Ole Miss: Lasting Opportunity

By  | 

The first time 28-year-old James Meredith walked onto the campus of the University of Mississippi, it signaled the beginning of a new era.

On Oct. 1, 2002, a frail and aging Meredith said he hoped it would do the same thing.

The man who integrated Ole Miss actually says he wishes he'd played a larger role in the fight against segregation. But officials at Ole Miss apparently believe his role was plenty big. They've planned events throughout the next year to mark the 40th anniversary of the school's integration.

Chancellor Robert Khayat said it is important to do that, as the school moves into the future.

One of the ways Ole Miss will move ahead while remembering the past is at the law school. Officials there have unveiled a set of memorabilia honoring the first African American students at the law school.

It also honors slain civil rights leader Medgar Evers who was denied admission to the law school before it was integrated. His widow, Myrlie Evers-Williams called it a fitting tribute.

Possibly the most lasting tribute to those events of 40 years ago will be a civil rights memorial, that will be built between the Lyceum and the library. It is expected to be complete next spring.