Mississippi Colleges & Universities: Embark on an Educational Journey

A comprehensive guide to Mississippi colleges, offering insights into types, popular choices, accreditation, and tips for choosing the right college in the Magnolia State.

Mississippi Colleges

Strap in and join us as we take a thrilling ride through Mississippi’s vibrant college scene.

Nestled in the heart of the South, Mississippi—known fondly as the Magnolia State—is a treasure trove of colleges and universities.

Picture yourself at the University of Mississippi, immersed in a sea of Rebel red and blue during an electrifying home football game.

Maybe you’re more drawn to the tranquil and intimate environment of Millsaps College, a private liberal arts school in the capital city of Jackson.

As we journey through some of the best colleges in Mississippi, we’ll help you explore some of the state’s standout institutions.

But we won’t stop there.

We’ll delve into accreditation, demystify the college selection process, and provide invaluable tips to aid you on your path to success.

Buckle up and prepare for a voyage of discovery through the captivating world of Mississippi colleges.

Contents

Types of Colleges in Mississippi

Like a quilt sewn with care, Mississippi’s educational scene blends various types of institutions, each adding its unique texture and color.

Public Colleges and Universities in Mississippi

Starting with the vibrant, bustling public universities, these state-funded institutions are large and often diverse.

Mississippi State University, for example, is renowned for its research programs, hosting the largest university-owned supercomputer in the state.

No. of colleges: 9

General admissions requirements: a solid GPA, as well as SAT or ACT scores;

Private Colleges and Universities in Mississippi

Transitioning from the large-scale public universities, we find the smaller, private colleges that offer a close-knit, personalized learning environment. 

Picture the serene campus of Belhaven University, a Christian institution in Jackson. 

Like many private colleges in the state, this school provides specialized degree programs and is acclaimed for its strong arts program.

No. of colleges: 10

General admissions requirements: transcripts or proof of high school completion (GED), as well as SAT or ACT scores;

Community and Technical Colleges in Mississippi

Now, let’s shift our gaze to community colleges. 

Providing associate degrees and vocational training, community colleges in Mississippi are essential stepping stones for many on their higher education journey.

No. of colleges: 18 

General admissions requirements: transcripts or proof of high school completion (GED)

*Note: Every college has different admissions requirements, so it is essential to check the specific requirements for each one.

Popular Colleges in Mississippi

Across Mississippi, the story of each college unfolds uniquely, contributing to the state’s educational tapestry.

Each offers a distinct, enriching experience, making Mississippi a go-to destination for students nationwide.

Let’s set out on a southern soiree through some of the popular colleges in Mississippi that make the state a remarkable academic haven.

The University of Mississippi

University, MS

Mississippi Colleges: University of Mississippi

Meet the University of Mississippi, or as locals call it, “Ole Miss.”

Nestled in the quintessentially Southern town of Oxford, Ole Miss serves as an intellectual haven, particularly celebrated for its rigorous programs in Accountancy and Pharmacy.

The campus is a hive of activity, home to cultural events and sporting spectacles that ignite the Rebel spirit.

And let’s not forget; it houses the fascinating National Center for Physical Acoustics.

As you soak up the vibrant energy of Ole Miss, you’ll see it’s more than just a university.
It’s a living, breathing piece of Mississippi.

Avg. Tuition Cost

$12,454

Duration

4 Years

Type

Public

Enrollment

Less selective

SAT

Required

Graduation Rate

66%

Acceptance Rate

90%

Classes

Online, On-campus & Hybrid

Degree Types

Types Of Degrees

Certificate, Bachelor's, Master's, and Doctorate

Popular Degrees and Majors

Popular Degrees & Majors

• Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities
• Accounting and Related Services
• Radio, Television, and Digital Communication
• Marketing
• Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research, and Clinical Nursing

Mississippi State University

Mississippi State, MS

Mississippi Colleges: Mississippi State University

Next, we journey to the epicenter of innovation, Mississippi State University.

Affectionately known as Bulldogs, the students here don’t just learn; they push boundaries.

The university is a hotbed of research, particularly in agriculture, engineering, and business.

Also, MSU beats strong with athletic prowess, fostering a sense of camaraderie as students rally behind their teams.

Oh, and did I mention it hosts the Ulysses S. Grant Presidential Library?

At MSU, every corner reveals a new opportunity, a fresh perspective, and a chance to make a mark.

