Out-of-state students make Oxford home

Ellie Darcey
The Oxford Eagle

A 2014 study released by the University of Mississippi states that 39 percent of students are from out of state. As the university’s popularity grows, so does the out-of-state student population.

The majority of student population (61 percent) is from Mississippi, but it’s difficult not to find students who have moved to Oxford from out of state to attend college.

Libby Callaway, a senior at Ole Miss, was born and raised in Atlanta and always thought she’d be a University of Georgia Bulldog. But she knew deep down, she was a Rebel.

“My entire family went to UGA, including my dad,” she said. “Growing up, my parents made it seem like in-state was the only option. But when senior year rolled around, I really wanted to explore my options, and luckily my parents let me.”

Callaway said a majority of her classmates attended Georgia colleges, but she didn’t want to attend college with the same people she grew up with. She wanted change, but remaining the the SEC was important.

Callaway visited the University of Tennessee and the University of Alabama before deciding on Ole Miss. She liked the size of the campus.

“It has a small school feel,” she said. “I can walk across campus and find someone I know.”

She was also attracted to the town of Oxford, and she said everywhere she went, people asked if she needed directions and what she thought of the university.

When her parents visited, they also understood why their daughter wanted to move to Oxford.

“We raised Libby basically expecting that when college came around, she would want to be a Bulldog like the rest of our family,” said dad Gene Callaway. “But when she explained that she wanted to look into different options, we let her explore them. But I will say, Libby going to a school in Mississippi never crossed my mind.”

Mom Rana Callaway had a harder time letting her daughter attend college out of state, but she changed her mind after a weekend visit.

“After seeing the town and school, it was hard to say no,” she said. “There are so many unique things about Oxford, like the Square, restaurants, and people set it apart.

“The school, itself, has a beautiful campus and just more of a smaller feel than UGA, even though she has so many friends who are students there. In all honesty, Oxford, Mississippi, is a very special place, and in the end it was easy to let Libby go to school out of state.”

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