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Longwood University and its Programs


Longwood University is an institution of higher learning dedicated to the development of citizen leaders who are prepared to make positive contributions to the common good of society. Building upon its strong foundation in the liberal arts and sciences, Longwood provides an environment in which exceptional teaching fosters student learning, scholarship, and achievement. As the only four-year public institution in south central Virginia, Longwood serves as a catalyst for regional prosperity and advancement.


Longwood University will be recognized as the top comprehensive public institution in the South through its focus on attracting and retaining a diverse faculty recognized for excellence in teaching, attracting outstanding students, providing challenging instruction of the highest quality and providing an academic and residential life environment that develops citizen leadership skills. To achieve this vision, all members of the Longwood community will be dedicated to the highest standards of academic distinction and quality of life, and will examine, reaffirm, and refine those aspects of the college experience that collectively make Longwood an exceptional learning community.

To ensure the vitality of the learning community, Longwood University will increase enrollments while maintaining its inherent character and enhancing its academic quality. The learning community will provide high levels of faculty directed research; student-faculty interaction; active and collaborative learning experiences; enriched educational offerings, including internships and cross-cultural opportunities; and engagement with technology.

Dynamic teaching and superior scholarship that directly influence student learning and increase academic achievement will characterize the Longwood University learning community. Student accomplishments will be defined by established competencies that demonstrate a sound grasp of the liberal arts and sciences as well as the ability to think critically, respond creatively, and apply knowledge to the resolution of practical issues. Assessment of these competencies will be used to ensure continuous improvement of the educational experience.

The curriculum, incorporating the appropriate use of instructional technology, will be refined to ensure its relevance to the mission of developing citizen leaders. It will continue to provide a rigorous foundation in the liberal arts and sciences and elevate Longwood's exceptional professional programs, such as teacher education and business, to the highest regional and national standards.

The University embraces all members of the diverse campus community, leading to a collegial climate where divergent ideas are respected. Longwood will be committed to community service and outreach devoted to local, regional, national and global advancement.

The improvement of learning and quality of life will permeate all institutional practices including the design of co-curricular programs, which fosters integration and coordination of academics and student life; supportive student services; and the creation of physical facilities that contribute to the overall development of students.

Longwood's careful and responsible stewardship of human, fiscal, and environmental resources will be continuously improved to incorporate the most effective methods and practices in supporting the institution's vision.

Approved by the Longwood Board of Visitors
December 1, 2001


Longwood University is located in historic Farmville, Virginia - 65 miles west of Richmond and Petersburg, 48 miles east of Lynchburg, and 60 miles south of Charlottesville. U.S. Highways 15 and 460 intersect in town. Commercial bus systems provide service to the town.

Farmville is a growing college town with a population of 7,000; it is the business and education center of the area. Located in and near town are churches, hotels, motels, a country club, a municipal airport, and a community hospital. Hampden-Sydney College, a liberal arts college for men, is five miles south of the campus. Many points of historic and recreational interest are within a short distance of Farmville, including Appomattox Courthouse and National Historical Park, Sailors Creek Battlefield State Park, Twin Lakes State Park, Holliday Lake State Park, Poplar Hill Golf Club, and the National D-Day Memorial in Bedford. The nationally known Lee's Retreat Civil War Trail and the new Civil Rights in Education Heritage trail pass through Farmville.


Longwood University, a pioneer first in private and later in public education, is one of the oldest institutions of higher learning in the United States. Longwood was founded on March 5, 1839, when the Farmville Female Seminary Association was incorporated by the General Assembly of Virginia.

In the succeeding years the increasing prosperity of the Farmville Female Seminary led the stockholders to expand the seminary into a college, and the Farmville Female College was incorporated in 1860. On April 7, 1884, the State of Virginia acquired the property of the Farmville Female College, and in October of the same year the Normal School opened with 110 students enrolled. This was the first state institution of higher learning for women in Virginia.

With the passage of the years, the Normal School expanded its curriculum and progressed through a succession of names. It became the State Normal School for Women in 1914, the State Teachers College at Farmville in 1924, Longwood College in 1949, and Longwood University in 2002.

Longwood was first authorized to offer a four-year curriculum leading to the degree of Bachelor of Science in Education in 1916. It was authorized to offer the Bachelor of Arts in 1935, the Bachelor of Science in 1938, a curriculum in business education the same year, courses leading to a degree in music education in 1949, and the Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in 1976. In 1978, Longwood was authorized to offer the Bachelor of Fine Arts, and in 1981, the Bachelor of Music. In 1954, graduate programs were authorized. Longwood became fully coeducational in June 1976.


The campus of Longwood University has seen dramatic improvements over the past few years with the completion of major construction and campus beautification projects.

Brock Commons, a beautiful pedestrian promenade named after benefactors Macon and Joan Brock (Class of 1964), was officially opened on April 24, 2004. Brock Commons has become the central focal point for Longwood, uniting the campus community around a safe, pedestrian-friendly environment, while creating an outdoor, collegial ambiance for students, faculty, staff, and visitors.

