Emory and Henry College

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
For the university in the U.S. state of Georgia, see Emory University.
Emory & Henry College
Emory & Henry College Seal.png
Seal of Emory & Henry College
Motto Macte Virtute (Latin)
Motto in English
Increase in Excellence
Established 1836 (1836)
Type Private, liberal arts college
Affiliation United Methodist Church
Endowment $86.5 million[1]
President Jake Schrum (effective August 1, 2013)[2]
Students 978
Undergraduates 942
Postgraduates 39
Location Emory, Virginia, U.S.
36°46′25″N 81°50′00″W / 36.77361°N 81.83333°W / 36.77361; -81.83333Coordinates: 36°46′25″N 81°50′00″W / 36.77361°N 81.83333°W / 36.77361; -81.83333
Campus Rural
Colors Blue and Gold
Athletics NCAA Division III
Old Dominion Athletic Conference
Nickname Wasps
Mascot Wasp


Emory and Henry College
Nearest city Emory, Virginia
Built 1845
Architectural style Colonial Revival, Other, Georgian Revival
Governing body State
NRHP Reference # 85003695[3]
VLR # 095-0098
Significant dates
Added to NRHP January 30, 1989
Designated VLR January 18, 1983[4]

Emory and Henry College, known as E&H, Emory, or the College, is a private, coeducational liberal arts college located in Emory, Virginia, United States. The campus comprises 335 acres (1.36 km2) of Washington County, Virginia, which is part of Appalachian highlands of Southwest Virginia. Founded in 1836, Emory & Henry College is the oldest institution of higher learning in Southwest Virginia.[5]


Bishop John Emory

Emory & Henry College is named after John Emory, a renowned Methodist bishop, and Patrick Henry, an American patriot and Virginia’s first governor.[5][6] The college was founded upon the principles of vital faith and civic engagement by Creed Fulton, a Methodist minister; Colonel William Byars; Tobias Smyth, a Methodist farmer, and Alexander Findlay, a Methodist businessman.[7]

Patrick Henry

The foundation for Wiley Hall was laid on September 30, 1836. The Board of Trustees then hired Charles Collins (1838–1852) as the institution's first president with classes beginning in the spring of 1838 with 60 students enrolled.[8]

The College closed its doors in April 1861 during the Civil War and was commandeered by the Confederate States of America in 1862 operating as a hospital until 1865. During this time the campus saw battle during the Battle of Saltville. The hospital was the setting of Lieutenant Smith's murder on October 7, 1864 by Champ Ferguson. After the civil war ended, the College reopened.[8]

During World War II, Emory & Henry was one of 131 colleges and universities nationally that took part in the V-12 Navy College Training Program which offered students a path to a Navy commission.[9]

Today, the college comprises a student body population of approximately 1,100 and employs 75 full-time professors.[10] Graduates of E&H have become scientific researchers, NASA engineers, writers, physicians, ministers, lawyers, educators and business people.


Located in the Virginia Highlands, the Emory & Henry central campus encompasses 168 acres (0.68 km2) and is surrounded by an additional 167 undeveloped acreage in the village of Emory. The entire central campus is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and the Virginia Register of Historic Landmarks.[11]


With many campus buildings dating from the mid 19th century, several major academic buildings are listed on the National Registry of Historic Buildings, including Wiley Hall, which was built 1838 and was used as a confederate hospital during the Civil War. In recent years, Emory & Henry has been experiencing a building boom, most notably with the construction of the James H. Brooks Field House, a major expansion of Byars Hall, and the construction of the Woordorw W. McGlothlin Center for the Arts.

Residence Halls

Emory & Henry boast modern and newly renovated campus housing. Among the residence halls are the newly built Elm and Hickory halls, which feature double occupancy rooms, each with its own bathrooms. In the Emory "village" students enjoy Prillaman and Linden houses, modern residences that feature single and double occupancy rooms in a home-like setting. Other residence halls include Stuart Hall, Martha Washington Hall and Hillman Hall.


