BW Trustees Approve Name Change
Baldwin-Wallace College will become Baldwin Wallace University in a move Trustees say is aimed at more accurately reflecting its current structure and the breadth of the institution's academic program offerings. The Trustees voted at their winter meeting to adopt the name change, effective on July 1 of this year with complete implementation by the end of 2012.
Last fall, B-W President Richard Durst established a special task force to review the advisability of changing the institution's name. The ten-member group, chaired by William Spiker, vice president for advancement, recommended the adoption of "university" following five months of study and constituent surveys that included input from students, alumni, faculty and staff, with each group favoring the change.
Since the U.S. News & World Report survey of "America's Best Colleges" was established nearly two decades ago, Baldwin-Wallace has been listed among the top Masters Universities - Midwest. B-W was considered a university because of the breadth of its academic program and number of graduate degrees awarded each year. In fact, according to criteria set by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, the 200-plus graduate degrees B-W awards in the 13 program offerings in business and education qualifies it as a large-size graduate program.
B-W currently offers more than 60 major areas of study in seven academic divisions, many of which are in pre-professional areas. Of the ten undergraduate and graduate programs added in recent years and several others in the approval process, most are viewed as university offerings.
"Members of the Task Force - and ultimately the Board of Trustees - concluded that the change to university designation more completely conveys who we are today as well as the institution that is emerging for tomorrow," said B-W President Durst. "What will not change is our dedication to the liberal arts as the foundation for a lifetime of learning and our core values. The B-W focus on student learning and personal growth, individual attention and exceptional achievement will be unwavering."
It will not be the first time the Berea campus has worn the "university" name. B-W was founded in 1845 as Baldwin Institute and re-chartered ten years later as Baldwin University. In 1913 Baldwin University merged with neighboring German Wallace College to become Baldwin-Wallace College.
In addition to the new university designation, B-W will drop the hyphen in its name in a nod to the importance of search engine optimization through third party search engines.
Today Baldwin-Wallace has more than 4,100 students enrolled in undergraduate and graduate programs on its 125-acre campus in Berea, online and at B-W East in Beachwood. B-W is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, a commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. Individual programs also are accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM), National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), the Commission of Athletic Training Education (CAATE), and the United Methodist Church Board of Accreditation.
Click here for a list of questions most frequently encountered by institutions undergoing a name change.