Berea College Ranked No. 1 “Best Value College” by The Wall Street Journal/THE

A Berea College student reading the Wall Street Journal's article ranking Berea College Number 1Berea College once again tops the list of “Best Value Colleges” in the nation in The Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education (THE) 2021 College Rankings. Berea’s no-tuition model contributed to its No. 1 best-value ranking.

To determine the best value among the top 250 schools WSJ/THE divided each institution’s overall score by its net price, which includes the total cost of attending a school, such as tuition, fees, room and board, books and supplies, minus federal or institutional financial aid that doesn’t have to be repaid. Students who don’t receive any aid aren’t included in the calculation. The College ranked No. 144 overall, climbing from l55 last year.

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Jennifer Bentz Awarded $8,500 Phi Kappa Phi Fellowship

Jennifer Bentz in front of University of St. Louis School of Medicine building

Jennifer Bentz, a Berea College alumna of Maryville, Tennessee, received a Fellowship worth $8,500 by The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi (PKP)—the nation’s oldest collegiate honor society for all academic disciplines. Bentz is one of 58 recipients nationwide to receive a Phi Kappa Phi Fellowship.

Bentz received a bachelor’s degree in biology from Berea College earlier this year. As a Phi Kappa Phi Fellow, Bentz will pursue a Doctor of Medicine at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

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Berea Ranked No. 1 as Best Bang for the Buck and No. 3 Best Liberal Arts College

Washington Monthly 2020 College Rankings CoverWashington Monthly ranked Berea College No. 1 as the Best Bang for the Buck Colleges in the South. Berea also was named the nation’s No. 3 top liberal arts college in the 2020 Washington Monthly College Rankings guide. No other college in Kentucky was in the top 50. Such recognition for Berea comes from its success in educating and graduating academically talented, low-income students who become service-oriented leaders in their professions and communities. Last year, Berea held the No. 1 and No. 4 spots respectively.

Berea College was recognized by Washington Monthly author Robert Kelchen for maintaining “consistently high rankings thanks to their economic diversity, relatively strong graduation rates and commitment to meeting students’ financial need.”

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Berea College Seeks 1,600 Donors on Sept. 3

Giving Day Banner August 2019

Photo: Crystal Wylie ’05

Berea College is looking for 1,600 people to participate in its annual Giving Day on Thursday, Sept. 3. This event generates significant excitement and support for Berea’s students with contributions coming from donors locally, regionally and nationally.

Donors can support Berea’s Giving Day easily by making a gift online; by texting “BEREA” to 56512; by calling 800-457-9846; or by mailing a check to CPO 2216, Berea, KY 40404.

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Berea Named One of the Best 386 Colleges in the Princeton Review’s 2021 Guide

The Best 386 Colleges Princeton Review CoverThe Princeton Review has once again cited Berea College as “one of the nation’s best institutions for undergraduates to earn their college degree.” This citation was made in their just-released publication of The Best 386 Colleges: 2021 edition of the annual college guide.

Berea is nationally recognized for its high-quality education and its distinctive labor program, which hires every admitted student to help operate the school. Berea is also known for its Tuition Promise Scholarship that covers more than $44,000 in annual tuition costs for every student. Berea’s students mostly come from families making an average of $29,000 and are the first in their families to attend college.

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Berea College Named No. 1 Top Producer of Gilman Scholars 

2018-2019 Gilman Top ProducerContinuing a long tradition of students winning Gilman scholarships, Berea College was named the top U.S. college for having the most 2018-2019 Gilman International Scholarship undergraduates, 21, among colleges with enrollments under 5,000. Berea also was recognized in other categories, including top producers for first-generation students and top producer for most diverse destinations for studying abroad.

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Bill Daugherty Begins Term as Berea College Trustee

Bill Daugherty profileWilliam S. (Bill) Daugherty was elected in April to serve on the Berea College Board of Trustees for a term beginning July 1.

A 1976 Berea College alumnus and recipient of Berea’s 2017 Distinguished Alumnus Award, Daugherty is a co-founder and serves as a Managing Partner of BlackRidge Resource Partners LLC, an independent exploration and production company with oil and gas production in Kentucky, Illinois, Texas, Oklahoma and Wyoming.

“As an alumnus, I have always been grateful for the opportunities Berea College afforded me and the solid foundation I received for my future,” said Daugherty.  “I look forward to giving back by serving as a contributing member of the Board of Trustees.”

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Berea College Announces Plan for Fall Semester; All Students Invited to Return to Campus

The Administrative Committee of Berea College has decided to invite all Berea students to return for the upcoming semester. The fall 2020 semester will begin on Aug. 12 and conclude Nov. 24, prior to Thanksgiving.

