Mid-Continent University

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Mid-Continent University
MidContinent University Crest.gif
Former name
West Kentucky Baptist Bible Institute, Baptist Bible Institute, Mid-Continent Baptist Bible College, Mid-Continent College
MottoBuilding Effective Leaders
TypePrivate, Baptist
Active1949 (1949)–2014 (2014)
AffiliationSouthern Baptist Convention
Location, ,

36°48′53″N 88°38′54″W / 36.8148°N 88.6483°W / 36.8148; -88.6483Coordinates: 36°48′53″N 88°38′54″W / 36.8148°N 88.6483°W / 36.8148; -88.6483
ColorsNavy and Gold

Mid-Continent University was a four-year, liberal arts Christian institution located near Mayfield, Kentucky, United States. It had been experiencing financial troubles and was placed on "warning status" by its regional accreditor the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools in late 2013.[1] On April 15, 2014, university officials reported that Interim President Ken Winters stepped down for family reasons April 12, and that former President Robert Imhoff and his wife Jackie Imhoff, the vice president of adult services, who had stepped down from their positions in February but were still receiving a salary, were fired. Robert Thomas "Tom" Walden was named to replace Winters.[2] On April 16, it was announced that the university did not have enough money to pay staff, and would close at the end of June.[3] On October 6, 2014, it was announced that Mid-Continent University had filed for bankruptcy.[4]


The university opened as the West Kentucky Baptist Institution in January 1949 in Clinton, Kentucky. In 1957, the university moved to Mayfield and changed its name to Bible Baptist Institute. In June 1965, the Board of Trustees changed the name of the school to Mid-Continent Baptist Bible College. In 1972, the Harris family of Graves County donated approximately 100 acres to the college and construction began on this campus. By 1992, LaVerne Butler, then-president of the university facilitated the school's accreditation.[clarification needed] He retired in 1997.[5] On May 20, 1993, the Board of Trustees changed the name to Mid-Continent College, and after organizing into two separate colleges, changed the name to Mid-Continent University.[6]

In December 2013, the school's accreditation warning by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools was extended for a second year.[7] This in turn triggered the denial of Federal financial aid from the United States Department of Education and put the school in financial difficulty.[8]

On April 16, 2014 all remaining employees were laid off although plans were for the school to remain open and staffed with volunteers until after graduation. Every class with at least one student graduating in May was covered by volunteers.[9][10]

On April 18, 2014, Western Kentucky University developed a special offer to accept all credits and waive application fees as well as other special incentives to ease the transition for Mid-Continent students.[11][12] On April 19, Midway College made a similar announcement.[13] Shortly afterwards, the school announced teach-out agreements with Murray State University, University of the Cumberlands and Campbellsville University.[14]


The university offered three bachelor's degrees: (bachelor of arts, bachelor of science, and bachelor of ministry) and two associate's degrees: (associate of arts and associate of science).[15]

On April 15, 2014, Mid-Continent's Board of Directors voted to cease operations and instruction, effective June 30, 2014. All faculty and staff were dismissed, with the exception of a few faculty members that agreed to volunteer their services without pay until the end of the semester, in order to accommodate graduating seniors.


Mid-Continent teams were known as the Cougars. The university was a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) and the National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA); primarily competing in the NAIA's American Midwest Conference (AMC), the Cougars also competed as a member of the Division I Mid-East Region of the NCCAA. Men's sports included baseball, basketball, cheerleading and soccer; while women's sports included basketball, cheerleading, softball and volleyball.[16]


  1. ^ "Southern Accreditor Clears Virginia, Fisk, Florida A&M". Inside Higher Ed. December 11, 2013. Retrieved December 24, 2013.
  2. ^ "Mid-Continent University gets new acting president". Lexington Herald-Leader. April 15, 2014. Retrieved April 16, 2014.
  3. ^ "Financially troubled Mid-Continent University to close on June 30". The Republic (Columbus, Indiana). April 16, 2014. Retrieved April 16, 2014.
  4. ^ "Mid-Continent University Files for Bankruptcy Protection". WPSD-TV. October 6, 2014.
  5. ^ Foust, Michael (December 21, 2010). "LaVerne Butler, conservative leader, dies". Baptist Press. Archived from the original on December 22, 2010. Retrieved 2011-05-31.
  6. ^ "MCU History". Mid-Continent University. Retrieved 2011-05-31.
  7. ^ "Disclosure Statement Regarding the Status of MID-CONTINENT UNIVERSITY Mayfield, Kentucky Issued December 19, 2013, by SACS Commission on Colleges" (PDF). SACS. Archived from the original (PDF) on 19 April 2014. Retrieved 17 April 2014.
  8. ^ Ramsey, Austin (24 February 2014). "Mid-Continent appoints Winters acting president". Murray Ledger and Times. Retrieved 17 April 2014.
  9. ^ "Mid-Continent University in Mayfield lays off entire staff, faculty in advance of June closing". Paris Post-Intelligencer. 16 April 2014. Retrieved 17 April 2014.
  10. ^ "Mid-Continent Chairman Confirms Layoffs, School Will Operate Through June 3". WKMS TV. Retrieved 17 April 2014.
  11. ^ Willis, Kevin. "WKU Actively Recruiting Mid-Continent Students Following Announcement that School is Closing". Western Kentucky University Public Radio. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
  12. ^ Mason, Chuck (19 April 2014). "WKU sees opportunity to grow". BG Daily News Park City Edition. Retrieved 19 April 2014.
  13. ^ "Midway waiving fees for Mid-Continent transfers". WHAS TV. 19 April 2014. Archived from the original on 21 April 2014. Retrieved 21 April 2014.
  14. ^ "Coming Soon - Teach Out Agreements". Mid-Continent University. Retrieved 26 April 2014.
  15. ^ "Traditional Degrees". Mid-Continent University.
  16. ^ "MCU Athletics". Retrieved 2011-06-02.

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