Brenau University is a private, 4-year school located in Gainesville, GA, about 50 miles northeast of Atlanta. The school was founded in 1878 as a women’s college, the school was sold in 1900 to HJ Pearce who named it Brenau in a blend of German words meaning “to burn” and “gold” with the motto “As Gold Refined by Fire.” Although it was originally called a Baptist Seminary for Women, it does not maintain any affiliation with the church. The school achieved university status in 1992. The 50 acre campus, set in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains near Lake Lanier, features Georgian architecture, tree-lined pathways and multiple green spaces.
Benau University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges and offers Bachelor’s degrees, post-baccalaureate Certificates, Master’s degrees, post-masters Certificates and Doctorates in over 30 majors. Noted for Healthcare fields, Education and Dance, the largest programs on campus are in Healthcare and Business. The University also offers 16 degree programs online – 4 are undergraduate degrees. The University is comprised of five colleges: College of Fine Arts & Humanities, College of Health Sciences, College of Business & Mass Communication, College of Education and Sidney O. Smith Jr. Graduate School. Per the Mission Statement, “Brenau University challenges students to live extraordinary lives of personal and professional fulfillment. As students pursue undergraduate and graduate degrees or non-degree programs at Brenau campuses and online, each prepares for a lifetime of intellectual accomplishment and appreciation of artistic expression through a curriculum enriched by the liberal arts, scientific inquiry and global awareness.”
There are over 1,500 undergraduate students enrolled in Brenau University, most of whom live on campus among the 11 residence halls. The University sponsors approximately 50 clubs and student organizations including club sports and intramurals. For the varsity athlete, the gold and black Golden Tigers, led by HJ, field teams in 8 sports and participate in NAIA Division I competition. Students are held to the Brenau Honor Code: “I promise to uphold the Brenau University honor code by refraining from every form of dishonesty and cheating in university life, and will strive to create a spirit of honesty and honor. Failure to do so is considered a breach of trust toward the faculty and student body. I accept this commitment as a personal responsibility to refrain from and to report all forms of dishonesty and cheating.” Looking forward, the University has this stated Vision: Brenau University will provide a rich and much-needed approach to 21st century education. The BRENAU 2025 vision foresees the university’s producing intellectually adept, compassionate, professionally expert leaders steeped in the liberal arts to address commercial and social needs of a diverse world.