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Emory and Henry College

Emory & Henry College
Seal of Emory & Henry College
Motto Macte Virtute (Increase in Excellence)
Established 1836 (1836)
Type Private, liberal arts college
Affiliation United Methodist Church
Endowment $86.5 million[1]
President Jake Schrum (effective August 1, 2013)[2]
Students 978
Undergraduates 942
Postgraduates 39

Emory, Virginia, U.S.
36°46′25″N 81°50′00″W / 36.77361°N 81.83333°W / 36.77361; -81.83333Coordinates: 36°46′25″N 81°50′00″W / 36.77361°N 81.83333°W / 36.77361; -81.83333{{#coordinates:36|46|25|N|81|50|00|W|region:US-VA_type:edu |primary |name=

Campus Rural
Athletics NCAA Division III
Old Dominion Athletic Conference
Colors Blue and Gold
Nickname Template:If empty
Mascot Wasp

Emory and Henry College
Nearest city Emory, Virginia
Built 1845
Architectural style Colonial Revival, Other, Georgian Revival
Governing body State
NRHP Reference # 85003695[3]
VLR # 095-0098
Significant dates
Added to NRHP January 30, 1989
Designated VLR January 18, 1983[4]

Emory & Henry College, known as E&H, Emory, or the College, is a private, coeducational liberal arts college located in Emory, Virginia, United States. The campus comprises Script error: No such module "convert". of Washington County, Virginia, which is part of the Appalachia mountain region of Southwest Virginia. Founded in 1836, Emory & Henry College is the oldest institution of higher learning in Southwest Virginia.[5]


Bishop John Emory

Founded in 1836, Emory & Henry College is named after John Emory, a Methodist bishop, and Patrick Henry, an American Patriot and Virginia’s first governor.[5][6] The college was founded upon the union of faith and learning and the ideals of freedom and civic virtue by Creed Fulton, a Methodist minister, Colonel William Byars, Tobias Smyth, a Methodist farmer, and Alexander Findlay, a Methodist businessman.[7]

The foundation for Wiley Hall was laid on September 30, 1836. The board of trustees then hired Charles Collins (1838–1852) as the institution's first president with classes beginning in the spring of 1838 with only 60 students enrolled.[8] The College closed its doors in April 1861 due to the Civil War and was commandeered by the Confederate States of America in 1862 operating as a hospital until 1865. During this time the campus saw battle during the Battle of Saltville. The hospital was the setting of Lieutenant Smith's murder on October 7, 1864 by Champ Ferguson. After the civil war ended, the College reopened.[8]

During World War II, Emory and Henry College was one of 131 colleges and universities nationally that took part in the V-12 Navy College Training Program which offered students a path to a Navy commission.[9]

Today, the college comprises a student body population of around 900 and employs 75 full-time professors.[10] Graduates of E&H have become scientific researchers, NASA engineers, writers, physicians, ministers, lawyers, educators and business people.


Located in the Virginia Highlands, the Emory and Henry central campus encompasses Script error: No such module "convert". and is surrounded by an additional 167 undeveloped acreage in the village of Emory. The entire central campus is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and the Virginia Register of Historic Landmarks.[11]


With many campus buildings dating from the mid 19th century, several major academic buildings are listed on the national registry of historic buildings, including Wiley Hall which was built 1838, and used as a confederate hospital during the civil war. Rosalind Reichard, the previous president of the college had also undertaken a significant commitments to building new buildings or renovating existing ones. Along with a new Music addition and several new dormitories, the college has built a new athletic field house and is currently constructing a performing arts center.

Residence Halls

Wiley-Jackson (MaWa), Elm, Hillman, Weaver, Stuart, Sullins, Carriger and Matthews Halls, The Cottage, Houses 14–17, Prillaman, Cambridge, Damer, Princeton, Collins Houses. Hickory Hall is the newest residents hall on campus.[12]


McGlothlin-Street, Wiley, Fulton-Miller, and Byars Halls[11]


Memorial Chapel, Kelly Library, King Center, Brook Field House, Martin-Brock Student Center, Van Dyke, Emily Williams House, Tobias-Smyth Cabin (a reconstructed log house which was home to one of the college's founders; now a museum and meeting place.)[11]


Emory and Henry College's liberal arts academic program is based upon a required four-year core curriculum of history, literature, and culture. The college has more than 25 academic programs of study and offers more than 50 Bachelor degrees and offers master's degrees in education and community and organizational leadership. The college's programs in public policy and community service and international studies have been nationally recognized.

