Philander Smith College
|Philander Smith College|
|Established||1877: Walden Seminary
1882: Philander Smith College
|President||Walter M. Kimbrough|
|Location||Little Rock, Arkansas, United States|
|Affiliations||United Methodist Church
Philander Smith College is a private, historically black college that is affiliated with the United Methodist Church. It is located in Little Rock, Arkansas. The student body averages around 850 attendees, with around 30% of that figure attending part-time. Although known historically as a school for African Americans, it accepts students of all races. However, the vast majority of its students are black.
Philander Smith College was officially founded in 1877 under the name of Walden Seminary as a means of providing education opportunities for freed slaves west of the Mississippi River. The school was renamed Philander Smith College in 1882 to recognize the financial contributions of Adeline Smith, the widow of Philander Smith. The college was chartered as a four-year college in 1883 and conferred its first bachelor’s degree in 1888. In 1933, it merged the assets of the George R. Smith College in Sedalia, Missouri, which burned down in 1925. In 1943, Philander Smith was accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
Philander Smith College was a pioneer during the civil rights movement as many of its students engaged in nonviolent resistance against segregation laws (such as sitting in at "whites-only" lunch counters).
Dr. Walter M. Kimbrough became the 12th and current president of Philander Smith College in 2004 at the age of 37. At that time, he was dubbed the first college president from the hip-hop generation, and was the youngest HBCU president and one of the youngest college presidents in the nation.
Rankings and Education Conservancy 
Kimbrough joined the Education Conservancy in its criticism of U.S. News and World Report college rankings by signing a letter circulating among college presidents that asks them not to participate in the peer assessment portion of the survey. George W. Russel Gray is the current Director of Admissions.
On Feb. 21, 1989 - Philander Smith ended the longest home-court winning streak in NCAA Division III women's basketball history with a 92-89 victory over Rust College of Holly Springs, Mississippi.
Philander Smith teams, nicknamed athletically as the Panthers, are part of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), primarily competing in the Gulf Coast Athletic Conference (GCAC). Men's sports include basketball and track & field; while women's sports include basketball, cheerleading, track & field and volleyball.
Notable alumni 
|"Geese" Ausbie||former Harlem Globetrotters player and coach|
|James Hal Cone||major figure in systematic theology and liberation theology|
|Joycelyn Elders||former Surgeon General of the United States|
|Calvin King||1975||farm developmer, and the President of the Arkansas Land and Farm Development Corp|
|Lottie Shackelford||former mayor of Little Rock, Arkansas|
|Elijah Pitts||former Green Bay Packers player|
|Al Bell||founder of Stax Records and former president of Motown Records|
|Robert L. Williams||1953||prominent figure in the history of African-American psychology|
Notable faculty 
|Lee Lorch||mathematician and civil rights activist|
See also 
- Philander Smith College Historic District, listed on the National Register of Historic Places
- Kamara, Margaret (28 June 2007). "Are U.S. News Rankings Inherently Biased Against Black Colleges?". Diverse Issues in Higher Education.
- "Growing Challenge to ‘U.S. News’". Inside Higher Ed. 18 May 2007.
- Official website
- Official athletics website
- Philander Smith College on Twitter