2022-23 Academic Catalog


Volume XCVII


Mississippi State University is a comprehensive, doctoral degree granting, land-grant university. It forms part of a cohesive community with the growing city of Starkville, population 25,000. Located in the eastern part of north-central Mississippi, the university is 125 miles northeast of Jackson, 165 miles southeast of Memphis, and 150 miles west of Birmingham. It is served by U.S. Highway 82, state highways 12 and 25, and by commercial air service through Golden Triangle Regional Airport, 14 miles east of campus.

Mississippi State University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) to award baccalaureate, masters, specialist, and doctoral degrees. Questions about the accreditation of Mississippi State University may be directed in writing to the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, GA 30033-4097, by calling (404) 679-4500, or by using information available on SACSCOC’s website (www.sacscoc.org).

Mississippi State University comprises the following academic units: the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, including the School of Human Sciences; the College of Architecture, Art, and Design, including the School of Architecture; the College of Arts and Sciences; the College of Business, including the Richard C. Adkerson School of Accountancy; the James Worth Bagley College of Engineering, including the Swalm School of Chemical Engineering and the Richard A. Rula School of Civil and Environmental Engineering; the College of Forest Resources; the College of Veterinary Medicine; the College of Education; the Graduate School; the Judy and Bobby Shackouls Honors College; and the Center for Distance Education. Four regional research and extension centers representing both the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station (MAFES) and the Mississippi State University Extension Service are located in different parts of the state. MAFES conducts research at 16 off-campus sites throughout the state. The Mississippi State University Extension Service offers programs and services in all 82 counties of Mississippi. Supporting the academic and educational programs of the total university are the Mitchell Memorial Library and branch libraries.

Mississippi State University operates off-campus sites with undergraduate and graduate programs in Meridian, Miss., as well as the School of Architecture's fifth-year program in Jackson, Miss.

Several centers and institutes perform specialized teaching, research or service activities.  Among these are the Alliance for System Safety of UAS Through Research Excellence (ASSURE); Center for Cyber Innovation; Institute for Market Studies; Institute for Systems Engineering Research (ISER); Institute for Computational Research in Engineering and Science (ICRES); Center for Safety and Health; High Performance Computing Collaboratory; Mississippi State Chemical Lab (MSCL); National Strategic Planning and Analysis Research Center (nSPARC); Research and Curriculum Unit; Institute for Imaging and Analytical Technologies; Carl Small Town Center; Gulf Coast Community Design Studio; Biological and Physical Sciences Research Institute; Center for Computational Sciences; Cobb Institute of Archaeology; Institute for the Humanities; Stennis Institute of Government and Community Development; Center for Family Enterprise Research; Center for Entrepreneurship and Outreach; Center for Retail and Cotton Product Development; Center for Educational Partnerships; Early Childhood Institute; Mississippi Writing/Thinking Institute; National Research and Training Center on Blindness and Low Vision; T.K. Martin Center for Technology and Disability; Center for Advanced Vehicular Systems (CAVS) and CAVS Extension; Center for Computer Security Research (CCSR); High Voltage Laboratory; Institute for Clean Energy Technology (ICET); Raspet Flight Research Laboratory (RFRL); Forest and Wildlife Research Center; Extension Service; Center for Governmental and Community Development; Southern Rural Development Center;  Center for Environmental Health Sciences; Energy Institute; Geosystems Research Institute (GRI); Institute for Genomics, Biocomputing and Biotechnology (IGBB); International Institute; Mississippi Water Resources Research Institute; Northern Gulf Institute (NGI); Social Science Research Center (SSRC); and Sustainable Energy Research Center (SERC).

The grounds of the University are comprised of about 4,200 acres, including farms, pastures, and woodlands. The net investment in buildings and grounds is approximately $1 billion.

The university began as the Agricultural and Mechanical College of the State of Mississippi, 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 College received its first students in the fall of 1880 in the presidency of Stephen D. Lee. In 1887, Congress passed the Hatch Act, which provided for the establishment of the Agricultural Experiment Station in 1888. Two other pieces of federal legislation provided funds for extending the mission of the College: in 1914, the Smith-Lever Act called for instruction in practical agriculture and home economics to persons not attendant or resident, thus creating the state-wide effort which led to Extension offices in every county in the State; and, in 1917, the Smith-Hughes Act provided for the training of teachers in vocational education.

