Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
April 25, 1983
NUMBER 50, PAGE 4,12b

Florida College - Formerly Florida Christian College


Under date of February 24, the Sunday Tampa Tribune carried the following story which we believe will be of widespread interest:

"Florida College is the new name of Florida Christian College, President James R. Cope announced during a progress report concluding the annual lecture series last week.

"At the same time, Cope told 700 in the audience at Hutchinson Memorial Auditorium that Paul Hutchinson, donor of the auditorium in 1957, has signified his intention to leave his entire estate to the junior college.

"An El Centro, Calif., businessman, Hutchinson prefaced his gift with the statement that 'I have more confidence in the college today than when I made the original gift and am delighted to see that others have been inspired to help also.'

"Cope announced two other bequests at the same time and declared that increased support by Tampa area businessmen is 'an indication of local confidence in the college.'

"He pointed to a gift of $10,000 for the surfacing of the large parking lot near the auditorium and other resurfacing on the campus as one such bequest and to John T. Lewis' gift of a valuable set of periodicals to the school.

"Lewis is from Birmingham, Alabama.

"Cope said college officials intended to change the name of the junior college for a number of years and that confirmation was received from Tallahassee recently.

Not Church Supported

"Commenting on the name change, Cope said the 'Christian' in the name 'leaves many people under the impression that the college is church supported and church controlled, whereas neither of these conclusions is accurate.'

"Florida College was used frequently as the school's name during the formative years, he declared and letterheads originally carried that name before the school opened.

"The junior college president said the primary reason for including 'Christian' in the school name probably had been to emphasize character training and 'a study of the Bible as a required part of the curriculum.

"'I would like to make it clear that the dropping of the term 'Christian' from the name does not mean that we have in any sense altered our emphasis upon the Bible as the basis for character building.

"'This institution is not a theological seminary but a standard junior college with the Bible offered as required study of those who attend.'"

"Hutchinson described 'an investment in Florida College today as an investment in the America of tomorrow' and said the 'greatest joy of my life has been to see the great pleasure and appreciation of these young people.

"`I enjoy seeing the good that this money has done. People should not wait until they die to put their money to work for young people.

"Florida College will embark on another `first' later this year, Cope announced, with its first complete summer session on June 17.

"At that time, he said, the college will offer freshman courses along with a college readiness program for students who wish to correct high school deficiencies in order to obtain full college acceptance.

"The Florida College summer session will feature make-up courses for sophomores, Cope said."

We are happy to carry the fore-going newspaper account of a development at Tampa which we feel will be of general interest. The change in the name of the school from Florida Christian College to Florida College will be a step welcomed by those brethren why had some misgivings as to the name "Christian" as applied to a secular institution. And it will demonstrate the determination on the part of the men in control of the school to weigh carefully and thoughtfully every suggestion made by brethren looking to increase usefulness from this educational institution. In an age when so many schools have betrayed the trust of their founders, it is heartening indeed to see such a school as Florida College seeking every way possible to strengthen herself in harmony with the intent and desires of so many faithful men and women who have invested both time and money in this undertaking. We hope this present move by the Board of Trustees in renaming the school will serve a highly useful purpose in making "Florida College" the kind of school to which conscientious and sincere people will be glad to entrust the college training of their sons and daughters.

— F. Y. T.