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Albany State University is a public historically black university in Albany, Georgia. In 2017, Darton State College and Albany State University consolidated to become one university under the University System of Georgia (USG). Albany State University has two campuses in Albany (East and West Campus) and a satellite campus in Cordele (Cordele Center).

Albany State University
Albany State University Academic Seal.jpg
MottoA Past To Cherish, A Future To Fulfill
TypePublic, HBCU[1]
Established1903
AffiliationUniversity System of Georgia
Endowment$1.8 million[2]
PresidentMarion Fedrick (President)[3]
Students6,371 (fall 2018)
Location, ,
United States
CampusUrban, 231-acre (934,823.8 m2)
ColorsRoyal blue and old gold
         
AthleticsNCAA Division II
NicknameGolden Rams
AffiliationsSIAC
Websitewww.asurams.edu

Contents

HistoryEdit

ASU's history at a glance
1903 Established as the Albany Bible and Manual Training Institute
1917 Became a state-supported, two year, agricultural and teacher training college and renamed to The Georgia Normal and Agricultural College
1932 Became a part of the University System of Georgia
1943 Granted four-year status and renamed to Albany State College
1981 First graduate program established
1994 Flooding caused extensive damage and resulted in campus expansion
1996 Name changed to Albany State University
2017 Albany State University and Darton State College became one consolidated university

Establishment and growthEdit

Joseph Winthrop Holley, born in 1874 to former slaves in Winnsboro, South Carolina, founded the institution in 1903 as the Albany Bible and Manual Training Institute. Two educators, Reverend Samuel Lane Loomis and his wife, sent Holley to Brainerd Institute and then Revere Lay College (Massachusetts). When attending Revere Lay, Holley got to know one of the school's trustees, New England businessman Rowland Hazard. After taking a liking to Holley, Hazard arranged for him to continue his education at Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts. Holley aspired to become a minister and prepared by completing his education at Pennsylvania's Lincoln University.

W. E. B. Du Bois inspired Holley to return to the South after he read Du Bois's writings on the plight of Albany's blacks in The Souls of Black Folk. Holley relocated to Albany to start a school. With the help of a $2,600 gift from the Hazard family, Holley organized a board of trustees and purchased 50 acres (200,000 m2) of land for the campus, all within a year. The aim of the institution at the time was to provide elementary education and teacher training for the local Black population.

The institution was turned over to the state of Georgia in 1917 as Georgia Normal and Agricultural College, a two-year agricultural and teacher-training institution.[4]

In 1932, the school became part of the University System of Georgia and in 1943 it was granted four-year status and renamed Albany State College. The transition to four-year status heavily increased the school's enrollment.

In 1981 the college offered its first graduate program, a prelude to the school being upgraded to university status in 1996.

In July 1994, most of the campus was flooded and suffered extensive damage when Tropical Storm Alberto caused the Flint River to overflow. Afterwards, the campus was extended towards the east with many new buildings erected on the higher ground.[5]

Albany State University eraEdit

In July 1996, the university system's Board of Regents approved the change from college to university and the name of Albany State College officially became Albany State University.

A new stadium was opened in 2004 and new housing units opened in 2006.

In 2015, the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia announced the merger of ASU and Darton State College.[6] In 2017, the institutions consolidated and assumed the name and branding of Albany State University, with the Darton College campus becoming the site of Albany State University's Darton College of Health Professions.

Enrollment was expected to be around 9,000 students. However, the combined enrollment decreased significantly. Fall 2013 enrollments were 6,195 for Darton State College and 4,260 for Albany State University[7] while Fall 2017 enrollments for the new combined Albany State University were 6,615.[8] This represents a 27% decrease over that period.

Due to the consolidation with Darton, Albany State became the largest HBCU in the state of Georgia and one of the largest in the United States.[9]

Civil Rights MovementEdit

The college played a significant role in the Civil Rights Movement in the early 1960s. Many students from the school, Black improvement organizations, and representatives from the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) came together to create the Albany Movement. The movement brought prominent civil rights leaders to the town including Martin Luther King Jr and resulted in the arrests of more than 1,000 black protestors. Among the very first to be arrested were students from Albany State.

On November 22, 1961, Blanton Hall and Bertha Gober entered the white waiting room of the Albany bus station to buy tickets home for the Thanksgiving holiday. Refusing to leave after being ordered to do so, police arrested them both. Albany State President William Dennis, fearful of losing his position, immediately suspended and eventually expelled the students. This action engendered a great deal of animosity from the black community and the student body.

