MISSISSIPPI – In the early morning hours on Tuesday, February 1, 2022, five of Mississippi’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities received an unsubstantiated bomb threat to our campuses. Once the threat was received, we each worked with our Department of Public Safety and local emergency response personnel to thoroughly investigate and determine the extent of the threat. Subsequently law enforcement officials cleared all campuses. The fact that these threats came on the first day of Black History Month proves these actions were intentional attempts to disrupt, invoke fear and discourage our faculty, staff, scholars, and the campus communities. Despite these threats, Mississippi’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities – WE STAND UNITED!

Alcorn State University, Jackson State University, Mississippi Valley State University, Rust College, Tougaloo College, Coahoma Community College, and Hinds Community College, Utica have long served our state and nation as educational beacons and have been a critical engine of life-changing opportunities for thousands of graduates and current students. We remain committed to ensuring each institution’s continued growth and success while guarding the safety of our greatest assets – our students.

Though we are forced to navigate some of the most politically and socially polarizing times in this nation’s history, collectively, we will remain strong and resilient and not be intimidated or fearful. As Mississippi’s HBCU community, we will continue our mission to inspire and empower the next generation of change agents who will go on to boldly confront hatred and injustice as it exists in all its forms.

The threats we received, along with several other HBCUs across the country, Illustrate the need for us to support one other. We are stronger together. As HBCUs, our histories speak of trials and triumphs, contest and courage, limitations and longevity. We are here on purpose, and we must be diligent in preserving and promoting our past, present, and future to further prove our importance and relevance to this nation’s economy and landscape.

Together we will forge ahead with a common purpose to advance academic excellence, promote good moral character, maintain professional integrity, and stand on the truth, and our institutions will continue to persevere as many of us have done for more than 100 years. We ask that the alumni and friend/supporters of our institutions join us as we stand against hatred, bigotry, and intolerance. This is our voice. This is our fight. These are our HBCUs.

Felecia M. Nave, Ph.D., President – Alcorn State University

Thomas K. Hudson, J.D., President – Jackson State University

Jerryl Briggs, Ed.D., President – Mississippi Valley State University

Ivy R. Taylor, Ed.D., President – Rust College

Carmen J. Walters, Ph.D., President – Tougaloo College

Valmadge T. Towner, Ph.D., President – Coahoma Community College

Stephen Vacik, Ed.D., President – Hinds Community College, Utica

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