North Central University

Not to be confused with Northcentral University.
North Central University
Motto "Your Life, Our Mission"
Type Private
Established 1930
Affiliation Assemblies of God
President Dr. Gordon Anderson
Academic staff
Students 1,191
Undergraduates 1,083
Postgraduates 108
Location Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
Campus Urban
Colors Navy Blue and Vegas Gold
Nickname Rams
Mascot Bama the Rama

North Central University is a coeducational, undergraduate, primarily residential college owned and operated by 11 Assemblies of God districts of the upper Midwest. It is located in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA. The school was founded in 1930 and is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.


Mission statement

The official mission statement is reproduced below.

North Central University is a Christ-centered, Bible based Pentecostal school with a commitment to academic excellence that prepares students to fulfill biblical models of leadership and ministry throughout the world. (Ephesians 4:11-12)[1]

Academic and spiritual requirements

All of North Central University's bachelor's programs contain a General Education Core, a Biblical Studies Core, and a Major Core, most of which can be earned by completing 124 credits.[2] The Biblical Studies Core is a required portion of all bachelor's degrees and earns the student a minor in Biblical Studies.[3] Students are also required to attend a daily chapel service and can voluntarily attend other methods of spiritual formation, which are both faculty- and student-led. As a part of all programs students must complete four semesters of volunteer work, two of which are required to be completed at a Church [4]

Student lifestyle

Students must agree to a code of conduct, according to North Central University's community-life standards, which disallow “certain practices that are forbidden in Scripture.”[5] North Central University has expelled students who have broken that code of conduct following a full disciplinary process.[6]

Ministry focus

Many majors are geared toward church-oriented vocations. All majors are designed to be ministry-focused, training students to serve God in a variety of ways according to their calling and gifts. Program focus at North Central is particularly centered upon urban and international settings.

Bible college heritage

Founded in 1930 as North Central Bible Institute, program offerings were expanded in 1955 to include a four-year degree. In 1957, the institution's name was changed to North Central Bible College and in 1964, North Central was accredited by the American Association of Bible Colleges. North Central continued expanding its offerings and was accredited in 1986 by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. In 1998, the college's name was changed to North Central University.

Governing structure

In a move to share ownership and management with neighboring districts, the Board of Directors authorized transfer of the title to a corporation with the membership drawn from the Wisconsin-Northern Michigan, Minnesota and South Dakota Districts in 1962 . The Iowa and Illinois Districts voted to join in the ownership and management of the college in May 1969 . During the 1970s, Michigan, Indiana and Nebraska also became regent districts. In 1981, Northern Missouri joined, and in 1985 North Dakota joined. In 1993, the Midwest Latin American District joined to become the 11th district. Thus, the University today is operated and supported by 11 Assemblies of God districts of the upper Midwest.


The Rams are members of the NCAA Division III and NCCAA Division II intercollegiate teams for men—baseball, basketball, cross country, golf, soccer, tennis, and track and field; for women— basketball, volleyball, soccer, cross country, track and field, tennis, and softball. A variety of club and intramural sports are available. The Clark-Danielson College Life Center Gymnasium is the home court for the basketball and volleyball teams. Prior to 1998, the school's nickname had been the "Flames" with black and red the school colors.

During 2012, North Central became an associate member of the Upper Midwest Athletic Conference in all varsity sports. NCU became a full member of the UMAC in 2013.




North Central University enrolled its first classes beginning October 1, 1930, under the name of North Central Bible Institute. The Institute's original home was in a newly erected Assemblies of God church, the Minneapolis Gospel Tabernacle (now Christ Church International), in downtown Minneapolis. Female students were placed in homes where they could work for their board and room, and male students were housed in rooms or apartments near the Institute. Ownership of the Institute was in the hands of the North Central District Council of the Assemblies of God which at that time included territory extending from the Great Lakes west to the Continental Divide in the northern tier of US states.


The Institute's graduating classes from 1933 to 1936 increased steadily. In 1936, when over 200 students registered, it was evident that new quarters were needed. The following September, students and faculty relocated to NCU's new home, the former Asbury Hospital at 910 Elliot Avenue Minneapolis. This five-story building, a city block in length, included adequate dormitory, office and classroom space to accommodate 500 students.

In February 1955, the Minnesota District of the Assemblies of God authorized the change to a four-year program, and the Institute graduated its first bachelor's degree class of eight students in 1956 . In April 1957, the parent district requested that the school name be changed to North Central Bible College.


A five-story building providing housing for male students and the cafeteria was added to the campus, along with a library building. In 1973, the new F.J. Lindquist Chapel was dedicated, and in the spring of 1981, the Clark/Danielson College Life Center was constructed to the south of the chapel. This CLC building contains classrooms, administrative offices and a gymnasium. Also completed at this time were the skyways connecting the College Life Center to Carlson Hall and the chapel to Miller Hall (the original building at 910 Elliot Avenue).

