One of the biggest institutions in Mississippi in terms of campus size and student body is the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss). But is being big enough to make it a good school for degree-seeking students?
The University of Mississippi is a good school for students who wish to earn a degree from a state flagship and a party school. It’s also a good fit for those who prefer a rural college experience as they complete highly ranked programs in the likes of Business, Nursing, Law and STEM disciplines.
Here’s an eerie fact you probably didn’t know about Ole Miss: Farley Hall, which is for use by the University Archives blues collection, Department of Journalism and staff of the Daily Mississippian and school’s yearbook, used to be a morgue during the Civil War, which is why it’s also known as the “Dead House”.
Whether you are into paranormal stuff or not, check out University of Mississippi quick stats:
- Location: Oxford, Mississippi
- Founding date: 1848
- Motto: Pro scientia et sapientia (for knowledge and wisdom)
- Campus size: 3,804 acres
- Campus type: Rural
- School type: Conservative public research university
- Reputation: Party school
- Selectivity level: Less selective
- Number of majors: 67
- Popular majors: Accounting, Business, Digital Communication and Media, Education, Humanities, Psychology
- Student body: 22,456
- Students per class: 20 to 29 in most classes
- Student-to-faculty ratio: 18:1
- Retention rate: 85%
- Graduation rate: 61%
- Athletic affiliation: NCAA Division I
- Color: Cardinal red and navy blue
- Mascot: Tony the Landshark
- Number of varsity teams: 18
- Sports: Baseball, basketball, cross country, football, golf, soccer, softball, tennis, track and field, volleyball
University of Mississippi Rankings
The University of Mississippi ranks highly nationally and locally. While it’s #67 in Top Public Schools by US News, Ole Miss is #2 in Top Public Universities in Mississippi by Niche. The school is also a high ranker value-wise. In fact, it’s #2 in Best Value Colleges in Mississippi by College Simply.
It’s not uncommon for graduating high school students to want to fill their college list with high-ranking institutions.
That’s because there are many perks associated with attending a school that dominates college rankings. Earning a degree employers will respect is arguably the one that’s the hardest to overlook.
If the University of Mississippi is your top-choice school, you will be happy to learn that it’s one of the most highly ranked institutions in the country as well as in Mississippi and the southeast. Just check out the following local rankings of Ole Miss by various college ranking sites:
- #1 in Best College Campuses in Mississippi (Niche)
- #1 in Best Colleges in Mississippi (College Simply)
- #1 in Best Public Colleges in Mississippi (College Simply)
- #2 in Best Colleges in Mississippi (Niche)
- #2 in Top 10 Four-Year Colleges and Universities in Mississippi (Campus Explorer)
- #2 in Top Universities in Mississippi (UniRank)
- #4 in 14 Best Colleges in Mississippi (CollegeChoice)
- #4 in Top 10 Colleges in Mississippi (Best Colleges)
- #48 in the South (Forbes)
Keep in mind, however, that just because a school is the best fit for one college ranker doesn’t mean right away that it’s also the best fit for you. And this is why you should keep reading to have a much better idea of whether or not the University of Mississippi is worthy of occupying the top spot on your college list.
What is the University of Mississippi Known For?
The University of Mississippi is sometimes referred to as the “Harvard of the South” because of its superb law program. However, its Business, Computer Science and Nursing programs are highly ranked, too. Ole Miss is known as, first and foremost, the flagship school of the state of Mississippi.
Up to 23% of Ole Miss’ students live in housing that’s owned or operated by or affiliated with the University of Mississippi. The 11 available residence halls, built between 1952 and 1973, provide a traditional living experience. Anyone classified as a freshman student is required to live on-campus for two consecutive semesters, except in some situations.
Greek life is pretty big at Ole Miss. And speaking of which, there are numerous fraternity and sorority houses available. Active fraternity and sorority members are allowed, although not required, to live in them.
Some programs/majors the University of Mississippi is especially known for include:
- Computer Science
- Criminal Justice
- Digital Communication
- Physical Therapy
- Political Science
Prefer to earn a degree at an institution that’s closer to small towns and farms rather than busy cities?
You will be more than glad to learn that the University of Mississippi’s campus, which is 3,804 acres big, has a rural setting. This means that it’s generally quieter and more peaceful.
Oxford, the city in which Ole Miss is located, has a turbulent past spanning two centuries. As a result of this, it’s steep in history and tradition, thus making it an excellent cultural destination. There are museums, galleries, town squares, old retail stores, restaurants and outdoor attractions to pay a visit.
