OXFORD, Miss. – For the second consecutive year, a graduate of Baldwyn High School plans to enroll this fall at the University of Mississippi on a full-tuition scholarship thanks to Jackson real estate entrepreneur Larry Johnson.
Alia Hodnett, a recent BHS honors graduate, has received the Landmark Foundation Ole Miss First Scholarship. Last year, Karrye Pippin was awarded the Larry Johnson Ole Miss First Scholarship, which honors the memory of Johnson’s parents, Swede and Alleene Johnson.
Johnson, owner of Landmark Companies in Jackson, said he and his brother Robert – both graduates of BHS – felt that establishing a scholarship for other BHS graduates was the perfect way to honor their parents.
"Our parents were essential in helping my brother and I see the importance of helping to provide a solid education for a student who has outstanding academic and leadership qualities," said Johnson, a 1956 graduate of Baldwyn High. "This scholarship is our way to help honor our parents and also to honor Ole Miss." Robert Johnson, of Germantown, Tenn., is a 1961 graduate of BHS.
Hodnett, who graduated May 18 from BHS, said she did not know she would receive the scholarship until three days before the school’s awards ceremony.
"I have always dreamed about attending Ole Miss and to do that I knew I would have to get a student loan," said Hodnett, daughter of Charlotte Samples and Larry Hodnett of Baldwyn. "I would like to say thank you to my benefactor for giving me this amazing opportunity to continue my education. You have made my dream real. I am very excited and honored."
At BHS, Hodnett was a member of the band, and she belonged to the Interact and Beta clubs.
Johnson graduated from Ole Miss in 1960 with a bachelor’s degree in business, followed by a law degree in 1962. He is a longtime supporter of his alma mater.
To learn more about Ole Miss First Scholarships, visit http://www.omfirst.olemiss.edu/scholars. For more information about giving programs at the University of Mississippi, visit