May 2, 2016

Hinds CC announces speakers for spring graduation ceremonies

Hinds Community College will have four spring 2016 graduation ceremonies, May 12-13 at the Muse Center on the Rankin Campus and May 15 at the Utica Campus. More than 1,100…
BY: Cathy Hayden

Hinds Community College will have four spring 2016 graduation ceremonies, May 12-13 at the Muse Center on the Rankin Campus and May 15 at the Utica Campus. More than 1,100 students are expected to graduate over the three days.

Retired allied health and nursing dean Mary Ann Sones will speak to graduates at 2 p.m. May 12. Darrel McQuirter, president of the Hinds County Board of Supervisors, speaks to academic and technical graduates at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. on May 13. Dr. Carolyn Meyers, president of Jackson State University, is the speaker for the Utica Campus ceremony at 2 p.m. Sunday May 15.

The grand marshal for the two Rankin Campus ceremonies is retiring Raymond Campus instructor Steve Miller.

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Sones, a Kosciusko native and 47-year resident of the Jackson area, retired from Hinds Community College in 2004 after 34 years in various teaching and administrative posts at the college. Sones served as chair of the dental assisting program, assistant dean of Allied Health and dean of the Jackson Campus-Nursing/Allied Health Center. She received emeritus dean status in January 2009.

Upon being hired in 1970, she returned to school to pursue an Associate of Applied Science degree while working. She earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Southern Mississippi and her master’s in teaching with an emphasis in community college administration from Mississippi State University. Previously, Sones held certification and licensure in the areas of dental assisting, dental hygiene, as well as teaching and administrative licensure from the Mississippi Department of Education, Division of Career and Technical Education.

McQuirter, a Clinton native, graduated from Clinton High School in 1980. He received an Associate degree in management from Hinds Junior College in 1983 before earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Mississippi College in 1985.

He worked for the Clinton Fire Department for 27 years until he retired in January 2005. During his time as a firefighter, he served as the department’s chief starting in January 2000, making him the first African-American to hold the position.


In December 2009, McQuirter became director of Permits and Zoning for Hinds County, a position that also involved being the county’s floodplain manager. He held the position until resigning in June 2013 to seek public office on the Hinds County Board of Supervisors. He was elected supervisor later that year to represent District 2 of Hinds County.

Dr. Carolyn W. Meyers is the 10th president of Jackson State University and a professor of civil and environmental engineering.

Since Meyers became president in 2011, Jackson State University expanded its impact with three new campus locations, increased course offerings for evening, weekend and online studies and implemented the nation’s largest freshman iPad initiative, which provides all first-year students with iPads to aid with their coursework.

Meyers’ vision for growth continues with plans to construct an on-campus domed arena and increase enrollment to 15,000 students. Meyers brought to JSU more than 30 years of academic and administrative leadership experience in higher education, serving most recently as president of Norfolk State University in Norfolk, Va.

She served as provost and vice chancellor for Academic Affairs for North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University, where she was a tenured professor of mechanical engineering and Dean of the College of Engineering. Meyers also was a tenured faculty member at the Georgia Institute of Technology and was the first Associate Dean for Research in its College of Engineering.

Meyers earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Howard University, a master’s degree in mechanical engineering and a doctorate in chemical engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology, and completed post-doctoral work at Harvard University. She is a fellow in the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and a board member of the American Council on Education.

JSU hosted First Lady Michelle Obama as graduation speaker on April 23

As Mississippi’s largest community college, Hinds Community College is a comprehensive institution offering quality, affordable educational opportunities with more than 170 academic, career and technical programs. With six locations in central Mississippi, Hinds enrolled nearly 12,000 credit students in fall 2014. To learn more, visit or call 1.800.HindsCC.