Mississippi University for Women Changes Course on Name Change

In January, the Mississippi University for Women announced that it was changing its name to Mississippi Brightwell University. Many alumni were upset with the name change because it did not reflect what the university is typically called: The W. So now the university has decided that it will now be called Wynbridge State University of Mississippi.

Nora Miller, president of the university, said that “we are grateful to our alumni and friends of the university for reminding us that our identity as ‘The W’ has both an enduring legacy and the flexibility to carry our institution into the future. By enshrining our commitment to ‘The W’ in the law, we promise our community that graduates past, present and future will remain united.”

According to Amanda Clay Powers, dean of library services and co-chair of the task force overseeing the name changing processs, “Wynbridge creatively pairs the Old English word for ‘W,’ using it as a ‘bridge’ that connects past, present, and future W graduates. With our commitment to keeping ‘The W,’ we feel this is the perfect name for the university that looks back at our illustrious past as the first publicly supported university for women, keeping our tradition of looking forward into the future.”

The Mississippi University for Women was founded in 1884 as the first state-supported college for women in the United States. Today, the university is home to 2,227 students in more than 70 majors and concentrations and has educated men for 40 years. Today, men make up 23 percent of the undergraduate student body.

Update: After objections from the university alumni, the university has put off any name change until 2025.

Filed Under: NewsWomen's Colleges


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