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Graduate School

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Welcome from the Interim Dean Dr. Katie Anthony

Thank you for your interest in pursuing a graduate degree at The University of Southern Mississippi. It is such an exciting time to become a Golden Eagle! Comprising over 23% of the total student enrollment, graduate students are huge contributors to our Carnegie R1 status as a doctoral university with very high research activity. Southern Miss faculty garnered over $91 million in extramural funds in fiscal year 2023, conducting high-impact basic and applied research in such diverse fields as psychology, molecular biology, chemistry, polymer science, history, political science, health sciences, marine and coastal sciences, and more. Graduate students were directly involved in these research projects, publishing their work in peer-reviewed journals and presenting their data at professional conferences.

At Southern Miss, we offer face-to-face, fully online, and hybrid programs that make graduate education accessible to traditional and non-traditional students and working professionals. Our main campus is located in Hattiesburg, and Coastal USM spans the Gulf Coast from the Gulf Coast Research Lab (GCRL) in Ocean Springs to the Stennis Space Center (near Picayune). Our graduate student population is among the most diverse in the state at 54.8% white, 21.8% black/African American, 5.3% Hispanic/Latino, and over 11% international students from 31 countries. Moreover, 28% of graduate students are first generation students, the first in their family to earn a college degree.

Our microcredentials, certificate, master’s, specialist, and doctoral programs benefit students with different aspirations, including those who are interested in jobs in academia, business and industry, military, or government. An exciting new opportunity for qualified military service members is the Tuition Assistance Gap Funding program, wherein Southern Miss covers the gap between federal tuition assistance (TA) and remaining course tuition for TA-approved hours.

Importantly, we take our graduate students’ professional development seriously here at Southern Miss. We offer a variety of opportunities for students to develop transferable skills to enhance their ability to compete for jobs, competitions to encourage the development of communication skills, and competitive travel awards to support travel to professional conferences or performances, among other resources. Opportunities for professional development are found on this website.

I hope you will take a close look at all Southern Miss has to offer, reach out to the Graduate School and your program of interest, and apply. We want to help you Join Us at the Top!

Katie Anthony, Ph.D., Interim Dean of the Graduate School

Vision and Mission

Operating within the values of a student-focused, Carnegie R1 research institution, the Graduate School at The University of Southern Mississippi will be a model for excellence and accomplishment in public graduate education.
The mission of The Graduate School of The University of Southern Mississippi is to foster a culture of excellence and integrity in graduate education, producing a diverse population of graduates whose competence, conduct, and professional presence set them apart in a competitive workforce and bring distinction to our institution. Our students will receive the highest-quality educational experience in their specific disciplines, along with opportunities for professional and personal development that will enrich their lives.

Focus on recruitment and success of the best and brightest students.

  • Increasing visibility and perceived value of a graduate degree from Southern Miss by showcasing student and faculty accomplishments
  • Developing strategies for proactive recruitment of local, regional, national, and international students
  • Providing competitive financial support through assistantships and fellowships that attract high quality prospects
  • Promoting student progress and success by fostering effective mentorship

Provide a holistic approach to graduate education through training in the discipline, along with opportunities for the development of transferable skills.

  • Adopting policies and practices that promote accountability and an expectation of accomplishment
  • Advancing professional development programs that enhance transferable skills
  • Funding competitive awards to support student travel to national/international conferences to share research or creative accomplishments

Office of the Graduate School

Head shot of Tracy Barnhill, M.Ed.

Tracy Barnhill, M.Ed.

Director of Graduate School Operations


Headshot of Brittney Hawkins

Brittney Hawkins, B.S.

Graduate School Data Management Coordinator

Areas of Expertise

Slate set-up, maintenance, and training, SOAR processes



Head shot of Desira L. Bailey

Desira L. Bailey

Administrative Assistant

Areas of Expertise

Administrative Assistant to the Dean, Graduate Council, and Faculty Credentials



Head shot of Shelby Flores, M.P.A.

Shelby Flores, M.P.A.

Assistant to the Dean for Finance and Administration

Areas of Expertise

Maintains all Graduate School accounts and oversees all graduate assistantships



Headshot of Shaadi Shoubaki, M.A.

Shaadi Shoubaki, M.A.

Assistant Director for Professional Development and Outreach

Areas of Expertise

Graduate student professional development coordination, recruiting, and outreach to prospective students



Headshot of Kayla Schreiber, MA

Kayla Schreiber, M.A.

Graduate Documents Specialist

Areas of Expertise

Thesis, dissertation, and doctoral project formatting and review


Michelle Templeton

Michelle Templeton, B.S.

Graduate Degree Auditor

Areas of Expertise

Progress-to-degree for students in the Center for STEM Education, School of BEES, School of Computing Sciences and Computer Engineering, School of Criminal Justice, Forensic Science and Security, School of Mathematics and Natural Sciences, School of Ocean Science and Engineering, School of Polymer Science and Engineering, College of Business and Economic Development, College of Nursing and Health Professions



Erica Brock, B.S.B.A.

Assistant Director for Graduate Program Management

Areas of Expertise

Progress-to-degree for students in the College of Education & Human Sciences, School of Humanities, School of Interdisciplinary Studies, School of Music, School of Performing & Visual Arts, School of Social Science & Global Studies, School of Media and Communication, School of Coastal Resilience



Headshot of Kentrice Easley

Kentrice Easley, B.U.S.

Graduate Admissions Evaluator



Headshot of Juliana Rouse MS

Juliana Rouse, M.S.

Graduate Admissions Evaluator



Headshot of Daleana Phillips, PhD

Daleana Phillips, Ph.D.

Director of McNair Scholars Program



Vacant Position

Assistant Director of McNair Scholars Program