Jun 25, 2021  
Traditional Undergraduate Catalog 2018-2019 
Traditional Undergraduate Catalog 2018-2019 Archived Catalog

Our History

The History of John Brown University

John Brown University’s rich history began with an enthusiastic evangelist, radio pioneer, educator, and author, John E. Brown, who recognized the need for an academic institution that would prepare young people to serve Christ. In 1919, with a goal of educating the “Head, Heart, and Hand,” John Brown laid the foundation for the institution that would later be called John Brown University. The vision of JBU has been carried through its ninety-nine year history by the leadership of the founder, his son, John Brown Jr., his grandson, John Brown III, and Presidents George Ford, Lee Balzer, and now Charles Pollard.


The university offers an education based on a liberal arts Core Curriculum and 43 undergraduate majors. Also available at JBU are academic opportunities for professionals and graduates. The JBU Degree Completion Program (now known as JBU Online Undergraduate) was established in 1993 to meet the needs of working adults and allows them to complete their undergraduate degree. In 1995, JBU began offering graduate classes. The Graduate School offers master’s degrees in Business, Counseling, Cybersecurity, Higher Education, and Teacher Education.


Since its founding, JBU has sought to nourish the spiritual life of its students. Professors and students work together to integrate a Christian worldview with their understanding and practice of academic disciplines. Professors and staff also make themselves available to guide and mentor students in the faith.

Within the JBU community, there are a variety of opportunities for students to deepen and live out their faith. Chapel services are held three times a week and feature dynamic worship and gifted guest speakers. A wide variety of ministry opportunities are offered to students through the Office of Christian Formation.


Students also gain valuable professional and personal life-skills that equip them to serve in business, education, industry, ministry, the arts, and a variety of other fields. Students and graduates are encouraged to integrate faith in the workplace and in every area of their lives.

While the scope of JBU’s mission has grown over the last 99 years, the central direction of that mission has remained the same: “Christ Over All.”


John Brown University is located in Siloam Springs, in the economically vigorous region of Northwest Arkansas. Several city parks, as well as nearby attractions such as Beaver Lake and Devil’s Den State Park, provide ample opportunity for outdoor recreation. Urban activities are easily available as well. Fayetteville and Bentonville, Arkansas, only 30 miles away, and Tulsa, Oklahoma, 80 miles away, offer shopping, dining, and a variety of cultural events.

The Student Body

John Brown University’s student body consists of over 1,350 in traditional programs representing more than 40 states and more than 40 nations. Around 10% of the students have primary citizenship in countries other than the United States. Many other students have international backgrounds, including many members of families involved in Christian missionary work. Most of the students identify themselves as church members; the largest numbers belong to evangelical congregations.

Approximately 250 additional students participate in the JBU Online Undergraduate Program for adult learners.

Graduate School programs in Counseling, Leadership, Business Administration, Higher Education Leadership, and Teacher Education areas include approximately 650 enrollees.

Milestone Leadership

Milestone Leadership has impacted people by delivering values-focused leadership training and development since 1998. Customizable leadership training programs are offered at the individual, team, and organizational level for corporate and nonprofit groups. Through programs such as the Leadership Circle for Suppliers, Senior Team Alignment, Strategic Planning, culture building and our flagship, Milestone Leadership Intensive, we successfully help leaders and their organizations accelerate performance to get further, faster.

Undergraduate and graduate students at John Brown University benefit as well from participating in targeted leadership development programs offered through Milestone Leadership.

Our two-year Soderquist Fellowship program is available to top applicants of John Brown University’s Master of Business Administration, Master of Science in Leadership, and Master of Science in Design Thinking and Innovation programs. These students work full-time for Milestone Leadership, receiving full tuition and a stipend for a two-year experience while completing their graduate degrees. In their roles they contribute directly to our mission, gaining valuable experience working alongside veteran business leaders.

Our goal as an organization is to continue building leaders worth following. We are striving to develop leaders who have clarity in values and purpose, who recognize the importance of results as well as the people who achieve them. It is these who leaders create great places to work and impact their communities.

Visit https://milestoneleadership.com to learn more.

The Center for Healthy Relationships

The CHR vision is a world where everyone is equipped for a lifetime of healthy relationships.

The CHR mission is to provide individuals, couples, families and organizations with practical and innovative resources that encourage and empower the growth of healthy relationships in personal and professional settings.

The CHR goals include:

  1. Design, develop and deliver “whole person” resources that encourage emotional, relational and spiritual growth and maturity in a person’s mind, will and emotions-whole men and women with a growth-focused perspective living in abundance and reflecting the reality of God’s power and presence in their lives.
  2. Provide informational and training events designed to instill Christ-centered principles of healthy relationships across the life-cycle and social economic spectrum in ways that strengthen marriages and families, churches, schools, and corporations.
  3. Provide innovative resources that promote healthy personal and professional relationships by increasing Emotional and Relational Intelligence (ERQ™), teaching healthy communication and conflict management skills, locally, regionally, nationally, and internationally.
  4. Partner with community agencies through the CHR RelationshipsMatter Project to provide relationship programs and resources for underserved populations (generational poverty, lower-income, prisoners and parolees) and other special-needs groups.
  5. Through the CHR ChurchStrong program actively support pastors, church, and parachurch leaders in assessing, through the CHR Church Relationship Assessment, the emotional, relational and spiritual state of a congregation, identify growth opportunities, provide education and enrichment to increase the effectiveness of existing marriage and other relationship ministries, and to equip leaders to facilitate the implementation of new and existing ministries.
  6. Partner with institutions of higher education to help colleges and universities identify, through the CHR Student Relationships Assessment, the degree to which their efforts are making a measurable difference in the emotional, relational and spiritual lives of their students, and help them design ways to more effectively meet those needs.
  7. Expand our ongoing efforts to increase the awareness of the personal and corporate value of healthy relationships, and help Northwest Arkansas become a place that is known for healthy marriages and strong families.

Visit http://liferelationships.com to learn more.