Important Dates for 2024

  • Applications are due by midnight on Friday, May 10, 2024.
  • The 2024 Institute will take place June 2 – June 7 on The W’s Columbus campus.
  • Students will receive notice of their acceptance or rejection by May 17.
  • Admitted students will be sent a packet that must be completed and returned by May 20.

What does it cost to attend?

Students are responsible for arranging transportation to Columbus, MS on the morning of Sunday, June 2 and for their departure on the early evening of Friday, June 7. Housing, meals, instructional materials, and transportation to and from Jackson, MS during the week are provided at no cost to participants. In addition, a full tuition scholarship covers the cost of each student’s enrollment at The W during the summer term, so the two hours of college credit are also free to students.

NEW MS is free to students thanks to the generous financial support of The W, the Ascend Fund (a collaborative fund dedicated to accelerating the pace of change toward gender parity in U.S. politics), and private donors.

How do students receive two hours of college credits?

When admitted students are notified of their selection, they will be sent a packet of forms to complete. Some of these forms are admission forms that the program director uses to enroll students at Mississippi University for Women and have their scholarships applied. This also allows students to receive a student ID# and gain access campus wifi and library holdings, so even if you don’t care about the course credit, don’t skip these forms!

On another form (or in an email poll), students indicate whether they wish to register for the POL 365 (political science) or WGS 365 (women’s, gender, & sexuality studies) section of the Mississippi Women in Politics course. The course is worth two credit hours, and students complete the course by attending all Summer Institute sessions and working on the Action Project and other learning exercises during sessions. Once they have completed the registration forms and indicated their course section preference, students do not need to do anything else to register for the class.

After MUW’s Summer Term ends (see the Academic Calendar), students can order their MUW transcript and have it sent to their home institution or included in any graduate program or job applications. Students are encouraged to work with their advisors to have the course substituted for a “Special Topics” or similar elective course offered at their institution, and a syllabus can be provided by the NEW MS Director, Dr. Chanley Rainey, upon request.

Who is eligible to attend?

NEW Leadership® Mississippi is open to undergraduate students enrolled in any Mississippi college or university and Mississippi residents enrolled in out-of-state schools. We are committed to diversity in terms of race, ethnicity, socioeconomic background, political ideology, and sexual orientation. We strongly encourage women of all backgrounds to apply.

How are participants selected?

The application process is competitive and all applications received by May 10 will be given full consideration by the NEW MS Admissions Committee, which is composed of the program director and faculty advisors. Each year, the Committee selects students with the intent of creating a class of individuals who represent diverse backgrounds and experiences and who have the potential to increase women’s political representation in the state.

Five primary criteria guide the competitive selection process:

  • Individual leadership potential;
  • Special interests, unique characteristics and/or diverse experiences which contribute to NEW MS program objectives and learning goals;
  • Interest in politics, public service, or public policy;
  • Articulated or demonstrated potential to contribute to the goal of increasing women’s political representation and leadership; and
  • Commitment to the goal of gender parity in politics.

Where do students live during the Summer Institute?

NEW Leadership MS students and peer mentors live together in Grossnickle Hall on the Columbus campus of Mississippi University for Women for the duration of the institute. Constructed in 1922, the Spanish Revival architecture of Grossnickle Hall earned this residence hall a spot on the National Register of Historic Places and a designation as a Mississippi Landmark. During the fall and spring semesters, Grossnickle home to the Residential Honors Program of the Ina E. Gordy Honors College.

Grossnickle Hall at sunset.

How do I get to Columbus?

The Mississippi University for Women is located at 1100 College Street in Columbus, MS (zip code 39701). If using a driving directions app (like Google Maps), we recommend using the address for Puckett House, which is right across the street from Grossnickle Hall (and home to the NEW MS Faculty in Residence). Puckett House’s address is 205 S 11th St, Columbus, MS 39701.