Kentucky Wesleyan College
KWC Seal.png
MottoFind Yourself
TypePrivate Liberal Arts College
Established1858; 164 years ago (1858)
Religious affiliation
United Methodist Church
Academic affiliations
Endowment$36.8 million
PresidentThomas Mitzel

37°44′37″N 87°07′13″W / 37.7435°N 87.1202°W / 37.7435; -87.1202Coordinates: 37°44′37″N 87°07′13″W / 37.7435°N 87.1202°W / 37.7435; -87.1202
CampusSuburban, 55 acres (22 ha)
ColorsPurple and white
Sporting affiliations
NCAA Division II
G-MAC, Independent (football)
Kentucky Wesleyan College logo.png

Kentucky Wesleyan College (KWC) is a private Methodist college in Owensboro, Kentucky. The college is known for its liberal arts programs. Fall 2018 enrollment was 830 students.[2]


The Barnard-Jones Administration Building at Kentucky Wesleyan College
The Barnard-Jones Administration Building at Kentucky Wesleyan College

Kentucky Wesleyan College was founded in 1858 by the Kentucky Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church. It was originally located in Millersburg. Classes began in 1866 and the first commencement took place in 1868. At first, it was a training school for preachers but soon business and liberal arts classes were added to the curriculum. In 1890 the school was moved to Winchester and soon after women began to be admitted for the first time. In 1951, the school moved to its present location in Kentucky's fourth largest city, Owensboro.[3]


College presidents include:[4]


Kentucky Wesleyan offers 29 majors and 13 pre-professional programs[5] and has a student-to-faculty ratio of 13:1.[6] Academics are divided into four divisions: Fine Arts & Humanities, Natural Sciences & Mathematics, Professional Studies, and Social Sciences.[7]


Kentucky Wesleyan is located on 55 acres of land.[2] Their campus includes buildings for academics, administration, student residence halls, and athletic facilities.

Academic and administrative buildings

Residence halls

All residence halls have air conditioning. Each residence hall room, unless designed as a private room, has two twin-size beds with mattresses, two dressers, two desks, two chairs and ample closet space. All residence halls are also equipped with Wi-Fi and laundry facilities. In addition, the campus is smoke-free.[9]

Athletic facilities

The campus includes both student athletic facilities and athlete spaces.[8]

Student life

Kentucky Wesleyan offers over 40 student organizations on campus. These range from campus ministry, student government, Greek life, academic, and other special interest clubs.[15] Intramural sports are offered on a seasonal basis.

Governing organizations

Media and publications

Greek life

Kentucky Wesleyan has three national fraternities and two national sororities.[17]



Campus ministries

Kentucky Wesleyan, as a private Christian college, has strong ties to the local religious community. They have partnerships with twelve churches of various denominations as well as on-campus services and religious organizations.[18]


Main article: Kentucky Wesleyan Panthers

The Kentucky Wesleyan (KWU) athletic teams are called the Panthers. The college is a member of the Division II level of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), primarily competing in the Great Midwest Athletic Conference (G-MAC) as a founding member since the 2013–14 academic year. The Panthers previously competed as a charter member of the Great Lakes Valley Conference (GLVC) from 1978–79 to 2011–12 (but was fulfilling its commitments to the final year of competition for its other sports in the GLVC as a full member for the 2012–13 school year; before beginning competition as a full G-MAC member). They also competed in the Kentucky Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (KIAC; now currently known as the River States Conference (RSC) since the 2016–17 school year) of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) from 1916–17 to 1954–55.

KWU competes in 22 intercollegiate varsity sports: men's teams include baseball, basketball, bowling, cross country, football, golf, soccer, tennis, track & field (indoor and outdoor) and wrestling; while women's sports include basketball, bowling, cross country, golf, soccer, softball, tennis, track & field (indoor and outdoor) and volleyball; and co-ed sports include cheerleading.[19]


The 2014 KWC football team currently competes as an NCAA Division II Independent team after leaving the GLVC, as an associate member, after the 2013 season.

Men's basketball

The men's basketball team advanced to the NCAA Men's Division II Basketball Championship Game six consecutive years (1998–2003), winning in 1999 and 2001 under the direction of Ray Harper.[20] In addition to these successes, they won six other championships (1966, 1968, 1969, 1973, 1987, and 1990) and were runners-up in 1957. Overall, Kentucky Wesleyan has won eight NCAA Division II National Men's Basketball Championships, which is the most by any NCAA Division II School.[20]

Notable alumni

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  1. ^ As of fall 2016. "Student headcount by level: All independent institutions (2006-16)" (PDF). Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education. Commonwealth of Kentucky. Retrieved 4 March 2018.
  2. ^ a b "Kentucky Wesleyan College". US News and World Report. Archived from the original on 2018-08-25. Retrieved 29 February 2020.
  3. ^ "The 10 Biggest Cities In Kentucky". WorldAtlas. Retrieved 2020-02-29.
  4. ^ Presidents of the College Archived 2013-12-27 at the Wayback Machine
  5. ^ "About Wesleyan". Retrieved 3 November 2017.
  6. ^ "KWC Common Data Set 2013-2014" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 13 April 2014. Retrieved 11 April 2014.
  7. ^ "KWC Academic Divisions". Archived from the original on 13 April 2014. Retrieved 11 April 2014.
  8. ^ a b "Visit Campus". Kentucky Wesleyan College. 2015-09-22. Retrieved 2020-02-29.
  9. ^ "About Our Halls". Kentucky Wesleyan College. 2015-10-26. Retrieved 2020-02-29.
  10. ^ "Massie Hall". Kentucky Wesleyan College. 2018-11-29. Retrieved 2020-02-29.
  11. ^ "Peeples Hall". Kentucky Wesleyan College. 2018-11-29. Retrieved 2020-02-29.
  12. ^ "Kendall Hall". Kentucky Wesleyan College. 2018-11-29. Retrieved 2020-02-29.
  13. ^ "Deacon Hall". Kentucky Wesleyan College. 2018-11-29. Retrieved 2020-02-29.
  14. ^ "Stadium Apartments". Kentucky Wesleyan College. 2018-11-29. Retrieved 2020-02-29.
  15. ^ "KWC Campus Clubs, Organizations, & Societies". Archived from the original on 29 August 2014. Retrieved 11 April 2014.
  16. ^ "Campus Clubs, Organizations & Societies". Kentucky Wesleyan College. 2015-10-13. Retrieved 2020-02-29.
  17. ^ "Greek life at KWC". Archived from the original on 2013-12-27. Retrieved 2013-12-27.
  18. ^ "Find a Church..." KWC Campus Ministries. Retrieved 2020-02-29.
  19. ^ Athletic teams
  20. ^ a b "Men's basketball NCAA Div. II Championships". Archived from the original on 2012-10-26. Retrieved 2012-12-03.
  21. ^ Katzenberger, George Anthony (1909). Directory of the Legal Fraternity of Phi Delta Phi – via Google Books.
  22. ^ Phi, Phi Delta (1909). Directory of the International Legal Fraternity of Phi Delta Phi – via Google Books.
  23. ^ "Film Beauty Weds Publicity Manager". Los Angeles Evening Express. February 19, 1921. p.2. Retrieved February15, 2022.