By 1932, when the Legislature renamed the College 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 College had received its first accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. By 1958, when the Legislature again renamed the institution, as Mississippi State University, the Office of 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 been created (1956). The College 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.

Past Presidents of the College/University

  1. Stephen D. Lee (1880-1899)
  2. John Marshall Stone (1899-1900)
  3. John Crumpton Hardy (1900-1912)
  4. George Robert Hightower (1912-1916)
  5. William Hall Smith (1916-1920)
  6. David Carlisle Hull (1920-1925)
  7. Buz M. Walker (1925-1930)
  8. Hugh Critz (1930-1934)
  9. George Duke Humphrey (1934-1945) 
  10. Fred Tom Mitchell (1945-1953)
  11. Benjamin F. Hilbun (1953-1960)
  12. Dean W. Colvard (1960-1966)
  13. William L. Giles (1966-1976)
  14. James D. McComas (1976-1985)
  15. Donald W. Zacharias (1985-1997)
  16. Malcolm Portera (1998-2001)
  17. J. Charles Lee (2001-2006)
  18. Robert H. Foglesong (2006-2008)

Vision and Mission Statements


Mississippi State University will be a leading student-centric public research university that is globally involved, accessible, inclusive, community engaged, and responsive to the many constituencies it serves while fully integrated with the intellectual, social, and economic development of the state and beyond by delivering excellent programs of teaching, research, and service, and instilling in its community the timeless values of integrity, hard work, and respect.


Mississippi State University is a public research, land-grant university with a mission to provide access and opportunity to all sectors of Mississippi’s diverse population, as well as other states and countries, and to offer excellent programs of teaching, research, and service.

Mississippi State University offers a comprehensive range of undergraduate, graduate, and professional programs across many disciplines.

The university embraces its role as a major contributor to the economic development of the state and beyond through targeted research and the transfer of ideas and technology to the public, supported by faculty, staff, students, and alumni relationships with industry, community organizations, and government entities.

Mississippi State University is committed to its tradition of instilling among its community ideals of diversity, citizenship, leadership, and service.

Building on its land-grant tradition, Mississippi State University strategically extends its resources and expertise for the benefit of Mississippi's citizens, the nation, and the world by offering access for working and place-bound learners through its on- and off-campus education and research sites, Extension, and distance education programs.

President's Cabinet / Officers of the University

Name Title
MARK E. KEENUM, Ph.D. President of the University
DAVID R. SHAW, Ph.D. Provost and Executive Vice President
KEITH H. COBLE, Ph.D. Vice President for Agriculture, Forestry, and Veterinary Medicine
REGINA Y. HYATT, Ph.D. Vice President for Student Affairs
JOHN P. RUSH Vice President for Development and Alumni
JULIE JORDAN, Ph.D. Vice President for Research and Economic Development
DON A. ZANT Vice President for Finance and Administraion and Chief Financial Officer
JOAN L. LUCAS General Counsel
RA'SHEDA BODDIE-FORBES Vice President for Access, Diversity, and Inclusion
JOHN COHEN Director of Athletics

Academic Deans

Name Title
DAVID R. SHAW, Ph.D. Provost and Executive Vice President
TERESA JAYROE, Ph.D. Dean of the College of Education
TERRY D. CRUSE, Ph.D. Associate Vice President and Head of Campus, MSU-Meridian
PETER RYAN, Ph.D. Executive Vice Provost and Dean of the Graduate School
LIS PANKL, Ph.D. Dean of Libraries
RICKEY TRAVIS, Ph.D. Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences
KENT H. HOBLET, D.V.M. Dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine
WES BURGER, Ph.D. Dean of the College of Forest Resources
SCOTT WILLARD, Ph.D. Dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences
JASON M KEITH, Ph.D. Dean of the Bagley College of Engineering
SHARON L. OSWALD, Ph.D. Dean of the College of Business
TOMMY ANDERSON, Ph.D. Interim Dean of the Shackouls Honors College
ANGI BOURGEOIS, PhD Dean of the College of Architecture, Art and Design

Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning

State of Mississippi

Officers of the Board

Name Title
TOM DUFF President
ALFRED RANKINS, JR, PhD Commissioner

Board Members


The Board maintains offices at 3825 Ridgewood Road, Jackson, Mississippi.