Adrian College

Adrian College
Adrian College
Established 1859
Type Private
Endowment $37.8 million
President Jeffery Docking
Academic staff 86
Students 1654 (all undergraduate)
Location Adrian, MI, USA
Campus Small town, 100 acres (0.4 km²)
Colors Black and Gold
Nickname Bulldogs
Mascot Bruiser

Adrian College is a private, co-educational liberal arts college related to the United Methodist Church in the city of Adrian, Michigan.



Herrick Tower

The school is approximately a 45-minute drive from Ann Arbor and Toledo, Ohio, and 90 minutes from Detroit. Its campus is on approximately 100 acres (0.4 km²) and features newly constructed facilities with modern designs and historic buildings recognized for their past, such as Downs Hall, home of the Theatre Department.


The college had its origin as a theological institute founded by Wesleyan Methodists at Leoni, Michigan, in 1845. This institution merged with Leoni Seminary, another Methodist school, in 1855 to form Michigan Union College. In 1859, that institution closed and its assets were transferred to Adrian to establish Adrian College. The college was chartered by the Michigan Legislature on March 28, 1859, under the first president of the college, abolitionist Asa Mahan. In the early stages of the American Civil War the college volunteered itself as a base for the formation of Michigan regiments for the Union side. The current Valade Hall building sits on the site of the former base camp for these soldiers.[1]

150th anniversary

In 2009 Adrian College celebrated its 150th anniversary. The celebration was to recognize the success and the traditions of this college.

The senior class president, Zachary Hamilton, and senior class vice-president, Stephen Kish, presented Adrian College with a time capsule on behalf of the Class of 2009. It was buried next to the clock tower and is to be opened in 50 years. The time capsule has contents including technologies and newspapers of this generation.[2]

Accreditation and enrollment

The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools and, as of the fall 2010 semester, has an enrollment of 1654 students.


Herrick Chapel

Adrian College has a long history of social activism, which is highlighted in its mission statement:

"Adrian College, a liberal arts College in the United Methodist tradition, is committed to the pursuit of truth and to the dignity of all people. Through active and creative learning in a supportive community, students are challenged to achieve excellence in their academic, personal, and professional lives, and to contribute to a more socially just society."



Shipman Library
Valade Hall

Adrian College offers over 40 majors and pre-professional programs.[4] Academic Programs, Adrian College


  • Accounting & Business: Management, Marketing, Economics, International Business and Studies
  • Art & Design: Studio Art, Art Education, Arts Management
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Communication Arts & Sciences: Media Arts, Journalism
  • Economics
  • English
  • Environmental Science/Studies
  • Exercise Science / Physical Education: Athletic Training
  • Geology (formerly Earth Science)
  • History
  • Interior Design
  • International Studies
  • Mathematics
  • Modern Languages & Cultures
  • Music: Performance, Music Education, Musical Theatre, Arts Administration
  • Philosophy/Religion
  • Physics
  • Political Science
  • Psychology
  • Sociology, Social Work, and Criminal Justice
  • Teacher Education
  • Theatre


  • Art History
  • Computer Information Systems
  • Public Relations
  • Women's Studies

Pre-professional programs

  • Pre-art Therapy
  • Pre-architecture
  • Pre-engineering
  • Pre-health Science
  • Pre-seminary
  • Pre-law Program

Study abroad

Adrian College offers a variety of study abroad opportunities.Study Abroad Opportunities, Adrian College

  • Traditional: Study for a semester or year in France, Spain, Germany, Japan, China, England, Australia, New Zealand, India, Mexico, Italy, Hong Kong, Argentina, South Korea, Austria, Greece, South Africa, etc.
  • May/summer term: All the traditional programs offer May and summer study abroad opportunities. In addition, Adrian College offers the following programs: Oxford Study Abroad Program and York Study Abroad.
  • May tour: Students travel to destinations for 1–2 weeks, experiencing the sights and sounds, history and culture of the Old World. Past tours have included Egypt, Italy, Greece, France, and Denmark.


Adrian College's institutes integrate theoretical and practical learning in distinctive and challenging ways. They are intended for students who desire academic work focused in a specialty area. Students and faculty affiliated with the institutes engage in ongoing dialog and collaborate on initiatives — developing integrated research projects, engaging in public service, as well as learning from alumni or friends of the college who act as professional mentors and advisers.Institutes, Adrian College

The institutes include:

  • Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies: The purpose of the institute is to help business students become entrepreneurs and help address some of the general disconnect between ideas and business creation. The institute strives to provide a forum and an opportunity for students, no matter what their major is, who may be interested in bringing an idea, a product, or talent to the market, to share those ideas and built the necessary required foundations.
  • Institute for Health Studies: A key mission of the Institute for Health Studies is to position students to secure their academic, professional and personal goals. To accomplish this result, we seek opportunities for the scientific and liberal arts to inform each other, for students to develop the capacity for innovation, to practice critical assessment of risk and risk taking, and to find that combination of focus and flexibility that permits life and career satisfaction.
  • Institute for Study Abroad (see above).
  • Institute for Ethics: The mission of the Institute of Ethics is to create awareness of the ethical dimensions to academic fields of study and to promote its discussion on campus. One task of the institute is to provide faculty and students with the necessary background and tools to integrate ethical questions into their courses.
  • George Romney Institute for Law and Public Policy will work to weave legal and public policy considerations into the academic fabric of Adrian College. Specifically, the institute will enhance pre-law and graduate opportunities for students, increase opportunities to study legal and policy issues, bring speakers to campus, promote interdisciplinary exploration of law and public policy and explore the opportunities for practitioners and academics to work together on these issues.


