Gardner-Webb At a Glance

Gardner-Webb University’s purpose is to advance the Kingdom of God through Christian higher education by preparing graduates for professional and personal success, instilling in them a deep commitment to service and leadership, and equipping them for well-rounded lives of lasting impact, Pro Deo et Humanitate (For God and Humanity).


Gardner-Webb is in Boiling Springs, N.C., about 50 miles west of Charlotte in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. The 225-acre campus is about an hour drive from both Asheville, N.C., and Greenville, S.C.


Nearly 4,000 total, including the undergraduate day program, graduate studies and the GOAL - The Degree Completion Program, from 40 states and 15 foreign countries


More than 170 full time, 75% with PhD or equivalent; 13:1 student-to-faculty ratio


Five professional schools, two academic schools and 13 academic departments offer more than 80 undergraduate and graduate major fields of study.


NCAA Division I, member of the Big South Conference, compete in 11 men’s and 11 women’s sports

Campus Life

More than 40 registered student organizations

Religious Affiliation



Dr. A. Frank Bonner (July 1, 2005 to present)

History Highlights 

  • 1905 – Founded as Boiling Springs High School and would later become Boiling Springs Junior College in 1928
  • 1942 – Renamed Gardner-Webb College in honor of North Carolina Governor O. Max Gardner and wife, Fay Webb
  • 1971 – Became a senior college, offering four-year degrees
  • 1993 – Became Gardner-Webb University
  • 2000 – Reclassified to NCAA Division I athletics
  • 2013 – Completed largest-ever capital campaign of $46 million
  • 2014 – Added nearly 26 acres and the former Crawley Memorial Hospital building to establish the College of Health Sciences

Did You Know?

Elite Doctoral University Status

* Gardner-Webb has achieved Doctoral University status with The Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education, an elite list of just 334 institutions nationwide. Among private schools in North Carolina, only Gardner-Webb, Duke University (Durham) and Wake Forest University (Winston-Salem) share the Doctoral University classification.

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Exceptional Core Curriculum

* Gardner-Webb’s core curriculum ranks in the top Two Percent in the United States as one of only 25 institutions nationwide to earn an “A” grade in the 2015-16 “What Will They Learn?” Study of more than 1,100 colleges and universities, conducted by the American Council of Trustees and Alumni (ACTA).

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Outstanding Service

* Gardner-Webb has been named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll every year since 2008. The honor, sponsored by the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) and the U.S. Department of Education, recognizes Gardner-Webb’s commitment to exemplary community service and meaningful outcomes in the community.

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Online Excellence

* Gardner-Webb was honored for excellence in web-based learning opportunities with recognition as a 2016 Best Online College in North Carolina by Best Colleges, based in Seattle, Wash., and Houston, Texas. The University was selected based on academic quality and affordability.

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Model Sportsmanship

* Gardner-Webb received the 2015-16 Institutional Sportsmanship Award from the Big South Conference, in recognition of the conference’s core values of sportsmanship and fair play in athletics.

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