South Carolina State University
Former name
Colored Normal Industrial Agricultural and Mechanical College of South Carolina (1896–1954)
South Carolina State College (1954–1992)
MottoScientia, Officium, Honos
Motto in English
Knowledge, Duty, Honor
TypePublic university
Land-grant university
EstablishedMarch 4, 1896 (1896-03-04)
Endowment$15.1 million (2021)[1]
PresidentAlexander Conyers
Students2,649 [2]
Undergraduates2,374 [3]
Postgraduates275 [3]

33°29′50″N 80°51′00″W / 33.49722°N 80.85000°W / 33.49722; -80.85000
Campus447 acres (181 ha),
(160 acres (65 ha) at Orangeburg campus,
287 acres (116 ha) additional acres at Camp Harry Daniels in Elloree, South Carolina)
Colors    Garnet and blue
NicknameBulldogs and Lady Bulldogs
Sporting affiliations

South Carolina State University (SCSU or SC State) is a public, historically black, land-grant university in Orangeburg, South Carolina. It is the only public, historically black land-grant institution in South Carolina, is a member-school of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, and is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS).


The university's beginnings were as the South Carolina Agricultural and Mechanical Institute in 1872 in compliance with the 1862 Land Grant Act within the institution of Claflin College—now known as Claflin University.

In 1896 the South Carolina General Assembly passed an act of separation and established a separate institution – the Colored Normal Industrial Agricultural and Mechanical College of South Carolina, its official name until 1954.[4]


Academic programs received more attention as the student population increased, but other programs, such as the university's high school, were forced to close due to the Great Depression. The New Deal Programs were used to create, among other things, Wilkinson Hall, the university's first separate library building (now home to Admissions and Financial Aid).


The college's campus grew, as it purchased over 150 acres (61 ha) for agricultural learning. After World War II, many students flocked to the college, creating a classroom shortage problem for the school. In 1947, the United States Army created an ROTC detachment, in which all male students were required to enroll until mandatory enrollment ended in 1969.

The school's name changed, as well, as the South Carolina General Assembly renamed the school South Carolina State College in 1954. Because of the "separate but equal" laws in the state, the legislature gave the college large sums of money to build new academic facilities and dormitories, some of which still stand on the campus today, including the Student Union (1954), and Turner Hall (1956). This was done in order to give black students an environment of "equal" education. Also, the legislature created a law program for the college, mainly to prevent black students from attending the law school at the then-segregated University of South Carolina. The law program folded in 1966 after the University of South Carolina integrated.


See also: Orangeburg massacre

South Carolina State University Administration Building, Orangeburg, South Carolina

During the height of the Civil Rights Movement, many students participated in marches and rallies aimed at ending segregation. The struggle came to a climax on the night on February 8, 1968, when three students were killed and 27 others were wounded by state policemen at the height of a protest that opposed the segregation of a nearby bowling alley. The tragedy, known as the Orangeburg massacre, is commemorated by a memorial plaza near the front of the campus.

From the late-1960s to the mid-1980s, under the leadership of M. Maceo Nance, the campus experienced unprecedented growth in the form of new academic buildings, such as Nance Hall (1974) and Belcher Hall (1986), new residence halls, such as Sojourner Truth Hall (1972), which, at 14 stories, is the tallest building in Orangeburg County, and a new library building (1968), not to mention enlargements and renovations of existing facilities. The school also opened the I.P. Stanback Museum & Planetarium, which is the only facility of its kind on a historically black university campus in the United States. After Nance's retirement in 1986, Albert Smith assumed the office of the school's president and, among other achievements, created an honors college in 1988.


During the tenure of Smith, the school also gained university status from the South Carolina General Assembly, becoming South Carolina State University in February 1992. In 1993, Barbara Hatton became the school's first female president and created many improvements for the campus, such as the 1994 renovation of Oliver C. Dawson Bulldog Stadium, constructing new suites and a larger press box, as well as increasing its capacity to 22,000. Hatton also spearheaded the creation of a plaza which resides in front of the Student Union and passes by several dorms and buildings in the central portion of the campus. Under SC State's next president, Leroy Davis, South Carolina State University celebrated its 100th anniversary in 1996, and the school constructed a Fine Arts Center in 1999, giving the Art and Music departments a new home.