Avg. Tuition Cost

$15,891

Duration

4 Years

Type

Public

Enrollment

Selective

SAT

Required

Graduation Rate

62%

Acceptance Rate

76%

Classes

Online, On-campus & Hybrid

Degree Types

Types Of Degrees

Certificate, Bachelor's, Master's, and Doctorate

Popular Degrees and Majors

Popular Degrees & Majors

• Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies
• Health and Physical Education/Fitness
• Business Administration, Management, and Operations
• Teacher Education and Professional Development, Specific Levels and Methods
• Mechanical Engineering

Mississippi College

Clinton, MS

Mississippi Colleges: Mississippi College

Arriving in Clinton, we are greeted by the stately facade of Mississippi College.

As the oldest college in Mississippi, the university has stories etched into every brick.

The academic offering is as enduring as the architecture, with renowned programs in Law and Medical Sciences.

Extracurricular activities are fueled by tradition.

Witness the riveting annual homecoming “Follies,” and you’ll understand why this college’s spirit endures.

Mississippi College is a gateway to the past, where the echoes of yesteryears harmonize beautifully with the symphony of today’s education.

Avg. Tuition Cost

$17,880

Duration

4 Years

Type

Private, Not-For-Profit

Enrollment

Selective

SAT

Not Required

Graduation Rate

52%

Acceptance Rate

49%

Classes

Online, On-campus & Hybrid

Degree Types

Types Of Degrees

Certificate, Bachelor's, Master's, and Doctorate

Popular Degrees and Majors

Popular Degrees & Majors

• Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research, and Clinical Nursing
• Health and Physical Education/Fitness
• Biology
• Business Administration, Management, and Operations
• Teacher Education and Professional Development, Specific Levels and Methods

University of Southern Mississippi

Hattiesburg, MS

Mississippi Colleges: University of Southern Mississippi

As we journey south to Hattiesburg, we find ourselves at the University of Southern Mississippi (USM).

USM thrives on its diverse programs, from Nursing to Marine Biology, offering educational pathways that mirror the city’s eclectic charm.

But the allure extends beyond the lecture halls.

The melody of the “Pride of Mississippi” Marching Band fills the air, and the renowned Dixie Darlings captivate at every game.

You can be sure that USM isn’t just a university; it’s a veritable playground where curiosity blossoms into opportunity.

Avg. Tuition Cost

$13,863

Duration

4 Years

Type

Public

Enrollment

Less selective

SAT

Required

Graduation Rate

51%

Acceptance Rate

96%

Classes

Online, On-campus & Hybrid

Degree Types

Types Of Degrees

Certificate, Bachelor's, Master's, and Doctorate

Popular Degrees and Majors

Popular Degrees & Majors

• Business Administration, Management, and Operations
• Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research, and Clinical Nursing
• Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities
• Psychology
• Teacher Education and Professional Development, Specific Levels and Methods

William Carey University

Hattiesburg, MS

Mississippi Colleges: William Carey University

Step onto the vibrant campus of William Carey University, nestled in the heartbeat of Hattiesburg, and feel a sense of belonging.

This institution, founded on Christian values, seamlessly merges academic rigor with community service, turning students into conscientious citizens.

Well-regarded for its liberal arts, education, and health sciences programs, Carey boasts impressive acceptance rates to medical and pharmacy schools.

What’s more, the annual Dinner Theater events are a campus highlight, infusing creativity and camaraderie into the air.

Avg. Tuition Cost

$10,886

Duration

4 Years

Type

Private, Not-For-Profit

Enrollment

Selective

SAT

Required

Graduation Rate

48%

Acceptance Rate

57%

Classes

Online, On-campus & Hybrid

Degree Types

Types Of Degrees

Certificate, Bachelor's, Master's, and Doctorate

Popular Degrees and Majors

Popular Degrees & Majors

• Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research, and Clinical Nursing
• Business Administration, Management, and Operations
• Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities
• Psychology
• Teacher Education and Professional Development, Specific Levels and Methods

Millsaps College

Jackson, MS

Mississippi Colleges: Millsaps College

Right amid Mississippi’s vibrant capital, Jackson, Millsaps College stands as a haven of intellectual growth.

This private liberal arts institution fosters an immersive learning environment, catapulting students out of their comfort zones.

Millsaps’ renowned Else School of Management and well-respected humanities programs are a testament to its commitment to academic excellence.

Moreover, the Major Madness, a yearly campus tradition, draws students together in a spirited competition, making the academic year all the more exciting.