Adrian College athletic teams, nicknamed the "Bulldogs," are part of the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association and the National Collegiate Athletic Association Division III. The men's NCAA Division III hockey team is a member of the Midwest Collegiate Hockey Association. The men's lacrosse team is part of the Midwest Lacrosse Conference. Adrian College is the third college or university to offer women's hockey as a varsity sport in Michigan. In 2011, the College reached an agreement with the federal Department of Education's Office of Civil Rights, resolving complaints that the College had violated Title IX. The College was found guilty of eleven violations of the law that governs gender equality, and agreed to make several changes to its athletic programs.[5] Adrian College offers the following varsity sports:


Adrian recently expanded its athletic programs, in the 2007-2008 Academic Year NCAA Division III men's and women's ice hockey was added along with mens Division I and Division 3 club hockey, synchronized skating and NCAA Division III men's and women's lacrosse. The Bulldog's lacrosse program, is the first varsity program in MI since the induction of Title IX. Women's bowling was added for the 2008-2009 year.

Men's ice hockey

The men's Division III team received national attention on the eve of Selection Sunday of the 2007–08 season on ESPN's "The Sports Reporters" as Mitch Albom, columnist from the Detroit Free Press, used his closing remarks to highlight the remarkable ride of the hockey team's season (their first at the NCAA level). The team finished 26-3 and did not make the NCAA Division III Tournament. The 2008 Baseball team won the Mideast Regional championship claiming the first regional title in the program's history and for any team at Adrian College. They are also the first representative team from the MIAA in the national tournament.


For more information, see List of Adrian Bulldogs head football coaches

College football has been a part of the history of Adrian college since 1892, when Hillsdale College defeated Adrian by a score of 56–0.[6] The first head football coach on record was E. E. Tarr in 1903.[7] Since then, the program has won 16 conference championships, the first in 1911 and the most recent in 1997.[8] The coach is Jim Deere who took over in 2010.[9]

Intramural sports

Intramurals are part of Adrian College and the athletic department. Some of the intramural teams include Flag Football, 5-on-5 Basketball, Coed Volleyball League, Broomball, Coed slow Pitch Softball, 7-on-7 Soccer, 8-on-8 Dodgeball, 6-on-6 Wiffleball, and 3-on-3 Basketball.[10]

Renaissance Project

On June 30, 2005, Stanley P. Caine retired after 16 years as president of Adrian College. The next day, Jeffrey Docking became Adrian College's 17th president, after serving as a vice president at Washington and Jefferson College in Washington, Pennsylvania. Since arriving at Adrian, Docking has introduced many plans to revitalize Adrian College and its campus, including construction of new buildings, renovation of old ones, and programs related to athletics such as the construction of a new Arrington Ice Arena. Many of these initiatives are grouped under his "Renaissance Project".[11]

Docking's initiatives and related changes have caused some controversy. The decision to introduce mandatory four-year residency for all students "to raise funds" is a departure from previous policies.[12] At a town hall-style meeting between students and administration concerning the drastic changes in housing policy, the Dean of Student Life declared that the new policy was essential because Adrian College had been in imminent danger of closing, thus rendering any Adrian degree "worthless."[13] In contrast, deposits for fall 2007 exceeded 550 by July 2007.

Renaissance II has begun with a focus on academic enhancements. An all-college retreat in August 2008 in Dearborn was used to help set priorities for new initiatives, such as a series of institutes. The goal of Renaissance II is to enhance the academics at Adrian College to better prepare students for excellence and success in the ever-changing world. The college is making renovations and expansions to the Science, Business, Visual Arts, and Performing Arts departments.[14]

Greek life

Greek life is present on campus, with five nationally recognized fraternities: Alpha Tau Omega, Phi Kappa Sigma, Theta Chi, Sigma Alpha Epsilon and Tau Kappa Epsilon. There are three nationally recognized sororities: Alpha Phi, Alpha Sigma Alpha, and Chi Omega.[15]

Fight song

Hail Adrian! -Hail, hail to Adrian- the home of the black and gold!- cheer, cheer for Adrian- lift your voices, proud and bold,- "Go, dawgs go!" -Fight, fight for Adrian- and champions again we will be!- our heroes will score, and the crowd will roar,- "Another bulldog victory!"

