Regarded as one of the oldest colleges in South Carolina and the 64th oldest in the United States; Furman University is named in the honor of Richard Furman of Charleston, a notable minister and president of the first Baptist Convention in America. The institute was originally founded in 1826 as an academy and theological institute. It was chartered as a comprehensive University in 1850. Today, it stands as a private, coeducational, liberal arts institute in Greenville, South Carolina. The beautifully landscaped main campus spans an area of more than 700 acres on the outskirts of Greenville.
Furman University is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, to confer bachelor’s and master’s degrees to students. The University offers majors and programs in more than 40 diverse areas of study such as accounting, art, biology, business, chemistry, classics, communication studies, and mathematics. Furman also offers a course in nature or environmental studies. Furman is also a member of Associated Colleges of the South.
Furman University is composed of several academic departments for Asian Studies, Biology, Business and Accounting, Languages and Literatures, Chemistry, Classics, Communication, Studies, Computer Science, Earth & Environmental Sciences. The University also offers continuing education programs to students who wish to further their education.
Most Popular Fields of Study
Furman University enrolls students from more than 45 states and over 40 foreign countries. The freshman students must send their complete application form along with the necessary official transcripts. The students must take either SAT or ACT entrance test. Students can check their application status online. The Engage Community is an online forum where students can join and chat with their Furman Admission counselor.
Furman University offers a wide range of financial aid options to the needy and deserving students. If you are seeking monetary assistance then you must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form. Furman provides financial assistance in the form of scholarships and student loans. The scholarships are classified into three types: Odell Scholarship Application for Humanities Majors; Mellichamp Scholarship; and Merit Scholarships.
Some of the scholarships offered at Furman include Herman W. Lay Scholarships; James B. Duke Scholarships; Hollingsworth and Townes Scholarships; Sustainability Science Scholarships; Wylie Mathematics Scholarships; Alden Pre-Engineering Scholarships; Bank of America Sustainability Fellows Scholarship; National Merit Scholarships; Achiever Scholarships; South Carolina Hope Scholarship; and Exploration of Vocation and Ministry Scholarships.
Furman University offers an active and diverse student life that aims at overall development. The Student Government Association (SGA) functions under a semi-Presidential system. SGA is composed of a president, the executive council, a secretary, and two senators. This student body acts as the voice of the students, and works for enhancing the University. Some of the SCA funded organizations include Sigma Alpha Epsilon, A Fashionable Cause, Admission Ambassadors, Bowling Club, C.Wright Mills Society (Sociology Club), Cicero Society, Upstate Forever, and Xi Theta Xi.
There are several student clubs and organizations on the campus. Students can either join an existing club or create a new one. The student clubs encourages students to take part in the various campus activities and events. Some of the student organizations include Club Baseball, Furman Power and Fitness Club, Ski & Snowboard Club, Catholic Campus Ministries (CCM), Presbyterian Student Association (PSA), and Furman University Gospel Ensemble (FUGE).
Furman University also has a strong Greek presence on the campus. The student organizations are governed by the following associations: Furman Student Government Associations (SGA) Furman University Student Activates Board (FUSAB), Heller Service Corp, Interfraternity Council (IFC), Panhellenic Association, Religious Council, and Residential Life Council (RLC). The on-site fraternities and sororities at Furman include:
Alpha Delta Pi
Alpha Kappa Alpha
Delta Delta Delta
Beta Theta Pi
Kappa Alpha Order
Kappa Alpha Psi
Media and Publications:
The Paladin is the student newspaper of the University. It publishes latest news regarding sports, issues and opinions. Bonhomie Yearbook is the annual publication of the University.
WPLS Radio is the student operated radio station of the University. FU2 TV is the television station serving the University.
The James Buchanan Duke Library is the main library for the Furman community. It is located at the center of campus. The library boasts a collection of more than 400,000 volumes of books and references relating to the academic curriculum of the institute. It also provides access to a wide range of information technologies. The main library also includes the office of library administration, archives, special collections, and other library departments.
The University Center or UC is set in the splendid backdrop of the Furman Lake. It is the hub of diverse campus activities and student involvement on the campus. The UC is a multipurpose facility that includes a bookstore, the PalaDen Food Court, the University post office and digital eXpress copy center.
The Counseling Center, located on the upper level of the Daniel Dining Hall offers academic and career counseling services to the students. There is also a career center that advises students to take the right entry into the workforce. It assists students in getting a job in their field of interest. The campus also includes several other academic and recreation facilities such as a science complex housing hi-tech scientific equipment; a chapel; a music complex with technology lab and recital halls; a 2,000-seat auditorium; physical activities center; workout facilities and pool; a 16,000-seat football stadium; tennis center; soccer stadium; and a 18-hole golf course.