Avg. Tuition Cost

$23,691

Duration

4 Years

Type

Private, Not-For-Profit

Enrollment

Selective

SAT

Not Required

Graduation Rate

66%

Acceptance Rate

68%

Classes

Online, On-campus & Hybrid

Degree Types

Types Of Degrees

Certificate, Bachelor's, and Master's

Popular Degrees and Majors

Popular Degrees & Majors

• Business Administration, Management, and Operations
• Accounting and Related Services
• Psychology
• Biology
• Neurobiology and Neurosciences

Mississippi University for Women

Columbus, MS

Mississippi Colleges: Mississippi University for Women

The W, as it is affectionately known, situated in Columbus, is a fine blend of tradition and innovation.

This institution welcomes both men and women, debunking its name’s implication.

The W’s acclaimed nursing program and the nationally recognized culinary arts program attract aspiring professionals from near and far.

Also, the annual Welty Writers’ Symposium, a homage to Pulitzer Prize-winning alumna Eudora Welty, turns the campus into a literary festival, setting students’ creativity ablaze.

Avg. Tuition Cost

$11,952

Duration

4 Years

Type

Public

Enrollment

Non-selective

SAT

Required

Graduation Rate

68%

Acceptance Rate

99%

Classes

Online, On-campus & Hybrid

Degree Types

Types Of Degrees

Certificate, Associate's, Bachelor's, Master's, and Doctorate

Popular Degrees and Majors

Popular Degrees & Majors

• Business Administration, Management, and Operations
• Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research, and Clinical Nursing
• Public Health
• Communication Disorders Sciences and Services

Tougaloo College

Tougaloo, MS

Mississippi Colleges: Tougaloo College

Sitting comfortably in Madison County, just north of Jackson, you’ll discover the historic Tougaloo College.

As a historically Black liberal arts institution, Tougaloo holds a legacy that resonates deeply with its community, but it’s also much more than that.

Tougaloo boasts a strong curriculum in the sciences, humanities, and education, preparing its students for a broad range of careers.

Beyond academics, the college’s vibrant event calendar, featuring the much-loved Homecoming Week, keeps the campus buzzing with energy.

Avg. Tuition Cost

$9,359

Duration

4 Years

Type

Private, Not-For-Profit

Enrollment

Selective

SAT

Required

Graduation Rate

41%

Acceptance Rate

56%

Classes

Online, On-campus & Hybrid

Degree Types

Types Of Degrees

Certificates, Bachelor’s, Master’s & Doctorate

Popular Degrees and Majors

Popular Degrees & Majors

• Sociology
• Economics
• Biology
• Health and Physical Education/Fitness
• History

Belhaven University

Jackson, MS

Mississippi Colleges: Belhaven University

Belhaven University, positioned right in the capital city of Jackson, brings together Christian values and innovative education.

Celebrated for its renowned arts programs, Belhaven nurtures artistic talent and kindling spiritual growth.

From the unique Arts Discover Day, where students transform the campus into a dynamic gallery, to its strong courses in fields like Business and Psychology, the Belhaven experience is beautifully multi-faceted.

The university’s spirit of creativity extends well beyond the classroom, making every day an opportunity for discovery and inspiration.

Avg. Tuition Cost

$18,088

Duration

4 Years

Type

Private, Not-For-Profit

Enrollment

Selective

SAT

Not Required

Graduation Rate

47%

Acceptance Rate

64%

Classes

Online, On-campus & Hybrid

Degree Types

Types Of Degrees

Certificate, Associate's, Bachelor's, Master's, and Doctorate

Popular Degrees and Majors

Popular Degrees & Majors

• Business Administration, Management, and Operations
• Health and Physical Education/Fitness
• Bible/Biblical Studies
• Health and Medical Administrative Services
• Clinical, Counseling, and Applied Psychology

Alcorn State University

Alcorn State, MS

Mississippi Colleges: Alcorn State University

Embark on a journey to Lorman, home to Alcorn State University, the oldest public historically black land-grant institution in the nation.

Balancing professional and liberal arts courses, Alcorn provides an education that is well-rounded and comprehensive.

It shines particularly in its agricultural and nursing programs, but it doesn’t stop there.

Every year, the entire Brave community looks forward to Homecoming, a lively, spirit-infused celebration that unites students, staff, and alumni.

From rigorous academics to spirited traditions, Alcorn State is a testament to the resilience and educational empowerment.

Avg. Tuition Cost

$16,206

Duration

4 Years

Type

Public

Enrollment

Selective

SAT

Required

Graduation Rate

42%

Acceptance Rate

39%

Classes

Online, On-campus & Hybrid

Degree Types

Types Of Degrees

Certificate, Associate's, Bachelor's, Master's, and Doctorate

Popular Degrees and Majors

Popular Degrees & Majors

• Biology
• Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities
• Business Administration, Management, and Operations
• Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research, and Clinical Nursing
• Social Work

Holmes Community College

Goodman, MS

Mississippi Colleges: Holmes Community College

Holmes Community College, with its campuses spread across Goodman, Grenada, and Ridgeland, is a beacon of accessible higher education in Mississippi.

