Our history began in September 1917 when Hinds County Agricultural High School opened in the small town of Raymond. These humble beginnings included an Administration Building, two dormitories, and a dairy barn, eight faculty and 117 students. Fast forward 100 years later and you have the largest community college and the fourth largest institution of higher learning in the state of Mississippi.
Through it all, Hinds has remained true to the mission: to provide a quality and affordable education. Hinds has enjoyed the tenure of six distinctive presidents, each bringing their own improvements and expansions to the college. In the 1920s, President R.E.L. Sutherland transitioned Hinds into a junior college. In the 1930s, President Judson Cain led the college to growth by providing work opportunities for young people to pay for room and board while receiving a quality education.
President George McLendon, or “Mr. Mac” as he was affectionately known, began serving in 1938 and continued growing the college. The 1940s brought on beautification and construction initiatives. In 1945, the GI Bill changed the face of the community college campus. Veterans took advantage of the opportunity to attend college and enrolled in vocational & technical programs that provided important skills and job training. The 1950s were the golden age of football, and the 1954 team reached unprecedented heights with the Eagles claiming a national championship after winning the Junior Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif.
During the 1960s, the leadership passed from Mr. Mac to President Dr. Robert Mayo. The baby boomers reached college age, and consequently Hinds’ enrollment topped 2,000 for the first time. Mayo extended the campus by adding new branches in Jackson and Vicksburg.
The 1970s brought on Hinds’ sixth and current president, Dr. Clyde Muse. Dr. Muse has continued this path of growth and expansion, adding Utica, Rankin and the Nursing/ Allied Health Center in the 1980s and changing the name to Hinds Community College. The 1990s brought new programs, and the 2000s a virtual network to take online classes. Traditional academic classes remain an integral part of the college experience; however, the demand for career and technical programs continues to flourish as business industry standards have evolved and require a higher level of education.
Today the college continues its mission to make education accessible and affordable to the common citizen. Relying on this fundamental formula, Hinds can look forward to further generations of service to the community, state and the nation. Each day Dr. Muse provides steady leadership and support to more than 1,500 faculty and staff members and 30,000 students annually.
He personifies the true commitment of leadership and carrying out the mission established 100 years ago. As we celebrate our 100th year, it is clear that Hinds Community College has much to be proud of.