1877: Walden Seminary |
1882: Philander Smith College
|President||Roderick L. Smothers, Ph.D.|
|Location||Little Rock, Arkansas, U.S.|
Green and Gold |
United Methodist Church|
Philander Smith College is a private historically black college, four-year undergraduate liberal arts institution, located in Little Rock, Arkansas . Philander Smith College is affiliated with the United Methodist Church and is a founding member of the United Negro College Fund (UNCF). Philander Smith College is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. The Mission of Philander Smith College is, "To graduate academically accomplished students who are grounded as advocates for social justice, determined to change the world for the better."
Philander Smith College was officially founded in 1877 under the name of Walden Seminary to provide educational opportunities for freed slaves west of the Mississippi River. In 1882 the school was renamed Philander Smith College in honor of the financial contributions of Adeline Smith, widow of Philander Smith. It was chartered as a four-year college in 1883 and conferred its first bachelor's degree in 1888. In 1933, it merged the assets of the George R. Smith College in Sedalia, Missouri, which burned down in 1925. In 1943, Philander Smith was accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
During the Civil Rights Movement, Philander Smith College was a pioneer in activism: many of its students engaged in nonviolent resistance against segregation laws or customs (such as sitting in at "whites-only" lunch counters).
Dr. Walter Kimbrough, former president of Philander Smith College, joined the Education Conservancy in criticizing the annual U.S. News and World Report college rankings; he signed a letter circulating among college presidents that asks them to refrain from participating in the peer assessment portion of the survey.
Philander Smith College Historic District
|Location||Roughly bounded by 13th, 11th, Izard, and State Sts., Little Rock, Arkansas|
|Area||less than one acre|
|Architect||Almand, John Parks|
|Architectural style||Colonial Revival, Bungalow/Craftsman, et al|
|NRHP reference #||99000229|
|Added to NRHP||September 13, 1999|
The school campus is located in central Little Rock. Interstate 630 (the Mills Freeway) was constructed just north of the campus, which is bounded by 10th and 14th streets to the north and south, and Gaines and Chester streets to the east and west. The core of the campus was originally built for Little Rock Junior College (now the University of Arkansas at Little Rock), and a two-block section of it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. One of its centerpieces is the former U.M. Rose School building, now the Cox Administration Building, designed by the noted Arkansas architect John Parks Almand in 1915, when he was working for Charles L. Thompson. The campus also includes the "Old Gym", a gymnasium built by the WPA during the Great Depression; and a former barracks building of the Camp Robinson Air Force Base, which was moved here in 1948.
Philander Smith teams, nicknamed the Panthers, are part of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), primarily competing in the Gulf Coast Athletic Conference (GCAC). Men's sports include basketball and track & field; while women's sports include basketball, cheerleading, track & field and volleyball.
On Feb. 21, 1989, Philander Smith gained a 92-89 victory over Rust College of Holly Springs, Mississippi, on their court, ending the longest home-court winning streak in NCAA Division III women's basketball history.
|"Geese" Ausbie||former Harlem Globetrotters player and coach|
|Isaac M. Burgan||President of Paul Quinn College from 1883-1891, 1911-1914|
|James Hal Cone||1958||major figure in systematic theology and liberation theology|
|Joycelyn Elders||1952||former Surgeon General of the United States|
|Stephanie Flowers||Arkansas State Senator since 2011 and former member of the Arkansas House of Representatives from Pine Bluff|||
|Calvin King||1975||farm developmer, and the President of the Arkansas Land and Farm Development Corp|
|Lottie Shackelford||former mayor of Little Rock, Arkansas|
|Elijah Pitts||1961||former Green Bay Packers player|
|Al Bell||founder of Stax Records and former president of Motown Records|
|Robert L. Williams||1953||prominent figure in the history of African-American psychology|
|Scipio Africanus Jones||coursework before transfer to Shorter College||lawyer and businessman|
|Lee Lorch||mathematician and civil rights activist|