Baylor University
MottoPro Ecclesia, Pro Texana
Motto in EnglishFor Church, For Texas
Religious affiliationBaptist General Convention of Texas
Endowment$1.004 billion
(May 31, 2011)[1]
PresidentKenneth Winston Starr
ProvostElizabeth Davis
Academic staff859[2]
LocationWaco, Texas, United States
CampusUrban,"College town"; 800 acres (3 km²)
SportsBaylor Bears
  Green and Gold</span>
MascotJudge Joy & Judge Lady [Both Live Bears], Bruiser (costumed)
AffiliationsBig 12, ASAIHL

Baylor University is a private Baptist university in Waco, Texas. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas, Baylor is the oldest university in Texas and was one of the first educational institutions west of the Mississippi River. The university's 800-acre campus is located near the banks of the Brazos River on freeway I-35, between the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex and Austin. Baylor University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.


In 1841, 35 delegates to the Union Baptist Association meeting voted to adopt the suggestion of Rev. William Milton Tryon and R.E.B. Baylor to establish a Baptist university in Texas, then a self-declared republic still claimed by Mexico. Baylor, a Texas district judge and onetime U.S. Congressman and soldier from Alabama, became the school's namesake.

In the fall of 1844, the Texas Baptist Education Society petitioned the Congress of the Republic of Texas to charter a Baptist university. Republic President Anson Jones signed the Act of Congress on Feb. 1, 1845, officially establishing Baylor University. The founders built the original university campus in Independence, Texas. Rev. James Huckins, the first Southern Baptist missionary to Texas, was Baylor's first full-time fundraiser. He is considered the third founding father of the university. Although these three men are credited as being the founders of the university, many others worked to see the first university established in Texas and thus they were awarded Baylor's Founders Medal.[3] The famous Texas revolutionary war leader and hero Sam Houston gave the first $5,000 donation to start the university. In 1854, Houston was also baptized by the Rev. Rufus Columbus Burleson, future Baylor President, in the Brazos River.[4]

File:Baylor University Independence.jpg

In 1851, Baylor's second president Rufus Columbus Burleson decided to separate the students by gender, making the Baylor Female College an independent and separate institution. Baylor University became an all-male institution. During this time, Baylor thrived as the only university west of the Mississippi offering instruction in law, mathematics and medicine. Many of the early leaders of the Republic of Texas, such as Sam Houston, later sent their children to Baylor to be educated. Some of those early students were, Temple Lea Houston, son of President Sam Houston, a famous western gun-fighter and attorney. Along with Lawrence Sullivan "Sul" Ross famous Confederate General and later President of Texas A&M University.

During the American Civil War, the Baylor president was George Washington Baines, maternal great-grandfather of the future U.S. President, Lyndon Baines Johnson. He worked vigorously to sustain the university during the Civil War, when male students left their studies to enlist in the Confederate Army and serve Texas in various military campaigns. Following the war, the city of Independence slowly declined, primarily caused by the rise of neighboring cities being serviced by the Santa Fe Railroad. Because Independence lacked a railroad line, university fathers began searching for a location to build a new campus.

Beginning in 1885, Baylor University moved to Waco, Texas, a growing town on the railroad line. It merged with a local college called Waco University. At the time, Rufus Burleson, Baylor's second president, was serving as the local college's president. That same year, the Baylor Female College also was moved to a new location, Belton, Texas. It later became known as the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor. A Baylor College Park still exists in Independence in memory of the college's history there. Around 1887, Baylor University began readmitting women and became coeducational again.

File:Baylor University 1892 front.GIF

In 1900, three physicians founded the University of Dallas Medical Department in Dallas, although a university by that name did not exist. In 1903, Baylor University acquired the medical school, which became known as the Baylor College of Medicine, while remaining in Dallas. In 1943, Dallas civic leaders offered to build larger facilities for the university in a new medical center if the College of Medicine would surrender its denominational alliances with the Baptist state convention. The Baylor administration refused the offer and, with funding from the M. D. Anderson Foundation and others, moved the College of Medicine to Houston. In 1969, the Baylor College of Medicine became technically independent from Baylor University.

