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Rachael Carraro

Hometown: Hattiesburg, MS

Major: Aerospace Engineering

From the moment she stepped off the bus on a campus tour, Rachael Carraro knew MSU was the place for her.

“I could feel the atmosphere, and I loved it.”

Micheal Reynolds

Hometown: Choctaw, MS

Major: Bachelor of Applied Technology, Healthcare Services

Micheal, a transfer student from East Central Community College, is one of a growing number of “non-traditional” students at MSU’s Meridian campus. While pursuing his bachelor’s degree, Micheal works for the Choctaw Health Center as an emergency medical technician (EMT). Micheal says that the proximity of the Meridian campus to his home, as well as the availability of online classes, helps him balance work with school.

Dee Stegall

Hometown: Smithville, MS

Major: Communication

If you transfer to Mississippi State, you will more than likely meet Dee Stegall, president of MSU’s Transfer Student Organization. A transfer student from Itawamba Community College, Dee fondly recalls his first experience at MSU.

“Everybody I met was genuinely interested in me. That’s something you can’t fake. They really cared.”

Today, Dee works to ensure that transfer students have the same positive experience he had when he was in their shoes.

Casey Smith

The Chapel of Memories is special to me for very personal reasons. The sorority I was a member of while attending MSU held initiation at the Chapel of Memories. Many of my lifelong friendships began because of that organization and a few of the ladies will be serving as bridesmaids at my wedding ... which will be held at, you guessed it, the Chapel of Memories. The chapel will always hold a special place in my heart. 

Khalil Cain

Hometown: Eupora, MS

Major: Business Technology Education

Khalil grew up coming to Mississippi State for games and couldn't wait to be a student.

"It was even better than I imagined."

The intimidating lecture halls he saw in the movies were nothing like his small classes with professors he could actually talk to. Like many students, Khalil discovered a passion for something other than his original major.

Carly Pippin

Hometown: Carthage, MS

Major: Undeclared

Carly felt pulled to Mississippi State, but not a specific major.

“I looked at interior design, engineering, political science. Nothing felt right.”

Meanwhile, Carly started joining organizations.

“Getting involved forced me to meet people, hear their stories and discover career paths I hadn’t thought of before.”

Another bonus?

Jake Hartzburg

Hometown: Fox Lake, IL

Major: Electrical Engineering

Jake is part of a group of researchers at MSU's Bagley College of Engineering developing autonomous robots to safely clean up radioactive materials. The best part?

“We get to use equipment in our lab that people in the industry actually use.” 

Even as a junior, Jake's résumé boasts real engineering experience, thanks to a full-time internship in his field. And his phone?

Kelsey Duncan

Hometown: Marietta, GA

Major: Communication

Kelsey’s childhood revolved around football. Her dad coached, and her brother always said she’d make a great sportscaster. Now, she dreams of returning to MSU one day to cover a sporting event as a broadcaster for a major network.

“I help film and edit videos of all MSU athletics through Hail State Productions.” 

Also on her résumé?

Nada Aziz

Hometown: Greenwood, MS

Major: Architecture

In high school, Nada created a giant parade float, theater sets and a storefront for her community through a local arts nonprofit. That experience sparked her passion for community-engaged design, which led her to MSU’s College
of Architecture, Art and Design.

“We do planning for small towns. We have the Carl Small Town Center and the Gulf Coast Community Design Studio, where I did an externship on rebuilding after hurricanes.” 

Hugo Garcia

Hometown: Senatobia, MS

Major: Marketing

Hugo’s entrepreneurial streak comes from his parents, who didn’t get to go to college.

“I’ve seen them work wonders. I thought, if I put that same work into my education, how far could I go?”

The college search was new for Hugo's family, but they soon discovered Mississippi State — and its dazzling e-Center.


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