Gober would continue in the civil rights movement as one of the SNCC's Freedom Singers and write the group's anthem. Bernice Johnson Reagon, another Albany State student who left school to work with the SNCC, would later form the well-known a cappella group Sweet Honey in the Rock. On December 10, 2011, thirty two of the students who were expelled were granted honorary degrees. The school awarded thirty one honorary baccalaureate degrees and one honorary doctorate – that to Bernice Johnson Reagon. A noted cultural historian, Reagon was also the commencement speaker.[10]

PresidentsEdit

 
The President's Office

Joseph Winthrop Holley served as President of the school from 1903–1943. He was succeeded by Aaron Brown (1943–1954), William Dennis (1954–1965), Thomas Miller Jenkins (1965–1969), Charles Hayes (1969–1980), Billy C. Black (1980–1996), Portia Holmes Shields (1996–2005), Everette J. Freeman (2005 – 2013), Art Dunning (2015-2018), and Marion Fredrick (2018-).

AcademicsEdit

Albany State offers undergraduate and graduate liberal arts and professional degree programs.

According to U.S. News & World Report, in 2019 ASU was ranked 40th (tie) in the magazine's ranking of undergraduate education at HBCUs[11] and was ranked as the 107th-141st school on the Regional Universities (South) list.[11] The student-faculty ratio is 15:1 and 42 percent of the classes contain less than 20 students.[11] The most popular majors are health professions and related, homeland security, law enforcement, firefighting and related, business, management, marketing, psychology, and education. The average retention rate is 69 percent and the four-year graduation rate is 8 percent.[11]

Academic colleges and unitsEdit

 
Peace Hall

Graduate school degree programs include Business Administration, Education, Educational Specialist, Counselor Education, Criminal Justice, Nursing, Public Administration, and Social Work.[13]

The institution offers 13 certificates, 14 associate, 30 baccalaureate, and 12 graduate degrees. The university also offers the Board of Regents' engineering transfer program and a dual degree program with the Georgia Institute of Technology, one of the top engineering schools in the nation. The Holley Institute summer program, which consists of an intense four weeks of study to help high school students improve low SAT scores and gain admission to college, has a near 100 percent success rate and has received praise from the state Board of Regents. Albany State also has the third highest student retention rate in the university system.

CampusesEdit

Albany State University East campus (Main) is located at 504 College Drive, 206 acres east of the Flint River. It has 32 buildings and five sport facilities.

Albany State University West campus (formerly Darton State College) is located at 2400 Gillionville Road, on 186 acres in West Albany. It has 16 buildings and five sport facilities. It is the site of the Darton College of Health Professions.

ASU also has a center in Cordele and provides specific courses at sites in Cairo, Waycross, Thomasville, Swainsboro, and Sandersville.

DemographicsEdit

Albany State University student body consists of both traditional and non-traditional students who number nearly 6,500 on campus. These students come primarily from Atlanta, Southwest and Central Georgia, other US states and many foreign countries. The average student age is 24, and about 40 percent of the students live in on-campus housing.[14]

Student lifeEdit

Student organizationsEdit

There are over 59 clubs and organizations including bands, choirs, religious groups, honor societies, several major Greek and honor sororities and fraternities, and ROTC.

Fraternities and sororitiesEdit

All nine of the National Pan-Hellenic Council organizations currently have chapters at Albany State University. These organizations are:

Organization Symbol Chapter Chapter symbol
Alpha Kappa Alpha ΑΚΑ Gamma Sigma ΓΣ
Alpha Phi Alpha ΑΦΑ Delta Delta ΔΔ
Delta Sigma Theta ΔΣΘ Delta Rho ΔΡ
Iota Phi Theta ΙΦΘ Zeta Pi ΖΠ
Kappa Alpha Psi ΚΑΨ Delta Xi ΔΞ
Omega Psi Phi ΩΨΦ Chi Epsilon ΧΕ
Phi Beta Sigma ΦΒΣ Beta Psi ΒΨ
Sigma Gamma Rho ΣΓΡ Zeta Psi ΖΨ
Zeta Phi Beta ΖΦΒ Pi Beta ΠΒ

Service fraternities and sororities

There are currently two national service fraternities and sororities at Albany State University. These organizations are:

Organization Symbol Chapter Chapter symbol
Alpha Phi Omega ΑΦΩ Psi Sigma ΨΣ
Gamma Sigma Sigma ΓΣΣ Epsilon Omicron ΕΟ

Music organizationsEdit

Three Greek music organizations have chapters at Albany State University. These organizations are:

Organization Symbol Chapter Chapter symbol
Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia ΦΜΑ Rho Delta ΡΔ
Kappa Kappa Psi ΚΚΨ Eta Kappa ΗΚ
Tau Beta Sigma ΤΒΣ Zeta Kappa ZK

Marching Rams Show BandEdit

Albany State's marching band participated in the 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2013 Honda Battle of the Bands (HBOB). Also, The Marching Rams Show Band participated in the 2016 Tournament of Roses Parade and Tournament of Roses Bandfest.

Albany State's marching band danceline is named the "Golden Passionates".

AthleticsEdit

Albany State University holds membership in NCAA Division II (as a member of the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference) and participates in the following sports: football, basketball, baseball, golf, cheerleading, volleyball, cross-country and track and field.[15] Additionally,in 2019 ASU's women soccer team will begin competing in the Peach Belt Conference . Through BSN Sports, Nike is the current sponsor of the Albany State University Athletic Department.