During World War II, Baylor was one of 131 colleges and universities nationally that took part in the V-12 Navy College Training Program which offered students a path to a Navy commission.[5]


During its more than 160 years of history, Baylor has had 14 presidents, whose leadership has shaped the growth of the institution (Interim presidents are noted):

(Note: While Rufus C. Burleson served as Baylor's President twice, he is counted only once in the presidential count. This makes Reddin Andrews the fifth president and Oscar Henry Cooper the sixth president. Additionally, the interim presidents are not counted in the presidential count.)



Template:Infobox U.S. university ranking As reported in the 2013 "Best Colleges" rankings by U.S. News & World Report, Baylor is No. 77 [6] out of 262 national universities.[7] The university's 2011 acceptance rate was 39.7 percent. According to the College Board, of the fall 2012 entering freshman class of 3,254 students, approximately 75 percent of the incoming students were in the top 20 percent of their high school class. This class consisted of 52 percent students in the top 10 percent of their high school graduating class, and 99 percent in the top half. Of undergraduates who returned after their freshman year, Baylor had the best rate in the State of Texas with almost 87 percent choosing to return to complete their degrees.[8] Baylor is among the 10 percent of U.S. colleges and universities to have a Phi Beta Kappa chapter.[9]

The average American College Test (ACT) score of Baylor undergrad students was 27. The average SAT scores were as follows: Math was 627, Reading was 610 and Writing was 591. There were 1,233 transfer applicants, in which 736 (59 percent) were accepted. The number of admitted transfer students who chose to enroll at Baylor was 451 (36 percent).[10] According to The Princeton Review, Baylor was ranked a Best Western College.[11] In addition, The Princeton Review ranked Baylor 2nd in marketing programs. Baylor University has been named a “Best Value in Private Colleges” by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine for 2011-2012.

Approximately 90 percent of students receive some type of financial aid from a mixture of sources; the student to faculty ratio is 14 to 1, with the average undergraduate class size of 27.

The university first received school accreditation in 1914 when it became an accredited member of the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.[12] The Baylor College of Medicine received accreditation from Southern Association of Colleges and Schools in 1970.[13]

In 2012, the American Council of Trustees and Alumni included Baylor in its What Will They Learn? study, which is an annual evaluation system of colleges and universities. The report assigns a letter grade to 1,070 universities based on how many of the following seven core subjects are required: composition, literature, foreign language, American history, economics, mathematics and science. Baylor was one of only 21 schools to receive an "A" grade, which is assigned to schools that include at least six of the seven designated subjects in their core curriculum.[14]

Graduate rankingsEdit

Several Baylor graduate programs, including its Law School, Hankamer School of Business and programs in the sciences and education are nationally ranked.[15]

Institutional organizationEdit


The university is divided into eleven degree-granting academic units. Two of the units are designated as colleges, while eight others are designated as schools. They are:

  • College of Arts and Sciences
  • Hankamer School of Business
  • Honors College
  • School of Education
  • School of Engineering and Computer Science
  • Graduate School
  • Law School
  • Louise Herrington School of Nursing
  • School of Music
  • School of Social Work

Additionally, the George W. Truett Theological Seminary is a unit of the university.

Student lifeEdit

More than 15,000 students study at Baylor, representing all 50 states, the District of Columbia and approximately 85 foreign countries. The university clubs and organizations provide each student with an opportunity to become engaged with an organization that shares his or her interests.

Greek organizationsEdit

A number of students participate in Greek life at Baylor. Approximately 14 percent of undergraduate men are members of fraternities. Meanwhile, 19 percent of undergraduate women (highest female Greek rate in Texas) are members of a sorority. There are four councils at Baylor. Most of the national fraternities on campus had existed previously as local fraternities for many years before affiliating with their national organizations. Beginning in the late 1970s, these locals began to affiliate with national fraternities. Fraternities and sororities are very active all year with various service events, mixers, football tailgates, formals, out of town weekends and All University Sing. Fraternities and sororities often collaborate in the fall to build parade floats for Baylor's Homecoming celebrations, one of the oldest in the nation. Baylor University possesses 12 Interfraternity Council (IFC) fraternities and eight National Panhellenic Conference sororities:

Fraternities Sororities
Alpha Tau Omega Alpha Delta Pi
Beta Theta Pi Alpha Chi Omega
Delta Tau Delta Chi Omega
Kappa Sigma Delta Delta Delta
Phi Delta Theta Kappa Alpha Theta
Phi Gamma Delta Kappa Kappa Gamma
Phi Iota Alpha Pi Beta Phi
Pi Kappa Phi Zeta Tau Alpha
Sigma Alpha Epsilon
Sigma Phi Epsilon
Tau Kappa Epsilon