Near the center of Brock Commons is the two-story, 60,000-square- foot Dorrill Dining Hall, located across from the Lankford Student Union. This multi-purpose facility, with its curved, colonnaded portico overlooking Iler Field, is the first building on campus to utilize geothermal heating and cooling. The flexible interior design provides space for banquets, meetings, and special events along with a Grand Dining Room seating 500 and an arcade seating an additional 700.

Adjacent to Brock Commons are broad lawns, 11 tennis courts, four athletic fields, and numerous late-20th century buildings, including the Greenwood Library, the Lankford Student Union, residence halls, and various academic facilities. The University has six auditoriums ranging in size from 150 seats to 1,227.

Willett Hall is a health, physical education, and recreation complex located on Brock Commons. It has a gymnasium with 3,000 seats; a complete weight-training laboratory; an Olympic-size pool with a three-meter board and underwater sound, lighting, and observation window; a 500-seat natatorium; a modern dance studio with a floating floor and staging capacity; and one of the state's best-equipped laboratories for the study of human performance as it relates to exercise, sports, health, and the arts.

The recently remodeled Lancaster Hall houses the President's Office and the offices of Administration and Finance, Student Affairs, and University Advancement.

Longwood's signature building, Ruffner Hall with its beautiful Rotunda, was rededicated on April 23, 2005 and replicates the university's most beloved building, dating to the 1880s, which burned on April 24, 2001 while undergoing a $12 million renovation.

The original eight paintings on the interior of the Rotunda dome, created in 1905 by the Italian-born artist Eugene D. Monfalcone of Richmond, have been returned to the dome following an extensive restoration that was underway prior to the fire. The historic Joan of Arc statue, known affectionately as "Joanie on the Stony" was also restored recently and returned to its place of honor on the main floor beneath the Rotunda. The bigger-than-life sculpture is a reproduction of the famous 1870 original created by French sculptor Henri-Michel-Antoine Chapu. The statue was a gift of the Class of 1914 and symbolizes Joan of Arc as the patron saint of Longwood.

Ruffner Hall was reconstructed in the classic style based on the original blueprints and drawings from the state archives in Richmond. The 83,143-square-foot building houses 22 classrooms, four academic departments and the offices of the Vice President for Academic Affairs and the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.

A new four-story Science Center opened on December 6, 2005. The 70,822-square-foot facility includes 23 classrooms and laboratories, 47 faculty offices and additional research space for both undergraduate and graduate research projects. The new building features a state-of-the-art, climate-controlled environment, with safety ventilation systems and hazardous materials safeguards along with a high-tech infrastructure for classrooms, laboratories, and distance learning facilities. A greenhouse and herbarium, housing the world's largest collection of Virginia plant specimens, are located on the roof.

Construction has begun on a new two-and-a-half story student recreation center to be known as the Center for Health and Fitness. Located on Main Street, adjacent to Frazer Residence Hall, the 74,683-square-foot facility is scheduled to open in the spring of 2007, and will feature a wide range of amenities including an indoor track, basketball and racquetball courts, a climbing wall, work-out rooms, juice bar, and the latest weight, exercise and training equipment.

Longwood Landings at Mid-Town Square, scheduled to open in August 2006, features four four-story buildings that will house 96 four-bedroom and 24 single-room apartments for students on the top three floors. Located on Main Street adjacent to campus, Longwood Landings will offer retail space on the first level with preference given to high-end clients. The project, a public-private partnership, also will provide 400 parking spaces for students and shoppers.

Not far from campus students can enjoy the facilities at Longwood Estate, which feature a new complex of athletic fields for field hockey, lacrosse, and soccer, along with a nine-hole golf course. The President's home, Longwood House, is situated on the Estate.

The College Year

The college year consists of a regular session, including two semesters of 15 weeks each, and a summer session. The summer session for undergraduate students consists of two four-week terms and one three-week term. The graduate summer session consists of two four-week terms. The summer session makes it possible for an undergraduate student to complete a degree program in three calendar years as compared to the traditional four academic years generally required to complete such a program. Both undergraduate and graduate classes during the summer are scheduled for five days a week.

Summer Session

Longwood welcomes a variety of students to its summer sessions by offering basic courses and advanced courses in the majors in a wide variety of academic disciplines. Specialized instruction is also available through a broad range of intensive course offerings.

Registration procedures for summer sessions are published on Longwood's Website, which is usually available in early February.


Commencement is held once a year, in May. Students completing a degree program in August or December may participate in the following May commencement.

Graduating seniors must buy from the college bookstore the caps, gowns, and hoods required for commencement exercises.

Longwood's Honor System

A strong tradition of honor is fundamental to the quality of living and learning in the Longwood community. The Honor System was founded in 1910, and its purpose is to create and sustain a community in which all persons are treated with trust, respect, and dignity. Longwood affirms the value and necessity of integrity in all intellectual and community endeavors. Students are expected to assume full responsibility for their actions and to refrain from lying, cheating, stealing, and plagiarism.

Upon entering Longwood, students sign the Honor Pledge:

I, .........................................having a clear understanding of the basis and spirit of the Honor Code created and accepted by the student body of Longwood University, Farmville, Virginia, pledge myself to govern my life at Longwood according to its standards and to accept my responsibility for helping others to do so, and with sensitive regard for my institution, to live by the Honor Code at all times and to see that others do likewise.