SC State Engineering and Computer Science Complex

Under the leadership of Andrew Hugine Jr., the school constructed a new 771-bed residence hall (Hugine Suites), which is the largest dormitory in South Carolina. The first four buildings in Phase One opened on August 26, 2006, and the last two in the first phase opened on September 10, 2006. With the opening of the new dorms, SC State has closed the following dorms, Bethea (freshmen male), Miller (female), Bradham (female), and Manning (female) Halls. Both Bradham and Manning Halls had been used since the World War I era, Miller Hall is being closed due to fire alarm system malfunctions, and Bethea is being closed after 50 years of service due to numerous building and health problems. Bethea Hall will be torn down to make way for a new $33 million complex for the School of Engineering.

The dining halls, both Washington Dining Hall and "The Pitt", located in the Student Union, received major facelifts, and the dining hall inside Truth Hall has been renovated into a cyber cafe, Pete's Arena. The university is also working to renovate Lowman Hall, which, when refurbished, will be the new administration building. South Carolina State recently broke ground on the new James E. Clyburn University Transportation Center (UTC), which will be home to the only UTC in South Carolina, one of only three among Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), and one of only 33 total UTCs in the nation. Currently work is being done to expand Hodge Hall. This science building will be gaining some much needed research and laboratory space.

South Carolina State hosted the first debate of the 2008 Democratic Party Presidential Candidate Debate series. This event, which took place on April 26, 2007, at the Martin Luther King Auditorium, was televised nationally on MSNBC. This debate made SC State the first historically black university to host a presidential candidate debate on its campus.[5]

Leroy Davis Sr. Hall

Hugine's contract was terminated by the SC State Board of Trustees on December 11, 2007, only four days before the Fall Commencement Exercises, by a telephone conference meeting.[citation needed] According to the board, his reasons for dismissal were a performance review for the 2006–2007 school year and a second education review. The board decided to conduct a national search for a new president immediately. On December 13, 2007, the board selected Leonard McIntyre, the Dean of the College of Education, Humanities and Social Sciences at SC State to serve as interim president. Hugine was the fourth president to leave SC State since Nance retired in 1986.

George Cooper, formerly with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, assumed the presidency of S.C. State on July 16, 2008, and was the tenth president. The SC State Board of Trustees voted to terminate Cooper's contract on June 15, 2010. John E. Smalls, senior vice president of finance, was appointed to lead the university in the interim.[6] President Cooper was reinstated two weeks later after a change in board membership.[7] His predecessor, Andrew Hugine, Jr., who was also dismissed and sued the university, eventually accepting $60,000 to drop his suit for defamation and breach of contract.[8] Hugine, now president of Alabama A&M University, sought $1-million from South Carolina State and $2-million from the trustees who voted to oust him.

In 2021, President Joe Biden visited Orangeburg to deliver a commencement address at South Carolina State.[9]



Colleges, departments, and schools

Nuclear engineering program

SCSU is the only university in South Carolina and only HBCU in the nation to offer a bachelor's degree in nuclear engineering. The program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET. Currently, it operates through a strategic partnership with North Carolina State University and University of Wisconsin-Madison.


South Carolina State is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS).

The university was placed on probation in June 2014 for failing to meet the accreditor's standards "concerning governing board conflicts of interest and board/administration structure, as well as financial stability and controls."[11] In June 2015, the SACS decided to allow the college to retain its accreditation, but kept them on probation for another year.[12] In June 2016, SACSCOC decided to remove the college from probation and retain full accreditation with no sanctions.[13]


U.S. News & World Report currently has SC State ranked 76 out of 136 in the Regional Universities South category, and 39 out of 79 HBCUs.[14]


Lowman Hall
Dukes Gym

The school's campus size is 160 acres (65 ha), with an additional 267 acres (108 ha) at Camp Harry Daniels in Elloree, South Carolina. Three buildings, Lowman Hall, Hodge Hall, and Dukes Gymnasium are included in the South Carolina State College Historic District, and separately listed on the National Register of Historic Places.[15]

The library is the Miller F. Whittaker Library.[16] The library was allocated $1 million from the South Carolina General Assembly in 1967 for its construction, and the library was dedicated in 1969.[17] The library is named in honor of the university's third president.[17] Originally two levels, a third level (the mezzanine) was added in a 1979 expansion.[17]


Main article: South Carolina State Bulldogs and Lady Bulldogs

See also: South Carolina State Bulldogs football and South Carolina State Bulldogs basketball

SC State Bulldogs Basketball Team
SC State Bulldogs vs. Hampton Pirates
Game Flag of SC State University

South Carolina State is a charter member of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) and participates in NCAA Division I (FCS for college football). The school sponsors basketball, soccer, volleyball, softball, cross country, track and field, and tennis for women, and basketball, tennis, track and field, cross country, and football for men. The athletic teams compete as the Bulldogs or Lady Bulldogs and the school colors are garnet and navy blue.