Whether your interest lies in health sciences, business administration, or humanities, Holmes has a program for you.

But it’s not all about books and lectures here.

The annual Day of Service sees students roll up their sleeves and contribute to community projects, fostering civic responsibility.

At Holmes, you’re part of a community that cares, learns, and grows together.

Avg. Tuition Cost

$5,936

Duration

2 Years

Type

Public

Enrollment

Non-Selective

SAT

Not Required

Graduation Rate

28%

Acceptance Rate

100%

Classes

Online, On-campus & Hybrid

Degree Types

Types Of Degrees

Certificate and Associate's

Popular Degrees and Majors

Popular Degrees & Majors

• Health/Medical Preparatory Programs
• Business/Commerce
• Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities
• Teacher Education and Professional Development, Specific Levels and Methods
• Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research, and Clinical Nursing

Southwest Mississippi Community College

Summit, MS

Mississippi Colleges: Southwest Mississippi Community College

Next stop, Summit, home to Southwest Mississippi Community College (SMCC).

Known for its comprehensive academic programs and lively campus life, SMCC offers an enriching, holistic college experience.

Here, you’ll find students gearing up for a rigorous engineering course, others cheering on the Bears at athletic events, and many soaking in the community spirit at the annual Fall Carnival.

Whether you’re an aspiring engineer or a sports enthusiast, SMCC ensures that your college years will be both enriching and exciting.

Avg. Tuition Cost

$4,255

Duration

2 Years

Type

Public

Enrollment

Non-Selective

SAT

Not Required

Graduation Rate

40%

Acceptance Rate

100%

Classes

Online, On-campus & Hybrid

Degree Types

Types Of Degrees

Certificate and Associate's

Popular Degrees and Majors

Popular Degrees & Majors

• Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities
• Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research, and Clinical Nursing
• Practical Nursing, Vocational Nursing, and Nursing Assistants
• Health and Medical Administrative Services
• Cosmetology and Related Personal Grooming Services

Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College

Perkinston, MS

Mississippi Colleges: Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College​

Our journey concludes at the picturesque Perkinston Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College (MGCCC) campus.

This institution, renowned for its academic and vocational programs, provides an unwavering commitment to student success.

Whether you’re preparing for a future in business, health care, or the arts, MGCCC offers a range of programs to fuel your ambition.

Let’s not forget about Bulldog Day, an annual event filled with food, games, and performances, making it a much-anticipated day on campus.

At MGCCC, every student gets the chance to dream, learn, and succeed.

Avg. Tuition Cost

$9,290

Duration

2 Years

Type

Public

Enrollment

Non-Selective

SAT

Not Required

Graduation Rate

33%

Acceptance Rate

100%

Classes

Online, On-campus & Hybrid

Degree Types

Types Of Degrees

Certificate and Associate's

Popular Degrees and Majors

Popular Degrees & Majors

• Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities
• Industrial Production Technologies/Technicians
• Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research, and Clinical Nursing
• Business Operations Support and Assistant Services
• Industrial Production Technologies/Technicians

Disclaimer:

All of the data about acceptance rates, graduation rates, tuition costs, and other relevant details for the list of popular colleges in Alabama mentioned above is sourced from CollegeScoreCard by the U.S. Department of Education and each college’s official website.

Please use the information and data provided only as a general guideline and verify it before making decisions based on it.

Accreditation for Colleges in Mississippi

Just like a lighthouse guides ships, accreditation directs students toward quality education. 

It’s a stamp of approval, showing that a college meets established standards of educational excellence. 

In Mississippi, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges stands as the main accrediting body. 

The value of accreditation echoes beyond a college’s reputation – it plays a pivotal role in credit transfers between institutions.

Tips for students when choosing a college in Mississippi

Dig into the academic offerings: Your prospective college should excel in your field.

Soak in the location: Mississippi offers both tranquil rural settings and buzzing urban life. What’s your preference?

Inspect the price tag: Tuition, living costs, and housing vary across colleges. Balance your budget and potential financial aid.

Confirm the accreditation: Ensuring your college’s accreditation will provide quality education and smoother credit transfers.

Take a campus tour: Nothing beats the firsthand experience of a campus visit to get the feel of the college.

Explore Scholarships & Financial Aid: Consider funding options like the HELP Scholarship Program and MTAG and MESG Grants.

