Together @ Messiah

Messiah University will be in session this spring with flexible in-person and remote learning options, health and safety protocols and student care and support. Visit our COVID-19 response website.


Messiah College is now officially Messiah University

Messiah College is now officially Messiah University

Wednesday, July 1 (Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania)—Messiah College is proud to announce that it is now Messiah University, effective today. The Messiah College Board of Trustees originally announced its decision and planning to pursue university status in October 2018. In the following months, Messiah’s leadership engaged the process with its accrediting body, the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, and the Pennsylvania Department of Education for approval to officially become a university on July 1, 2020.

“Messiah College becoming Messiah University is an important and natural next step in the growth and maturation of our institution,” said Messiah President Kim Phipps. “In many ways, university status is a much more accurate reflection of how Messiah has functioned for several years now. Our future as Messiah University holds tremendous promise and opportunity. But even in the midst of change and progress, our commitment to institutional mission, academic quality, Christian faith formation and the promotion of the common good remains steadfast.”

Messiah University will welcome its first incoming undergraduate and graduate classes this August, and the Class of 2021 will be the first official graduates of the University. 

Why become Messiah University?

Messiah already reflects a multiple-School university structure and offers an extensive mix of undergraduate and graduate programs in both the liberal and applied arts and sciences—including expansion to master’s and doctorate programs since 2009. The University is committed to launching new educational programs designed for the needs of a rapidly changing workforce—most recently adding accelerated programs in athletic training and occupational therapy that allow students to earn both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in just five years. “We’ve engaged students across all stages of higher learning—as early as high school students in our dual-enrolled programs to our recent launch of adult degree programs—online undergraduate degrees and certificates designed for busy working professionals,” Phipps added.

The move to university paves the way for even greater educational innovation and expanded academic, corporate and community partnerships. Because university status is more widely understood by international, graduate and non-traditional students, it creates opportunities for the University to expand its recruitment among those populations. Adopting university status opens new doors for Messiah University for other global partnerships including internships, study abroad, scholarship and research connections, as well and ministry, outreach and service opportunities.

The change in name also creates an internationally shared vocabulary that positions Messiah University as the top-tier, nationally ranked institution of scholarship and faculty-mentored research that it is. Messiah students enjoy a wide range of scholarship, research and engagement opportunities such as prestigious national and international scholarship competitions; the Collaboratory for Strategic Partnership and Applied Research; national and international service learning, community service and engagement, a rich network of off-campus and international programs and undergraduate research. These experiential learning opportunities remain a central part of Messiah’s strategic plan and vision.

Though much has changed in its 111-year history, Messiah University maintains its commitment to its unique Christian educational mission, its promise of academic excellence, its dedication to outstanding teaching and student learning, and fostering a strong and supportive campus community.

The Messiah University brand: transformation and see anew

“Our promise to students is that a Messiah University education will help them to see themselves, their faith, their world and their possibilities in exciting new ways. We are thrilled to celebrate this significant transformation,” Phipps said, “not just from college to university—but through the transformation in the lives of our students and alumni.”  

As part of its transition to university, Messiah also collaborated with current and prospective students and alumni to research and launch an institutional brand refresh, including the development of a new university logo and new marketing messaging and visuals to communicate its “see anew” brand platform. Learn more at 

About Messiah University

Founded in 1909 and located near Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Messiah University is a nationally ranked, private Christian university of the liberal and applied arts and sciences that enrolls nearly 3,400 undergraduate, adult degree program and graduate students.


NOTE FOR THE EDITOR: You may watch a short video from President Kim Phipps here.

For more information and video about Messiah’s transition to university status visit