During an open forum held on Sept. 20, President Robert B. Sloan announced that Houston Baptist University had changed its name to Houston Christian University. Faculty, staff, past and present trustees, and students were in attendance
“Houston Christian University more accurately epitomizes our student body and reflects the faculty, staff, alumni and community we serve,” said Sloan.
“We are committed to being a distinctively Christian university that welcomes all Christians to benefit from our excellent academic programs. This historic university appeals to people all across the spectrum of Christian denominational life, and this new name clarifies who we are.”
The renaming is part of a growth campaign to expand the university’s residential campus to 4,200 students and online campus to 5,800 students.
“We want to extend the influence of our mission while also appealing to as many students as possible,” Sloan said.
The university has considered a name change several times over the last 16 years, Sloan noted. A task force of trustees arrived at this new name after two years of consideration, research and prayerful review, he noted. On May 17, the board of trustees officially approved the change.
The university is partnering with Carnegie, a leading higher education marketing and enrollment strategy firm “to take our brand of traditional Christian higher education to the next generation of students,” Sloan said.
During the forum event, Sloan also affirmed the university’s core convictions, saying its historic Christian commitments have not and will not change.
“We believe that authentic and faithful Christian higher education, rooted in a scriptural worldview, is ever more critical in a fractured society in need of reconciliation, hope, and healing,” he said.
“By changing to Houston Christian University, we are striving to be even clearer about our convictions. We are committed to Jesus Christ. We are committed to the Scriptures. We are committed to the gospel and its power to draw all people to Christ. And we are committed to being ‘salt and light’ in the world.”
Houston Christian University’s mission statement is “to provide a learning experience that instills in students a passion for academic, spiritual and professional excellence as a result of our central confession, ‘Jesus Christ is Lord.’”
The recent name change marks the second time university leaders have changed the institution’s name. Originally launched in 1960 as Houston Baptist College by Stewart Morris Sr., the university was renamed Houston Baptist University in 1973.
Morris, one of the university’s “founding fathers,” voiced enthusiastic approval of the name change.
“I believe the name Houston Christian University is perfect. I am especially proud that the word ‘Christian’ will be in the name, since it truly represents who we are, a university where everyone is welcome,” Morris said.
The name change does not affect the university’s accreditation status, tuition or fees, or its financial aid application process.
A revised logo is expected to be completed soon. The university colors of orange and blue will remain the same, and the Husky mascot will continue to represent their 17 Division I sports.
Campus signage and athletics uniforms will be updated over the next few months.
Source: Baptist Standard