The fight song was written by Adrian alumni Darin McNabb. The fight song made its debut on October 6, 2007 when the Adrian College football team took on Olvet College in a tight battle for that homecoming evening.[16]


Bruiser the Bulldog is a live mascot that Adrian College adopted on December 14, 2009. Bruiser's hometown is Bristow, OK. He was born on Septemper 20, 2009. His caretaker is Adrian's Janine Grier. His official introduction to the college was on January 22, 2010 at the men's varsity hockey game.[17]

Landmarks, legends, and lore

  • Downs Hall: Built in 1860, Downs is the only building remaining from Adrian's original campus. The structure houses the Stubnitz Art Gallery and the Downs Hall Theatre. The building has served several functions through the years. Local legend contends it is the home of the Downs Hall Ghost, and students tell tales of late-night footsteps and strange sounds.
  • The "A": The class of 1914 placed a large concrete "A" at the front of campus near Madison Street. The structure is traditionally reserved for engaged couples only.
  • The Mound: The class of 1869 wanted to leave Adrian College a gift of unique distinction. Since money was hard to acquire during the days immediately following the Civil War, the class used earth for its memorial as a symbol of Adrian's strength. They intended to erect a statue of Asa Mahan, the college's first president; however, the funds did not materialize. The statue was never erected and the mound has stood since that day at the front of the campus.
  • The One Piece Threshold: One of the oldest landmarks of the college is an old stone threshold now used as a seat near the entrance to Valade Hall. The step was originally placed in front of Valade Hall in December 1859.
  • South Hall Bell: For more than 100 years, the College Bell hung in the cupola atop South Hall. It rang for classes, meals and daily chapel services as well as weddings, funerals, graduations and other special occasions. In 1960, South Hall was torn down to make way for the Herrick Carillon Tower. Placed inside the tower, the bell remained silent and was almost forgotten until the Class of 1984 donated funds to move the bell to a place near Shipman Library. The Class of 1999 provided funds to incorporate the bell into the entrance walkway of the renovated library.
  • The Rock: Originally, according to school legend, the rock was about three times larger because it was all above ground. The story claims that a transfer student from Albion and two friends decided in 1962 to do "the biggest thing to hit Adrian that year!" Under the cover of darkness, they buried it. Eventually, part of it resurfaced. Students have painted it countless times with messages and themes.
  • The Cane Ceremony: A few years ago, the alumni Office polled alumni on their favorite memory of Adrian College. Topping the list was the Cane Ceremony, which follows commencement every spring. Grace Wells Haviland, president of the class of 1921, carried the Shepherd's Crook to the Mound during the first outdoor Cane Ceremony. Today, the ceremony is performed on the commencement stage and each year the graduationng class affixes its colors to the Shepherd's Crook. These colored ribbons are imprinted with the names of each class graduate. The president of the class then hands it to the president of the next class. Though the Cane Ceremony began in 1921, the cane itself — and the custom of affixing class colors to it — dates from 1887. The date 1887 and the words Non Sine Labote (Climb Without Falling) are carved on the staff. The monument in front of the Mound commemorates the Cane Ceremony. It was a gift to the college from the Class of 1987.
  • The Outdoor Chapel: The rustic outdoor "chapel in the woods" was located where the Adrian College Chapel now sits. Outdoor services were held on rough benches. Students of 50 years ago warmly tell of spending quiet time in the lovely place.

Landmarks, Legends & Lore, Adrian College

Notable alumni


  1. ^ Adrian College History (Adrian College)
  2. ^ Celebrating 150 years: 1859-2009, Adrian College celebrates 150 years of success and tradition.
  3. ^ Adrian College Quick Facts (Adrian College)
  4. ^ A Liberal Arts Education, Adrian College
  5. ^ Gable, Eric. "Adrian College, government reach agreement in gender equity case". Daily Telegram. Retrieved November 11, 2011. 
  6. ^ DeLassus, David. "Adrian game by game results". College Football Data Warehouse. Retrieved November 15, 2010. 
  7. ^ DeLassus, David. "Adrian Coaching Records". College Football Data Warehouse. Retrieved November 15, 2010. 
  8. ^ DeLassus, David. "Adrian Composite Championship Listing". College Football Data Warehouse. 
  9. ^ "Jim Deere-Head Coach/Defensive Coordinator". Adrian Bulldogs Athletics. Retrieved November 16, 2010. 
  10. ^ Intramural Sports, Adrian College
  11. ^ Adrian College (2006-04-01). "President Outlines Adrian's Future During Inaugural Weekend". Retrieved 2007-03-26. 
  12. ^ The College World, Vol. 122, Issue 13.
  13. ^ The College World, Vol. 122, Issue 15.
  14. ^ Renaissance II, Adrian College
  15. ^ Greek Life, Adrian College
  16. ^ Fight Song, Adrian College
  17. ^ Bruiser, Adrian College
  18. ^ Distinguished Alumni Award (Alumni Association Board of Directors)

External links

Coordinates: 41°53′56″N 84°03′30″W / 41.898951°N 84.058424°W / 41.898951; -84.058424

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