University of Kentucky College of Arts and Sciences

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University of Kentucky College of Arts & Sciences
EstablishedApril 14, 1908
DeanMark Lawrence Kornbluh
Administrative staff
350 faculty members
Students5,200 undergraduates (960 graduates, 50 postdoctoral students)
LocationLexington, Kentucky, US
38°02′19″N 84°30′15″W / 38.0386°N 84.5043°W / 38.0386; -84.5043Coordinates: 38°02′19″N 84°30′15″W / 38.0386°N 84.5043°W / 38.0386; -84.5043

The College of Arts and Sciences (A&S) is the liberal arts and sciences unit of the University of Kentucky, located in Lexington, Kentucky. It is primarily divided[clarification needed] between the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities, and offers more than thirty degree options for both undergraduate and graduate students.

The college is home to 5,200 undergraduate students, 960 graduate students, 50 postdoctoral students, and 350 faculty members.[1] The College of Arts and Sciences is led by award-winning professors and researchers who have been recognized by such organizations as the Fulbright Scholar Program, National Science Foundation, and National Endowment for the Humanities. The College of Arts and Sciences features programs in Hispanic Studies, Human Geography, and Clinical Psychology each ranked in the top twenty among public institutions.[2]

The mission of the college is to facilitate the learning of a diverse student population through an educational curriculum emphasizing the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences. The college is dedicated to the idea that its students should have the ability to engage with diverse fields of knowledge and to think critically about the human and natural worlds.[3]

History of the college[edit]

The College of Arts and Science was established April 14, 1908 by James K. Patterson, the first president of the University of Kentucky, as part of Patterson's initiative to create a college within the university that would provide solid educational training in the sciences, arts, and humanities.

The Graduate School was formally established in 1912, and by 1919 UK was one of only 130 institutions in the United States whose graduate school had been accepted to the National Association of State Universities.

In 1918, President Frank McVey expanded the college from 13 departments to 22 in and added the "s" to Sciences (thus making it the College of Arts and Sciences). McVey insisted on hiring faculty members with doctorates to make the university more competitive.[4]

To accommodate the growing numbers of students during the 1931-32 academic year, UK built several new buildings, including the Biological Sciences building, Erikson Hall (built as the Home Economics Building), and an enlarged ROTC building.

In 1945 the College of Arts and Sciences began recognizing individual faculty members with the Distinguished Professor Award, the first of which was awarded to Grant Knight of the English Department. 1947 also saw Paul G. Blazer and his wife Georgia launch the still-ongoing Blazer Lecture Series to showcase the talent of university faculty and other members of the academic community.

Sociology major William Augustus Jones, Jr., and English minor Doris Wilkinson represented A&S in UK's first graduating class of African-Americans in 1958. Joseph Walter Scott, UK's first African-American professor, was hired by the Sociology Department in 1965 and was joined later in 1967 by Doris Wilkinson, who became the first female African-American professor in the school's history.[5]

During the same time – and in response to an increasingly tense political climate – the College of Arts and Sciences opened the Patterson School for Diplomacy.

The college's location on UK's campus was centralized by the construction of Patterson Office Tower. Completed in 1969, the Office Tower and adjacent Whitehall Classroom Building gave the College of Arts and Sciences additional classrooms and office spaces.

In 1974, Judith Lesnaw was hired on as the first woman in Biology, and she later became the first woman to receive tenure at the university. [6]

William Nunn Lipscomb was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1976 for his studies on borane structure and chemical bonding. As interest in Appalachia grew during the 1970s, UK opened the Appalachian Center in 1977 and developed a widely recognized curriculum in Appalachian Studies.[7]

In the 2005 Faculty Scholarly Activity Index, UK's Hispanic Studies Department was ranked as best among American universities. The college's programs in philosophy and religious studies also achieved high ranking in the same index.

Today, the University of Kentucky's primary goal is to become a Top 20 university by the year 2020. Since all students take classes in the College of Arts and Sciences, A&S plays an important role in working towards that goal. A&S is now the largest college in the university, and leads UK in the number of University Research Professorships.[8]


The College of Arts and Sciences features 18 traditional departments, offering majors leading to B.A., B.S., M.A., M.S., M.Phil., and Ph.D. degrees.


In addition to its departments, the College of Arts and Sciences also houses 19 interdisciplinary programs and committees:

Faculty awards and grants[edit]

Faculty in the College of Arts and Sciences have been awarded grants from such institutes as the National Science Foundation, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, National Institute on Drug Abuse, US Department of Education, and National Institutes of Health.[10] Similarly, faculty members have received many national and international fellowships, including awards from the Guggenheim Foundation, Fulbright Program, National Endowment for the Humanities, and Humboldt Foundation.[11]

Research funding[edit]

Professors in the College of Arts and Sciences account for 60% of the researchers at the University of Kentucky. In addition to multiple grants and fellowships, the College of Arts and Sciences has $45 million in collaborate external grants and ranks first in the number of grad student publications among colleges at the university.[12]

Deans of the college[edit]

  1. Arthur M. Miller, 1908-1917
  2. Paul P. Boyd, 1917-1947
  3. Martin M. White, 1947-1965
  4. Paul Nagel, 1966-1969
  5. Wimberly Royster, 1969-1972
  6. Art Gallaher, 1972-1980
  7. Donald Sands (Acting Dean), 1980-1981
  8. Michael Baer, 1981-1990
  9. Bradley C. Canon (Acting Dean), 1990-1991
  10. Richard Edwards, 1991-1997
  11. Donald Sands (Acting Dean) 1997-1998
  12. Howard Grotch, 1998-2003
  13. Steven L. Hoch, 2003-2009
  14. Phil Harling (Acting Dean), 2008-2009
  15. Mark L. Kornbluh, 2009–present


  • Ampersand, the magazine of the College of Arts and Sciences, is published twice yearly for alumni, faculty, and friends of the college.
  • Limestone, a journal of art and literature that is edited and published annually by graduate students in the Department of English.
  • disclosure: A Journal of Social Theory, an annual thematic publication of contemporary social theory produced by the Committee on Social Theory.


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  6. ^ "2016 Hall of Fame". University of Kentucky College of Arts and Sciences. Retrieved 7 February 2018.
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External links[edit]