Oliver C. Dawson Stadium

The school's football team has won more conference championships than any other school in the MEAC with 18 championships. Three former Bulldogs are members of the College Football Hall of Fame, including coach Willie Jeffries. The team also has six Black college football national championship titles, with the most recent title won in 2021.

Student life

There are over 50 registered student organizations on campus.[18]

The Marching 101 band

Marching band

Main article: The Marching 101

The university's marching band is known as The Marching 101. The band are regular performers at football games throughout the southeast, nationally televised professional football games, and has performed in The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade and The Rose Bowl Parade. The band was organized in 1918 as a "regimental band" performing military drills as well as assisting with music in the college Sunday school and other occasions. From 1924 on, a succession of band directors influenced the growth of the band as it became part of the Department of Music program. The nickname "Marching 101" came about when the band started with 100 members and 1 majorette. Today, the band has over 150 members and is accompanied by a majorette team named "Champagne". In 2011,2012,2014 and 2016 the Marching 101 was voted to perform at the annual Honda Battle of the Bands held in the Georgia Dome in Atlanta.

Notable alumni

Academia and research

Name Class year Notability Reference(s)
Kandice Tanner 2002 Senior Investigator at the National Cancer Institute, where she is head of the Tissue morphodynamics section [19]


Name Class year Notability Reference(s)
Richard G. Shaw First African-American to serve as Insurance Commissioner in West Virginia


Name Class year Notability Reference(s)
Essie Mae Washington-Williams 1946 Educator and African-American daughter of former U.S. Senator Strom Thurmond
Andrew Hugine, Jr. 1971, 1974 Former S.C. State President (2003–2008); Current President of Alabama A & M University
M. Christopher Brown II 1993 Current President of Kentucky State University Former President of Alcorn State University
Benjamin F. Payton 1955 Former President of Tuskegee University [20]
George Bradley 1983 Former President of Paine College [citation needed]
Anthony Parker 1975 President of Albany Technical College [citation needed]
John H. Dozier 1993 Former President of Kennedy-King College; Current Institute Community and Equity Officer of Massachusetts Institute of Technology [21]

Arts and media

Name Class year Notability Reference(s)
Doris Funnye Innis 1955 writer, journalist, educator, editor of Congress of Racial Equality publications, Rights and Reviews and CORE Magazine
Horace Ott pianist, composer, conductor and record producer
Ron Westray jazz trombonist, composer and educator
Armstrong Williams 1981 syndicated radio, television and newspaper political columnist
Charlton Singleton 1994 music educator, conductor, founding member of Grammy Award Winning ensemble Ranky Tanky
Kára McCullough 2013 Miss District of Columbia USA 2017 and Miss USA 2017

Politics, law, and government

Name Class year Notability Reference(s)
Juanita Goggins First African-American woman elected to the South Carolina legislature
James E. Clyburn 1961 U.S. Representative from South Carolina (1993–present) and Majority Whip (2007–2011) in the United States Congress
Ernest A. Finney, Jr. JD, 1954 First African-American Supreme Court Justice appointed to the South Carolina Supreme Court since the Reconstruction Era
Matthew J. Perry 1948,1951 United States Federal Judge
Clifford L. Stanley 1969 U.S. Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness
John W. Matthews, Jr. South Carolina State Senate


Name Class year Notability Reference(s)
Amos M. Gailliard Jr. 1951 retired Brigadier General in the New York Guard
Abraham J. Turner 1976 retired Major General in the United States Army
Stephen Twitty 1985 retired Lieutenant General in the United States Army
Henry Doctor Jr. 1954 retired Lieutenant General in the United States Army


