University of Charleston

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University of Charleston
UCharleston seal.png
Former names
Barboursville Seminary of the Southern Methodist Church
Morris Harvey College
Endowment$28.1 million[1]
PresidentMartin S. Roth
ProvostKim Spiezio
Students2,111 (Fall 2014)[2]
Location, ,
United States
ColorsMaroon and Gold[3]
NicknameGolden Eagles
UCharleston logo.png

The University of Charleston (UC) is a private university with its main campus in Charleston, West Virginia. The university also has locations in Beckley, West Virginia, and Martinsburg, West Virginia, known as UC-Beckley and UC-Martinsburg, respectively.


The school was founded in 1888 as the Barboursville Seminary of the Southern Methodist Church. In 1901, it was renamed Morris Harvey College, in honor of a devoted supporter.[4]

A building behind a wall that reads "University of Charleston" and another building with a glass parapet, with a river running in front
The University of Charleston from across the Kanawha River

In 1935 the school moved to downtown Charleston and affiliated with the Mason College of Fine Arts and Music. In 1940, it became independent of the Methodist Church. In 1947, the school moved to its present campus in the Kanawha City section of Charleston across the river from the State Capitol.[5] In 1951, it purchased the Young-Noyes House as the home of the college president.[6] It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1978.[7]

The college fell on hard times after the end of the military draft and college deferment during the Vietnam War and offered itself to the state in 1975, which refused the gift. In December 1978, the school changed its name to the University of Charleston. Beginning with the inauguration of President Dr. Edwin H. Welch in 1989, the school has undergone a physical and academic transformation. Four new residence halls, a parking garage, a fitness center, an academic building housing the library, computer and science labs, and a new school of pharmacy have been built since 1998.

UC established campuses on Mountain State University's former Beckley and Martinsburg, West Virginia, locations on January 1, 2013. UC later vacated the former MSU Martinsburg campus (the property was sold to a third-party buyer), and established a new location in Martinsburg, known as UC-Martinsburg.[8] UC vacated the former MSU Beckley campus after the 2014-15 academic year and established a new campus in Beckley.[9]

On December 15th, the Board of Trustees appointed a committee of West Virginia University graduates who named Martin S. Roth to succeed Dr. Edwin Welch as the President of the University. He began on June 30th 2018. Roth left his position as the Dean of the Business School at the University of Hartford.[10]


The University of Charleston is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

The university employs a unique outcomes-based model of education whereby students learn and master six competencies by graduation: Citizenship, Communication, Creativity, Critical Thinking, Ethical Practice, and Science.

There are over twenty undergraduate major programs at UC, with two majors being somewhat unusual to the region, with few other colleges offering similar programs: Interior Design and Radiologic Science. Besides these two programs, other top majors at UC include English, Sports Administration, Education, Communications, Accounting, Nursing, and Athletic Training.


In 2012, UC was ranked 14th by U.S. News & World Report for regional colleges in the South.[11] In 2011, UC was the top ranked regional college in West Virginia, according to U.S. News & World Report.

Graduate schools[edit]

In 2006, UC opened its first doctoral program, the UC School of Pharmacy. In 2008, the university opened a graduate business school which grants four business master's degrees: Master of Business Administration and Leadership (MBAL), Executive Master of Business Administration (EMBA), Executive Master of Business Administration with a concentration in Pharmaceutical & Healthcare Management (EMBA- PHM), and Executive Master of Forensic Accounting (EMFA).[12]

In 2012, the school announced a new Physician Assistant program.[13]


UC's athletic teams, known as the Golden Eagles, mostly compete in the Mountain East Conference (MEC) in NCAA Division II. In June 2012, UC was one of nine members of the West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WVIAC) that announced their plans to leave to form a new Division II conference. Two months later, the new conference was unveiled as the MEC, with UC as one of 12 charter members. The men's volleyball team, which was elevated from a club team to full varsity status for the 2015 season (2014–15 school year), plays at the National Collegiate (Division I/II) level; after playing in 2015 as an independent, it joined the Eastern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association. University of Charleston achieved its first division II national championship in men's soccer in 2017 defeating Lynn University in the finals.[14]

In 2005, UC entered into a partnership with the local school board to refurbish the school board–owned Laidley Field, which was renamed University of Charleston Stadium. The campus also boasts new or renovated softball, football, baseball, and soccer fields, and competes in 18 Division II sports.

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ As of June 30, 2009. "U.S. and Canadian Institutions Listed by Fiscal Year 2009 Endowment Market Value and Percentage Change in Endowment Market Value from FY 2008 to FY 2009" (PDF). 2009 NACUBO-Commonfund Study of Endowments. National Association of College and University Business Officers. Archived from the original (PDF) on December 14, 2017. Retrieved February 16, 2010.
  2. ^ As of September 11, 2014. "University of Charleston has Record Enrollment". (Press Release) University of Charleston. Archived from the original on March 10, 2015. Retrieved October 25, 2014.
  3. ^ UC Branding Manual (PDF). Retrieved 2016-08-04.
  4. ^ "Our History". Archived from the original on 2015-10-07. Retrieved 2014-08-15.
  5. ^ "History". University of Charleston. Retrieved 2019-10-10.
  6. ^ "National Register of Historic Places Inventory Nomination Form" (PDF). Young-Noyes House. State of West Virginia, West Virginia Division of Culture and History, Historic Preservation. 2009-04-04.
  7. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. March 13, 2009.
  8. ^ "Mountain State to sell UC-Beckley campus | News". 2014-08-13. Retrieved 2016-08-04.
  9. ^ "Charleston Gazette-Mail | New UC Beckley campus open". 2015-06-30. Retrieved 2016-08-04.
  10. ^
  11. ^ "University of Charleston | Best College | US News". Retrieved 2014-08-15.
  12. ^ "Quick Facts". Archived from the original on 2014-07-11. Retrieved 2014-08-15.
  13. ^ "Physician Assistant Program". Retrieved 2014-08-15.
  14. ^

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 38°19′59″N 81°36′59″W / 38.332917°N 81.616524°W / 38.332917; -81.616524