USM celebrates 50 years of integration - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

USM celebrates 50 years of integration

The University of Southern Mississippi integrated in September 1965. The University of Southern Mississippi integrated in September 1965.
HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) -

In September 1965, two women took on a brave endeavor that was just recently becoming accepted in Mississippi.

Raylawni Branch and Gwendolyn Armstrong Chamberlain, escorted by six body guards each, integrated The University of Southern Mississippi.

The two were the first black women to integrate a public university in Mississippi.

According to 2014 data, the university is now home to 14,845 students from all across Mississippi, 47 states and 63 countries. Nearly one-third - 31.67 percent - are black.

Here is a look at when other Mississippi universities integrated:

  • University of Mississippi- 1962
  • Mississippi State University- 1965
  • William Carey University- 1965
  • Millsaps College- 1965
  • Mississippi University for Women- 1966
  • Delta State University- 1967
  • unable to find Mississippi College's date of integration

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