Founded in 1902, Barton College is a four-year, private, liberal arts college located in Wilson, N.C. The Barton Experience focuses on academic excellence within a wide range of professional and liberal arts programs leading to baccalaureate and graduate degrees, including master’s degrees in Nursing, Kinesiology, Criminology and Criminal Justice Sciences, School Administration, and an MBA in Strategic Leadership. Barton celebrates innovation and bold thinking among faculty and staff as the College nurtures bold leadership development among students. Barton offers purposeful internships, practicums, and research/presentation in academic disciplines; engaging co-curricular cohorts; meaningful international travel and study; opportunities to give back through community service; an impressive array of cultural events; and diverse athletic competition among 24 collegiate teams.
Our 86-acre campus is home to Barton Bulldogs varsity athletics and boasts five residence halls, the W. N. Hackney Library, the Kennedy Recreation & Intramural Center, and other state-of-the-art facilities. Find out more in Quick Facts.
In 1923 the College adopted the words Habebunt Lumen Vitae — “They shall have the light of life” — as its official college motto. In 1955, the College was accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
History and Vision
Established in 1902 as Atlantic Christian College, Barton is committed to providing programs and opportunities to encourage the intellectual, spiritual, social, and cultural development of its students. Explore our history.
Wilson, North Carolina (population 50,000), is located 45 miles east of North Carolina’s capital city of Raleigh and seven miles east of Interstate 95 (the main route between New York and Florida). The city is served by Amtrak and by one bus company. Commercial air service is available at Raleigh-Durham International Airport.
Approximately 1,000. The College has students from 33 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and 17 foreign countries.
Seven schools offering over 40 academic majors. Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Fine Arts, Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Bachelor of Social Work, Bachelor of Liberal Studies, Master of Business Administration, Master of Education, Master of Science in Criminal Justice, Master of Science in Criminology and Criminal Justice Sciences, Master of Science in Kinesiology, and Master of Science in Nursing degrees are awarded through the schools of Allied Health and Sport Studies; Business; Education; Humanities; Nursing; Sciences; and Visual, Performing, and Communication Arts.
The College is affiliated with the Division of Higher Education of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). It is also a member of the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education, the American Council on Education, the North Carolina Association for Colleges of Teachers, North Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities, the American Association of the Colleges of Nursing, the National League of Nursing, and the North Carolina Council for Higher Education in Nursing.
The namesake of the College is Barton Warren Stone, who was a major figure in the founding of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). In addition to Stone’s early ministry in eastern North Carolina, he also has roots in private higher education in this state. Born in Maryland and reared in Virginia, Stone used his modest inheritance to attend Caldwell Academy in Greensboro in the late 1700s. Stone’s academic career had its beginnings in law and later in teaching, but it eventually gave way to a lifelong religious evolution that carried him to the frontiers of Kentucky. In that state, a religious movement led by Stone and another led by Thomas Campbell merged in 1832 to form the denomination which, 70 years later, established the College.
The Barton College Alumni Association includes more than 26,000 graduates and former students. Members of the Association are encouraged to take part in the organization’s many activities, from fund-raising to encouraging prospective students to consider the College.