Academic buildings include McGlothlin-Street Hall which includes Emory & Henry's very popular science programs as well as programs in education, political science, business and history. Historic Byars Hall was recently expanded to include classrooms, rehearsal spaces and office space for the Division of Visual and Performing Arts. In addition, the Hermesian and Calliopean rooms, which are home to the College's historic debate societies, have been restored to their early elegance. Students also attend classes on the main E&H campus in the Creed Fulton Observatory, Miller Hall and Wiley Hall.


Other campus buildings include Memorial Chapel, Kelly Library, the King Ahletic Center, Brook Field House, Martin-Brock Student Center, Van Dyke, Emily Williams House, and Tobias-Smyth Cabin (a reconstructed log house which was home to one of the college's founders; now a museum and meeting place.)[11]


Emory & Henry College's liberal arts academic program is based upon a required four-year core curriculum of history, literature, and culture. The college has more than 25 academic programs of study and offers more than 50 bachelor degrees and offers master's degrees in education and community and organizational leadership. The college's programs in public policy and community service and international studies have been nationally recognized.

Students have the opportunity to study abroad or travel abroad with professors. E&H students are able to attend to a range of lectures and cultural events, called Lyceums, led by political figures, area experts, or artists.

Service Students have opportunities to volunteer. Furthermore, volunteerism can be achieved through social activism with the Public Policy and Community Service Program and the Appalachian Center for Civic Life. The service fraternity Alpha Phi Omega has a chapter at Emory and Henry College.

Student research

E&H professors prepare students by providing research opportunities. Students studying biology could be collecting microbes 150 feet (46 m) under water. Physics majors could find themselves photographing binary stars. Students who do research for a political science class could be presenting their work to a major conferences such as the Western Political Science Association.

Study abroad

The International Education and Study Abroad Program is an important part of the liberal arts curriculum. In a partnership with CIEE students have spent semesters or summers abroad, or participated in Emory abroad courses—short-term international programs led by the E&H faculty. Through active engagement, the program enhances global awareness through an understanding of cultural diversity and global interdependence.


Each year, Emory and Henry holds close to 100 concerts, lectures, theatre, dance performances, films, exhibits, and poetry readings to complete the academic experience. Of the lyceum events, the biggest are a literary festival each November and ah a Spring Forum focused on a particular social issue.

Outdoor program

The College is located in the Appalachian Mountains with forests to hike, mountains for cross-country skiing, creeks to paddle, cliffs for rappelling, and caves for spelunking. The Appalachian and Iron Mountain Trails, The Virginia Creeper Trail, The Mount Rogers National Recreation Area, The Jefferson and George Washington National Forests, and the New, Nantahala, and Clinch rivers are all close by.


Main article: Emory & Henry Wasps

Emory and Henry College’s sports teams, nicknamed the “Wasps,” participate in NCAA Division III in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC). The college fields men’s teams in football, soccer, basketball, baseball, cross country and tennis and women’s teams in cross country, volleyball, basketball, softball, soccer, tennis and swimming.


The official Emory & Henry mascot is the Wasp. While there are many rumored origins of the nickname, the most commonly accepted story is that Emory & Henry was first called the Wasps after the football team played its first game in Neyland Stadium at the University of Tennessee.[12] Although Emory & Henry was beaten 27–0, Emory & Henry held the Volunteers scoreless for the first half. Legend has it that the local paper declared, "that those Virginia boys stung like wasps."

Student activities[edit]

There are more than 70 student organizations are active on Emory and Henry's campus. Community service projects are also a way many students, especially Bonner Scholars, spend their free time. Often students will mountain bike or hike on the numerous trials in nearby Damascus or Abingdon, or spend time outside participating in rock climbing, kayaking or other outdoor sports. Sports such as football, basketball, soccer, baseball, and volleyball are offered as both intercollegiate and as intramural sports.

Greek life[edit]

Emory and Henry allows local social fraternities and sororities only.

The currently recognized social sororities on campus are Alpha Beta Chi, Delta Omicron Pi, Delta Rho Delta, Kappa Phi Alpha, Pi Sigma Kappa, and Sigma Upsilon Nu.

