On October 12, 1896, the Alabama Girls’ Industrial School opened for its first session. After years of legislation and planning, the town of Montevallo was chosen as home for 10 faculty members and 145 students. Young women, from ages 14 to 22, now had an institution where they could seek a college degree, teacher training or an education in domestic science, business or industrial arts. These practical fields of study were designed to help women enter the expanding workforce of the Second Industrial Revolution.
To better reflect a changing curriculum, the Alabama Girls’ Industrial School updated its name to the Alabama Girls’ Technical Institute in 1911. The school still offered its industrial education courses, but enhanced and focused on its technical training in order to keep up with rapidly developing innovations and to grow enrollment to over 500 students.
As the United States transitioned to peacetime after World War I, the school recognized a need for a four-year educational experience for women. On September 9, 1923, Alabama College was “…established for the purpose of giving therein instruction in the liberal arts and sciences and in technical subjects suitable for women…” This transition also included accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) in 1925, a designation that the school still holds today. Enrollment continued to increase over the following years. In 1956, men were officially welcomed and within a decade the campus boasted over 1,700 students.
The late 1960s brought significant changes to the school. In 1968, Alabama College welcomed African-American students for the first time. In 1969, Alabama College became the University of Montevallo. Departments were organized into colleges under the leadership of deans to better reflect existing graduate programs and the addition of new ones. The University operates under this model today, boasting the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Education and Human Development, the College of Fine Arts and the Michael E. Stephens College of Business. The University of Montevallo is governed by a 14-person Board of Trustees led by the Governor of Alabama, and boasts an enrollment of over 2,600 students.
List of Presidents
Henry Clay Reynolds, 1896-1899
Francis Marion Peterson, 1899-1907
Thomas Waverly Palmer, 1907-1926
Oliver Cromwell Carmichael, 1926-1935
Arthur Fort Harman, 1935-1947
Dr. John Tyler Caldwell, 1947-1952
Dr. Franze Edward Lund, 1952-1957
Dr. Howard Mitchell Phillips, 1957-1963
Dr. Delos Poe Culp, 1963-1968
Dr. Kermit Alonzo Johnson, 1968-1977
Dr. James F. Vickery, Jr., 1977-1988
Dr. John Walter Stewart, Sr.,1988-1992
Dr. Robert M. McChesney, 1992-2006
Dr. Philip Carlton Williams, 2006-2010
Dr. John Wesley Stewart, III, 2010-present
The overriding mission of the University of Montevallo, unique in higher education in Alabama, is to provide to students from throughout the state an affordable, geographically accessible, ‘small college’ public higher educational experience of high quality, with a strong emphasis on undergraduate liberal studies and with professional programs supported by a broad base of arts and sciences, designed for their intellectual and personal growth in the pursuit of meaningful employment and responsible, informed citizenship.
The mission is periodically reviewed and reaffirmed by the Board of Trustees as part of the University’s five-year strategic planning cycle. The mission was first affirmed by the University’s Board of Trustees in 1978 and most recently in 2015 at the time of the approval of the current strategic plan. The University also regularly adopts and publishes a strategic plan, which becomes the basis for developing and evaluating all of the institution’s activities. The current strategic plan focuses on promoting academic excellence, enhancing student engagement and success, and engaging our community through mutually beneficial relationships that support academic, economic and sociocultural well-being.
For undergraduates, our vision is to offer academically capable students from all sociodemographic backgrounds an affordable, life-enriching, “honors college” experience stressing community service and global awareness, all within an atmosphere of national historic beauty and a tradition of innovative cultural expression. Our vision for graduate students builds on this undergraduate foundation, using traditional and innovative instructional methods to foster growth in specialized skills and knowledge required by practicing educators, counselors, speech-language clinicians, scholars in the humanities and other professional leaders, within a nurturing environment steeped in the unique “Montevallo experience.”
The University-wide assessment program measures progress toward established goals and student learning outcomes, promotes improvements in teaching and learning, evaluates the accomplishment of educational and administrative goals and facilitates continuing review of institutional effectiveness. Students participate in a variety of evaluative activities, beginning during the freshman year and continuing beyond graduation. Students may be required to take nationally and locally developed tests and surveys, contribute to portfolios, share ideas in focus groups, respond to interviews or participate in other ways to improve the education and services provided by the University. Assessments of aspects of institutional effectiveness are regularly conducted by and through academic and administrative departments.
