Southwest Baptist University
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|Southwest Baptist University|
|Motto||"Southwest Baptist University is a Christ-centered, caring academic community preparing students to be servant leaders in a global society."|
|Religious affiliation||Missouri Baptist Convention|
|President||C. Pat Taylor|
|Location||1600 University Ave.
Bolivar, MO 65613
|Campus||152 acres (61.5 ha)|
|Athletics||NCAA Division II, MIAA|
|Colors||Purple and white|
Southwest Baptist University (SBU) is a private institute of higher education affiliated with the Missouri Baptist Convention, which is part of the Southern Baptist Convention. In 2003 there were approximately 3,600 students attending at one of SBU's four Missouri, United States campuses, located in the state towns of Bolivar, Mountain View, Salem and Springfield.
Abner S. Ingman and James R. Maupin founded Southwest Baptist College in 1878 in Lebanon, Missouri. The Lebanon campus originally had an enrollment of 60 students and six faculty. The college lasted one year before the city decided they no longer wanted it. When news got out that the college would be moving, the communities of Aurora, Monett, and Bolivar in southwest Missouri attempted to attract the college. In 1879, the state of Missouri chartered the school and it moved to Bolivar, Missouri. The college went through many financial difficulties in the early part of the Twentieth Century. The college remained closed from 1910-1913 due to a fire that destroyed the entire campus, until Missouri Baptists and area supporters helped it open again as a two-year junior college.
On June 1, 1910, at 11:00 am., the fire that would destroy the campus started. The fire broke out under suspect circumstances, leading some to believe arson was the cause. Bolivar citizen firefighters tried to put out the fire, but the water supply ran dry and at 2:00 pm the fire engulfed the whole campus. Losses were estimated at $20,000. The college was rebuilt, and reopened in 1913.
When it reopened in 1913 as a junior college, Southwest Baptist College consisted of four buildings, three of which still stand on the Stufflebaum campus. This is what is referred to as the “old campus." Among the buildings still standing from the original Stufflebaum campus are Casebolt Apartments (formerly Casebolt Science Building), Memorial Hall, Maupin Hall and Ingman Hall.
On March 26, 1962 A fire destroyed Pike Auditorium. Students and townspeople saved eight pianos and almost all of the sports equipment from the locker rooms of the multipurpose building at that time. Pike Auditorium was the only building destroyed by the fire. The fire became a turning point in the history of Southwest Baptist. The newly elected president, Dr. Robert E. Craig, used the event to stimulate the buying of 102 acres (41.3 ha) of farmland south of Bolivar. This farmland expanded into the Shoffner Campus on which Southwest Baptist University resides today.
The Shoffner campus, located approximately a quarter-mile south of Stufflebaum campus, was started in 1962 with the opening of Beasley Hall. Within ten years, Landen Hall (formerly New Men’s Dorm), Leslie Hall, Goodson Student Union, and the Wayne and Betty Gott Educational Center (formerly the campus library) were opened. In 1977, Mellers Dining Commons was opened, adjoining Goodson Student Union.
In 1981, the Gene Taylor National Free Enterprise Center was opened to facilitate the College of Business and Computer Science. This was the same year in which Southwest Baptist College became Southwest Baptist University. In 1989, the Sells Administrative Building was completed to accommodate the growing administrative department of Southwest Baptist University.
In 1992, the Wheeler Science Center opened, giving the science department a facility capable of housing hundreds of students. The school of Physical Therapy is located in this building.
The Wayne and Betty Gott Educational Center was renovated in 1998 to accommodate classroom needs. The campus library moved to what is now the Jester Learning and Performance Center, and was renamed the Harriet K. Hutchens Library, which opened in 1996. The rest of the Jester Learning and Performance Center was completed in 2001. It currently houses the Davis-Newport theatre and the Bob R. Derryberry School of Communication Arts.
The most recent addition to the Shoffner campus is the Jane and Ken Meyer Wellness Center. It opened to students in January 2005. This facility houses an indoor track, intramural gym, fitness center, rock wall and is also the home of Bearcat Basketball.
Presidents of SBU
Presidents listed in chronological order.
- James R. Maupin (1878–1884)
- Abner S. Ingman (1884–1886)
- Julius M. Leavitt (1886–1889)
- W. H. Burnham (1889–1892)
- Robert E. L. Burks (1892–1895)
- Asa Bush (1895–1897)
- James R. Rice (1897–1899)
- Ernest W. Dow (1903–1905)
- Joseph Rucker (1905–1908)
- J. E. Austin (1908–1913)
- Charles W. Fisher (1913–1915)
- B. W. Wiseman (1915–1916)
- John C. Pike (1916–1928)
- John W. Jent (1928–1930)
- Courts Redford (1930–1943)
- Samuel H. Jones (1943–1948)
- John W. Dowdy (1949–1960)
- Robert E. Craig (1961–1967)
- James L. Sells (1968–1979)
- Harlan E. Spurgeon (1979–1983)
- Charles L. Chaney (1983–1986)
- J. Edwin Hewlett, Jr. (1989–1990)
- Wayne Gott (Interim) (1991–1992)
- Roy Blunt (1993–1996)
- C. Pat Taylor (1996–present)
Southwest Baptist University Colleges include:
- College of Business and Computer Science
- Courts Redford College of Theology and Ministry
- Lewis E. Schollian College of Education and Social Sciences
- Geneva Casebolt College of Music, Arts and Letters
- College of Science and Mathematics
- St. John's College of Nursing and Health Services
- Casebolt Music Center and Casebolt apartments – named after Geneva Casebolt, a beneficiary who gave a large endowment for the buildings.