The currently recognized social fraternities on campus are Theta Chi Epsilon, Pi Delta Chi, Sigma Alpha Kappa, Sigma Iota, Dom-I-Necher, Phi Gamma Phi, Phi Pi Alpha, C Phi C, and Beta Lambda Zeta.

Student media[edit]

  • The Whitetopper student newspaper, established in 1921.
  • EHC-TV, student produced television news program.
  • WEHC-FM 90.7, the college's official radio station.
  • ehcwired.com, online student news site.

Unchartered organization investigation[edit]

On November 6, 2014, the campus newspaper, the Whitetopper, reported that an investigation of the Emorium Society was underway.[13] The organization's existence is a violation of Emory and Henry's current policies and further accusations of hazing were levied against the group, which are currently being investigated.[13]

Around the same time a second group emerged of students claiming to be the Henricense Society. These students fought for fairness for all E&H students, even going the distance to create a blog to show the Emorium Society the error of their ways and encouraging them to become a part of the community.[14] Their efforts went unheeded by both the administration and the Emorium Society and after several threats against students, the Henricense Society ceased operations.[15]

Results from the investigation have not been released to the E&H student body, but unofficial results were discussed with certain students. The administration has uncovered a wide body of knowledge about the Emorium Society including lists of members and group activities. Some of these include vandalism and association with alumni accused of hazing.[16]


Traditions at Emory and Henry College include:

Service Plunge – the college's annual "Service Plunge" is a tradition and a requirement of all incoming freshman in which they must go out and perform community service for a day during the first month of school (usually a Saturday).[17]

Running of the Bulls – The Running of the Bulls is a Bi-annual event in which girls who are pledging a sorority are sent running out of the front door of Wiley-Jackson (MaWa) and are told to run towards the sorority which they intend to pledge. The event, although short, is often attended by large portions of the student population due to its somewhat humorous nature.

The Rock – Every athletic team that plays their games at Fred Selfe Stadium touches a giant rock taken from the late Fred Selfe's hometown. Coach Selfe was a long-time assistant coach for the Emory and Henry football team who died of cancer and whose saying "Trust in your teammates, trust in yourself" is painted in the football locker room. Touching the Rock is seen as not only a unifying gesture, but it is supposed to also be a "recognition of all those who wore the blue and gold before you."

The Duck Pond – Emory and Henry is known for having ducks year round at its duck pond. This is because the pond is naturally heated due to a spring (which can be see in the corner closest to Wiley Hall in the foundations of the old well house).

Rain, Sleet, or Snow – Emory and Henry is notorious among students for not canceling classes due to inclement weather. This is due the fact that large numbers of Emory and Henry students live on campus and since they do not have to drive to school, the College often feels little need to cancel class.[18] It is rumored among students that the college has only been closed three times since its opening in 1836 due to inclement weather.

Rankings and recognition[edit]

In the last 27 years, Emory & Henry professors have been recognized 17 times with major state or national teaching awards. The most recent recipients include Dr. Michael Lane, who received the 2014 Virginia Outstanding Faculty Award from the State Council for Higher Education in Virginia, and Dr. Alma Ramirez, who was awarded the 2014 "Rising Star" award by the Virginia Foundation for Independent Colleges. Seven times Emory & Henry professors have won the state or national Professor of the Year Award given by the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education. Emory & Henry has won this award more than any other college or university in Virginia. E&H recipients of that award include T. Edward Damer, 1988; Kathleen R. Chamberlain, 1993; David A. Copeland, 1997; Stephen L. Fisher, 1999; Teresa D. Keller, 2003; John H. Roper, 2005; James C. Duchamp, 2011; and Scott Boltwood, 2013. In addition to Lane, E&H winners of the Virginia Outstanding Faculty Award have included Fisher, 1994; Samir N. Saliba, 1997; John Lang, 1998; Duchamp, 2009 and Keller, 2010. Lane is also the recipient of the 2012 Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching given by the Virginia Foundation for Independent Colleges. Saliba is also the recipient of the 2001 Outstanding Teaching Award given by the National Board of higher Education and Ministry of the United Methodist Church.

