Frontline Responders: Arimentha Coleman Howlett shining positive light on fellow residents

Updated: Apr. 9, 2023 at 8:00 PM CDT
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MERIDIAN, Miss. (WTOK) - Arimentha Coleman Howlett grew up in Shuqualak, Mississippi. Early in her life schools in Mississippi were segregated. But Ms. Howlett pushed through, receiving a bachelor’s degree in education from Rust College and a master’s degree in elementary education with a specialization in special education from Mississippi State University. She was one of the first African Americans to attend MSU’s master’s degree program and feels it opened the doors for many others who came after her.

“A white man came by the house and asked to talk to my father and said that someone said his daughter should be one of the first to go to Mississippi State. They were very nice to us, and I enjoyed it. They would take part in different programs and different things. I was always ready to take part in it. They would always accept me. if I didn’t say anything about taking one, they’d be looking for me so I agreed,” said Howlett.

After earning her Master’s, Howlett worked as an educator in Noxubee County and later became the Program Developer for Noxubee County Schools. Now she’s spreading her love to other retired residents at Brookdale.

“Ms. Howlett is a joy to be around, she’s one of our residents that participates in any activity we have going on in Clare Bridge, and she’s always willing to join. Whenever you’re having a bad day, you can go to her and talk to her. She’ll perk you up. So, we’re very glad to have Ms. Howlett here as one of our residents,” said Clare Bridge Program Coordinator, Larrya Cole.

Howlett was one of three women honored by Brookdale during Women’s History Month.

“Oh, that gave me joy. I don’t know, I guess God has blessed me. I’ve been honored at some different places and when I hear what I do I just say well thank you Lord because I’m like why are they talking about this old girl? But this old girl is ready to accept it and I appreciate it,” said Howlett.

Howlett said she looks forward to making more fun memories at Brookdale.