The Administrative Committee carefully reviewed input from various College groups, including the Division Council, logistics groups and the Fall Re-opening Task Force, as well as information from various agencies regarding the situation of the COVID-19 pandemic nationally, statewide and locally to inform its decision.

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Jessica Napier, Berea College Alumna, Nationally Recognized As Health Education Teacher of the Year

Jessica Napier ’00

Jessica Napier ’00 (Photo: LEX 18)

Jessica Napier, a 2000 graduate of Berea College, has been named National Health Education Teacher of the Year by SHAPE America, an organization that champions health and physical educators at every level, from preschool to university graduate programs.

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Dr. Dwayne Mack appointed vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion at Berea College

Dr. Dwayne Mack

Dr. Dwayne Mack

Dr. Dwayne Mack was appointed vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion at Berea College effective July 1. Dr. Mack has been with the College since 2003 and has taught American history, African American history and general studies. He currently serves as professor of history and the Carter G. Woodson Chair in African American history. He brings to the position a wealth of knowledge from research and scholarship on diversity, equity and inclusion in higher education, the civil rights movement, interracial education and the gendered past of Berea College. In this position, Mack also will be a member of the Administrative Committee.

“My approach to the vice president role is rooted in my longstanding commitment to collaborative leadership that cultivates diversity, equity and inclusion,” Mack said. “Ultimately, my work is driven by a commitment to social equality, with the aim of generating practices that have a practical impact. Creating a campus climate that is inclusive and diverse, and supports our Great Commitments and Climate Assessment Report will continue to be the most meaningful and rewarding work of my professional career. It is at the core of my research and praxis.”

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Berea College Announces Fulbright Awards for 2020-21

Two Berea College students received national recognition from the  Fulbright U.S. Student Program through the U.S. Department of State and the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board.

Meredith Black ’19 received her Fulbright award to be an English Teaching Assistant (ETA) in Germany and Shelby Wheeler ’16 to be an ETA in Spain.

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Three Berea College Students Named Thomas J. Watson Fellows

Berea College students Stephen Nwaloziri, Aloyce (Hans) Riziki and Sophia Winkowitsch have won the prestigious distinction of being members of the 52nd Class of Thomas J. Watson Fellows.

Sophia Winkowitsch

Sophia Winkowitsch

Watson Fellows are selected from just 40 private colleges and university partners across the United States making the Watson pool extremely competitive. This year there were 153 finalists who were nominated to compete on the national level, from which 47 Fellows were selected.

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Weatherford Award Winners Named

The winners of this year’s Weatherford Awards for the best books about Appalachia are Appalachian Reckoning (non-fiction) edited by Anthony Harkins and Meredith McCarroll, Forage by Rose McLarney (poetry), and Any Other Place (fiction) by Michael Croley. The Weatherford Awards honor books deemed as best illuminating the challenges, personalities and unique qualities of the Appalachian South. Granted by Berea College and the Appalachian Studies Association for 50 years, the awards commemorate the life and achievements of W.D. Weatherford, Sr., a pioneer and leading figure in Appalachian development, youth work and race relations, and his son, Willis D. Weatherford, Jr., Berea College’s sixth President. These winning authors will be recognized at the 2020 Appalachian Studies Conference in Lexington, Kentucky on Friday, March 13. 

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Dr. Nicholas D. Hartlep Recognized By DIVERSE as a 2020 Emerging Scholar

Nicholas Hartlep Portrait

Dr. Nicholas D. Hartlep
(Photo: Jennifer Lance ’20)

Dr. Nicholas D. Hartlep of Berea College’s education department has been named as a 2020 Emerging Scholar by DIVERSE, a national magazine focused on diverse issues in higher education. Hartlep, who is the Robert Charles Billings Chair in Education and chair of Berea College’s education studies department, is one of 15 minority scholars doing remarkable interdisciplinary work in the academic sphere. DIVERSE says the 2020 Emerging Scholars are recognized as academic leaders who represent the future of education. Read the full article in DIVERSE.

Samantha Shawn Earp Elected to Berea College Board of Trustees

Samantha Earp

Samantha Shawn Earp

Samantha Shawn Earp was elected to serve on the Berea College Board of Trustees for a six-year term.

Earp is vice president of information technology and chief information officer at Smith College, where her responsibilities include oversight of the college’s IT environment and management of the central IT organization. She also serves as a member of the president’s cabinet.

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Berea’s Westervelt Program Opens Spring Registration for Photography Course

Sarah Heggen

Sarah Heggen, owner of Light My Fire Photography, will instruct the Westervelt Program class focused on photography this spring.

The Berea College Technology and Applied Design department is accepting course registration for spring 2020 Westervelt Program classes, which will focus on photography. The class will begin Feb. 4, 2020, and will meet on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. in room B10 of the Danforth Technology building.  The instructor will be Sarah Heggen.

