USM Alumni Association celebrates 100 years, gives back to incoming freshmen

May 5, 2017



HATTIESBURG, MS. - The following is a press release from the University of Southern Mississippi.


As part of its 100-year anniversary celebration, the University of Southern Mississippi Alumni Association is pleased to award a record number of 100 Pierce Legacy Scholarships to incoming 2017 freshmen who are children and grandchildren of Southern Miss alumni.


The Southern Miss Alumni Association began on May 4, 1917 and served primarily as a placement service for new teachers in its early days. Although the organization today hardly resembles its humble beginnings, the Association leadership is dedicated to playing a significant role in helping the University reach its potential. Over the coming year, the Association will place an increased focus on national engagement, membership and volunteer development as it celebrates a Century of Service to the institution.


“As an Association, we cannot think of a better way to celebrate our century of service to the University than by contributing to the success of future Golden Eagles,” said Jerry DeFatta, executive director of the Southern Miss Alumni Association. “Since its establishment in 1999, more than 95 students have been named Pierce Legacy Scholars, with 13 students being honored with the award last year. This $100,000 investment illustrates the Association’s continued focus on the importance of student scholarships.”


A total of 100 congratulatory letters were mailed today to incoming freshmen, offering each student a one-time, $1,000 scholarship. These legacies will also be recognized during a special scholarships award ceremony during the 2017 Homecoming weekend.


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