Diversity is a hot topic right now. You can't watch the news or browse social media without hearing about equality.
And that's mostly because diversity's a good thing. You've heard the saying, "Diversity is the art of thinking independently together."
So we wanted to help prospective applicants understand what colleges in the will offer them a diverse experience.
A university campus is one of the most diverse places you'll find in Mississippi, as people of all religions, gender preferences and races come together from all over the world to enrich their minds.
But where would we find the most diverse colleges in Mississippi? After running the numbers on 15 colleges and universities, we landed on Belhaven University as the most diverse college in Mississippi.
Here's the set of the top ten most diverse colleges in Mississippi for 2020.
If you're looking to meet people from all different backgrounds be sure to add Belhaven University to your college visit road trip.
Read on for more about the colleges and the methodology behind the data.
For more reading on Mississippi, check out:
In order to run the only assessment on college diversity undertaken, we simply had to aggregate and then sort data on the racial profiles of each college and university in Mississippi.
Here's what we looked at specifically in terms of the racial breakdown by percentage at each institution:
For most colleges, a significant portion of the student body was listed as "Unknown Race". We removed that from the calculation and only focused on the known races of students from the College Scorecard data.
We then calculated an HHI-score for each of the 15 schools based on the available data -- a statistical representation of diversity. The lower the score, the more diverse the campus.
So it looks like if you want to get the most diverse student experience, you need to contact admissions at Belhaven University or University of Southern Mississippi.
Location: Jackson, MS
# Of Undergraduates: 1,429
Diversity Index (HHI): 4,349
Belhaven University is a private Christian liberal arts university located in Jackson, Mississippi, founded in 1883. The university offers traditional majors, programs of general studies, and pre-professional programs in Christian Ministry, Medicine, Dentistry, Law, and Nursing.
Location: Hattiesburg, MS
# Of Undergraduates: 12,143
Diversity Index (HHI): 4,823
The University of Southern Mississippi, known informally as Southern Miss, is a public research university with its main campus located in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. The Hattiesburg campus is located 70 miles north of Gulfport, Mississippi and 105 miles northeast of New Orleans, Louisiana. USM is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award baccalaureate, master's, specialist, and doctoral degrees. The university is classified by the Carnegie Foundation as a \"Research University\" with \"High Research Activity\".
Location: Cleveland, MS
# Of Undergraduates: 3,356
Diversity Index (HHI): 4,907
Delta State University is a regional public university located in Cleveland, Mississippi, United States, in the heart of the Mississippi Delta. DSU is one of eight publicly funded universities in the state.
Location: Columbus, MS
# Of Undergraduates: 2,660
Diversity Index (HHI): 5,056
Mississippi University for Women, also known as MUW or "The W", is a four-year coeducational public university located in Columbus, Mississippi, United States. It was formerly known as Industrial Institute and College (II&C) and later Mississippi State College for Women (MSCW). Men have been admitted to MUW since 1982 and currently make up 19% of the student body today.
Location: Hattiesburg, MS
# Of Undergraduates: 1,715
Diversity Index (HHI): 5,093
William Carey University is a private Christian liberal arts college in Mississippi, affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention and the Mississippi Baptist Convention. The main campus is in Hattiesburg, and a second campus is in the Tradition community near Gulfport and Biloxi.
Location: Clinton, MS
# Of Undergraduates: 2,440
Diversity Index (HHI): 5,661
Mississippi College is a Christian university located in Clinton, Mississippi, just west of the capital city of Jackson. Founded in 1826, MC is the second-oldest Baptist-affiliated college in the United States and the oldest college in Mississippi. With more than 5,000 students, Mississippi College is the largest private university in the state.
Location: Mississippi State, MS
# Of Undergraduates: 13,307
Diversity Index (HHI): 5,837
The Mississippi State University for Agriculture and Applied Science, commonly known as Mississippi State University, is a comprehensive land-grant and public research university located adjacent to the city of Starkville in an unincorporated area of Oktibbeha County, Mississippi. With 21,353 students at its Starkville campus, Mississippi State has the largest campus by enrollment in the state. It is classified in the category of \"R2: Doctoral Universities - Higher Research Activity\" by the Carnegie Foundation and has a total research and development budget of $239.4 million, the largest in Mississippi. It is listed as one of the state's flagship universities.
Location: Jackson, MS
# Of Undergraduates: 1,193
Diversity Index (HHI): 6,438
Millsaps College is a private liberal arts college located in Jackson, Mississippi, the state capital. Founded in 1890 and affiliated with the United Methodist Church, Millsaps is home to 985 students. One of 40 colleges featured in Loren Pope's Colleges That Change Lives, it is one of only 21 private colleges nationwide named a Best Buy in the 2013 Fiske Guide to Colleges.
Location: University, MS
# Of Undergraduates: 9,608
Diversity Index (HHI): 6,471
The University of Mississippi is an American public research university located in Oxford, Mississippi. Including the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, it is the state's largest university by enrollment. The university was chartered by the Mississippi Legislature on February 24, 1844, and four years later admitted its first enrollment of 80 students. The university is classified as an \"R1: Doctoral University--Highest Research Activity\" by the Carnegie Foundation and has an annual research and development budget of $121.6 million. The university ranked 145 in the 2018 edition of the US News Rankings of Best National Universities.
Location: Blue Mountain, MS
# Of Undergraduates: 371
Diversity Index (HHI): 7,564
Blue Mountain College is a private liberal arts college, supported by the Mississippi Baptist Convention, located in the northeastern Mississippi town of Blue Mountain not far from Tupelo. Founded a women's college in 1873, the college's board of trustees voted unanimously for the college to go fully co-educational in 2005.
If you're looking at universities in Mississippi with the most diverse student bodies, this is an accurate list. Below is a complete list of every college and university in Mississippi with their diversity index score.
Hopefully, this is helpful for you as you weigh in on all factors while you decide on which institution to attend.
For more reading on colleges around Mississippi, check out: