Bluefield College

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Not to be confused with Bluefield State College.
Bluefield College
Established 1922
Type Private
Religious affiliation Baptist General Association of Virginia
President David W. Olive
Students 793
Location Bluefield, VA, U.S.
Athletics Mid-South Conference of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics
Mascot Ram
Affiliations Appalachian College Association, Council for Christian Colleges and Universities

Bluefield College is a small, Christian liberal arts college in Bluefield, Virginia, United States, in Tazewell County. It offers 22 majors, and is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. The 82-acre (330,000 m2) campus is about 150 ft (46 m) from the state line between Virginia and West Virginia.


Bluefield College was founded in 1922 by the Baptist General Association of Virginia (BGAV), after residents of Bluefield offered to donate land and start-up funds.[1] R.A. Landsdell became the first president in 1920, and the current administration building is named Landsdell Hall in his honor. At its founding, Bluefield was a two-year junior college. Future Nobel Prize winner John F. Nash took mathematics courses at the relatively new college while in high school. In his autobiography for the Nobel Foundation, he writes

I should mention that during my last year in the Bluefield schools that my parents had arranged for me to take supplementary math. courses at Bluefield College, which was then a 2-year institution operated by Southern Baptists. I didn't get official advanced standing at Carnegie because of my extra studies but I had advanced knowledge and ability and didn't need to learn much from the first math. courses at Carnegie.[2]

Under Charles L. Harman, president from 1946–1971, the college built Easley Library, the dormitory Rish Hall, Harman Chapel, and a geodesic dome as the gymnasium.[1]

In 1975, Bluefield reinvented itself as a four-year college, and during the 1989-1996 presidency of Roy A. Dobyns, student enrollment doubled to more than 800 students. In 1998, under the leadership of President Daniel G. MacMillan, the college cut tuition by over 20% and refocused its student recruitment on the local area.[1]

In 2007, the current president, David W. Olive, was inaugurated.[3] Shortly thereafter, the college raised tuition by about 20%,[4] and announced a new strategic plan.

Online Degree Programs[edit]

Bluefield College has been offering online bachelor’s degree programs since 2011. The college is ranked by U.S. News and World Report in the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs category and has over 500 enrolled students.[5] The college offers four bachelor degree programs online including Criminal Justice, E-business and Entrepreneurship, Management and Leadership, and Human Services. Additionally, students have the opportunity to complete an online Master’s degree in Education and Nursing (RN to BSN). Students enrolled in the college’s non-traditional adult degree-completion programs can also earn their bachelor’s degrees on campus or online.[6][7]

Degree Completion Program[edit]

Bluefield College has an adult degree completion program called Inspire. Inspire is an online adult program, which is designed to accelerate the length of time to achieve a four-year degree. Some online degree programs, which they offer are e-Business / Entrepreneurship, Management and Leadership and Criminal Justice. BC has an articulation agreement with the Virginia Community College System for students wishing to transfer into the program. - Updated 2013


Bluefield College teams, nicknamed athletically as the Rams, are part of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), primarily competing in the Mid-South Conference. The Rams previously competed in the Appalachian Athletic Conference (AAC). Participation in sports is popular at Bluefield, and in intercollegiate athletics, the college has seven men's and six women's teams. Men's sports include baseball, basketball, cross country, football, golf, soccer and tennis; while women's sports include basketball, cheerleading, cross country, golf, soccer, softball, tennis and volleyball.

Bluefield Basketball has been nationally ranked in 2007 and 2008, beginning the preseason poll at No. 15 Nationally. Bluefield, at the conclusion of the 2008–09 season was ranked 7th, with an undefeated schedule in the AAC, but lost the AAC Championship game at King by 1 point. Bluefield Baseball has also been a growing program there and have had successful winning seasons the past years. In 2007 they were the NCCAA Regional Champs. In 2009 they were the NCCAA national champions. Athletes make up about 60% at Bluefield.[8]

On June 4, 2011 Bluefield College announced the return of a football program with head coach Mike Gravier with "club football" and expecting play in the NAIA beginning in 2012.[9] Bluefield College had not had a football program since the attack on Pearl Harbor.[10]

In the fall of 2012, Bluefield left the AAC to become a member of the Mid-South Conference with the addition of football. The Rams compete in the league's East Division.


External links[edit]

Coordinates: 37°14′22.1″N 81°15′7.2″W / 37.239472°N 81.252000°W / 37.239472; -81.252000