State higher education officials were conducting a second round of interviews Monday that were expected to result in three individuals being chosen as finalists to be the next president of Jackson State University.

Names of the candidates being interviewed were not released by the Board of Trustees of the State Institutions of Higher Learning before the board voted to go into executive session to meet with the candidates.

“This is a little bit different from the first round,” said IHL Commissioner Glenn Boyce. “It’s intended to be general discussion and free flowing.”

Before the committee voted to go into executive session, Boyce encouraged members of the search committee to make the candidate feel “very comfortable.”

A preferred candidate will be selected from the three and brought to the JSU campus, tentatively on May 17, for a full day of meetings with JSU constituents.

Participants in those sessions will be allowed to complete a rating survey about the candidate for the board to review before making a final decision.

The board will then vote to name the next president or vote to reopen the search to fill the position vacated by Dr. Carolyn Meyers last October.

In October 2016, the Institutes of Higher Learning trustees reported that Jackson State’s cash reserves declined from $37 million to $4 million over four years.

The board hired Ridgeland-based Matthews, Cutrer & Lindsay P.A., an accounting analytics firm, to assess the university’s finances between Fiscal Year 2012 and Fiscal Year 2016.

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Ashley F. G. Norwood, a native of Jackson, earned a bachelor's degree in English from Jackson State University and a master’s degree from the Meek School of Journalism at the University of Mississippi. Norwood, who specializes in multimedia journalism, has been recognized nationally for her documentary film the fly in the buttermilk, which covers the history, perceptions and principles of black Greek-lettered organizations at the University of Mississippi.