Mississippi Valley State University (commonly referred to as MVSU) is a historically black university located in unincorporated Leflore County, Mississippi, in the Mississippi Delta, near Itta Bena. MVSU is a member- school of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund. The institution, which opened in 1950, was created by the Mississippi Legislature as Mississippi Vocational College. The legislature anticipated that legal segregation of public education was in danger (and would in four years be declared unconstitutional in the United States Supreme Court's decision in Brown v. Board of Education the institution, hoping that its existence would draw African-American applicants who might have otherwise applied to attend Mississippi's premier whites-only institutionsthe University of Mississippi, Mississippi State University, and the University of Southern Mississippi.
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