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Cormack Keeps Promise to His First Class of High School Graduates with $10,000 Endowed Family Scholarship

Pictured from left: Maxwell, Kennedy, Krystal, Michael, and Madison Cormack.

CLEVELAND, Miss. – For Dr. Michael Cormack, giving back to the Delta — the place where he started his first educational leadership role — was close to his heart and ran through the hearts of his entire family. It’s this philosophy that made Delta State University the perfect place to steward the newly instituted Cormack Family’s $10,000 Endowed Scholarship. He kept his promise.

“My family and I are excited to continue to stay connected with students in Quitman County,” said Michael Cormack, “while assisting them with access to higher education. We hope this scholarship will serve many who will be first-generation college graduates.”

Endowed scholarships are an important aspect of support for students at universities.

“Scholarships impart the comfort needed from financial strain and will make a difference in the lives of our students,” said Christy Riddle, Executive Director of the Student Success Center.

Recently, Cormack fulfilled his compassionate desire to help students from Quitman County, Mississippi with financial assistance to lessen the burden of attaining a degree.

“My wife and family want to stay connected to our Delta roots,” said Cormack. “My wife’s family is from Quitman County. My mother-in-law attended Quitman Elementary School, which is the school I would later lead as principal. This school and community are part of my family. We’re so excited to stay connected and to support in this way.”

“Scholarships can help students who are the first in their family to ever graduate find a rewarding career,” said Cormack.

In 2010, Cormack served as the elementary school principal at Quitman County Elementary School, his first assignment as principal. He immediately cared for those students and promised to help them with their future.

“I endeavor to support attendance at Delta State University for graduates of Madison Shannon Palmer High School, the same students that I got a chance to work with from Quitman County and all who will follow,” said Cormack.

A well-educated man and leader in his community, Cormack and his wife, Krystal, feel strongly about the importance of education. Michael Cormack sits on two boards supporting educational endeavors: the Mississippi Children’s Museum and the Woodward Hines Education Foundation, which focuses on postsecondary access and success for Mississippi high school graduates.

Dr. Michael Cormack, Deputy Superintendent for Jackson Public Schools received his bachelor’s degree from Boston College, a master’s degree in Elementary Education from Delta State University, a master’s degree in Organizational Leadership from Columbia University, and a Doctorate in Educational Leadership and Policy from Vanderbilt University.

Krystal Cormack is the Director of Tutor Success for BookNook, an educational technology company that focuses on closing the literacy gap for students across the country. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, a master’s degree in Elementary Education from Delta State University and will complete her Doctorate in Teacher Education at the University of Mississippi this coming May.

Both Michael and Krystal Cormack began their careers as fourth-grade teachers in the Mississippi Delta and have served as educators in Mississippi in various capacities. Their children are students in the Jackson Public School District.

“The Cormack Family Endowed Scholarship holds special meaning for us, and our children supported the idea. We are a family of educators who are committed to recognizing the brilliance of the young people from Quitman County. We are overjoyed at this opportunity to support them in this way,” Krystal Cormack noted.

For more information about how to start a scholarship, contact the Delta State University Foundation by email at or by phone at 662-846-4794.

Written by John Spencer