The city has one of the lowest crime rates in Mississippi. Based on online data, in Oxford, your chances of becoming a victim of a violent crime is one in 519, and becoming a victim of a property crime is one in 40.
Here are some of the major cities near Ole Miss:
- Baton Rouge
- Saint Louis
- New Orleans
Sports-wise, football is quite big at the University of Mississippi. In fact, the school claims three national championships in football — 1959, 1960 and 1962. Golf is popular at the school, too. And, as of this writing, Ole Miss’ women’s golf just claimed the institution’s very first recognized NCAA Championship.
Is the University of Mississippi a Party School?
The University of Mississippi is consistently one of the top party schools in the US. One reason for this is that Greek life is quite big at school. In fact, based on a Niche poll, up to 66% of Ole Miss attendees agree that fraternities and sororities are a big part of campus life.
Want to have an idea of just how the students of the University of Mississippi like to party?
Let’s just say that the school was #17 in the Top 50 Party Schools in America by Stacker in 2017. Ole Miss was also #17 in the 25 Top Party Schools in America by Newsweek in 2021.
As of this writing, Niche ranks the University of Mississippi #1 in Top Party Schools in Mississippi and #17 in Top Party Schools in America.
The same college ranking site also ranks the school #1 in Best Greek Life Colleges in Mississippi, #5 in Best Greek Life Colleges in America, and #25 in Colleges With the Best Student Life in America.
But just because you prefer to focus more on earning a degree doesn’t mean you should cross Ole Miss out of your college list. That’s because joining parties is not mandatory.
Schools are Similar to Ole Miss
Many schools similar to the University of Mississippi are located in the same state, too, such as Delta State University, Mississippi College and Mississippi State University. Many public schools, such as San Jose State University and the University of Tennessee, are also comparable to Ole Miss.
Positive that you are what the University of Mississippi’s admissions officers look for?
Chances are that your application will also be able to impress various academic institutions, public and private alike, often compared with Ole Miss. Needless to say, adding them to your college list is a smart move.
In Mississippi, naturally, there are various colleges and universities similar to the highly ranked flagship school. But there is no need to limit yourself to schools located in Mississippi. Especially if you are a non-Mississippi resident and you want a University of Mississippi experience, you have a lot of choices.
The following are some colleges and universities Ole Miss aspirants may also consider applying to:
- Delta State University. It may be a small institution alright, having less than 3,000 students only. However, Delta State University is big in rankings. For instance, it’s #35 in Top Public Schools by US News.
- Georgia State University. One of the four research schools of the University System of Georgia, Georgia State University takes pride in the fact that it’s one of the most innovative schools in the land.
- Kennesaw State University. A public research university, Kennesaw State University is the producer of the highest number of teachers and nurses in the state of Georgia.
- Mississippi College. In Mississippi, the oldest academic institution is Mississippi College. Founded in 1826, this Clinton-based college is also the second-oldest Baptist-affiliated school in the US.
- Mississippi State University. According to the school itself, Mississippi State University is dedicated to learning, research and service. Business, Computer Science and Engineering are some of its top programs.
- Mississippi University for Women. Despite the name, Mississippi University for Women is a co-educational school. A public university located in Columbus, Mississippi, it has an acceptance rate of 97%.
- San Jose State University. The oldest public university on the West Coast, San Jose State University offers both traditional and online programs. Both purely online and hybrid classes are available.
- Spelman College. A historically black liberal arts school, Spelman College admits women only. It is considered the country’s largest producer of Black women with doctorate degrees.
- University of North Texas. Niche ranks the University of North Texas, which is a public school, #5 in Most Diverse Colleges in Texas, #6 in Top Public Universities in Texas, and #11 in Top Party Schools in Texas.
- University of Tennessee. The flagship school of the University of Tennessee system, the University of Tennessee was founded two years before Tennessee even became the 16th state of the country.
Acceptance Rate at the University of Mississippi
For a flagship school of a state, the acceptance rate at the University of Mississippi is surprisingly high. Up to 88% of all applicants end up getting an offer to enroll. Students admitted into Ole Miss have an SAT score range of 1020 to 1250, an ACT score range of 21 to 29, and an average GPA of 3.5.
There are many different selective colleges and universities in the Magnolia State.
However, compared with other selective institutions in the US, they have relatively higher acceptance rates. For instance, Mississippi College, which is regarded as the most selective school in the state, admits almost half of all applicants — it has an acceptance rate of 42%.
It’s because of the fact that many colleges and universities in Mississippi have high acceptance rates why Ole Miss, despite having a high acceptance rate of 88%, is still one of the most selective schools in the state.
