Wilberforce University’s impressive history sets it apart from other national higher education institutions.

Founded in 1856, Wilberforce University has stayed true to its founding principles of self-determination and access to academic excellence.


Information on cost, academic programs, accreditation, special services, campus contacts, refund policies, Return of Funds to Title IV, and procedures for officially withdrawing are available in the University Catalog at these locations:

  • Cost of Education
  • Academic Programs (pgs. 37-155)
  • Accreditation (p. 1)
  • Academic Regulations (pgs. 8-17)
  • Campus Contacts (pgs. 156-162)
  • Institutional Refund Policy (p. 27)
  • Return of Funds to Title IV (p. 33)
  • Procedures for Officially Withdrawing (p. 10)
  • General Information on physical facilities (pgs. 5-6)
  • College Index (pgs. 164-167)

Wilberforce University is a four-year, fully accredited liberal arts institution.

We offer 20 academic concentrations in:

  • business
  • communications
  • computing and engineering sciences
  • humanities
  • natural sciences
  • social sciences

We also offer dual degree programs in architecture, aerospace, and nuclear engineering.

Through the University’s Adult and Continuing Education Program we offer Credentials for Leadership in Management and Business (CLIMB). This program serves students interested in completing their Bachelor of Science degree in organizational management, health care administration, or information technology.

Early in 1856, the Methodist Episcopal Church purchased property for the new institution at Tawawa Springs, near Xenia, Ohio. For many years the institution operated with great success.

The Civil War in 1862 shifted enrollment and financial support, unfortunately causing Wilberforce to close for a year. In March of 1863, Bishop Daniel A. Payne of the African Methodist Episcopal Church negotiated to purchase the University’s facilities. Payne, a member of the original 1856 corporation, secured the cooperation of John G. Mitchell, principal of the Eastern District Public School of Cincinnati, Ohio and James A. Shorter, pastor of the A.M.E. Church of Zanesville, Ohio. The property was soon turned over to them as agents of the church.

The University was newly incorporated on July 10, 1863.

In 1887 the State of Ohio began to fund the University by establishing a combined normal and industrial department. This department later became Central State University.

Wilberforce also spawned another institution, Payne Theological Seminary. It was founded in 1891 as an outgrowth of the Wilberforce University Theological Department.

Today, Wilberforce University continues to build on its sacred traditions in the 21st Century. Our campus is a visual delight of modern buildings that include the Wolfe Administration Building, the Alumni Multiplex, Student Health Center, Communications Complex, the John L. Henderson Hall, and the Louis Stokes Health and Wellness Center.

Higher Education Act - Annual Notice

The Higher Education Amendments of 1998 (HEA98) requires institutions to provide annual notice to enrolled students of the availability of the following consumer information:


It is the established policy of Wilberforce University not to tolerate any form of discrimination or harassment by or against any individual or group of individuals for reasons of sex, race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, age, disability, military status, sexual orientation gender identity and expression, etc. The university is fully committed to providing equal opportunities in all employment-related activities, educational programs, and other activities of the institution. Any person who is subjected to conduct that creates a discriminatory, intimidating or harassing environment should report the Office of Human Resources, (937) 708-5798.


It is the policy of Wilberforce University to provide reasonable accommodation to students with disabilities. If you would like to request such accommodations because of a physical, mental, or learning disability, please contact the Office of Student Academic Support Services, (937) 708-5257. Wilberforce University Reasonable Accommodations Policy and Process


Information on rights and procedures for inspection, correction, and disclosure of information in the student’s record. Student rights under FERPA are published in the University Catalog. You may obtain a copy by contacting the Office of the Registrar at (937) 708-5736.


Description of student aid program, application procedures and eligibility criteria, and rights and responsibilities of students receiving financial assistance. Student financial aid information is Information is available by contacting Student Financial Services (SFS) at (937) 708-5727. Student Financial Services (Financial Aid website)


Statistics concerning reported crimes occurred on campus. The report also includes institutional policies concerning campus security such as policies concerning alcohol and drug use, crime prevention, the reporting of crimes, sexual assault, and other matters. You can obtain a copy of the Annual Security & Fire Safety Report report by contacting Campus Police (937) 708-5701 or visiting their website www.wilberforce.edu/campus-police/.


Information on Wilberforce University’s intercollegiate athletics programs: intercollegiate varsity teams; number of participants; operating expenses; gender, status, and salary of all coaches; revenue generated; funds spent on athletic student; and recruiting expenditures for both men’s and women’s teams. 2018 Student Right to Know Act – Six Year Completion-Graduation Rates Report – Student Athletes in 2011 Cohort.


HEOA Sec. 488(a)(1)(E) amended HEA Sec. 485(a)(1) (20 U.S.C. 1092(a)(1)): added HEA Sec. 485(a)(1)(U): HEOA amendment effective August 14, 2008: “Institutions must make available to current and prospective students the retention rate of certificate- or degree-seeking, first-time, undergraduate students as reported to IPEDS. Retention & Graduation Rates

Six Year Completion-Graduation Rates Report – All Undergraduates

Six Year Completion Rates- Student Athletes

Student Body Diversity Report 2018


2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, & 2010

Wilberforce University embodies six(6) core values that undergird all decisions critical to accomplishing the university’s mission:

Our Students

Our Students are the center of our existence; respect, spiritual values and commitment to their educational success is our priority.


We are an African Methodist Episcopal Church University that believes in the Living God; we embrace Christian principles as our foundation.

Christian Principles

Ethics, integrity, and honesty, as exhibited in the Christ of Scripture, are an essential part of our spiritual growth and permit us to develop our relationships with God and one another.

Quality Education

We will provide a living-learning environment with excellent teaching and a challenging curriculum.

Social & Community Responsibility

We are devoted to serving our community through personal and institutional outreach consistent with our core values.

History and Tradition

We embrace and cherish our history and take responsibility for our future and for distinguishing ourselves through the 21st century and beyond.

Wilberforce University is accredited on probation by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) , a regional accrediting agency recognized by the Department of Education which accredits degree-granting post-secondary educational institutions in the North Central region, comprised of 19 states, including Ohio.

To contact The Higher Learning Commission:

Higher Learning Commission
230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500, Chicago, Illinois 60604-1411
Phone: 800.621.7440 / 312.263.0456 | Fax: 312.263.7462 | info@hlcommission.org

This accreditation affirms that Wilberforce University continues to provide quality educational programs and services to students. The next reaffirmation is scheduled for 2019/2020. For the Wilberforce University Public Disclosure Statement of Status Change from Accredited to Accredited: On Probation, please click here.

© 2018 Wilberforce University - All Rights Reserved.

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