A partnership between The University of Southern Mississippi and Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, has enabled MGCCC students to enroll into a program that will guide them from the community college to a bachelor’s degree in the entertainment industry with an emphasis in film.

In fall 2014, Southern Miss and MGCCC signed an agreement that will provide MGCCC students with the opportunity to complete academic degree programs through both campuses. In an effort to fulfill this institutional partnership, Southern Miss and MGCCC developed the “Film Studies Pathway,” an academic degree route that will serve as a pilot for future pathways established between both institutions.

“At Southern Miss we continue to focus on innovation in our curricular programming. The Film Studies Pathway is a collaborative effort that creates another distinctive partnership with Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College,” said USM Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Steven R. Moser. “Both institutions are committed to providing a solid course of study for film students that is unique to our region.”

Providing quality educational programs for community college students on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, the partnership with MGCCC offers both institutions the opportunity to create a route that will assist students in furthering their education. The Film Studies Pathway will go into effect this fall for the 2016-17 school year.

“We are very excited for our students to have the option to major in film studies on the Mississippi Gulf Coast,” said MGCCC President Dr. Mary S. Graham. “As the film industry grows along the Gulf Coast and all over the South, MGCCC students interested in pursuing a degree in this area will be able to do so and have greater opportunities for success while studying right here at home.”

Southern Miss is the only university in the state of Mississippi to offer a bachelor’s degree with an emphasis in film, which is housed under the School of Mass Communication and Journalism. For students in Mississippi, this program meets a growing need for those who desire a career in film.

“The University has a long-standing, mutually beneficial relationship with MGCCC, and a partnership of this kind further improves the lives of our students and their success toward graduation,” said Southern Miss Gulf Park Interim Associate Provost Dr. Casey Maugh Funderburk. “This academic partnership between our two institutions is a pathway that places students on a trajectory toward degree completion by starting at MGCCC and finishing at Southern Miss.”

Upon admission, MGCCC students should indicate their interest in pursuing the Film Studies Pathway, which will put them on a route toward a degree at Southern Miss. MGCCC students will then be referred to Southern Miss faculty for advisement; be directed to a series of preferred courses at MGCCC that will count toward a degree at Southern Miss; and should they meet entrance qualifications upon completion at MGCCC, students will then be admitted automatically – as a junior – to the Film Studies Pathway offered on the University’s Gulf Park campus.

“At Southern Miss, we hope that the students who enroll into the Film Studies Pathway will have an early insight into their academic pathway, which will allow them to move toward a degree with determination and with the full support of the MGCCC and Southern Miss communities,” said Maugh Funderburk. “Students who choose this path will have intentional advising that sets them up for success, ultimately resulting in a career in film, a growing and ever-expanding industry in the state of Mississippi.”

For further information about the bachelor’s degree in entertainment industry, with an emphasis in film, or the Film Studies Pathway, contact the Office of Admissions at (228) 214-3444 or gcadmissions@usm.edu.

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