Housing & Dining:
All full-time students at Furman University are required to live in the campus residence halls. The south campus housing and lakeside housing are available for the undergraduate students. The south campus housing is composed of the following dorms: the Geer, Manly, Poteat, Blackwell and McGlothlin. The lakeside housing includes the Judson, Townes, McBee, Gambrell, Ramsey, Haynsworth, and Chiles dorm. The dorms are equipped with all the modern amenities such as air-conditioning, closets, wired Internet access, and laundry.
Furman’s North Village is an apartment complex, built for the juniors and seniors. It also offers apartment style living for the upperclassmen. These apartments feature two or four bedrooms, living room, equipped kitchen, balcony, two vanity areas, two bathrooms, closet and storage space. Each bedroom comprises of a full-size bed, desk, chair and dresser/ hutch.
Furman University offers a wide variety of dining options for the students. The main dining facility is the Daniel Hall, which offers a varied menu including a salad bar, pasta bar, homemade pizza, waffle bar, and grill. Einstein Brother’s Bagels, located just above the Dining Hall offers a quieter and more relaxed atmosphere. Students can relax, study or grab a coffee and toasted sandwich at this outlet. Pala Den Food Court, located in the University Center offers Chick-Fil-A, Moe’s Southwest Grill, Freshens, and Pan Geos. Furman also features a dining facility called Tower Cafe, where students can enjoy coffee from Starbucks.
The students can also dine at the several off-campus eateries located in Greenville. There are several restaurants ranging from cheap dining to five-star feasts. Some of the popular places to eat are Soby’s, Coffee Underground, Barley’s, and Sharkey’s Pub.
Points of Interest:
Students at Furman enjoy a wonderful life both on and off campus. During leisure hours, students can enjoy exploring the various on-site points of interests which include Doughboy Statue, honoring the Furman students who served in World War I; Daniel Chapel Organ; and The Bell Tower and Burnside Carillon. The University’s special collections department includes the South Carolina Poetry Archives and the South Carolina Baptist Historical Collection. There are also several off-campus sightseeing points in Greenville worth exploring.
Student Enrollment Demographics
Student Graduation Demographics
Furman University’s athletic department sponsors men’s and women’s teams in diverse sports such as basketball, football, soccer, golf, baseball, volleyball, track & field, and tennis. These athletic teams compete in the NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association) Division I; and are members of the Southern Conference. The teams are nicknamed as the Paladins. Their colors are Royal Purple and White. Furman is the only liberal arts institute to be ranked in Sports Illustrated’s ‘Top 100 America’s Best Sports Colleges’.
Furman University hosts various intramural sports and club sports programs throughout the year. Nearly two-thirds of the student population participates in the intramural sports. The student organization members compete in various recreational and intramural sports such as soccer, softball, team handball, tennis, basketball, volleyball, flag football, bowling, ultimate frisbee, golf, sand volleyball, and spades. The intramural sports brings the students, faculty members and staff together to recreate, enjoy and have a fun experience.
From the moment the students step into the campus till they leave it, they become a part of the rich Furman traditions. Orientation for the new students includes familiarizing them with the University through academic sessions, residence hall meetings and fun social activities. Activities Fair is sponsored by the sophomore class. The exhibits help accustom new students with the campus organizations and motivate them to join one.
Homecoming is a popular tradition that marks the event when returning alumni and current students gather at the green mall during a week for a football game, dance, floats and many other enjoyable activities. Some other important traditions worth mentioning are Family Weekends; L.D. Johnson Lecture Series; Furman Fall Fest; Holiday Concert; and Sorority and Fraternity Recruitment.
Furman University graduates have gone on to earn reputation and fame in diverse fields. Some of the notable alumni are Charles Townes, winner of Nobel Prize in Physics; John B. Watson, notable American Psychologist and founder of Behaviorism; Jay Bocook, renowned composer and arranger; Herman Lay, founder of the Lay’s Corporation; Sherri Turner, a professional golfer; Mark Sanford, former Governor of South Carolina; and Betsy Byars, a prominent children’s author.
Additional School Information
U.S. News & World Report magazine (2011 edition) ranked Furman University No. 41 among the ‘Best National Liberal Arts Colleges’ category.
Furman University has received several accolades and praises from The Princeton Review, The Fiske Guide to Colleges, Peterson’s Competitive Colleges, and The College Board College Handbook.
Furman University. 2011.
Thompson, Tommy L. Furman University: a timeless place. Harmony House, 1998. Print.
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