St. Andrews University History

In September 1961, the first students stepped onto the grounds of a spacious, lake-centered campus that only a short time earlier had been named St. Andrews Presbyterian College. Long before the arrival of those first students, Presbyterians across North Carolina, laity and clergy, had committed themselves to this new adventure in higher education.

The history of St. Andrews began in 1896 with the founding of Flora Macdonald College in Red Springs, NC. In 1958, Flora Macdonald College merged with Presbyterian Junior College in Maxton, NC, to establish St. Andrews. In 1996, St. Andrews celebrated the Centennial Anniversary of its heritage by hosting a series of events and celebrations. In honor of the occasion, 800 plus alumni, faculty, students, staff and friends, gathered for this birthday party to recognize the shared history of the three institutions.

The history of St. Andrews offers a consistent record of academic innovation, recognitions and accomplishments far out of proportion to the college’s small size and limited human and financial resources. It has repeatedly demonstrated an ability to recognize needs which were not being met by the prevalent higher education cannon of pedagogical strategies, texts, programs or assumptions. It has also combined its visionary thinking with successful academic planning to translate insights into concrete, efficacious higher education innovation.

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