In 1943 the construction of the Zachary T. Hubert Health Clinic began under the leadership of President Jacob L. Reddix. The Health Center was built as a small hospital with 24 beds. It consisted of a ward for men and a ward for women, two isolation wards, two staff offices, a reception room, operating room, kitchen, utility room and apartments for nurses.
Dr. J. L. Shirley, Jr. M.D. said in 1943, “Jackson College will offer complete health services to four groups; student body, faculty, immediate community, and its adopted rural community schools.” He also states that this clinic was the first health association of its type in Jackson, MS for African Americans. The Health Center’s Motto was “Modern Health Service and Health Education for All.”
The building was named after the third president of Jackson College, Dr. Zachary T. Hubert. He was the first African-American president of Jackson College from 1911 to 1927. When the Health Clinic was built in 1943, President Reddix felt that former President Hubert deserved the honor of the building being named after him because of his focus on health issues during his presidency.
President Reddix wrote, “From the beginning of his administration as president in September, 1911 until he left the college in 1927, Mr. Hubert manifested a vision and had the stamina to pursue it with perseverance. This vision, that of making the student’s life complete, entailed many dreams which he labored to change into realities. He made the entire college-community health-conscious. President Hubert believed and advocated that health is first, education, second. In this respect he was truly progressive, for modern education teaches us that health is a basic, fundamental right to all human beings regardless of color or station in life.”
Currently the Zachary T. Hubert building operates as the office of Human Resources for Jackson State University.
SOURCES: Blue and White Flash (1944), Jacksonian, and the 1944 yearbook. JSU Division of Library and Information Resources, Archives and History