Did MC participate as one of the 131 institutions to administer a navy officer training program during World War 2?
Yes. When the United States entered World War II in 1941, enrollment at Mississippi College began to drop as military duty called. But a Navy training program for officers began at MC in 1943, and this program boosted college finances and enrollment during the war. Mississippi College was one of 131 institutions selected out of 1600 to provide educational preparation for a military officer training program. A Navy V-12 unit began their first term in 1943, with 335 men enrolled.
MC designated Chrestman Dormitory, Alumni Hall, and the main cafeteria for the use of the V-12 unit. Female students at MC were provided lodging and meals on the old Hillman campus. The Navy men took regular college classes with civilian students and participated in college life. It is said that the men complained of the social restrictions at Mississippi College, but they traveled to Jackson and Vicksburg to participate in dances. Once a month, they had variety shows which often featured their band, the 4.0 Skybirds. In 1943-44 the president of the student body, the vice president, and the student attorney were all members of the Navy V-12 unit.
By the end of the program in 1945, approximately 902 individuals had matriculated through the training program.