Former JSU professor Rose E. McCoy dies at 97

Updated 4:25 PM,Oct. 17, 2011

Rose E. McCoy

Funeral services for Dr. Rose Embly McCoy will be held on the Jackson State University campus in the Rose Embly McCoy Auditorium on Wednesday, October 19, 2011 @ 12 noon.

Public viewing will be held at People’s Funeral Home, Inc., 886 North Farish Street, Jackson, Mississippi on Tuesday, October 18, 2011 from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m.  Friends and family hour will be held at People’s Funeral Home on Tuesday, October 18, 2011 from       6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Drs. Rose E. and A.H. McCoy Scholarship Fund, at Jackson State University.

Rose Embly McCoy, a longtime Mississippi educator who was active in the civil rights movement with her late husband, has died at their daughter’s home in Hampton, Va. She was 97.

Dr. Rosalind McCoy Sibley, who’s a physician, says her mother died Tuesday after being in declining health for some time.

Funeral services for McCoy will be held Oct. 19 at Jackson State University.

McCoy taught psychology at Jackson State University and was the department chairwoman when she retired in 1980. The university’s auditorium is named for her.

She was the widow of Dr. A.H. McCoy, a dentist who led the NAACP’s effort to desegregate the Jackson school system. A federal building in downtown Jackson is named for him.



6 thoughts on “Former JSU professor Rose E. McCoy dies at 97

  1. As my landlord, I never knew your legacy. I learned so much at your home going today. May you rest in peace. D’Andra Orey

  2. Dr. McCoy was an outstanding professor. During my freshman year, I had to add more classes to my schedule, and the psychology course was available. My homeboy said, “Do not take Dr. McCoy, because she is the department head of Psychology. Find so other class to take.” I said, “It is just a pschology course. ” Well, it was more than just a psychology course. It was a critical thinking course.

    The very first day, she allowed us to discuss any issue, and you know — the educational experience begin. In her class, it was not just enough to know the answer or believed something. We must know why we believe whatever believe. If we did not have any evidence, proof, theory, etc., it did not count in this class. She demanded that we support every issue with findings. This was a new way of thinking for me as a freshman.

    Dr. McCoy was the first professor that personally know that was seriously conducting laboratory research (experiments) for publication purposes.
    “What an Outstanding Educator!”

  3. Dr. McCoy a professor, legend, and activist!!!!!

    I never had the opportunity or pleasure of meeting such a profound woman, but I cherish the foundation and legacy that she set for all people, especially women. She is an imprint that can never be copied. Thank you Dr. McCoy for the education I was able to received at JSU!
    Class of 2007

  4. Dr. McCoy truly embodied excellence in every sense of the term. She enjoyed entertaining at her home. Everyone loved attending her social functions. I met and got to know a lot of individuals I never thought I would get to know on a personal level.

    It was challenging to be her secretary. I learned a great deal from her. She was a true educator and administrator. Others have commented on her pedagogical style and being able provide students with the strength to know that they could succeed. I remember many times she would have one-on-one sessions with students if they did not do well on an exam. She would spend sometimes and hour or more with the student.

    Again as her secretary, I truly understood the meaning of the word sec-re-tary. People always asked me how I got alone with her and I would tell them great. I told them that I finally understood her. Just as with many of us today, we just need someone we can trust and depend on.

    She really did love her work and JSU. Finally, I want to thank her for taking a chance on a 19 year young lady just out of business school and still looking for a place where she could build a career.

    Thanks for everything!!! JOB WELL DONE!!

  5. Dr. McCoy embodied the excellence of the faculty at Jackson State.

    Like many of our professors in the 70s, she was highly knowledgeable, sophisticated, and able to find ways to make complex concepts accessible to students. Of course, she was serious and didn’t play, which meant students had to be prepared so that they could demonstrate to her in their questions and in the discussion that they had put forth the effort and were familiar with the material. That done, Dr. McCoy would put you over the top in terms of ‘getting it.’ She had a compelling pedagogical style that literally drew students in and made them want to rise to the challenge and be like her in terms of awareness and confidence in one’s ability to discuss and process the information. The bottom line is that she was an intellectual who modeled what it was like to be at the very top of one’s game, and to experience that level in every class meeting made us want to be like that.

    I never forgot her over these nearly 40 years and never will because she, like Dr. Warren and others, gave a lot to appreciative students, and it stuck.

  6. Dr. McCoy was one tough lady, she was a tremendous asset to the University and to the state of Mississippi. She will be missed by those of us who were fortunate enough to have had her as a professor. She was my undergraduate Psychology advisor, and I am sure that she always did what was best for the students in the JSU Psychology program.

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