Paine College

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Paine College
Paine seal violet.png
Paine College Seal
Former names
Paine Institute
Motto "Rejoicing In Hope"
Type Private
Historically black college
Established 1882
Affiliation United Methodist Church
President Jerry Hardee [1]
Students 450 - 500 [2]
Location Augusta, Georgia,
United States
Campus Urban
64.4-acre (260,617.6 m2)
Colors Purple and white
Nickname Lions
Affiliations NCAA (Division II), SIAC
Paine College athletics logo

Paine College is a private, coeducational historically black liberal arts college located in Augusta, Georgia, United States. It is affiliated with the United Methodist Church and Christian Methodist Episcopal Church. Paine College offers undergraduate degrees in the liberal arts, business administration, and education through residential, commuter, and off-site programs,[1] the college is experiencing financial issues. Following two years of probation, its regional accreditor, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, recommended in June 2016 that the college lose its regional accreditation.[2][3]


Paine College has a 64.4-acre (260,617.6 m2) acre campus in the heart of Augusta. Most of its buildings, including residence halls, classroom buildings, and the library, are located in the main campus area, the athletic field, gymnasium, tennis court, and the chapel/music building are included in the rear campus area. The Collins-Calloway Library and Resources Center houses the Paine College Digital Collections, which feature historical images of Paine College and oral history interviews of Paine College alumni and presidents.

A historic district within the campus was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on December 26, 2012, for its contributions to education and African-American heritage.[4]


The college's athletic teams are known as the Lions. Paine College currently competes in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) at the Division II level as a member of the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC). Men's sports include baseball, basketball, cross country, golf and track & field; women's sports include basketball, cross country, softball, track & field and volleyball.

The college's football returned to play in 2014 after a half-century absence;[5] in their first season back, the football team finished 2-8[6] before the program was again shut down.[7]

Accreditation and finances[edit]

The college is experiencing financial issues and has been placed on probation by its regional accreditor, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS).[8] The school began 2015 on probation due to being in violation of nine standards, including financial stability.[9]

In November 2015, Paine College launched the "Build it Back Campaign", which raised over half a million dollars in six months,[10] this was to support its fundraising goal of $3.5, of which $2.5 million in cash has been raised. The college plans to use the money to offset the debt of $5.4 million.[11] Following a March 2016 onsite visit, SACS found the college in compliance with one of the standards that was previously problematic, leaving a total of three standards in question;[10] in May, the college celebrated meeting its fundraising goal. However, one month later SACS recommended that the college lose its regional accreditation.[3]

On June 16, 2016 SACS said Paine had not satisfied deficiencies in three areas: financial resources, financial stability, and control of sponsored research/external funds, this may mean loss of accreditation and loss of the ability of students to get federal loans. Its enrollment is now 534, and over 95% of its students receive financial aid, the school lost $2.9 million in assets through the end of 2014. In 2015, Paine suspended its football program but still was unable to make payroll for its employees.[12] Paine appealed the decision to remove accreditation, the appeal was heard on September 12. On September 16, the college was notified that the decision was upheld, on September 19, Paine College filed suit in federal court. A consent decree has been entered for a preliminary injunction reinstating Paine College on probation.[13]

With enrollment below projected targets, the long-term viability of Paine College is a serious concern. To save the historic building ensemble from destruction President Jerry Hardee has entered an agreement with the United House of Prayer to use the college's buildings for low-income housing after college operations have been wound down.

Notable alumni[edit]

This is a list of notable alumni of Paine Institute and/or Paine College.

Name Class year Notability Reference(s)
John Wesley Gilbert 1886 First African-American archaeologist [14]
Emma R. Gresham 1953 Mayor of Keysville, Georgia (1985-2005) and the second African American female to be elected as a chief official in Georgia [15]
Louis Lomax 1942 journalist, first African American to appear on television as a newsman [16]
Joseph Lowery President of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference 1977-1997 [17]
Mike Thurmond 1975 Attorney and first African-American elected as Georgia Labor Commissioner [18]
Channing Tobias 1902 Civil rights activist and appointee on the President's Committee on Civil Rights [19]
Woodie W. White 1958 Bishop of the United Methodist Church [18]
Frank Yerby 1937 Internationally acclaimed author and film writer [20]

See also[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^ Doug Lederman (June 20, 2014). "A College Loses Accreditation". Inside Higher Ed. Retrieved July 29, 2014. 
  3. ^ a b Tom Corwin (June 16, 2016). "Paine to lose accreditation". The Augusta Chronicle. Retrieved June 16, 2016. 
  4. ^ "National Register of Historic Places Program: African American History Month Feature 2013: Paine College Historic District, Augusta, Richmond County, Georgia". National Park Service. Retrieved 2013-02-22. 
  5. ^ "Saints prove need for revised playoffs - Tuesday Morning Quarterback - ESPN". 2014-11-11. Retrieved 2015-03-16. 
  6. ^ "Paine College Athletics - @PaineAthletics Football Claw the Way to Victory Over Tigers, 45-34". Retrieved 2015-03-16. 
  7. ^ Gay, Chris. "Paine College is one and done in football | The Augusta Chronicle". Retrieved 2015-03-16. 
  8. ^ Doug Lederman (June 20, 2014). "A College Loses Accreditation". Inside Higher Ed. Retrieved July 29, 2014. 
  9. ^
  10. ^ a b
  11. ^
  12. ^ "Paine College Accreditation to Be Revoked" Inside Higher Education June 17, 2016
  13. ^ "Disclosure Statement Regarding the Status of PAINE COLLEGE" (PDF). September 20, 2016. Retrieved November 19, 2016. 
  14. ^ "1884 John Wesley Gilbert :: Paine College Library Digital Collection". Retrieved 2015-03-16. 
  15. ^ "Georgia Magazine". 2002-09-05. Retrieved 2015-03-16. 
  16. ^ "Lomax, Louis; The Black Past: Remembered and Reclaimed". Retrieved 2016-05-16. 
  17. ^ "Joseph Lowery : Biography". Retrieved 2015-03-16. 
  18. ^ a b "Alumni Spotlight | Paine College Alumni". Retrieved 2015-03-16. 
  19. ^ "Tobias, Channing H. (1882-1961) | The Black Past: Remembered and Reclaimed". Retrieved 2015-03-16. 
  20. ^ "Frank Yerby (1916-1991) | New Georgia Encyclopedia". Retrieved 2015-03-16. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 33°28′10″N 81°59′36″W / 33.469487°N 81.993402°W / 33.469487; -81.993402