Central Baptist College
Central Baptist College (CBC) in Conway, Arkansas, was founded in 1952 as Conway Baptist College. The school is located at 1501 College Avenue in Conway, Arkansas. The school grounds were originally occupied by Central College for women, which was established in 1892 and closed in the 1947-1948 school year. Central Baptist College is an affiliate of the Baptist Missionary Association of Arkansas.
Degree programs and academics
CBC offers associate of arts degrees in business, education, general education, mathematics, music, office administration, pastoral studies, and religious education. The college also offers 22 bachelor's degrees which include church music, youth ministry, and bible studies with emphases in missions, pastoral studies, religious education, biology, business administration and 12 intercollegiate sports.
CBC also puts a large emphasis on its adult degree program, PACE, which meets during the evenings and accommodates those who either never completed their degree or do not have the time to be a full-time student.
When the Arkansas Baptist State Convention occurred in 1891, they appointed a committee to consider starting a educational institution for women. The board appointed Colonel George W. Bruce to be the first Chairman of the Board, and the committee then decided to acquire the current CBC property in Conway as a location for this new institution.
The school was named Central College and opened first in 1892 in a Baptist church while the construction of Main Building on campus was still underway. The overall goal for Central College was to train women in skills for use in the home, church, and work.
The Central College did very well until it was closed in 1947. The campus was left closed and empty for 5 years until it was purchased in 1952 by the Arkansas Missionary Baptist Association for $85,000. The Association opened the school back up as Conway Baptist College in the fall of 1952. Dr. D.N. Jackson was named the first president of the college. The name of the college was officially changed to its current title, Central Baptist College, in 1962.
The mascot of Central Baptist College is the Mustang. CBC is a member of the National Christian College Athletic Association and the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics. The Mustangs compete in NAIA Division II athletics. CBC has a total of twelve NAIA athletic teams. The Mustangs recently earned their first national championship in school history, winning the 2010 NCCAA Softball Title.
- Cross Country
- Cross Country
As of the 2011 spring semester, the enrollment at CBC is 677 students. There are 419 traditional students and 258 adult students enrolled in the college's PACE program.
The first president of CBC was Dr. D.N. Jackson, who was appointed in 1952.
The current president of CBC is Terry Kimbrow. Growing up in Poplar Bluff Missouri, Kimbrow married his highschool sweetheart, Patricia, right out of high school. He immediately went into the workforce as a grocery bagger at Safeway stores. He followed Safeway jobs into Tennessee and then to Arkansas. At the age of 23, Kimbrow became the youngest store manager in the district. He met his spiritual mentor, Martin Jameson, a pastor of Caldwell Baptist Church, when he was working. Thanks to the guidance of his pastor, Kimbrow decided to persue a career in the ministry. He moved him and his family to Conway in 1987 and started college at Central Baptist College. in 1993 he became Vice president of institutional advancement. At first, Kimbrow had no desire to be president, but applied at the last minute due to the urgings of faculty, staff, and students.
He has served as president of CBC since 2004. He has a Master's Degree from Arkansas Tech University. Under Kimbrow's leadership, CBC has set enrollment records and has also set plans to extend the campus of CBC to make way for additional enrollment. His plan, called "Vision 2020: A Miracle in the Making" hopes to extend the student population of CBC to 2,020 students by the year 2020 through multiple construction projects. While Kimbrow has served as president, CBC has received a record level of donations to the university, including a 5 million dollar donation in 2011, which is to be used in the construction of a three-storey,36,000-square-foot academic building. In addition to classrooms and a computer lab, the new facility will also house offices that serve the student body.
Ratliff Bell Tower
Probably the most well-known building on the CBC campus is the Ratliff Bell Tower.
The tower was designed in the fashion of Old Main (not to be confused with the University of Central Arkansas building of the same name) and lies in the center of the campus. Ratliff Bell Tower was completed in early 2008, with its dedication ceremony being held on February 9, 2008. Source and pictures: http://www.cbc.edu/development_alumni.aspx?id=1352
The tower was named in memory of Tom Ratliff and in honor of Jo Ann Ratliff. It is at the heart of the college's donation campaign, with the "Buy-A-Brick" campaign specifically being promoted. The campaign allows one to etch their name (or honor someone) with a brick in the walkway, similar to the sidewalk in front of the UCA Student Center. Individuals can also have a pillar named or have a stone embedded in their "Walk of Honor".
Mabee Student Services Complex
The Mabee Student Services Complex is located at the center of the CBC campus and is home to much of campus life. The cafeteria, admissions office, bookstore, and financial aid department all reside within. The complex also holds a game room, a community room, and a snack bar for both students and the community.
Notable former students or graduates
- David McCollum, "Central Baptist College Joines the NAIA," Log Cabin Democrat, October 5, 2009.