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The name change is an outcome of King’s strategic plan, unveiled in 1998, to create
a broader mix of academic programs based on a university model. Becoming King University
will more aptly describe the master’s-level, comprehensive benchmark that our institution
has reached over the past decade.
In recent years, King has experienced unprecedented growth in both enrollment and
programming. We now have six academic schools of learning and have been placed in
the Best Regional University category in U.S. News & World Report.
King’s administration and key leadership among various stakeholder groups had discussed
a possible name change for some time and brought forward the idea formally to the
board of trustees last year. The board voted unanimously to approve the recommendation,
believing it is highly beneficial to the school and to current and future enrollment.
Once the name change was approved by the board, through input from key leadership
throughout the campus, King began developing detailed plans for implementing the change
and notifying appropriate parties.
Under King University, we will retain the legacy of King College through the name
of King College of Arts and Sciences so that our schools are named as follows:
Several factors paved the way. The first relates to our growing student body. King
University has had record-breaking enrollment for the past 13 years. In fact, our
student population has doubled since 2005. Our fall enrollment in 2013 stood at approximately
King’s presence in the Southeast has also expanded due to 13 satellite campuses that
now serve students from Richlands, Va., to Knoxville, Tenn. We’ve also broadened our
undergraduate offerings and added master’s degrees in the areas of business, nursing
and education. Being renamed a “university” also more accurately aligns King with
current assessments performed by entities interested in higher education. Due to its
broadened curriculum, King has been placed by U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges in the category of Best Regional University for the past several years.
In addition, our new name better positions us to add doctoral programs. The name change
will also help us to grow and continue meeting local workforce and regional needs
and a growing online audience.
We will officially begin doing business as King University on June 1, 2013. After
the Board of Trustees vote in October, we began working to file all the appropriate
paperwork and notifications to collegiate accrediting agencies. However, you will
begin to see “University” used in various publications and promotional items this
The name change more aptly reflects the range of academic programs available to King
graduates and to current students. Also, many business people are not familiar with
collegiate rankings and may be more receptive to job candidates – our alumni – whose
resumes state “King University.” In addition, recognizing that we exist in a global
economy, being a university clarifies King’s higher education status among international
students. The word “college” often refers to pre-university programs and not higher
education in some international environments.
Students graduating in August 2013 will be the first to receive King University diplomas.
Changing the name will more accurately represent our institution to individuals seeking
learning opportunities or teaching positions – no matter where they reside. In many
foreign cultures, the word college commonly refers to pre-university academic programs,
so clarifying our status strengthens our ability to attract a broader, more diverse
pool of candidates for recruiting both new faculty and students.
Being a “university” also better aligns us with higher education ranking systems that
are becoming increasingly important as search tools. It also enhances our fundraising
possibilities, foundation opportunities and grant awards that would further grow our
campus and academic programs.
Not at all. King University already has an established reputation built on 146 years
of academic excellence. We are highly regarded by other academic institutions and
consistently named among the best in the country by collegiate ranking systems. The
name change more effectively reflects King’s broadened curriculum and wider footprint
– and better positions our institution for future growth.
No. Tuition costs will not be determined or affected by the name change.
King will remain a Presbyterian institution of higher learning with the same mission,
vision and values. For the past 146 years, King has had a clear mission that was refined
during our institution’s strategic planning process of 1998: to build meaningful lives
for achievement and cultural transformation in Christ. This charge will not change;
nor will the school’s vision statement.
Changing our name to university will have no effect on our low student-to-teacher
ratio and community atmosphere of the Bristol campus. Many students attend through
our Graduate & Professional Studies and Online Programs and the many satellite campuses
across Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia. The name change will better represent
the inclusion of these students in the student body.
The alma mater has been a long-held tradition of King, and, as a piece representative
of King alumni, we will give members an opportunity to make modifications to the wording
if they choose to do so.
Yes. Any King graduate wishing to obtain an updated diploma can receive one by mail
by submitting a formal request through our registrar’s office.
Through Sept. 1, 2013, any King graduate wishing to obtain an updated King Universtiy
diploma can do so at no charge.
If you’re a King College graduate, you are automatically a graduate of King University.
On your resume, simply indicate that you graduated from King University, followed
by a parenthetical note, such as: Education: M.B.A., King University (formerly King College), 2004
Answering simply that you are a graduate of King University is accurate. Or you could
reply, “I’m a graduate of King University, which was known as King College for its
first 145 years.”
All transcripts requested after June 1, 2013, will indicate that you are a graduate
of King University.