Founding Principle: Matthew 28:19-20
“Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”
Mission: Promoting Academic Excellence in a Christian Environment
Vision: To be a Christian university nationally recognized for integrating faith in learning, leading and serving.
Biblical Core Values: What We Believe …
Scripture. II Timothy 3:16 “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.” The Bible is the inerrant and infallible record of God’s revelation to humanity, and it is the only sufficient source of appeal on matters relating to the Christian faith.
God. Genesis 1:1 “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” John 1:3 “All things were made by him; and without him was not anything made that was made.” There is one and only one living and true God. The historical account of Genesis decrees that He is the personal and direct Creator of all that exists, including the first human beings Adam and Eve. To Him we owe the highest love, reverence, and obedience.
Jesus Christ. John 14:6 “Jesus saith unto them, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” God made provision through Christ for the redemption of sinful humanity by His substitutionary atonement on the cross, and He alone is sufficient as Savior.
Salvation. John 3: 16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Salvation involves God’s gracious redemption of individuals and is offered freely to all who accept Jesus Christ as personal Lord and Savior by repentance and faith.
Life of the Believer. Romans 12:2 “And do not be conformed to this world, but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” Christians are to be consistent with Scripture in their character and conduct.
Evangelism and Missions. Acts 1:8 “But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.” It is the privilege and duty of every Christian to share the Gospel of Christ personally and by all other methods in harmony with the Gospel.
Statement of Purpose
Charleston Southern University is an independent liberal arts university affiliated with the South Carolina Baptist Convention. The university is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Each degree program is combined with a comprehensive liberal arts foundation, which is designed to develop problem-solving and communication skills. The university was founded upon the principle that students should have an opportunity for a quality education under the guidance of Christian faculty. The university’s vision is to be a Christian university recognized for integrating faith in learning, leading and serving.
Classes are offered in the classroom, online, and in blended formats. Currently, students are drawn primarily from the Southeastern United States and pursue a broad variety of careers in the arts and sciences, as well as business, education, and nursing.
Founded as the Baptist College at Charleston in 1964, the institution changed its name to Charleston Southern University in 1990 to reflect the offering of graduate programs. The campus is located 16 miles from the city of Charleston.
Faith Integration: Strengthen the culture of the university where biblical faith is a priority
Academic Excellence: Assure excellence in academic programs to maximize student learning
Student Engagement and Success: Increase student satisfaction, retention, graduation rates and employment opportunities
Regional, National and International Reputation: Promote academic and student success regionally, nationally and internationally
Faculty, Staff and Coaches Development: Provide for the personal and professional development of faculty, staff and coaches
Enrollment: Grow enrollment by expanding academic programs and employing a variety of delivery methods
Athletics: Improve the competitive status of the university’s NCAA Division I athletic program
Resource Development: Generate financial resources to accomplish the university’s goals and objectives
Financial Stewardship: Maximize university financial, technological and physical resources
History and Organization
The urgent need for another college in the Lowcountry became a matter of active and organized consideration in 1954. South Carolina Baptists made its establishment a matter of official deliberation at a meeting of the General Board in September 1955.
After considerable study, the Capital Needs Committee of the State Convention brought a recommendation which initiated efforts to begin seeking both a site and funds for the establishment of a college.
Purchase of 500 acres of land, 16 miles from the city limits of Charleston, at the northeast intersection of Interstate 26 and U.S. Highway 78, was made. In 1964, trustees were elected by the South Carolina Baptist Convention.
Dr. John A. Hamrick was elected the first president of the university by the Board of Trustees in November 1964. The first academic session opened in the fall of 1965, in the facilities of the First Baptist Church of North Charleston. By September 1966, buildings on the campus were ready, and the university’s second year began amid construction, landscaping and the physical development of the campus. The university has grown from a student body of 588 to an enrollment of 3,600.
In 1984 Dr. Jairy C. Hunter, Jr. became the second president. The university’s first graduate program, the master of education became accredited in 1986.
In November 1990, the South Carolina Baptist Convention, upon the recommendation of the Board of Trustees of Baptist College at Charleston, approved the name change to Charleston Southern University.
From its beginning the university has sought to provide not only excellent academic opportunities, but has, in all its planning, held to the ideal of the development of the total individual. Employment of personnel deeply committed to assisting each individual student to attain his or her maximum potential within a Christian environment has made this institution distinctive.
