University of Pikeville

The University of Pikeville (UPIKE) is a private university affiliated with the Presbyterian Church (USA) and located in Pikeville, Kentucky. It was founded in 1889 by the Presbyterian Church and is located on a 25-acre (10 ha) campus on a hillside overlooking downtown Pikeville.

University of Pikeville
Former name
Pikeville Collegiate Institute (1889–1909)
Pikeville College (1909–2011)
MottoThe Leading University of Central Appalachia
TypePrivate university
Established1889; 133 years ago (1889)
Religious affiliation
Academic affiliations
Endowment$14.2 million[1]
ChancellorPaul E. Patton
PresidentBurton Webb[2]
Location, ,
United States
CampusRural, 500 acres (2.0 km2)
NewspaperThe Bear Facts
Orange & Black
NicknameBears & Lady Bears
Sporting affiliations
MascotPikey the Bear
Upike logo.png

The university is home to the Kentucky College of Osteopathic Medicine, one of three medical schools in the state of Kentucky. The university confers associate, bachelor's, master's and doctorate degrees through its six academic divisions and one medical college; enrollment was 2,366 students in fall 2016.


The university was founded in 1889 by the Presbyterian Church as the Pikeville Collegiate Institute. It operated on the primary, secondary and post-secondary levels, although its "college" offerings were not accredited and did not lead to a degree.[4]

In 1909 the school was split into the Pikeville College Academy, which was a private school at the primary and secondary level, and Pikeville College, which was accredited as a junior college, offering the first two-years with an anticipation of students then transferring to another Presbyterian college for a degree. In 1955 the school became a degree granting four-year college in its own right, and in 1957 the academy closed.[4]

In 1997, the Pikeville College School of Osteopathic Medicine, now the University of Pikeville Kentucky College of Osteopathic Medicine, was established. This makes the college one of the smallest colleges in the United States to have a medical school.[4]

The purpose of the osteopathic medical school, while graduates are fully prepared to specialize in any medical field, is to train primary care physicians to fill the shortage of medical care in the rural section of Appalachia in which it is located. Student recruitment is focused almost exclusively on students with a rural Appalachian background. It is one of 29 osteopathic colleges in the country, and one of five in Appalachia.[5]

On July 1, 2011, the school officially changed its name from "Pikeville College" to the "University of Pikeville".[6] Late in the same year, voices were raised in the Kentucky General Assembly in favor of converting the university into a state-supported school.[7] By the end of the following March, proponents abandoned their plans after deeming them politically impossible.[8]


Coal and Record Memorial Buildings on Hambley Boulevard
Training-Academy Building

The University of Pikeville is located on a 25 acres (0.10 km2) hillside campus, overlooking Downtown Pikeville in Kentucky's Eastern Mountain Coal Fields region.[1]

Academic buildingsEdit

  • The Armington Learning Center – A building which houses all undergraduate math and science classes, undergraduate labs, various faculty offices, Chrisman Auditorium, the Chrisman Appalachian Research Institute.
  • The Administration Building – The Administration Building houses the College of Education.
  • The Allara Library – Dedicated in 1991, the Allara Library contains 3 floors of study rooms, books, a small cache of microfilm and microfiche, and the basement houses the University of Pikeville tutoring lab. The Allara Library was remodeled from the old Pikeville Hospital.
  • The Coal Building – This building houses the University of Pikeville Kentucky College of Osteopathic Medicine.
  • Health Professions Building – This building houses the University of Pikeville Kentucky College of Optometry.[9] Also, the building houses a Chick-fil-A and Einstein Bros. Bagels.
  • Record Memorial – This building serves as a connection between Hambley Boulevard and University of Pikeville and also contains Booth Auditorium, the Sturgill Board Room, the Elizabeth Akers Nursing Program, the Marguerite Weber Art Gallery, and the Ridenour Dance Studio.
  • Training-Academy Building – This is the oldest building on campus, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It houses the Coleman College of Business.

Residential buildingsEdit

  • Derrianna Hall – Has always been a female dorm and houses upperclassmen females only.
  • Condit Hall – Houses all freshman female students. The campus safety office is also located in Condit.
  • Wickham Hall – Although originally a dorm for female campus residents it now houses all freshman males. The ground floor of the building holds the student lounge.
  • Page Hall – Page Hall, like Wickham Hall, was originally a residence hall for female campus residents but now is a co-ed Hall and houses clubs and organizations that are registered with affinity housing.
  • The Kinzer Residential Center – Kinzer Hall houses both male and female upperclassmen campus residents.
  • Spilman Hall – Located next to Page Hall, Spillman is a Co-Ed dorm that also hold handicap dorms on the first level.
  • UPIKE South – Formerly a hotel, UPIKE South is the first off-campus housing and is only offered to graduate students.
  • Gillispie Hall – Located next to Kinzer Hall, Gillispie Hall houses honor freshman student.
  • College Square Residence Hall – is a co-ed hall located by the campus gym.

Student life and athleticsEdit

The Marvin Student Center – The building housed the campus bookstore, lounge, gameroom, post office, Upward Bound Program, and ROTC/National Guard Offices until it was demolished during the fall semester of 2010. A new building for the medical school called the Coal Building was built in its place. The new $34 million educational facility was dedicated on September 15, 2012.[10]

UPIKE's men's and women's basketball teams play at the 5,700-seat Appalachian Wireless Arena adjacent to the campus in downtown Pikeville.[11] The Expo Center opened in 2005 and replaced the UPike Gym as the home of the men's and women's basketball teams, although the women's volleyball team still uses the gym. The facility has also hosted the Mid-South Conference basketball tournament.[12]


The University of Pikeville award associate degrees, bachelor's degrees, master's degrees, and doctoral degrees.[13] The university's Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree is awarded in collaboration with the University of Pikeville Kentucky College of Osteopathic Medicine and the Doctor of Optometry program began in 2016.


