Concordia University Irvine
|Christ College Irvine|
|Motto||Developing Wise, Honorable, and Cultivated Citizens.|
|Affiliation||Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod|
|Colors||Green and Gold|
|Athletics||NCAA Division II|
Concordia University Irvine (formerly Christ College) is a private Christian university in Irvine, California, United States. It was established in 1976 to provide a Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod college to serve the Pacific Southwest and provide training for pastors, religious education teachers, and Christian school administrators. Concordia University Irvine has a total undergraduate enrollment of 1,592 and its campus size is 70 acres (28 ha). It is one of nine colleges and universities in the Concordia University System.
In 1955, Dr. Victor Behnken, then president of the Pacific Southwest District of the Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod (LCMS), proposed the creation of a preparatory college for the Pacific Southwest. In 1962, the LCMS agreed to build the school. A search committee commissioned by the district considered 87 sites before commercial and residential real estate developer The Irvine Company offered the present location in Irvine. In 1973, Rev. Dr. Charles Manske accepted the call from the district to be the founding president of Christ College Irvine.
In February 1993, the Board of Regents of Christ College Irvine voted to change the school's name to Concordia University Irvine. At that time, the university became the tenth campus in the national Concordia University System (CUS). In addition to the Concordia University System, the LCMS and its congregations also operate two seminaries, 130 high schools, and more than 900 elementary schools, making it the second largest church-operated school system in the United States.
|Rev. Dr. Charles Manske||1973–1980|
|Rev. Dr. D. Ray Halm||1980–1998|
|Rev. Dr. Jack Preus||1998–2010|
|Dr. Kurt Krueger||2010–2018|
The university currently includes five schools: Christ College (Christian seminary), School of Arts and Sciences, School of Business, School of Education, and School of Professional Studies; and offers 20 undergraduate majors and 50 specializations, nine graduate programs, four adult bachelor's degree completion programs, and three nursing programs. In 2014, Concordia University Irvine added its first doctoral program, Educational Leadership.
The campus is located 50 miles (80 km) south of Los Angeles, 80 miles (130 km) north of San Diego, and 6 miles (9.7 km) inland from the Pacific Ocean in the city of Irvine. Irvine is a planned community which is rated one of the safest cities of its size in the United States. The campus rests on a 70-acre (28 ha) plateau overlooking Orange County in a private residential community surrounded by wildlife and hiking trails. The offices of the School of Professional Studies - Adult Degree Programs, M.A. International Studies, and the Masters in Coaching and Athletic Administration (MCAA) teams moved to an offsite location in Irvine.
Concordia University Irvine athletics teams are members of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). Primarily competing in the NCAA Division II Pacific West Conference (PAC West), men's sports include baseball, basketball, cross country, soccer, swimming and diving, tennis, track and field, volleyball, water polo, and lacrosse; women's teams include softball, basketball, cross country, soccer, swimming and diving, tennis, track and field, volleyball, water polo, lacrosse, and cheer.
The university was previously a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) from 1981 to 2015. During that time, Concordia University Irvine earned 7 NAIA Team National Championships and 25 NAIA Individual National Championships. In addition to the NAIA championships, Concordia University Irvine won 26 Golden State Athletic Conference (GSAC) Regular-Season Championships and 13 GSAC Tournament Championships.
In U.S. News & World Report's 2013 rankings of the best colleges in America, Concordia University Irvine is listed as 63rd in the Western region. In 2016, the university earned a ranking of 55 among regional universities in the Western U.S.
In 2015, The Chronicle of Higher Education ranked Concordia University Irvine as one of the fastest-growing private nonprofit master's universities in its 2015-2016 edition of Almanac of Higher Education, noting that the university grew over a 10-year period (2003–2013).
Notable alumni and faculty
- Cameron Gliddon – professional basketball player in Australia
- Misty May-Treanor – three-time Olympic gold medalist; beach volleyball champion
- J. A. O. Preus III – former president
- Christian Ramirez – professional soccer player
- Rod Rosenbladt – professor of theology
- Larry Tieu (2007) – ASEAN Basketball League player for the Saigon Heat
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