Non IFC Fraternities, Social Clubs, & Non NPC Soroities

Fraternities Sororities
Beta Upsilon Chi Delta Kappa Delta
Kappa Omega Tau Kappa Chi Alpha
Phi Kappa Chi Sigma Phi Lambda
Alpha Phi Omega

Golden Wave Marching BandEdit

The Baylor University Golden Wave Band (BUGWB) is the halftime entertainment for Baylor football. The band attends every home football and sometimes travels to away games. The band's name dates back to 1928 when, while on tour in West Texas, observers noted that the band members' gold uniforms looked like a giant "golden wave" sweeping over the landscape.

Military serviceEdit

Baylor University has a strong history of military service and offers both Army and Air Force ROTC for students.

Baylor has had several famous military graduates such as Andrew Jackson Lummus, Jr., who fought and died at the Battle of Iwo Jima during World War II and received the Medal of Honor for his service. John Riley Kane also received the Medal of Honor for his service after flying 43 combat missions for a total of 250 combat hours in Europe, Africa and the Middle East. Kane's daring operations caused German intelligence reports to dub him "Killer Kane."

In July 1948, the Air Force and Baylor University partnered in the creation of Air Force ROTC Detachment 810 - one of the first detachments ever created. In 2008, Detachment 810 was awarded the Air Force ROTC Right Of Line Award as the No. 1 large detachment in the nation. The unit was additionally awarded the High Flight Award, recognizing it as one of the top four detachments in America. It has been named best in the AFROTC Southwest Region for 1996, 2003 and 2008.

Research and endowmentEdit

In 2005, the university was invited to join the Collider Detector at Fermilab (CDF) collaboration at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in Batavia, Illinois.[16] The project is one of the world's largest experimental physics collaborations.

The following year, Carnegie Foundation upgraded the university's classification to "Research University" status with "High Research Activity," opening the door to many new research opportunities.[17]

In October 2009, a group of state, county and city governments and organizations and higher educational institutions in Central Texas announced the creation of the Central Texas Technology and Research Park, and the park's first project, the Baylor Research and Innovation Collaborative (BRIC) to be housed in the former General Tire facility on South Loop Drive in Waco. Funding for the effort came from the state of Texas and Baylor University. Clifton Robinson (a member of Baylor's Board of Regents) donated the facility to the university to support the research collaborative.[18][19]

Several former and present members of faculty at Baylor are involved in the intelligent design debate, most notably philosopher William Dembski, now at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Christian philosopher Francis Beckwith and electrical engineer Robert J. Marks II.[20][21]

The university's endowment passed $1 billion in 2007 and reached $1,055,478,000 on December 31, 2007.[22] Despite the economic crisis of 2008, Baylor spokesperson Lori Fogleman reported that Baylor's endowment grew 5.1 percent in the fiscal year ending June 30, 2008; the National Association of College and University Business Officials estimated that during that same period, the median return for the top 25 percent of college endowments decreased by 2.2 percent. Fogleman cited the university's long-term investments and diversified holdings as the cause of the endowment's success. As of December 2008, the Baylor endowment totaled less than $1 billion, down from a May high of $1.06 billion.[23][24] A consulting firm hired by the university expressed concern that the disagreements within the Baylor community could hinder the endowment from continuing its four-year streak of increased endowment donation totals and its 2012 goal of a $2 billion endowment, though the current economy may also prevent both.[25]

On March 4, 2010, "An anonymous longtime Baylor donor. . . set up an estate provision that will benefit the school to the tune of an estimated $200 million dollars. The gift will bolster Baylor's research on the issues of aging in multiple disciplines at the school."[26] Citing the most recent data reported by the Chronicle of Higher Education, Baylor officials say the $200 million donation is the second-largest gift to a Texas college or university and ranks among the top 20 private gifts to higher education institutions in the country.[27]


Floyd Casey Stadium has been Baylor's home Field since 1950.

Baylor's men's sports teams are nicknamed the Bears, and the women's teams are nicknamed the Lady Bears. Student athletes participate in the NCAA's Division I.

Baylor was a charter member of the Southwest Conference and remained a member until its dissolution in 1996. Baylor is now a member of the Big 12 Conference along with former SWC members TCU, Texas and Texas Tech.