E&H was honored by President Obama with the Corporation for National and Community Service Presidential Award in March 2010, making it the first Virginia institution for higher learning to receive the award.[19]

Washington Monthly consistently ranks Emory & Henry as the top liberal arts college in Virginia and among the top 50 liberal arts colleges nationwide.

"Virginia has no shortage of schools with robust reputations … but Emory & Henry does the finest job of them all of educating contributors to society." – Colleges That Change Lives.

According to measurements of student satisfaction conducted by the Student Satisfaction Inventory (SSI), Emory and Henry students rate their college well above the national average for four-year institutions with regard to the quality of the instruction they receive and the effectiveness of their academic advisors. Among the many other categoriES in which Emory and Henry sharply exceeds the national average are the desire for students to enroll again and their assessment of the helpfulness of E&H staff and administrators.

Notable alumni[edit]

The E&H Alumni Plaza sits midway between Wiley Hall and Memorial Chapel.

Literature, television and arts[edit]


  • Joe L. Kincheloe (1972) – World-renowned author of over 50 books on education, culture, and politics; Canada Research Chair in Critical Pedagogy at McGill University, Montreal, Canada.
  • Henry DeLamar Clayton – President of the University of Alabama from 1886-1889; Confederate general during Civil War.


  • Frank Rowlett (1929) – American cryptologist who cracked the Japanese code during World War II.
  • Thomas T. Handy (enrolled 1908-1911) - Served as Deputy Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army in World War II; signed the orders to drop the atomic bomb on Hiroshima.
  • James Patton Brownlow - Brevet Brigadier General of the 1st Tennessee Volunteer Cavalry Regiment (Union) during the Civil War.
  • J.E.B. Stuart (enrolled 1848–1850) - a U.S. Army officer and later a Confederate general during the American Civil War.

Science, research, and medicine[edit]

  • John Young (1955) - NASA worker who discovered the use of gravitational pull of the earth and moon to bring the Apollo 11 lunar module back to earth.

Politics and government[edit]


Sports and athletics[edit]


  1. ^ As of February 14, 2014. "U.S. and Canadian Institutions Listed by Fiscal Year 2013 Endowment Market Value and Percentage Change in Endowment Market Value from FY 2012 to FY 2013" (PDF). 2013 NACUBO-Commonfund Study of Endowments. National Association of College and University Business Officers. Retrieved April 1, 2014. 
  2. ^ "New President Has Busy First Day". Ehc.edu. Retrieved 8 November 2014. 
  3. ^ Staff (2010-07-09). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 
  4. ^ "Virginia Landmarks Register". Virginia Department of Historic Resources. Retrieved 5 June 2013. 
  5. ^ a b Salmon, John S. (1994), A Guidebook to Virginia's Historical Markers, Charlottesville, Virginia: University of Virginia Press, p. 51 
  6. ^ Heatwole, Cornelius Jacob (1916), A History of Education in Virginia, New York, New York: MaCmillan and Company, p. 162 
  7. ^ [1][dead link]
  8. ^ a b [2][dead link]
  9. ^ "Donald W. Tendick, Sr., Memorial". Historical Marker Database. 2011. Retrieved September 26, 2011. 
  10. ^ [3][dead link]
  11. ^ a b [4][dead link]
  12. ^ [5][dead link]
  13. ^ a b Brickey, Kaylan. "Allegations Made Against Emorium Society." The Whitetopper 06 Nov. 2014, 176th ed.: 1+. Print.
  14. ^ "Hericense Society: About". Retrieved 2015-09-15. 
  15. ^ "Henricense Society: Inactive". The Emorium Society. Retrieved 2015-09-15. 
  16. ^ Letter to the editor, The Whitetopper 13 Nov. 2014, 177th ed.: 1+. Print.
  17. ^ [6][dead link]
  18. ^ [7][dead link]
  19. ^ [8][dead link]

External links[edit]