Claude Bennett (1928-1933)

Claude Bennett Supervisor of Rural Schools Claude Bennett succeeded Joe Cook as president in 1928, selected by the Board of Trustees.

Many of the faculty and staff remained loyal to the former president and viewed Bennett with suspicion. Nevertheless, it was during the Bennett administration that the school was approved for membership in Southern Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools in 1929. 

In 1932, a single board of trustees was created to oversee all of Mississippi’s institutions of higher learning. This body replaced the separate boards of trustees under which the institutions had previously operated.

Uppermost on the new board’s agenda was removing political appointees of Gov. Theodore Bilbo, so in 1933, President Bennett was fired.