Students have the opportunity to study abroad or travel abroad with professors. E&H students are able to attend to a range of lectures and cultural events, called Lyceums, led by political figures, area experts, or artists.

Service Students have opportunities to volunteer. Furthermore, volunteerism can be achieved through social activism with the Public Policy and Community Service Program and the Appalachian Center for Civic Life. The service fraternity Alpha Phi Omega has a chapter at Emory and Henry College.

Student research

E&H professors prepare students by providing research opportunities. Students studying biology could be collecting microbes Script error: No such module "convert". under water. Physics majors could find themselves photographing binary stars. Students who do research for a political science class could be presenting their work to a major conferences such as the Western Political Science Association.

Study abroad

The International Education and Study Abroad Program is an important part of the liberal arts curriculum. In a partnership with CIEE students have spent semesters or summers abroad, or participated in Emory abroad courses—short-term international programs led by the E&H faculty. Through active engagement, the program enhances global awareness through an understanding of cultural diversity and global interdependence.


Each year, Emory and Henry holds close to 100 concerts, lectures, theatre, dance performances, films, exhibits, and poetry readings to complete the academic experience. Of the lyceum events, the biggest are a literary festival each November and ah a Spring Forum focused on a particular social issue.

Outdoor program

The College is located in the Appalachian Mountains with forests to hike, mountains for cross-country skiing, creeks to paddle, cliffs for rappelling, and caves for spelunking. The Appalachian and Iron Mountain Trails, The Virginia Creeper Trail, The Mount Rogers National Recreation Area, The Jefferson and George Washington National Forests, and the New, Nantahala, and Clinch rivers are all close by.


Main article: Emory & Henry Wasps

Emory and Henry College’s sports teams, nicknamed the “Wasps,” participate in NCAA Division III in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC). The college fields men’s teams in football, soccer, basketball, baseball, cross country and tennis and women’s teams in cross country, volleyball, basketball, softball, soccer, tennis and swimming.

Fight song

"Rah, Rah, for Emory!"
 We're Emory born and Emory bred
 And when we die we'll be Emory dead!
 So Rah, Rah, for Emory and Henry!
 Rah, Rah, for Emory and Henry!
 Rah, Rah, for Emory! Rah, Rah, Rah!

Old Blue and Gold will reign on high,
 We'll win this game to DAY OR DIE!
 So Rah, Rah, for Emory and Henry!
 Rah, Rah, for Emory and Henry!
 Rah, Rah, for Emory! Rah, Rah, Rah!"


The official Emory and Henry nickname is the Wasps. While there are many rumored origins of the nickname, the most commonly accepted story is that Emory and Henry was first called the Wasps after the football team played the first ever game in Tennessee's Neyland Stadium by a local Knoxville newspaper.[13] Though Emory and Henry was beaten 27–0, legend has it that the local paper declared "that those Virginia boys stung like wasps," and the nickname has stuck ever since.

The Emory and Henry basketball team's unofficial mascot is a dog named "Pete," who wears an Emory and Henry jersey and is yellowish in nature. Pete is a reference to the late Emory and Henry basketball coach Bob Johnson's Labrador retriever (which was also named Pete). Pete (the dog) was often seen sitting beside Coach Johnson during games at the King Center.

Student activities

There are more than 70 student organizations are active on Emory and Henry's campus. Community service projects are also a way many students, especially Bonner Scholars, spend their free time. Often students will mountain bike or hike on the numerous trials in nearby Damascus or Abingdon, or spend time outside participating in rock climbing, kayaking or other outdoor sports. Sports such as football, basketball, soccer, baseball, and volleyball are offered as both intercollegiate and as intramural sports.

Greek life

Emory and Henry allows local social fraternities and sororities only.

The currently recognized social sororities on campus are Alpha Beta Chi, Delta Omicron Pi, Delta Rho Delta, Kappa Phi Alpha, Pi Sigma Kappa, and Sigma Upsilon Nu.

The currently recognized social fraternities on campus are Theta Chi Epsilon, Pi Delta Chi, Sigma Alpha Kappa, Sigma Iota, Dom-I-Necher, Phi Gamma Phi, Phi Pi Alpha, C Phi C, and Beta Lambda Zeta.

