Jarvis Christian College, a historically Black educational institution in Hawkins, Texas, has received approval to offer a master’s degree in business administration and a master’s degree in criminal justice. The new programs are scheduled to begin in January 2023. As a result, the college plans to change its name to Jarvis Christian University.
The college was founded in 1912 as the Jarvis Christian Institute. The college receved a gift of 450 acres of land from a former Confederate Army officer James Jones Jarvis and his wife to “keep up and maintain a school for the elevation and education of the Negro race; in which school there shall be efficient religious and industrial training.” Until 1937 the institute was the only accredited high school exclusively for Blacks in the area. The school began regularly offering junior college courses in 1927 and was incorporated as a college the next year. Senior college courses were offered beginning in 1937. Since its founding, the college has bee affiliated with the Disciples of Christ church.
Today, Jarvis Christian College enrolls just over 700 students, according to the most recent data available from the U.S. Department of Education. African Americans make up 67 percent of the student body.
“What offering master’s degrees does is it allows us to expand our mission and expand that service in terms of another level. Now, not only are we approved to offer bachelor’s and associate’s degrees, we are also approved to offer master’s degrees as well. It allows us to further our scope in our service to students,” said Cleopatra Allen, assistant to the provost and director of academic initiatives.