Mars Hill University will host a celebration of its new name and university status on August 26 from 4 until 8 pm, at Meares Stadium, in the Ammons Family Athletic Center. The public is invited.
Although the name will officially change from Mars Hill College to Mars Hill University on August 15, the celebration will be held later in the month, so that students returning after summer break can participate. August 26 is also the first day of class for the 2013-14 academic year.
According to President Dan Lunsford, the celebration will represent years of planning, hoping, and dreaming for trustees, administrators, and others associated with the university’s long history. Recently, the college’s expansion, both in terms of enrollment and variety of offerings, has increased, setting the stage for the move to university status.
“We believe that changing the designation from college to university is one that positions the institution to be recognized for what we really are,” Lunsford said. “The name university denotes a greater variety of offerings, and it indicates the opportunity to obtain undergraduate and graduate education in selected fields as part of the Mars Hill experience.”
In addition to food, games and entertainment, the August 26 celebration will include the opportunity to participate in a group picture of all attendees. The photo will go into the university archives in commemoration of the event.
“We are not just celebrating our history; we’re making history,” Lunsford said. As an alumnus, Lunsford said he has always taken pride in Mars Hill’s grand legacy.
“I am thankful for those who preceded us. But now, it is our time,” he said. “The history of Mars Hill continues to be written, and now is our time to take that marvelous history and nurture a thriving legacy for a new generation.”
Mars Hill University is a premier private, liberal arts institution offering over 30 baccalaureate degrees and one graduate degree in elementary education. Founded in 1856 by Baptist families of the region, the campus is located just 20 minutes north of Asheville in the mountains of western North Carolina.www.mhc.edu.