SwimmingEdit

Albany State sponsored men's and women's swimming, and diving teams. Which in past years were named National Black College Swimming and Diving Champions in 1979 and 1980.

Notable alumniEdit

This is a list of notable alumni which includes graduates, non-graduate former students, and current students of Albany State University. It also reflects those alumni who attended and/or graduated from the institution under its prior historical names.

Name Class year Notability References
Alice Coachman 1949 first African-American woman to win an Olympic gold medal and the only American woman to win a gold medal in the 1948 Games [16]
Walter Curry former professional football player
Kenneth Gant former professional football player [17]
Art Green former CFL and NFL player [18]
Shaun R. Harper 1998 author and leading scholar on racial equality in higher education; professor, founder, and Executive Director of the Center for the Study of Race and Equality in Education, University of Pennsylvania [19]
Big James Henderson 1984–1986 former powerlifter who competed in the International Powerlifting Federation and won five world bench press titles; offensive lineman for the 1985 SIAC Conference Championship football team [20]
Caldwell Jones former professional basketball player [21]
Charles Jones former professional basketball player [22]
Major Jones former professional basketball player [23]
Wil Jones former professional basketball player [23]
Dan Land former professional football player [17]
Jo Marie Payton actress [24]
Bernice Johnson Reagon singer, composer, scholar, and social activist; Professor Emeritus of History at American University in Washington, DC; Curator Emeritus at the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of American History in Washington, DC; 2002–04 Cosby Chair Professor of Fine Arts at Spelman College in Atlanta Georgia [25]
Rick Ross played football for two years rapper
Shirley Sherrod 1970 civil rights advocate, former Georgia State Director of Rural Development for the United States Department of Agriculture [26]
Mike White former professional football player and former head football coach at Albany State University

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "List of HBCUs – White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities". August 16, 2007. Archived from the original on December 23, 2007. Retrieved January 3, 2008.
  2. ^ Albany State University | Best College | US News. Colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com. Retrieved on 2013-08-09.
  3. ^ https://www.asurams.edu/marion-fedrick-named-interim-president-albany-state-university/
  4. ^ "Albany State University". The New Georgia Encyclopedia. Retrieved January 23, 2008.
  5. ^ Lewis, Terry (June 26, 2016). "Flood of 1994 spurred building boom at Albany State University". The Albany Herald. Retrieved July 24, 2019.
  6. ^ Davis, Janel (November 10, 2015). "Regents approve Albany State, Darton State merger". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Retrieved July 21, 2019.
  7. ^ http://www.usg.edu/assets/research/documents/enrollment_reports/SER_Fall_2013_Final.pdf
  8. ^ http://www.usg.edu/assets/usg/docs/news_files/BOR_USG_Fall_2017_Enrollment_Report.pdf
  9. ^ "Albany State at a Glance".[permanent dead link]
  10. ^ Lewis, Terry (December 8, 2011). "Expelled students to get degrees". Albany Herald. Retrieved February 5, 2012.
  11. ^ a b c d "Albany State University - Profile". U.S. News & World Report. 2019. Retrieved July 24, 2019.
  12. ^ a b c d "Albany State University Academic Affairs". Albany State University. Retrieved July 24, 2019.
  13. ^ "Albany State University Graduate Programs". Albany State University. Retrieved July 24, 2019.
  14. ^ "Albany State University". Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia. Archived from the original on January 2, 2008. Retrieved February 7, 2008.
  15. ^ "Albany State Athletics Overview". Albany State University. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
  16. ^ "Biography of Alice Coachman". Archived from the original on February 2, 2011.
  17. ^ a b "NFL Players who attended Albany State University". databaseSports.com. Archived from the original on March 7, 2008. Retrieved February 6, 2008.
  18. ^ "Art Green". Retrieved May 9, 2012.
  19. ^ http://www.gse.upenn.edu/equity/content/researchers-and-staff. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  20. ^ "Big James Henderson Bio". Retrieved January 1, 2009.
  21. ^ "Caldwell Jones". Basketball-reference.com. Archived from the original on May 17, 2008. Retrieved May 21, 2008.
  22. ^ "Charles Jones". Archived from the original on May 23, 2008. Retrieved May 21, 2008.
  23. ^ a b "NBA/ABA Players who attended Albany State University". Basketballreference.com. databaseSports.com. Archived from the original on February 21, 2008. Retrieved February 6, 2008.
  24. ^ "Albany Map Population Information and City Statistics". juggle.com. Archived from the original on July 17, 2011. Retrieved January 21, 2011.
  25. ^ "Bernice Johnson Reagon:Scholarship:2006 bio statement". bernicejohnsonreagon.com. songtalk publishing. Archived from the original on March 3, 2008. Retrieved February 7, 2008.
  26. ^ "Sherrod encourages grads to end racism". Archived from the original on July 18, 2011. Retrieved December 30, 2010.

Suggested readingEdit

External linksEdit