Name Class year Notability Reference(s)
Bobby Lewis 1968 Point guard and originator of the Two Ball Skills Development Program. 2017 Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame Nominee [22][23]
Javon Hargrave 2016 NFL nose tackle
Willie Jeffries 1959 Legendary college football coach at South Carolina State and Howard University. He was first African-American coach of a Division I majority white school.
Deacon Jones former Professional football player for the Los Angeles Rams, San Diego Chargers, and Washington Redskins; inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1980
Phillip Adams 2010 NFL defensive back
Joe Ikhinmwin 2012 Former professional basketball player and team captain of London Lions (basketball)
Willie Aikens former Major League Baseball player
Rickey Anderson former National Football League running back
Orlando Brown former professional football player for Cleveland Browns and Baltimore Ravens.
Rafael Bush 2010 former NFL defensive back
Barney Bussey 1984 former NFL defensive back
Kenny Bynum former National Football League running back
Harry Carson former Professional football player for the New York Giants; inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2006 [24]
Edwin Bailey 1980 former NFL guard for the Seattle Seahawks
Rufus Bess 1978 former Professional football player for the Minnesota Vikings
Charlie Brown 1981 former Professional football player Washington Redskins
Barney Chavous 1973 former NFL defensive end
Dextor Clinkscale 1979 former National Football League safety for the Dallas Cowboys
Chartric Darby Professional football player for Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Seattle Seahawks.
Will Ford Professional football player in the Canadian Football League
John Gilliam 1966 former Professional football player for the St. Louis Cardinals, New Orleans Saints and Minnesota Vikings
Darius Hadley former Professional football player in the Arena Football League
Dwayne Harper 1987 former Professional football player for the Seattle Seahawks
LaKendrick Jones former football player in the Arena Football League
William Judson 1981 former Professional football player Miami Dolphins
Angelo King 1980 former Professional football player Dallas Cowboys
James Lee Professional football player Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Shaquille Leonard 2017 NFL linebacker for the Indianapolis Colts
Marshall McFadden NFL linebacker
Robert Porcher 1992 former Professional football player for the Detroit Lions
Raleigh Roundtree former National Football League player
Donnie Shell 1974 former Professional football player for the Pittsburgh Steelers
Mickey Sims former Professional football player Cleveland Browns
Christian Thompson 2012 NFL defensive back for Baltimore Ravens
Wendell Tucker 1965 former Professional football player for the Los Angeles Rams


  1. ^ "South Carolina State University | Data USA".
  2. ^ "SCSU asks lawmakers for $209M in state budge". 2023-01-18.
  3. ^ a b "Ranking". Retrieved 2019-11-30.
  4. ^ "SC State University: An 1890 Land-Grant University",
  5. ^ "Campaign 2008: Democrats Rumble in South Carolina Debate". CBS News. 26 April 2007.
  6. ^ "South Carolina State University". Retrieved 2014-08-23.
  7. ^ Fain, Paul (2010-07-01). "South Carolina State U.'s Board Rehires Ousted President – Administration – The Chronicle of Higher Education". Retrieved 2014-08-23.
  8. ^ "Fired President Settles His Lawsuit Against South Carolina State U. – The Ticker – Blogs – The Chronicle of Higher Education". 2010-02-04. Retrieved 2014-08-23.
  9. ^ "U.S. President Joseph R. Biden Jr. to address SC State graduates at Dec. 17 commencement".
  10. ^ "South Carolina State University". Retrieved 2016-06-09.
  11. ^ Doug Lederman (June 20, 2014). "A College Loses Accreditation". Inside Higher Ed. Retrieved July 29, 2014.
  12. ^ Levins, Savannah (June 11, 2015). "SC State Keeps Accreditation, Still on Probation". WLTX. Retrieved 13 September 2015.
  13. ^ Wilks, Avery. "S.C. State escapes death sentence, retains accreditation". The State. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  14. ^ "Overall rankings". US News Education. Retrieved 6 August 2023.
  15. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. July 9, 2010.
  16. ^ Miller F. Whittaker Library, South Carolina State University.
  17. ^ a b c About the Library, South Carolina State University.
  18. ^ "Clubs & Organizations - SC State University". 29 August 2021.
  19. ^ "Kandice Tanner". 2020-09-28. Archived from the original on 2020-09-28. Retrieved 2022-06-10.
  20. ^ Silverberg, David (October 24, 2016). "Former Tuskegee President Benjamin Payton shaped Alabama school, civil rights history". Naples Daily News. Retrieved June 18, 2018.
  21. ^ "John Dozier named Institute Community and Equity Officer". MIT News. February 12, 2020. Retrieved August 1, 2020.
  22. ^ NCAA (1968). "1968 Cumulative Basketball Statistics Report - SC State College" (PDF). NCAA Stats Archive. NCAA. Retrieved 2014-08-13.
  24. ^ "Harry Carson". Archived from the original on March 14, 2013. Retrieved December 21, 2012.

Further reading