Fresno Pacific University

Fresno Pacific University

Infobox University

name = Fresno Pacific University
motto = Founded on Christ
established = 1944
type = Liberal Arts
head_label = President
head = D. Merrill Ewert
city = Fresno
state = California
country = United States
undergrad = 1007
postgrad = 900
postgrad_label = graduate
campus = 42 acres, 16 buildings
faculty = 200
mascot = Sunbird
free_label = Sports teams
free = Fresno Pacific Sunbirds
website = []

Fresno Pacific University (Originally Pacific Bible Institute) was founded in 1944 by the Pacific District Conference of Mennonite Brethren Churches. The University awarded its first Bachelor of Arts degree in 1965. A masters degree program was introduced in 1975.

Mission and Academics

"Fresno Pacific University develops students for leadership and service through excellence in Christian higher education." [cite web|url=|title=Mission, Vision and Values|publisher=Fresno Pacific University|accessdate=2008-03-16]

Fresno Pacific offers Bachelors degrees in 28 fields (and minors in an additional 10) with 45 areas of study.It also offers advanced degrees or credentials in four areas: Education, Individualized Master of Arts, Leadership & Organizational Studies, and Peacemaking & Conflict Studies. The university is organized into four schools: The School of Business; the School of Education; the School of Humanities, Religion and Social Sciences; and the School of Natural Sciences. In the most recent U.S. News & World Report college rankings, Fresno Pacific's peer assessment score tied it for twenty-sixth in the Western United States in the Universities-Master's category

Fresno Pacific is accredited through the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. [cite web|url=|title=Statement of Accreditation Status|publisher=Western Association of Schools and Colleges|year=2007|accessdate=2008-03-16]


At the time of its founding, Pacific Bible Institute was located in a large home at 1095 N. Van Ness Ave. There were five staff members and twenty-eight students. By the time the first school year was finished, a former YWCA building at the corner of Tuolumne and L streets (originally designed by Julia Morgan) had been purchased, and the next school year began in this building.

By 1958, land was purchased for the construction of the current campus near the corner of Butler and Chestnut, along with the Mennonite Brethren Biblical Seminary and the new Butler Avenue Mennonite Brethren Church. Construction began on a new classroom building that year, and two dormitory buildings one year later. The classroom building was ready for use in the fall of 1959, but the dorm buildings were not completed until 1961 due to financial difficulties.

The Bible Institute became an accredited junior college in 1961, and decided to develop a four-year program two years later, in 1963. In 1964, Pacific Bible Institute changed its name to Pacific College, and became accredited with the WASC the next year. By 1967, the decision was made to add graduate courses, and the accreditation for the first Master of Arts program was received from WASC in 1975. The college changed its name to Fresno Pacific College in 1976 and to Fresno Pacific University in 1997.

Building Construction Table


Men's Athletic Teams

*Cross Country
*Track and Field
*Water polo

Women's Athletic Teams

*Cross Country
*Track and Field
*Water polo


* The "Wittenberg Door", a board located in the atrium of Steinert Campus Center, near the entrance to the dining room, is a place for the exchange of ideas. People are free to post expressions of their views, but are asked to write pieces in a charitable spirit and to include the writer's name. It was built in approximately 1983, and the original version was located in Alumni Hall when it still served as the campus cafeteria. A new board was built in 2004, and the old one was dismantled. The Mennonite Brethren Biblical Seminary has a board with the same name and purpose outside the B.C. Lounge.
* The Mennonite Central Committee holds its annual West Coast Relief Sale and Auction on the campus during the first weekend in April, at approximately 4:00pm-9:00pm Friday and 7:00am-3:00pm Saturday. Ethnic foods, used books, antiques, plants, world crafts, and quilts are all sold on campus in various booths and auction events.
* University Family Thanksgiving Meal
* Winter Formal

Chief Executives

*1944-1946 Rev. Sam W. Goossen - Acting President/Dean
*1946-1947 Rev. George B. Huebert - Administrator
*1947-1953 Dr. George W. Peters - President/Dean
*1953-1954 Dr. Rueben M. Baerg - Acting President
*1954-1955 Dr. Rueben M. Baerg - Acting President, one-half year; Administrative Committee last half of year, Dr. George W. Peters, Chmn.
*1955-1960 Rev. B.J. Braun - President
*1960-1961 Dr. Arthur J. Wiebe - Director of Pacific Bible Institute; Mr. Joel A. Wiebe - Interim Director
*1961-1975 Dr. Arthur J. Wiebe - President
*1975-1976 Rev. Edmund Janzen, Chairman, Presidential Council
*1976-1982 Rev. Edmund Janzen - President
*1982-1983 Mr. Silas Bartsch - Interim President; Edmund Janzen on leave
*1983-1985 Rev. Edmund Janzen - President
*1985-1997 Dr. Richard Kriegbaum - President
*1997-2000 Dr. Allen Carden - President
*2000-2002 Dr. Harold Haak - President
*2002-present Dr. D. Merrill Ewert - President

Notable athletes

Ron Adams, Assistant Coach for the Chicago Bulls


*Toews, Paul, ed. "Mennonite Idealism and Higher Education: The Story of the Fresno Pacific College Idea". Fresno, Calif.: The Center for Mennonite Brethren Studies, 1995. ISBN 1-877941-05-0.
*Wiebe, Joel. "Remembering...Reaching: A Vision of Service, a Fifty Year History of Fresno Pacific College". Fresno, Calif.: Fresno Pacific College, 1994. ISBN 1-884397-01-8.

External links

* [ Official website]
* [ Official athletics website]
* [ Center for Peacemaking and Conflict Studies]

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