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10/16/2007 - Jackson, Miss.

During its regular monthly meeting, the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning (IHL) discussed the opinion and judgment issued in October by the Lowndes County Chancery Court in the case between the Mississippi University for Women Alumnae Association and the Mississippi University for Women and the Board of Trustees. While hopeful a settlement can still be reached, the Board voted to authorize its attorney to take any and all action necessary to protect the constitutional governing authority of the Board, including an appeal of the opinion to the State Supreme Court. However, the Board intends to continue negotiations with the Alumnae Association in a good faith effort to resolve the matter.

“Unfortunately, the opinion violates the constitutional structure set in place by Mississippi voters to protect the state’s public universities from this kind of outside interference and control,” said Trustee Amy Whitten, chair of the Board’s Legal Committee. “The Board does not take its decision to appeal lightly, but realizes it has no choice as it has an obligation to uphold the responsibilities bestowed upon it by the Mississippi Constitution. We are hopeful, however, that a resolution can be reached through a thoughtful dialogue between the involved parties.”

The Board’s next regular monthly meeting will take place on November 14, 2007, in the IHL Board room. For more information, visit http://www.mississippi.edu/.

The Mississippi Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning governs the eight public universities in Mississippi, including Alcorn State University; Delta State University; Jackson State University; Mississippi State University including the Mississippi State University Division of Agriculture, Forestry and Veterinary Medicine; Mississippi University for Women; Mississippi Valley State University; the University of Mississippi including the University of Mississippi Medical Center; and the University of Southern Mississippi.


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