University Profile Lincoln University (LU) is the United States' first degree-granting historically black university. It is located in southern Chester County, Pennsylvania. The university also hosts a Center for Graduate Studies in the City of Philadelphia. Lincoln University provides undergraduate and graduate coursework to approximately 2,500 students. As former president Dr. Horace Mann Bond noted in his book Education for Freedom: A History of Lincoln University, Pennsylvania, with the college's founding in 1854, "This was the first institution founded anywhere in the world to provide a higher education in the arts and sciences for youth of African descent."
Today, Lincoln University provides a liberal arts and science-based undergraduate core curriculum and select graduate programs to prepare students of every race and nationality. Lincoln is a "state-related" university, meaning it receives public funds and offers reduced tuition for Pennsylvania residents but is under independent control.
The Lincoln University Urban Center (LUUC) is an extension campus in the University City section of Philadelphia, where Drexel University and University of Pennsylvania are also located. This campus offers Graduate level programs and continuing education. After the renovation that was started in Fall of 2007 is completed, the Urban Center will be known as Lincoln University Plaza.
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University HistoryIn 1854 Rev. John Miller Dickey, a Presbyterian minister, and his wife, Sarah Emlen Cresson, a Quaker, founded Ashmun Institute, later named Lincoln University. They named it after Jehudi Ashmun, a religious leader and social reformer. They founded the school for the education of African Americans, who had few opportunities.
John Miller Dickey was the first president of the college. He encouraged some of his first students: James Ralston Amos (1826-1864), his brother Thomas Henry Amos (1825-1869), and Armistead Hutchinson Miller (1829/30-1865), to support the establishment of Liberia as a colony for African Americans. Each of the men became ordained ministers.
In 1866, Ashmun Institute was renamed Lincoln University after the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln.
The college attracted highly talented students from numerous states, especially during the long decades of legal segregation in the South. As may be seen on the list of notable alumni (link below), many went on to achievements in careers in academia, public service, the arts and many other fields.
In 1945 Dr. Horace Mann Bond, an alumnus of Lincoln, was selected as the first African-American president of the university. During his 12-year tenure, he continued to do social science research, and helped support the important civil rights case of Brown v. Board of Education, decided in 1954 by the US Supreme Court. He established an important relationship with the collector Albert C. Barnes, who ensured Lincoln University had a role in the management of his art collection, the Barnes Foundation.
In 1972 Lincoln University formally associated with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania as a state-related institution.
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