The Pikeville (UPike) athletic teams are called the Bears. The university is a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), primarily competing in the Mid-South Conference (MSC) since the 2000–01 academic year.[14] The Bears previously competed in the Kentucky Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (KIAC; now currently known as the River States Conference (RSC) since the 2016–17 school year) from 1958–59 to 1999–2000.

UPike competes in 25 intercollegiate varsity sports: men's sports include baseball, basketball, bowling, cross country, football, golf, soccer, swimming, tennis, track & field and wrestling; while women's sports include basketball, bowling, cross country, golf, soccer, softball, swimming, tennis, track & field and volleyball; and co-ed sports include archery, cheerleading, dance and eSports.[15]


Pikeville athletics have won numerous conference championships and three national championships: two in women's bowling in 2004 and 2008 and a NAIA DI men's basketball championship in 2011.[16][17]

Notable alumniEdit


# Name Term begin Term end Notes References
1 David Blythe 1889 1891 [a] [24]
2 Katherine B. Vreeland 1892 1894 [a] [24]
3 Tobias J. Kendrick 1894 1895 [a] [24]
4 James H. Hammett 1895 1898 [a] [24]
5 Thomas M. Cornelison 1898 1899 [a] [24]
6 James F. Record 1899 1911 [a] [24]
7 J.P. Whitehead 1911 1915 [24]
8 James F. Record 1915 1932 [24]
9 Frank D. McClelland 1932 1937 [24]
10 Harry M. Crooks 1938 1940 [24]
11 A.A. Page 1940 1962 [24]
12 Burnice H. Jarman 1963 1965 [24]
13 Thomas H. Johns 1967 1969 [24]
14 Robert S. Cope 1969 1974 [24]
15 Jackson O. Hall 1975 1985 [24]
16 William H. Owens 1985 1997 [24]
17 Harold H. Smith 1997 2009 [24]
18 Micheal M. Looney 2009 2009 [24]
19 Paul E. Patton 2009 2013 Governor of Kentucky from 1995 to 2003. Current university chancellor.[25] [25][24]
20 James L. Hurley 2013 2015 [24]
21 Burton Webb 2016

See alsoEdit

Notes and referencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d e f Principal of Pikeville College Institute or Pikeville College Academy.
  1. ^ a b College Overview Retrieved on 2010-06-13
  2. ^ "News - University of Pikeville". Archived from the original on 2016-03-17. Retrieved 2016-02-10.
  3. ^ a b c As of fall 2016. "Student headcount by level: All independent institutions (2006–16)" (PDF). Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education. Commonwealth of Kentucky. Retrieved 4 March 2018.
  4. ^ a b c History of Pikeville College Retrieved on 2010-06-13
  5. ^ The other osteopathic colleges in Appalachia are located at:
  6. ^ "Welcome – University of Pikeville". Retrieved 2012-02-28.
  7. ^ Estep, Bill; Musgrave, Beth (December 22, 2011). "Kentucky leaders discuss making University of Pikeville a state school". Lexington Herald-Leader. Retrieved February 10, 2012.
  8. ^ Kiley, Kevin (March 15, 2012). "Turnabout in the Mountains". Inside Higher Ed. Retrieved 1 November 2012.
  9. ^ UPIKE's New Health Professions Building Breaks Ground Southeast Kentucky Chamber of Commerce. Retrieved 2014-07-22.
  10. ^ "Coal Building – University of Pikeville". Retrieved 5 September 2012.
  11. ^ "About". Eastern Kentucky Expo Center. Retrieved February 10, 2012.
  12. ^ Staff (January 23, 2006). "Community Trust Bank MSC basketball tournaments at Expo Center March 2–4". Floyd County Times. Retrieved February 10, 2012.
  13. ^ Majors offered at Pikeville College Retrieved on 2010-06-13
  14. ^ "Members: University of Pikeville". 2013. Retrieved December 27, 2013.
  15. ^ "About Pikeville Athletics". University of Pikeville. Retrieved February 10, 2012.
  16. ^ "Athletic Highlights". University of Pikeville. Retrieved February 10, 2012.
  17. ^ Staff (March 23, 2011). "Unseeded Pikeville wins NAIA championship game in overtime". CBS Sports. Retrieved February 10, 2012.
  18. ^ "Walt Harris – Official UFC® Fighter Profile". Retrieved 14 April 2018.
  19. ^ "Pikeville College Graduate Donnie Jones takes over at UCF". WYMT-TV. March 30, 2010. Retrieved 2010-12-29.
  20. ^ "Former Kentucky Governor Paul Patton Named Pikeville College President". Williamson (WV) Daily News. August 2009. Archived from the original on 2013-02-09. Retrieved 2010-12-29.
  21. ^ John Paul Riddle 1901–1989 Historical Marker Society of America. Retrieved on 2010-12-29
  22. ^ Profile for Will T. Scott Retrieved on 2010-12-29
  23. ^ Price, Tom (2001). Tales from the Gamecocks' Roost. United States: Sports Publishing, LLC. p. 56. ISBN 1-58261-342-7.
  24. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t Presidents of Pikeville College Archived 2011-02-13 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved on 2010-12-29
  25. ^ a b "Former Kentucky Governor Paul Patton Named Pikeville College President". Williamson (WV) Daily News. August 2009. Archived from the original on 2013-02-09. Retrieved 2010-12-29.

External linksEdit

Coordinates: 37°28′45″N 82°31′16″W / 37.47910°N 82.52119°W / 37.47910; -82.52119