Student media

  • The Whitetopper student newspaper, established in 1921.
  • EHC-TV, student produced television news program.
  • WEHC-FM 90.7, the college's official radio station.
  •, online student news site.

Unchartered organization investigation

On November 6, 2014, the campus newspaper, the Whitetopper, reported that an investigation of the Emorium Society was underway.[14] Although it is generally acknowledged that the organization does good things for people, their existence is a violation of Emory and Henry's current policies, and further accusations of hazing were levied against the group, which are currently being investigated. [15]

Results from the investigation have not been released to the E&H student body, but unofficial results were discussed with certain students. The administration has uncovered a wide body of knowledge about the Emorium Society including lists of members and group activities. Some of these include vandalism and association with alumni accused of hazing. [16]


Traditions at Emory and Henry College include:

Service Plunge – the college's annual "Service Plunge" is a tradition and a requirement of all incoming freshman in which they must go out and perform community service for a day during the first month of school (usually a Saturday).[17]

Running of the Bulls – The Running of the Bulls is a Bi-annual event in which girls who are pledging a sorority are sent running out of the front door of Wiley-Jackson (MaWa) and are told to run towards the sorority which they intend to pledge. The event, although short, is often attended by large portions of the student population due to its somewhat humorous nature.

The Rock – Every athletic team that plays their games at Fred Selfe Stadium touches a giant rock taken from the late Fred Selfe's hometown. Coach Selfe was a long-time assistant coach for the Emory and Henry football team who died of cancer and whose saying "Trust in your teammates, trust in yourself" is painted in the football locker room. Touching the Rock is seen as not only a unifying gesture, but it is supposed to also be a "recognition of all those who wore the blue and gold before you."

The Duck Pond – Emory and Henry is known for having ducks year round at its duck pond. This is because the pond is naturally heated due to a spring (which can be see in the corner closest to Wiley Hall in the foundations of the old well house).

Rain, Sleet, or Snow – Emory and Henry is notorious among students for not canceling classes due to inclement weather. This is due the fact that large numbers of Emory and Henry students live on campus and since they do not have to drive to school, the College often feels little need to cancel class.[12] It is rumored among students that the college has only been closed three times since its opening in 1836 due to inclement weather.

Rankings and recognition

In the last 21 years, 14 E&H professors have won a major state or national teaching award. The most recent recipients were Dr. Scott Boltwood, a professor of English who won the 2013 Carnegie Foundation CASE award of Undergraduate Teaching, Prof. Michael Lane, a professor of Chemistry, and Dr. Teresa Keller, a professor of Mass Communication both of whom won the Outstanding Faculty Award given by the State Council for Higher Education in Virginia in 2014 and 2010 respectively.[18] In the last 23 years, eight E&H professors have been named Virginia or U.S. Professor of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation and the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education and six have won the State Council for the Higher Education of Virginia's Outstanding Faculty Award—a feat unmatched by any college or university in the state.[19]

E&H was honored with the Corporation for National and Community Service Presidential Award March 2010, making it the first Virginia institution for higher learning to receive the award.[20]

Forbes Magazine has consistently ranked Emory and Henry among the top 100 colleges and universities in the nation. Emory and Henry was one of five Virginia institutions to make the top 100 and the only regional college or university among the 569 (or the top 15 percent) selected for the ranking out of the 3,798 institutions nationwide.[19]

Emory and Henry is ranked as the 25th safest school in the nation.[21]

"Emory and Henry doubles the talents of most of the kids it gets, and contributes to their moral development as well. It is a caring, nurturing college, and it may be unique in the way it works with parents . . . I didn't meet anyone who wished he'd gotten into some other school, which is unusual, because at nearly every college, except maybe Harvard, there is a sullen cohort of rejected suitors of another institution." – Loren Pope, Colleges That Change Lives.

Faculty Award given by the State Council of Higher Education in Virginia.[19]

According to measurements of student satisfaction conducted by the Student Satisfaction Inventory (SSI), Emory and Henry students rate their college well above the national average for four-year institutions with regard to the quality of the instruction they receive and the effectiveness of their academic advisors. Among the many other categoriES in which Emory and Henry sharply exceeds the national average are the desire for students to enroll again and their assessment of the helpfulness of E&H staff and administrators.

