Strategic Plan

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The Vision for Bethany College

Build for a Lifetime

From our pioneering founding in 1840, and ever responsive to the times, Bethany College continues to deliver a quality, student-centered liberal arts and sciences education. Our students grow and change while on campus, and after graduation they become leaders and change agents, building a better world.

We remain true to our founder Alexander Campbell’s aim to educate whole students—spirit, mind, and body—in the liberal arts and sciences tradition. We value interdisciplinary education and inclusion of diverse backgrounds. Here, on our historic 1,100-acre campus, we prepare Bethanians not only to make a living but to live lives of meaning.

Bethany provides students with ongoing mentorships and friendships, along with passports to lifelong learning, global, national, and regional adventure. Our communities of alumni are invested more than ever in Bethany and give their time, talent, and resources to support the College’s mission.

For nearly two centuries, a Bethany education has combined theory and practice in an intimate setting of academic learning and professional preparation. Our offerings of classical and contemporary fields of study are now complemented by graduate programs.

Grounded in our traditions and values, and pioneering into the future, Bethany recently launched its Strategic Build for a Lifetime Plan. The strategic plan reflects our commitment to individual and institutional growth.


With pride in our history, Bethany is fearlessly embarking on new paths to educate students, preparing them for the challenges of today and tomorrow. We recommit to our belief in the special role and value of a liberal arts and sciences education, while adapting to the rapidly changing job market by offering new undergraduate and graduate fields of study.


Our foundational Bethany Plan in the Liberal Arts and Sciences includes comprehensive exams and senior capstone projects, a model championed through countless success stories and differentiated nationally in the liberal arts. New is the Bethany School of Graduate Studies of robust 4+1 and other Master’s degree programs. We will cultivate a culture of program entrepreneurship that responds to market demands with new degrees in the M.B.A. 4+1 Program, M.S. Low Residency Program in Business Cybersecurity Management, and a pathway for additional degrees, as well as new undergraduate programs including the recently approved B.A. in Criminal Justice. Together these innovative new offerings not only bring rapid academic reform, but position Bethany as a leader in academic entrepreneurialism.


Bethany College will make major strides to enhance the on-campus student experience through scholarships, student programs, clubs, athletics, Greek life, and social opportunities. Together, we will strengthen student satisfaction and retention. A bold new admissions strategy will engage high school student interests in both athletic and non-athletic areas, so that the college is known for its growing number of scholar-athletes. A newly launched career plan will connect students to mentors and development opportunities. Obtaining focused resources will be essential to securing and retaining the best possible faculty and advisors. Bethany College will flourish to become a larger, more inclusive, enjoyable campus for all students.


Bethany has listened and will continue to listen to our stakeholders, including prospective and current students, parents, business and community leaders, public officials, alumni, faculty, and staff. Our resulting Bethany partnership program will yield substantial strategic relationships with the Town of Bethany, local and state government, the Disciples of Christ, regional and state economic development organizations, high schools, community colleges, and like-minded higher education institutions. In a world of new challenges for higher education, Bethany will forge critical partnerships to advance our mission and secure our future.


Recognizing the foremost need for Bethany’s financial well-being, we will take the bold steps of an ambitious, comprehensive fundraising campaign to achieve a balanced budget, support our operational needs, renew our infrastructure, and replenish our endowment. Closely tied to this effort is a commitment to achieving the enrollment goal of 900 undergraduate and graduate students.

Every Bethanian has a story.

Whether you have your own story or you want to help write the next chapter in the college’s long history, come to campus and meet today’s students or contact us for ways you can help. To discover how you can help us thrive, reach out to Vice President of Institutional Advancement, Marketing and Communications Lori Weaver at 304.829.7284 or