William Carey University is a private Christian liberal arts college located in Hattiesburg, Mississippi
William Carey University is affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention and the Mississippi Baptist Convention. The main campus is located in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, with a second campus located in the Tradition community near Gulfport, Mississippi and Biloxi, Mississippi.
William Carey University was founded by W. I. Thames in 1892 as Pearl River Boarding School in Poplarville, Mississippi. A disastrous fire destroyed the school in 1905, and in 1906, with the backing of a group of New Orleans businessmen, Thames re-opened the school in Hattiesburg as South Mississippi College. Another fire destroyed the young institution, forcing it to close. In 1911, W. S. F. Tatum acquired the property and offered it as a gift to the Baptists, and the school re-opened as Mississippi Woman’s College. In 1953, the Mississippi Baptist Convention voted to move the college into coeducational status, which necessitated a new name for the institution. In 1954, the board of trustees selected the name of William Carey College in honor of William Carey, the eighteenth century English cobbler-linguist whose decades of missionary activity in India earned him international recognition as the “Father of Modern Missions.” The school changed to university status in 2006.
The college offers baccalaureate degrees in the areas of arts and letters, education, natural and behavioral sciences, business, religion, music, and nursing. The university also offers M.B.A, M.Ed., M.S. in psychology, M.S. in Health Information Systems, and an M.S.N. degree, as well as a specialist degree in elementary education and a Ph.D. in education administration. In 2009, William Carey opened the College of Osteopathic Medicine, and 2010, welcomed its first class of 110 students. In 2012, Carey added a Ph.D. program in nursing. Three trimesters of eleven weeks each comprise the academic year. Two summer sessions, a J-term, and a May Term session are also offered.