Baylor has won three NCAA titles. In 2004, the men's tennis team defeated UCLA in the championship match. In 2005, the Baylor Lady Bears basketball team beat Michigan State in the championship game. In 2012, the Baylor Lady Bears basketball team beat the Notre Dame Fighting Irish in the NCAA national championship; the first college basketball team ever to finish with a perfect 40-0 record.

Baylor's 2011 football team completed a 10-3 season with a win over the University of Washington Huskies in the Alamo Bowl and finished the season ranked No. 12 in the nation. Quarterback Robert Griffin III was the recipient of the Heisman Trophy as the nation's most outstanding college football player.

During the past three seasons, the Baylor men's basketball team has twice advanced to the Elite Eight of the NCAA 'March Madness' Championship tournament. Under the direction of head coach Scott Drew, Baylor has achieved a record of 121-55 (.688) over the past five seasons and reached post season play in four of those years. Four former Baylor basketball players have been drafted in the first or second round of the NBA Draft in the past two seasons; Epke Udoh (first round), Perry Jones III (first round), Quincy Acy (second round) and Quincy Miller (second round).



Baylor University is the originator of the Homecoming tradition in the United States.

The Baylor Homecoming event was launched in November 1909 as a way to reconnect Baylor alumni with current students. The event includes a football game, bonfire, concerts, speeches, receptions, class reunions, pep rallies, and the nations oldest and longest collegiate parade.

Memorial Lamp PostsEdit

During World War II more than 4,000 Baylor men and women served in the U.S. Armed Forces, more than 125 of whom died during the war. Since 1946, a red granite lamp post has been erected in each of the fallen's honor to stand as a guard by day and illuminate the paths of campus by night. Ever since, a new lamp post has been added for each Baylor alumnus or student who has fallen in service to the country. The lamp posts are all of the same design and contain bronze plaques detailing the life and manner of death of the individual service member.

The Baylor LineEdit

The Baylor Line is a tradition which started in 1970 at Baylor University. It is made entirely of freshmen and is at the heart of building Baylor spirit and tradition for new students. Freshmen wear a football jersey with the number of their proposed graduation year and a nickname on the back.

All University SingEdit

All University Sing is an annual spring semester variety show featuring clubs and organizations on campus. In 1958, Pigskin Revue was added as a Homecoming event that featured the best acts from the previous spring's competition. Up until 1963, the event was primarily groups singing in the style of a choir on a riser. Since then the event has grown to the include high energy Broadway style song and dance numbers. In 2003, Baylor celebrated 50 Years of Sing with commemorative books, DVDs and reunions.

Alma materEdit

Baylor's alma mater is That Good Old Baylor Line. In 1906, a student penned humorous words to the tune of "In the Good Old Summer Time" and they became generally accepted among the student body as the school fight song. However, in 1931, Enid Eastland Markham, wife of music professor Robert Markham, feeling the words were not dignified enough nor representative of the total university, wrote new lyrics which were soon sanctioned as the official school song. The Good Old Summer Time tune was later arranged to fit Mrs. Markham's "Baylor Line" through the work of Jack Goode, Donald I. Moore and Charles F. Brown.


Every spring since 1934, Baylor takes a Thursday off from classes for a spring holiday which since 1966 has been known as Diadeloso (Spanish for Day of the Bear). The Baylor University Chamber of Commerce organizes the event which consists of entertainment of all types. Events on campus include: tug-o-war, free food, dog shows and concerts.

Immortal TenEdit

In January 1927 a bus carrying the Baylor basketball team collided with the Sunshine Special train in Round Rock, Texas. Ten members of the traveling party were killed and many others were injured in the accident. Each year at homecoming the story of the Immortal Ten is told again to the new freshman class at the Freshman Mass Meeting. The names of the ten are called out. In 1996, the senior class provided initial funding to create and place an Immortal Ten statue on campus. Fund raising and discussions about where to place the statues continued off and on over the ensuing years. Finally, on June 22, 2007, the statues, which were sculpted by Bruce R. Greene, were unveiled. The Immortal Ten memorial was officially dedicated during Homecoming on Nov. 2, 2007 in Traditions Square.[28][29][30][31][32]


