Amite County resident Mildred Belle Martin
Barron, the oldest living graduate of Mississippi
Woman’s College, celebrated her 105th birthday
on January 2 in Summit. For her birthday, WCU
presented Mildred with a framed copy of her 1929
diploma from MWC to replace the original one that
burned in a house fire in 1936.
Cindy Cofield, director of alumni relations,
brought yearbooks from Mrs. Barron’s days at MWC
and watched in delight as she reminisced about her
college years, fondly remembering classmates and
professors. A double major in history and English,
Mildred taught high school English in Oak Vale,
Fernwood, Summit, and East Fork following her
graduation from MWC. After a 20-year absence from
the classroom to rear her children, she returned to
teaching at Liberty High School from 1959 until her
retirement in 1972, a total of 24 years of teaching in
the public school system.
After looking through yearbooks, Mildred’s
daughter Cherrie read a birthday greeting from Dr.
Tommy King, president of WCU. She declared with
a smile, “105! I didn’t realize I was that old.” Cindy
then played the piano as she and Mildred sang the
MWC Alma Mater.
Mississippi Women’s College
met Saturday, April
to celebrate the
of the inaugural year of
MWC. Alumnae and
guests were charmed
with the story of Louise
Hearst’s 1923 class ring
which was discovered
by diver Reed Banjanin
and donated to the
university by Louise’s
special guest, Trish
Jenkins (’64), delighted
the audience with a
dramatic first person
narrative of the life of
Mrs. Mildred Martin
Barron (MWC ’29).
L-R) Barbara Hamilton (’58), executive assistant to the
president, Myrthe Walker (’34), Betty Hart (’52), Joyce
Raby (’53), and Helen Thornton (attended ’47–’49).