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One of the oldest private institutions of higher learning in the Southeast – and a
school with an established academic reputation and widening geographic outreach –
is announcing it will be renamed King University.
King President Greg Jordan announced to students today that the 146-year-old King
College of Bristol, Tenn., is officially becoming King University, effective June
1, 2013. Founded in 1867, the school is known for its consistently high academic standards
and for producing quality graduates. King has been listed among America’s Best Colleges
in U.S. News World Report for the past 23 years and The Princeton Review’s best schools for the past nine years.
“It is with pride and great excitement that we announce the decision by King’s board
of trustees to approve changing our institution’s name to King University,” Jordan
says. “This change reflects the master’s-level, comprehensive benchmark that our school
has reached in recent years. We believe the word ‘university’ more accurately reflects
the current complexity of our academic programs and ultimately enhances the value
of a King degree for past, present and future graduates.”
After about a year of discussion and based on the school’s unprecedented growth over
the past decade, the name change was recommended by the administration and approved
by its board of trustees. Significantly, King has more than doubled its student body
since 2005, with fall 2012 enrollment approximating 2,400 students – the highest in
“Our efforts to remove barriers to education for working adults through our Graduate
and Professional Studies (GPS), launched in 2001, and more recently, the development
of online programs helped pave the way to our broadening academics and accelerated
growth,” Jordan notes. “Of course, none of it could be possible were it not for the
decades of academic excellence that led up to this juncture. It is an amazing evolution
by which we should all be encouraged.”
Becoming a university is the natural unfolding of King’s strategic plan, unveiled
in 1998, to create an even broader mix of programs based on a university model. Using
this approach, the institution now has six academic schools of learning:
Notably, three of the GPS offerings are advanced degrees – a Master of Business Administration
(MBA), a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) and a Master of Education (MED). Also,
the school plans to add doctoral programs in the future.
In addition to growing its main campus in Bristol and offering online programs, King
has established 12 satellite campuses across East Tennessee and Southwest Virginia,
serving the immediate region.
Bill Adams, chairman of the King University Board of Trustees, notes that the name
change is crucial in positioning King within the larger academic community.
“This represents a clear demonstration of King’s accomplishments on a national level,”
he says. “Becoming a university will benefit the school on a number of levels, particularly
in terms of facilitating fundraising and foundation opportunities and the future acquisition
of grant awards.”
Being renamed a “university” also more accurately aligns King with current assessments
performed by entities interested in higher education. Due to its broadened curriculum,
King has been reviewed using a university standard by U.S. News World Report Best Colleges for the past several years.
Other benefits cited by Jordan include improved job and graduate school opportunities
for graduates and enhanced ability of King University to recruit faculty and students
from across the globe. The new designation also helps boost marketing and branding
for the school, clarifying its higher education status for foreign audiences, for
which the word “college” often refers to pre-university programs and not higher education
and advanced degrees.
For more information about King University, please visit www.king.edu.
King University is a Presbyterian, master's-level comprehensive university. Founded in 1867 as King
College, the University offers more than 90 majors, minors, pre-professional degrees
and concentrations in fields such as business, nursing, law, medical and health sciences,
pharmacy, digital media, education, and humanities. Graduate programs are offered
in business administration, education, and nursing. A number of research, off-campus
learning opportunities, and travel destinations are also available. King University
is a NCAA Division II and a Conference Carolinas member with 25 varsity athletic teams.
For more information about King University, visit www.king.edu. King University does not discriminate against academically qualified students of
any race, color, national or ethnic origin, sex, age, or disability. King University
is certified by SCHEV to operate locations in Virginia. For more information, contact
the King University office at Southwest Virginia Community College, 309 College Road,
Richlands, VA 24641.