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Artist Kiana Honarmand Exhibits Work Giving Insight to the Injustices Faced by Iranian Women

Growing up in Iran, I felt stuck between tradition and modernity, as did many other people in my generation.”- Kiana Honarmand, 2019

The Doris Ulmann Galleries has opened an exhibition featuring works by artist Kiana Honarmand on view now until Feb. 27, 2020. The exhibit, Across the Space Separating, consists of a selection of Honarmand’s works that discuss the juxtaposition of her Middle Eastern identity and her education in Western art. Honarmand uses this duality in her identity to discuss sociopolitical issues of modern Iran, like the violation of women’s rights, as well as the Western perception of the Middle East as a whole.

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Berea College Recognized as a Phi Kappa Phi Circle of Excellence Gold Chapter

Phi Kappa Phi LogoThe Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi—the nation’s oldest and most selective collegiate honor society for all academic disciplines—recently recognized the Berea College chapter of Phi Kappa Phi as a Circle of Excellence Gold Chapter, the second-highest commendation a chapter can receive from the organization. The award is given to chapters that exceed expectations in chapter operations and who demonstrate sustainability and vitality as a chapter of Phi Kappa Phi.

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Malaklou Appointed Chair of Women’s and Gender Studies

M. Shadee Malaklou

Dr. M. Shadee Malaklou, Chair of Women’s and Gender Studies

Dr. M. Shadee Malaklou, a critical race, gender and sexuality studies scholar, joined Berea College as chair and assistant professor of Women’s and Gender Studies and director of the Women’s and Gender Non-Conforming Center in fall 2019. Malaklou earned her doctoral degree in Culture and Theory and graduate certificates in Critical Theory and Gender and Sexuality Studies from the University of California, Irvine in June 2016. She earned her bachelor’s degree in Cultural Anthropology and Women’s Studies from Duke University in May 2007.

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Berea Recognized 80 Graduates During Mid-Year Ceremony

Commencement Crowd

President Lyle Roelofs addressing crowd of Berea college graduates at mid-year commencement.
(Photo: Jennifer Lance ’20)

Berea College’s Recognition Ceremony for Mid-Year Graduates was held Sunday, Dec. 8 at 3 p.m. in Phelps Stokes Chapel. Jim Branscome, retired managing director for investment analysis of Standard & Poor’s (S&P), addressed the seniors who completed their degree requirements at the end of this term. The Berea College graduates represent 14 states and 10 other countries.

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Berea Certified as a Bee Campus USA Affiliate

Student beekeeper examining a honey super

Berea College is now certified as an affiliate of the Bee Campus USA program.

Long known as a leader in sustainability and stewardship of natural resources, Berea College is the 85th educational institution in the nation to achieve certification of its efforts in creating sustainable habitats for pollinators, which are vital to feeding the planet.

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Two Alumni Awards Presented at Berea College Homecoming

Each year during Homecoming Bereans are recognized for their professional accomplishments, contributions to the community and commitments to the mission of Berea College. This year, Jim Gaines ’56 received the Distinguished Alumnus award and Sharyn Mitchel FD ’65 BC ’69 received the Rodney C. Bussey Award of Special Merit. Recipients were honored at the Alumni Awards Presentation and Reception at 6 p.m., Nov. 15 in the Boone Tavern Events Center. Continue reading Two Alumni Awards Presented at Berea College Homecoming

Hartlep Appointed Chair of Education Studies, Named the Robert Billings Chair in Education

Nicholas D. HartlepBerea College appointed Nicholas D. Hartlep as the chair of the department of education studies and named him as the Robert Billings Chair in Education.

Hartlep began his career as a first grade teacher in Rochester, Minnesota, before receiving a doctoral degree in urban education at the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee (UWM). He also has a master’s degree in K–12 education and bachelor’s degree in elementary education, both conferred from Winona State University (WSU).

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Professor Birner Receives Faculty Enhancement Award from Oak Ridge Associated Universities

Dr. Susan BirnerDr. Suzanne Birner, assistant professor at Berea College, was awarded the Ralph Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement award from Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU). Dr. Birner competed with 167 applicants, many from R1 institutions (doctoral universities with the highest level of research activity). The $5,000 grant award is matched by each applicant’s institution.

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Berea College Recognized for Outstanding Service to Environmental Education

Berea College forester speaking with visitors at the Forestry Outreach Center

Berea College Forester Clint Patterson speaking with visitors to the Forestry Outreach Center. (Photo: Moriah Avery ’21)

Berea College was recognized by the North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE) with the 2019 Outstanding Service to Environmental Education by an Organization award for incorporating environmental education into its sustainability initiatives.

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