The University of Mississippi

The William Magee Institute for Student Wellbeing

The William Magee Institute for Student Wellbeing, which includes the William Magee Center for Wellness Education, opened in 2019 to provide university students alcohol and other drug education, help with other addiction areas, support, referrals and research.

David Magee and his wife, Kent, began a grassroots movement among alumni, parents, friends and students that ultimately founded the Magee Center in memory of William Magee, their son. The institute and center quickly received an outpouring of significant private support, enabling meaningful work to begin.

“Everyone knows or loves someone who is battling substance abuse, whether alcohol, drugs, both or other issues. We are grateful for the magnitude of support received – 815 gifts and commitments to date for a total of $4.2 million,” said David Magee.

“The misuse of alcohol and other drugs is stereotypically thought to be a rite of passage for college students. Still, the truth is that the issue runs much deeper – many students have extensive experience with alcohol and other drugs before they reach college. They use substances to manage anxiety and to fit in with others, and substance misuse is often a family problem.”

Private funding is needed to develop new engagement programs for students and support research in finding reliable and effective prevention and intervention of abuse.

The state Institutions of Higher Learning Board of Trustees approved the university’s request to open the stand-alone William Magee Institute for Student Wellbeing; the institute is the umbrella organization over the Magee Center to prevent substance abuse and address the misuse of alcohol and other drugs, as well as coming centers focusing on eating disorders and stigma. The Jackie and Fazer Triplett Center for AOD (alcohol and other drug) Research will focus on finding and testing solutions for students and families and help establish the Institute as a national model for the higher education community.

For more information on supporting the Magee Institute and its centers, contact Brett Barefoot, senior director of development for parents and family leadership, at or 662-915-2711.

To seek help for a student, contact or 662-915-6543.

Visit the Magee Institute website

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