*Note: Filling out all the required paperwork and gathering the proper documents is super important when applying for any scholarship or financial aid program. And, of course, don’t forget to send in your application by the deadline to seize these fantastic opportunities!

Why study in Mississippi?

Now that we’ve looked at some helpful tips for choosing a college in Mississippi, it’s time to consider the broader picture – why study in Mississippi at all? 

This question takes us beyond individual campuses and into the heart of what makes Mississippi an attractive destination for students. 

Rich in culture and history, Mississippi is more than just a place for academic pursuits. 

It’s a state that offers a distinct southern charm, a tapestry of traditions and experiences that add depth to your education. 

Coupled with some of the most affordable tuition rates in the country, studying at Mississippi college is not just a choice but an investment in a vibrant and enriching future.

Pros of studying in Mississippi:

  • Cost-effective living standards
  • Affordable tuition
  • Scenic beauty
  • Heartwarming community vibes

Cons of studying in Mississippi:

  • Limited facilities in rural areas
  • Summertime heat and humidity
Number of Students in the State & Demographics

Number of Students & Demographics

163,054 students, of which 59.1% of full-time students are female

Popular Student Areas in The State

Popular Student Areas

Oxford, Starkville, and Hattiesburg

Average College Tuition Cost

Avg. Tuition Cost

$13,057
*Based on colleges listed above

Career Outlook for Students in Mississippi

Employment Rate & Median Wage

Setting foot into the working world, you’ll be curious about the opportunities Mississippi presents. 

Let’s illuminate your career outlook.

The median wage for those brandishing a bachelor’s degree in the Magnolia State hovers around the $45,180 mark, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Coupled with an unemployment rate that stood at 3.8% in April 2023, the prospects are promising.

Popular career paths for students in Mississippi include:

  • Healthcare: Ranging from nurses to healthcare administrators.
  • Education: Positions include teachers, education administrators, and counselors.
  • Business: Opportunities abound in finance, marketing, and management.
  • Agriculture: Roles in farming management, agricultural science, and agribusiness.
  • Engineering: Fields such as civil, mechanical, and electrical engineering.
  • Information Technology: Careers in software development, data analysis, and cybersecurity.
  • Social Work: Roles involve community outreach, counseling, and social services administration.
  • Tourism & Hospitality: Opportunities in hotel management, event planning, and travel services.

FAQ - About colleges in Mississippi

While many factors can affect college admissions, Mississippi’s most competitive universities typically include Alcorn State University and Mississippi College due to their high academic standards.

Many of the state’s community colleges, like Holmes Community College and Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, have open admissions policies, making them more accessible for students.

In terms of student enrollment, the University of Mississippi and Mississippi State University are among the largest institutions in the state.

Many colleges in Mississippi, like Mississippi State University and the University of Mississippi, offer tuition waivers or discounts for senior citizens.

*It’s important to note that each institution may have specific requirements and limitations for its senior citizen tuition programs. It’s recommended to check with the individual schools for more information on their policies and application processes.

Mississippi colleges offer a mix of on-campus and off-campus housing options.

Students can choose from traditional dormitories, university apartments, and private rentals.
As for transportation, most campuses are pedestrian-friendly and offer shuttle services.

Larger cities also provide public bus systems, and some colleges participate in bike-sharing programs.

Mississippi colleges shine in the realm of research opportunities.

From conducting groundbreaking studies at the University of Mississippi’s Research Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences to diving into marine biology research at the University of Southern Mississippi’s Gulf Coast Research Lab, students have ample opportunities to contribute to their field of study.

Students can get involved through their academic department or a professor’s research project.

Extracurricular activities are the spice of college life in Mississippi.

Students can engage in a wealth of clubs, sports teams, student government, and volunteer organizations.

Cultural events, intramural sports, and fraternity and sorority life also add zest to the college experience.

Summary

As you embark on your college journey, remember, selecting the right college is about finding where you’ll grow, thrive, and achieve your dreams.

Whether that’s in a bustling city like Jackson or a tranquil college town, Mississippi’s colleges hold a wealth of opportunities waiting to be uncovered.

So dive into the research, visit campuses, and immerse yourself in the exploration.

Your perfect Mississippi college experience is just around the corner!

Editorial Disclaimer

The College Compass is reader-supported and committed to maintaining complete editorial independence. All views expressed are solely ours and are not influenced by any external party. We may include affiliate links in the article, which helps us earn a small commission to support our work. We always have a link to the source for any data or information we include. Learn more about our editorial practices.

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