Belmont University officials have announced a record-breaking 7,425 students have enrolled for the fall semester, the start of the institution's 125th year.
According to a release, the university’s enrollment number has more than doubled since 2000 (2,976 students). In addition, this marks the 15th consecutive year that Belmont’s enrollment broke the previous year’s record.
Applications for undergraduate admissions for fall 2015 saw an increase of 8.3 percent compared to the fall 2014 number and resulted in BU’s largest freshman class to date with 1,429 students.
“As Belmont celebrates its 125th anniversary this year, it’s amazing to me to ponder the way this university has grown and changed over the course of its history,” Belmont President Bob Fisher said in the release. “I believe our founders would be incredibly — and pleasantly — surprised to see how their initial dreams to enable female education in the 19th century have developed into a top-ranking, co-ed institution focused on empowering more than 7,400 students to engage and transform the world.”
Belmont University has named its most recently opened building the R. Milton and Denice Johnson Center.
The building’s moniker honors the longtime BU trustee, BU graduate and HCA Chairman and CEO Milton Johnson, who teams with his wife as benefactors of the Bridges to Belmont Endowed Scholarship. The Johnsons recently donated $10 million to BU to create the scholarship fund (read here).
The Johnson Center (see the site here courtesy of Google Maps and read more here) houses the BU Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business, the BU media studies program and a 950-seat cafeteria.
With a price tag of $87 million, the 134,000-square-foot Johnson Center boasts $3.6 million in technology resources and specialized equipment to serve students majoring in entertainment industry studies, music business, audio engineering technology, songwriting, motion pictures and media studies. It includes classroom, lab, performance, production and research space options.
“From top to bottom, this building reflects innovation, excellence and a strong commitment to setting our students up for success,” Belmont President Bob Fisher said in the release. “Our Curb College and media studies majors will be privileged to work with equipment and in settings that meet or exceed industry standards, preparing them to not simply achieve their career goals but to lead their respective industries. It’s only appropriate that we should name this building in honor of a man who is at the forefront of his industry and a couple who generously support education with their time, energy and resources.”
Milton Johnson (pictured) said the new center will help Belmont “provide its students with the technology and other resources needed to become the best in their fields, while also enhancing campus life for all students.”
Belmont University officials announced today the recently opened Wedgewood Academic Center has become the first building on a Tennessee-based university campus to achieve platinum LEED certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.
The building, which anchors the southeast corner of the intersection of 15th and Wedgewood avenues, opened 10 months ago.
Of note, the Wedgewood Academic Center also has become the first LEED for New Construction project in Nashville to achieve the platinum level, the highest in the LEED ratings system, according to a release.
The 186,000 square foot Wedgewood Academic Center (see here courtesy of Google Maps) sits above a five-level underground parking garage and represents Belmont’s largest building to date. The facility houses more than 50 undergraduate programs from three different colleges as well as 20 science labs, classrooms and offices, two food service venues, multiple green roofs and a chapel.
Nashville-based Earl Swensson Associates designed the structure.
Belmont President Bob Fisher said in the release that universities should be “at the forefront of issues impacting society.”
“My son Rob, who is an environmental consultant, frequently reminds me that sustainability and conservation are critical topics facing us today and facing the future generations we’re educating on this campus,” Fisher said. “It’s imperative that we model a strong commitment to managing resources, as Belmont’s done with its Conservation Covenant, recognizing that prioritizing ‘green’ initiatives reflects good stewardship and offers long-term benefits to our operations, the environment and our community’s health and satisfaction.”
Best Choice Schools has ranked both Belmont and Vanderbilt universities among the nation's Top 20 urban campuses for beauty.
BU (the law school building at which is pictured here) ranks No. 10, while VU ranks 16th. Memphis-based Rhodes University (No. 27) is the only other Tennessee school on the list.
Criteria for the ranking involved schools being located in cities with populations of 100,000 or more. Specific campus elements included prior national and international accolades, student enjoyment, notable features, historical significance and environmental friendliness.
“We take great pride in creating and maintaining a campus that is both visually appealing and environmentally sustainable," Belmont President Bob Fisher said in a release. "Not only do these gorgeous surroundings provide our students, faculty and staff a beautiful place to study, work and play, but they also show prospective families that you can have it all — a great education and a stunning campus right in the middle of a fantastic city.”
Of note, most of the universities on the list are private. Read more here.
A year-old venture that helps church leaders develop their organizations is relocating to Belmont University from North Carolina. The Center for Healthy Churches is headed by Brentwood native Bill Wilson and is looking to take the reins from the Center for Congregational Health.
The partnership enhances leadership training already going on at Belmont including the Moench Center for Church Leadership, the H. Franklin Paschall Chair of Biblical Studies and Preaching and the Center for Executive Education.
“Our agreement with the Center for Healthy Churches helps extend our focus on developing young leaders and equipping and strengthening churches. It means more opportunities to serve the local church,” said Darrell Gwaltney, dean of Belmont’s College of Theology and Christian Ministry.
While most of us are focused on the court this week, the nerds at Inside Higher Ed took a look at who would win the NCAA Tournament if it were played in the classroom:
Here's how Inside Higher Ed's bracket works: to determine the winners, we first look to the Academic Progress Rate, the N.C.A.A.'s multiyear measure of a team's classroom performance. When two teams tie, we turn to the N.C.A.A.'s Graduation Success Rate, which measures the proportion of athletes on track to graduate within six years. In the event of a G.S.R. tie, we then turn to the Federal Graduation Rate, a slightly different formula that the government uses to track graduation rates.
This tournament's championship round was a nail-biter, going into double overtime, with the teams tying on both the A.P.R. and the G.S.R.
The winner? Belmont, which edged out Kansas in the final after topping Virginia, Georgia, Dayton, Louisville and Duke on the way to the title. They also won the title in 2013, the last year they qualified for the tournament.
"We take pride in the academic accomplishments of our program – past and present – and full credit goes to our players," Belmont coach Rick Byrd said in a release. "It is neat how Inside Higher Ed puts this twist on the NCAA Tournament bracket each year."
Back in the real bracket, Byrd's 15th-seeded Bruins are 16.5 point underdogs to No. 2 seed Virginia in Friday's game.
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