Justice
- David Dilardi Major League Baseball Player