The school mascot is the American black bear. Baylor University houses two live American black bears on campus. They are named Judge Joy Reynolds and Judge Sue Sloan, affectionately referred to as "Joy" and "Lady", respectively.[33] In the fall of 2005, the university finished renovation and construction of the Bill and Eva Williams Bear Habitat, a $1 million facility which includes a thirteen-foot (four-metre) waterfall, three pools, two dens, grass, and eye-level viewing. The facility is a United States Department of Agriculture- licensed Class C Zoo. It was formally dedicated on Oct. 28, 2005.[34]

The NoZe BrotherhoodEdit

The NoZe Brotherhood, an unofficial fraternal organization founded in 1924, provides the university with unusual public pranks and satirical writings in its newspaper, The Rope.

University MaceEdit

During the War of 1812, Cyrus Baylor, brother of R.E.B. Baylor, was cited for his bravery with the presentation of a gold sword by President Jackson. In 1957, it was given to the university. In 1974, Baylor president Abner V. McCall suggested that the sword be used to form the focal point of a ceremonial "symbol of authority." A timber from one of Old Main's towers was used to construct a base and center pole. Walking canes of former Baylor President Rufus C. Burleson and Gen. Sam Houston, who had been baptized by Burleson and had been a supporter of the university, were linked to the sword to form the Mace. It is used at all university commencement exercises and at other special ceremonies.

Notable alumni, faculty and staffEdit

There are over 120,000 living Baylor alumni.

Campus galleryEdit


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  3. "Founders Day". Baylor University. 2011-11-03. Retrieved 2012-04-10.
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  7. "Methodology: Ranking Category Definitions". U.S. News & World Report.
  8. "Student Body". College Board. Retrieved February 17, 2013.
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  11. "Baylor University - The Princeton Review".
  12. Results[dead link]
  13. Results[dead link]
  14. Czupor, Z.J. (10-11-2012). "National study ranks Colorado Christian in top 2 percent of colleges". Denver Post. Retrieved 11 January 2013.
  15. "Baylor Programs Ranked in U.S. News Grad School Survey".
  16. "Baylor Invited To Join Experimental Physics Lab". Baylor University. 2005-05-09. Retrieved 2012-04-10.
  17. "Baylor Reclassified by Carnegie Foundation as 'Research University'". Retrieved 2008-06-22.
  18. "Unique Partnership Creates Region's First Research Park". Baylor University. 2009-10-23. Retrieved 2010-11-02.
  19. "Q&A with Dr. Truell Hyde on the formation of the Baylor Research and Innovation Collaborative". Archived from the original on 3 November 2010. Retrieved 2010-11-02.
  20. "Baylor avoids repeating an anti-ID purge from years before" by Mark Bergin World Magazine
  21. Baylor U. Removes a Web Page Associated With Intelligent Design From Its Site" by Elizabeth F. Farrell Chronicle of Higher Education Sept. 4, 2007.
  22. "Lilley: 2012 endowment goal may be too small". Retrieved 2008-06-22.
  23. "University quells financial concerns". The Baylor Lariat. 2008-12-03. Retrieved 2008-12-05.
  24. "Baylor officials: endowment weathering economic storm". The Waco Tribune. 2008-10-03. Retrieved 2008-06-22.[dead link]
  25. "In-fighting, economy may hurt endowment". The Baylor Lariat. 2008-10-02. Retrieved 2008-10-04.
  26. "Baylor Receives Largest Gift in School's History". KWBU 103 NPR. 2010-03-04. Archived from the original on 24 September 2010. Retrieved 2010-09-06.
  27. "Baylor Receives Anonymous $200 Million Donation". KWTX 10 News. 2010-03-04. Retrieved 2010-09-06.
  28. Baylor's Immortal Ten finally get their statuary due[dead link]
  29. Baylor University || Homecoming || Freshman Mass Meeting[dead link]
  30. [1][dead link]
  31. "Baylor Flashback - Jan. 22, 1927 - The Immortal Ten :: Exactly 80 years ago, Baylor tragically lost 10 athletes". Retrieved 2012-04-10.
  32. "Immortal Ten Memorial Installed on Campus". Baylor University. Retrieved 2012-04-10.
  33. "Baylor University || Bear Program". 2011-11-20. Retrieved 2012-04-10.
  34. "Baylor To Dedicate New Bear Habitat". Baylor University. 2005-10-24. Retrieved 2012-04-10.

External linksEdit

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