Check out this list of Mississippi institutions arranged based on selectivity level to have a much better idea:
|Rust College||Holly Springs||50%|
|Mississippi State University||Mississippi State||54%|
|William Carey University||Hattiesburg||55%|
|Alcorn State University||Alcorn State||58%|
|Mississippi Valley State University||Itta Bena||65%|
|Jackson State University||Jackson||68%|
|University of Mississippi||Oxford||88%|
|Delta State University||Cleveland||94%|
|Blue Mountain College||Blue Mountain||96%|
|Mississippi University for Women||Columbus||97%|
|University of Southern Mississippi||Hattiesburg||97%|
Needless to say, institutions for higher education in Mississippi not included in the list above have 100% acceptance rates — all applicants end up receiving an acceptance letter.
Early Admissions at the University of Mississippi
The University of Mississippi does not offer Early Decision. Likewise, it doesn’t offer Early Action or any other early admission plan. Instead, Ole Miss has rolling admissions. This means that aspirants can apply without having to beat a hard deadline. The school evaluates applications as they come.
Applying to colleges and universities can be very stressful and exhausting. One of the main reasons for such is the fact that graduating high schoolers need to submit their applications on or before a certain date.
What’s more, different institutions have different application deadlines!
It’s because of having rolling admissions why applying to the University of Mississippi is so much less nerve-racking. You can focus very well on filling out your application correctly and getting your hands on all the required materials. As soon as everything is ready, you just have to send it to the admissions office of Ole Miss.
But keep in mind that there is one downside to applying to a school with rolling admissions. And it’s none other than the fact that the granting of admission stops the moment that full capacity is obtained.
Due to this, the University of Mississippi suggests applying no later than April 1 for best consideration.
How Much Does It Cost to Attend the University of Mississippi?
The sticker price of going to the University of Mississippi for one academic year is $25,762. However, for out-of-state students, the amount climbs to $42,034. The tuition alone for non-Mississippi residents amounts to $24,990. Meanwhile, in-state tuition is nearly three times cheaper: $8,718.
Being a public school, attending Ole Miss is so much more affordable for Mississippi residents.
From elsewhere in the US and want nothing but a degree from the University of Mississippi?
That’s because around 68% of the school’s undergraduate students receive some kind of financial assistance. You could be one of them, and it all starts with filling out the FAFSA form.
Related Article: 425 Colleges Charging In-State Tuition for Out-of-State Applicants
The following is the breakdown of the estimated cost of attending Ole Miss for one academic year:
|EXPENSES||IN-STATE COSTS||OUT-OF-STATE COSTS|
|Room and board||$10,734||$10,734|
|Books and supplies||$1,100||$1,100|
The sticker price of attending the University of Mississippi is nearly twice as high for non-Mississippi residents than Mississippi residents. Just in case you are applying to the school as an out-of-state student, make sure that you compare the pros and cons of attending it compared with another Mississippi school or an in-state one.
How Much Do the University of Mississippi Graduates Make?
Six years after attending the University of Mississippi for the first time, employed graduates make around $41,200 per year. Their annual salaries climb to about $52,700 ten years after their initial enrollment at Ole Miss. The said amount is 54% higher than what’s regarded as the national median.
Everyone knows that earning a degree these days doesn’t come with a cheap price tag.
It’s because of this why many college-bound teens and their parents consider the return of investment (ROI) when building a college list. You can have an idea of a school’s ROI by determining your future lifetime earnings with a degree and subtracting the tuition, fees, room and board, and other costs of earning a degree.
And to help you get started with doing the math, you should be aware of how much the University of Mississippi graduates tend to make on average. But keep in mind that all sorts of things can affect one’s annual salary, and one of them is the major declared and completed in college.
Speaking of which, the following are the average initial salaries (six years after going to the school as a first-year student for the first time) of the graduates of Ole Miss based on major:
|Dental Support Services||$44,900|
|Criminal Justice and Corrections||$26,900|
|Health and Physical Education||$22,600|
Just Before You Apply to the University of Mississippi
The University of Mississippi is one of the most high-ranking public institutions in the land. It’s also one of the largest and most well-known, too, given the fact that it’s the state of Mississippi’s flagship school.
Above, we talked about some of the most important matters every Ole Miss aspirant needs to know about, from the school’s most popular majors to the average yearly salary of its graduates. Feel free to use the information you just came across in figuring out whether or not the University of Mississippi is the perfect fit.
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent those of the College Reality Check.