Affiliation and Support
Charleston Southern University is affiliated with the South Carolina Baptist Convention. However, young men and women of all faiths are invited to share in its programs. The University is under the direct supervision of the Board of Trustees (elected by the South Carolina Baptist Convention), who are charged with the responsibility of operating it within the purpose for which it has been chartered. Income for the University is derived from tuition, endowment, gifts from alumni and friends and from SCBC funds.
Art Studio: The building houses studio spaces for design, drawing, painting and printmaking classes.
Athletic Center: The Athletic Center has locker rooms for the football and track and field teams and athletic training space.
Athletic Field House: The Field House contains the basketball court, exercise rooms, athletic training facilities, classrooms and athletic department offices.
Brewer Center: The facility includes a wellness center, fitness studio, a multifunctional gym and a lounge area. Offices for campus recreation, campus ministries, student activities and a North Charleston Police Department substation are housed in the Brewer Center. The center is named for Jimmie, Patricia and Brad Brewer.
C.S. Jones Hall: Jones Hall houses the offices of the president, the vice president for academic affairs and the School of Business. The hall is named for Clif S. Jones.
Derry Patterson Wingo Hall: The nursing building houses classrooms, an auditorium, labs and faculty offices. The building is named for Derry Patterson Wingo.
Nursing Building: The College of Nursing facility includes classrooms, computer, nursing, clinical and skills labs, conference rooms, faculty and student lounges, skills work rooms, simulation labs, debriefing rooms, a home health suite and faculty offices.
F.K. Norris Hall: Norris Hall houses classrooms, computer labs and faculty offices for the department of English. The building is named for Fred K. Norris Jr.
H.C. Wingo Hall: Wingo Hall houses classrooms and faculty offices for the School of Education. The building is named for Henry C. Wingo.
H.E. Ashby Hall: Ashby Hall houses classrooms, labs, computer labs, an auditorium and faculty offices for math, computer science and science. The building is named for H. E. Ashby.
Hunter Center: The center houses offices for enrollment, financial aid, student accounts, student employment, veterans’ services and the registrar. The building is named for Dr. Jairy and Sissy Hunter.
Lightsey Chapel Auditorium: The chapel seats 1,500 and is a multipurpose facility equipped with a modern stage and support equipment. The building is named for W. Norris and Nell Peeples Lightsey.
The Margaret Kelly Hamrick Prayer room is located at the front of the building.
Lightsey Music Building: The music building houses faculty offices for the Horton School of Music, practice facilities and the Black Box Theatre. The building is named for Nell Peeples Lightsey.
L. Mendel Rivers Library: The library provides traditional print and nonprint resources, reading rooms, study rooms and offices for library personnel. The lower level houses classrooms, faculty offices and the graphic design studio. The building is named for L. Mendel Rivers.
The library is a selective depository in the Federal Depository Library Program.
The South Carolina Room houses items related to South Carolina’s history, literature and the arts.
Java City, a coffee shop, is located at the entrance to the building.
Physical Plant: The building houses the department offices, carpentry and electric shops and storage areas for campus equipment and supplies.
Residence Halls: All rooms are arranged in suites with a connecting bathroom and have wireless and cable access and heating/air conditioning in each room. Student lounge areas are located in all residence halls.
Science Building: The building houses chemistry labs, biology labs, research labs, faculty offices, a greenhouse and classrooms.
Strom Thurmond Center: The center houses the dining hall, Gold Room, a student lounge, the President’s Dining Room, the bookstore, offices for the dean of students, university relations, advancement, business affairs, CSU online, a faculty suite of offices, the Career Center and the Student Success Center. The building is named for Strom Thurmond.
A Chick-fil-A Express is located on the first floor.
Whittington Hall: The building houses classrooms, a rehearsal hall, music practice rooms, a music technology lab and faculty offices. The building is named for Jeff and Bernice Whittington.
Whitfield Center for Christian Leadership: The facility includes classrooms and conference areas and houses faculty offices for the School of Christian Studies and the history, political science and criminal justice departments. The building is named for W. Floyd and Shirley Whitfield.
Whitfield Stadium Center: The facility provides broadcast areas for the media, pregame and halftime social gathering rooms, coaches’ offices and meeting rooms, a concession sales area and restroom facilities. The center is named for W. Floyd and Shirley Whitfield.
All buildings at Charleston Southern University are architecturally barrier free. There are elevators in all major buildings, with the exception of some residence halls. The residence halls provide for handicapped facilities on the first floor of each building.