In December 1981, five apartment buildings located directly behind Miller Hall became part of the campus. In March 1988, the University purchased a building located behind the chapel. In 1989, NCU acquired a renovated storefront called the Del Kingsriter Center for Intercultural Relations. This building houses the Carlstrom Deaf Studies, Intercultural Studies and Languages, English, and Psychology departments, and classrooms.

The college began purchasing the Elliot East Condominiums in 1993 . Today it owns the majority of the 32 units, which are available for rent by students. In 1994, the college also purchased the American Legion on South Tenth Street which is now used as classrooms, and the Trestman property on the southwest quadrant of Chicago Avenue and Fourteenth Street which is home to the University Bookstore and the Center for Youth and Leadership. At the spring 1998 meeting of the Board of Regents, the college's name was changed to North Central University.


In 2001, the new Phillipps Hall dormitories were completed, as was the remodeling and refurbishing of the Carlson Hall Cafeteria. During that same period, significant remodeling efforts were made in a variety of campus buildings.

In 2005, the University broke ground for the Thomas E. Trask Word and Worship Center, a project that includes the additions of a 200-seat auditorium and two-story atrium and the remodeling of the Lindquist Chapel. In the same year, North Central acquired the Mensing Fine Arts Building, a 35,000-square-foot (3,300 m2) building located two blocks from campus. In 2006, the University held its 75th anniversary celebration.

In 2007, North Central University acquired two buildings, affectionately called "The Fortress" or "The Yellow Building" and "The Mansion". The Mansion was renovated to become the new home of the Intercultural Studies department and the Business department.

In 2011, the decision was made by the University to phase out the Deaf Studies Program. Though the administration recognized that the program greatly benefited the ASL students, giving them great advantage in their field, and that the program helped train ministers and missionaries to an unreached group that needed the Gospel as much as any other person, the University could no longer financially support the program. Just days before the 2010-2011 school year ended, however, it was announced that the University had received a donation that would keep the program open for many years to come and the University reversed the decision to phase out the program. The ASL program at NCU is now one of the strongest in the country.

Residence hall changes

In 2009, it was decided to close the Residence Areas of Zimmerman House, the men's honor community, and the floors on the third floor of TJ Jones Memorial Library, the women's honor floor, due to decreased enrollment. The third floor of TJ Jones Memorial Library currently houses the university's Communications Department.[7]

In the 2009-2010 school year, the east side of 3 Carlson became a men's floor. As a result of these closures, Carlson Hall turned into an all-male living area. The first two floors of Phillips also holds men.

Due to the influx in the number of students for the 2010-2011 school year, Zimmerman House was reopened as a women's dormitory. It was later closed during the 2013-2014 school year. Mensing Hall, home to mostly music majors, closed the 2014-2015 school year.

During the summer of 2011 & 2012, the university began and finished a bathroom remodel in both Miller and Carlson hall. Each bathroom was gutted and expanded with additional sinks and toilets. Several old dorm rooms were removed to make room for the expansion and additional bed space was created elsewhere. The school began bedroom renovations on both dormitories during the summer of 2013, finishing in the summer of 2014.

Major Changes: 2011

Program Changes

In 2011, North Central announced permanent changes in all of its B.A. and B.S. programs that would reduce the number of credits in every program. Most of the programs were reduced to 124 credits, having over 130 credits to them previously. This was done in an effort to assist students in completing their programs and graduating in 4 years.

Introduction of Colleges, Schools, and Institute

On March 22, 2011, at the start of the daily Chapel service, the President of North Central University, Dr. Gordon Anderson, announced the formation of four new Colleges within the University. This was a move to change the nomenclature of certain campus entities in order to better support the current program offerings, as well as continued program growth. It was cited as part of the change that the standard University has under it Colleges, then Schools under those, and Departments under the schools. North Central University had been operating solely as Departments under the University banner. In accordance with the new nomenclature structure of the University, several Schools were also named. The Institute for Biblical and Theological Studies was later introduced to focus on preparing students wishing to enter into seminary after graduating. The current structure of the University is as follows:

Notable alumni

Reggie Dabbs-youth evangelist

Radio station

Since 2007, the University has owned and operated FM radio station KNOF, which broadcast a Full Gospel schedule of programs and southern gospel music. Recently, a partnership was formed between Praise FM and the University to offer a variety of worship music throughout the day. At the start of the Fall 2008 semester, it was announced that the radio station would be moved to the former Comm Arts building right behind the Trask Worship Center.

See also


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