Emory and Henry College is one of 100 colleges from across the nation that have been named to a list recognizing their distinctive abilities to provide excellence in education and to dramatically improve the chances of success for their students. The listing, which is published by Student Horizons, Inc., recognizes schools on the basis of student engagement, excellence in teaching and the successful outcomes for students and graduates.

In 2004, Y'all magazine listed Emory and Henry among the 40 colleges and universities in the South with the greatest football traditions. "Not to be overshadowed by neighboring Division I powerhouses . . .Winning seasons plus pride and pageantry equals one of the greatest Southern football traditions."[22]

Notable alumni

File:The Emory & Henry College Alumni Plaza.jpg
The E&H Alumni Plaza sits midway between Wiley Hall and Memorial Chapel.

Literature, television and arts


  • Joe L. Kincheloe (1972) – World renown author of over 50 books on education, culture, and politics; Canada Research Chair in Critical Pedagogy at McGill University, Montreal, Canada.
  • Henry DeLamar Clayton – President of the University of Alabama from 1886-1889; Confederate general during Civil War.


  • Frank Rowlett (1929) – American cryptologist who cracked the Japanese code during World War II.
  • Thomas T. Handy (enrolled 1908-1911) - Served as Deputy Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army in World War II; signed the orders to drop the atomic bomb on Hiroshima.
  • James Patton Brownlow - Brevet Brigadier General of the 1st Tennessee Volunteer Cavalry Regiment (Union) during the Civil War.
  • J.E.B. Stuart (enrolled 1848–1850) - a U.S. Army officer and later a Confederate general during the American Civil War.

Science, research, and medicine

  • Charles W. Sydnor (1965) - Celebrated World War II historian credited for tracking down and testifying against Nazi war criminals who had illegally entered the United States.
  • John Young (1955) - NASA worker who discovered the use of gravitational pull of the earth and moon to bring the Apollo 11 lunar module back to earth.
  • John “Bill” Ashworth (1931) - Medical officer in the Pacific during World War II; cared for Japanese Prime Minister Hideki Tojo after a suicide attempt; served as chief of surgery at Johns Hopkins and as Emory and Henry campus physician.

Politics and government


Sports and athletics


  1. ^ As of February 14, 2014. "U.S. and Canadian Institutions Listed by Fiscal Year 2013 Endowment Market Value and Percentage Change in Endowment Market Value from FY 2012 to FY 2013" (PDF). 2013 NACUBO-Commonfund Study of Endowments. National Association of College and University Business Officers. Retrieved April 1, 2014. 
  2. ^ "New President Has Busy First Day". Retrieved 8 November 2014. 
  3. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2010-07-09. 
  4. ^ "Virginia Landmarks Register". Virginia Department of Historic Resources. Retrieved 5 June 2013. 
  5. ^ a b Salmon, John S. (1994), A Guidebook to Virginia's Historical Markers, Charlottesville, Virginia: University of Virginia Press, p. 51 
  6. ^ Heatwole, Cornelius Jacob (1916), A History of Education in Virginia, New York, New York: MaCmillan and Company, p. 162 
  7. ^ [1][dead link]
  8. ^ a b [2][dead link]
  9. ^ "Donald W. Tendick, Sr., Memorial". Historical Marker Database. 2011. Retrieved September 26, 2011. 
  10. ^ [3][dead link]
  11. ^ a b c [4][dead link]
  12. ^ a b [5][dead link]
  13. ^ [6][dead link]
  14. ^ Brickey, Kaylan. "Allegations Made Against Emorium Society." The Whitetopper 06 Nov. 2014, 176th ed.: 1+. Print.
  15. ^ Brickey, Kaylan. "Allegations Made Against Emorium Society." The Whitetopper 06 Nov. 2014, 176th ed.: 1+. Print.
  16. ^ Letter to the editor, The Whitetopper 13 Nov. 2014, 177th ed.: 1+. Print.
  17. ^ [7][dead link]
  18. ^ [8][dead link]
  19. ^ a b c [9][dead link]
  20. ^ [10][dead link]
  21. ^ [11][dead link]
  22. ^ "Y'all - The South's Homepage™". Retrieved 8 November 2014. 
  23. ^ "David Walker Parrish, Jr.". Hill & Wood Funeral Service. July 2, 2010. Retrieved April 4, 2014. 

External links