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Private, Pentecostal Liberal Arts Degrees at Lee

Lee University appears in our ranking of 50 Great Affordable Colleges in the South.

Ranked the U.S. News & World Report’s 47th best Southern school, Lee University is a nonprofit Church of God affiliate in Tennessee that offers 111 bachelor’s and 18 graduate options, including nine fully online, at a 16:1 learner-faculty ratio with 79 percent retention. For example, the B.S. in Special Education builds a 120-credit, CAEP-accredited sequence toward the K-12 Comprehensive Disabilities license with 15 weeks of teaching placements like Yates Primary or Cleveland High. Chaired by Dr. Murl Dirksen, the 120-credit B.A. in Anthropology delivers hands-on experience in the Archaeology Research Center with the USDA Forest Service and Karak Resource projects.

On Moodle, the Division of Adult Learning at Lee University digitally powers an M.A. in Ministry Studies with four custom 36-credit, 18-month concentrations in Worship Studies, Church Leadership, Theological Studies, or Youth & Family Ministry online for median mid-career pay of $76,700. Since 2016, the 54-credit M.S. in Athletic Training headed by Dr. Dewayne Knight has fulfilled BOC certification with 800 hours of clinical practicum from Paul Dana Walker Arena to the Center for Sports Medicine. Other degrees include the B.A. in Theatre, B.S. in Mathematics, B.S. in Information Systems, M.S. in Higher Education Administration, and M.S. in Holistic Child Development.

About Lee University

Lee University originated on January 1, 1918, when Ms. Nora Chambers welcomed an inaugural class of 12 to the Church of God’s Bible Training School. After World War I, it grew rapidly by adding a correspondence program in 1918. In 1947, it was renamed Lee’s Bible College to honor Church overseer Flavius Josephus Lee. Fully accredited in 1960, it switched from two-year to four-year degrees for liberal arts in 1969. By 1990, Lee College started its first graduate program for a Master of Church Music. In 1996, the John Templeton Foundation featured Lee on its Character-Building College Honor Roll. On August 1, 1997, it was formally titled Lee University with a strong commitment to the Pentecostal Research Center.

Endowed for $20.6 million, Lee University now educates 5,386 Flames from 47 states and 48 countries either online or on-site with 95+ clubs like Adopt-A-Grandparent. In 2015, Lee was honored with a Better Business Bureau Torch Award for Marketplace Ethics. In 2017, the “College of Distinction” was a finalist for a Tennessee Valley’s People’s Choice Award. On Niche, Lee boasts America’s 61st best religious studies, 92nd best campus, and 153rd top communications programs. The Open Doors Report listed Lee University fourth nationally for studying abroad. College Factual placed Lee 98th for public relations, 139th for special education, and 11th for theology. Washington Monthly also picked Lee 63rd among U.S. master’s institutions.

Lee University Accreditation Details

On June 14, 2018, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) Board of Trustees notably took action to raise Lee University’s accreditation valid through 2025-26 from Level IV to Level V under its 18th president, Dr. Charles Paul Conn, who received the M.C. Headrick Award from the Cleveland Chamber of Commerce. Located 127 miles down Interstate 75 in Decatur, Georgia, this elite 11-state Southeast Region accreditor is suitably recognized by the Council on Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). The Vice President and Provost Office also outlines these degree-specific accreditations:

  • Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
  • Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education
  • Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs
  • Public Relations Society of America
  • National Association of Schools of Music
  • Council for Accreditation of Educator Preparation

Lee University Application Requirements

Admission to Lee University is labeled “moderately difficult” by Peterson’s though 2,029 of the 2,443 Fall 2017 applicants were okayed for less selective 83 percent acceptance. First-year Flames blasting into USA Today’s 13th best service school must hold secondary or GED diplomas. Strong emphasis is placed on discernible Christian character and potential. Freshmen need a minimum 2.0 GPA, but the average is 3.63. Composite test scores must be at least 900 on the SAT and 17 on the ACT. Test-optional policies only apply with 15+ transfer credits. Current undergrads must hold 2.0 GPAs or greater at regionally accredited colleges. Non-U.S. residents often take the TOEFL for a minimum 450 Written or 45 Internet mark. The Graduate Studies School mandates relevant four-year bachelor’s degrees and GPAs above 2.75. Four MM programs specifically require a Bachelor of Music. The M.S. in Athletic Training needs 3.0 GPAs and 300 GRE scores with prerequisites like Human Anatomy plus CPR certification. Doctor of Nursing Practice cohorts need unencumbered licenses, 3.0 GPAs, and MSN degrees.

Lee University conveniently has rolling undergrad admission year-round. The Kairos Scholars Honors Program has April 17th priority and June 15th final deadlines. The Graduate Studies School has general cutoff dates of June 1st for Fall, November 1st for Spring, and April 1st for Summer. Dates move up to April 15th, July 15th, and December 15th for DNP nurses. Submit the Lee Application securely online with $25 by credit card or PayPal. Official transcripts are mailed to PO Box 3450 at 890 North Ocoee Street in Cleveland, TN 37320. Testing results require SAT/GRE code 1401, MAT code 2540, or ACT code 3978. Additional program requirements include the 2-3 recommendations, graduate interview, writing sample, background check, fingerprinting form, teacher/nurse license, experience résumé, and MMR vaccine record. Learn more by contacting (423) 614-8500 or admissions@leeuniversity.edu.

Tuition and Financial Aid

For 2018-19, Lee University charged full-time undergrads taking 12-16 credits $8,520 per term or $17,040 annually. Undergrads paid a comprehensive services fee of $325 by semester. Living at the Cleveland campus’ dorms like Atkins-Ellis Hall added $1,520 to $2,265 for term rent. Unlimited meal plans for Deacon Jones Dining Hall were $1,900 extra each semester. Lee budgeted $1,600 for books and $3,560 for personal supplies. Annual traditional bachelor’s attendance equaled $31,150 on-site and $22,850 with family. The Division of Adult Learning had online undergrad pricing of $454 per credit. Graduate programs billed $710 per credit taken anywhere. The School of Religion had a master’s ministerial discount of $193 per credit. Advanced Summer Session courses were cheaper at $670 per credit too.

According to the NCES College Navigator, the Student Financial Services Office at Higginbotham Administration Hall ignites 75 percent of Lee Flames with average aid of $9,088 each for $32.67 million total. University funds include the Centennial Scholarship, John D. Nichols Scholarship, Asian Pacific Scholarship, Lettie Pate Whitehead Scholarship, Poiema Ministry Scholarship, Theatre Talent Scholarship, Mark Anthony Hayes Scholarship, Lesa Karean McClenahan Scholarship, Cletus Benton Memorial Scholarship, Craig Hagmaier Scholarship, Pathway Press Journalism Scholarship, and Marsha Rader Scholarship. The Dean’s Scholarship gifts $7,000 for freshmen with 24-26 ACT or 1160-1250 SAT scores. The Roberson Leadership Program has a February 1st deadline for its 50 scholarships of $2,000. Phi Theta Kappa members transferring 60+ credits at GPAs over 3.5 receive $4,000 scholarships. Completing FAFSA documents coded 003500 determines Federal Pell Grant, SEOG Grant, Direct Subsidized/Unsubsidized Loan, and Work-Study amounts. Tennessee also offers the HOPE Scholarship, Dual Enrollment Grant, Foster Child Grant, and Wilder-Naifeh Grant.

Search through 129 programs of study at Lee University on the Academic Affairs Office website.