- Felix Goodson Student Union – named after a former Dean of Students.
- Gene Taylor National Free Enterprise Center – named in honor of former Missouri Congressman Gene Taylor
- Hammons Center for Facilities Excellence – named after Dwain Hammons and his wife, Donna, who gifted SBU with the property this building is located
- Harriett K. Hutchens Library – named in honor of Harriett K. Hutchens, who gave a generous donation.
- Jane and Ken Meyer Wellness and Sports Center/Meyer Hall – named in honor of the Meyers who were beneficiaries for this and other projects.
- Jester Learning and Performance Center – named in honor of Bill Jester who stepped in after the project had to be reorganized after the passing of Sam Walton.
- Jim Mellers Center – Donor in 1980s who owned a photography shop and later received a patent for a photography related idea.
- Killian Health Center – named in honor of Bob and Betty Killian, owners of Killian Construction Company.
- Mabee Chapel – named after the J.E. and L.E. Mabee Foundation.
- Mellers Dining Commons – named in honor of Marietta Mellers, the wife of Jim Mellers.
- Plaster Athletic Center/ Plaster Stadium/ Plaster Hall – named in honor of beneficiary Robert W. Plaster.
- Sells Administrative Center – named in honor of Jim Sells who served as president for 11 years. (1968–1979)
- Wayne and Betty Gott Educational Center/Gott Hall – Wayne and Betty Gott are two of the largest donors to SBU.
- Wheeler Science Center – named in honor of Clarence Wheeler who gave a large donation for the building and scholarships.
- Beasley Hall – named in honor of Dr. Titus Beasley who gave the lead gift for this hall.
- Landen Hall – named in honor of Edward and Daisy Landen for "devotion to their church, the Southern Baptist Convention and to Christian higher education"
- Maupin Hall – named in honor of the first President James R. Maupin (1878–1884).
- Memorial Hall – named in honor of the ten students from SBU who served in World War II.
- Roseman Apartments – named in honor of the Roseman family who previously owned the complex.
- Woody Hall – named in honor of Jessie Lee Woody, a donor towards the project.
Academic and Professional Organizations
- Accounting Club
- Association for Computing Machinery
- Chi Sigma Theta
- English Club
- Gamma Alpha Theta
- Nursing Club
- Phi Beta Lambda
- Behavioral Sciences Club
- Psi Chi
- Delta Epsilon Chi
- Missouri Gamma Alpha Chi
- Missouri Sigma Pi Kappa Delta
- College Republicans
- Cultural Awareness Network (C.A.N.)
- Habitat for Humanity
- Christian Service Organization
- Crosslight (women's musical ensemble)
- Discipleship teams
- Fellowship of Christian Athletes
- Fellowship of Christian Recreators
- Higher Ground
- Phi Eta Sigma (National Honor Society)
- Revival teams
- SBU missions
- SCJS (Sociology and Criminal Justice Society)
- Small group ministry
- Student Government Association
- T.E.A.M. (Theatrical Evangelism and Missions)
- Theta Alpha Kappa
- Omnibus (student newspaper)
- Buddy Baker, film composer, best known for his long relationship and extensive work with the Walt Disney Company.
- Roy Blunt, Republican Senator for the State of Missouri (former President of university)
- Ben M. Bogard, founder of the American Baptist Association
- Rod Jetton, former Speaker and Republican member of the Missouri House of Representatives
- Shane Schoeller, Republican member of the Missouri House of Representatives and Republican candidate in the Missouri secretary of state election, 2012
- Bill Randles, Republican candidate in the Missouri gubernatorial election, 2012
- Hamlett, Mayme (1984). To Noonday Bright: A History of Southwest Baptist University . Bolivar, MO: Southwest Baptist University. (p. 78)
- Hamlett, Mayme (1984). To Noonday Bright: A History of Southwest Baptist University . Bolivar, MO: Southwest Baptist University. (p. 274)
- Hamlett, Mayme (1984). To Noonday Bright: A History of Southwest Baptist University . Bolivar, MO: Southwest Baptist University. (p. 275)
- C. Taylor, Personal Communication, January 10, 2008.
- C. Taylor, Personal Communication, January 10, 2008
- (portrait list of presidents on display at Harriett K. Hutchens Library in the Jester Learning and Performance Center, Shoffner campus, Bolivar, MO.)
- "Benjamin Marcus Bogard (1868–1951)". encyclopediaofarkansas.net. Retrieved August 4, 2013.
- Southwest Baptist University
- Southwest Baptist University Athletics
- Southwest Baptist University Newspaper Omnibus Online