The University of Montevallo is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) to award Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Educational Specialist degrees. Questions about the accreditation of the University of Montevallo may be directed in writing to Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097, by calling (404) 679-4500, or by using information available on SACSCOC’s website (www.sacscoc.org).
Additionally, the University is committed to attaining national accreditation in its programs where such recognition is available and appropriate. The University of Montevallo and its programs have been accredited or approved by the following organizations:
- Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) for American Dietetic Association (ADA)
- American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences (AAFCS)
- American Chemical Society (ACS)
- The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International)
- Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology (CAA) of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA)
- Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP)
- Council on Social Work Education (CSWE)
- National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)
- National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD)
- National Association of Schools of Music (NASM)
- National Association of Schools of Theatre (NASM), Associate Member
- National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE)/Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP)
All education programs that result in state licensure are also approved by the Alabama State Department of Education.
The University is also a member of the prestigious Council of Public Liberal Arts Colleges (COPLAC) and the Birmingham Area Consortium for Higher Education (BACHE).
Famous for its red brick streets and paths, the 160-acre main campus has more than 60 buildings surrounded by lawns, groves and flowerbeds. The central portion of the campus is a National Historic District with two antebellum structures, including the 1823 Edmund King House. The Olmsted Brothers - of the landscape architecture firm famous for designing New York’s Central Park, Atlanta’s Ponce de Leon Avenue parks and the grounds of Biltmore Estate near Asheville, North Carolina - also developed the first plan for the Montevallo campus. Their basic design ideas are still followed.
UM’s campus offers a number of well-equipped facilities available to students.
Farmer Hall, the Student Union Building, is home to the James R. Wilkinson Student Life Center. The Center includes dining options, a game room and an indoor lounge area, which is the location of many student events. Farmer Hall also houses a student post office and the Student Life and SGA offices.
The 97,000 square-foot Robert M McChesney Student Activity Center, opened in 2004, features an indoor walking track, indoor swimming pool, weight room, cardio room and racquetball courts for use by all students, faculty and staff. It is also the home of the Athletic Department offices, home swim meets, volleyball games and basketball games. Outside are a disc golf course, tennis courts, sand volleyball court and basketball courts set up for student use. Additionally, the Old Gym houses a gymnasium and dance studio and Myrick Hall includes a gymnasium. University athletic facilities include the Kermit A. Johnson Baseball Field at the Bob Reiner Stadium, tennis courts, the Georgine Lemak Soccer Field, a softball field, a track and field complex, a golf course and a cross-country course.
Palmer Hall, which opened in 1930, is the home of the Student Financial Aid and Registrar’s Offices. It also holds the 1,200-seat Palmer Auditorium: this space is used for assemblies, shows and - most famously - UM’s College Night performances. The ornate auditorium includes a large stage, orchestra pit and a Holtkamp organ. The acoustically advanced, 250-seat LeBaron Recital Hall was completed in 1972. The Merchants and Planters Bank Auditorium at Humanities Hall contains technologically advanced multimedia equipment and is used extensively for lectures and films. Reynolds Studio Theatre, housed in the historic Reynolds Hall, is a flexible performance space of approximately 160 seats. The theatre contains state-of-the-art lighting and sound equipment and serves as the venue for most UM Theatre Department productions.
The University’s Barnes and Noble Bookstore is a few blocks from campus, on Main Street. It is the go-to place for not only textbooks and supplies, but also a variety of University gear.
Flowerhill is the University’s presidential residence since 1926. The beautiful home sits atop an expansive and picturesque lawn, which is the site of spring graduation.
Carmichael Library is a 3-story, 52,000-square-foot facility offering a variety of labs, study rooms, resources, common space and food service.
Anna Irvin Dining Hall was built in 1928 and serves as the University’s primary dining facility. Falcon Foods serves made-to-order entrees of regional and traditional cuisines as well as salads, sandwiches and wraps, bakery items, baked entrees and pastries, all focusing on fresh ingredients and healthy offerings. Anna Irvin Dining Hall was renovated in 2013.
The nine student residence halls provide in-room wireless internet access and cable television access in each room. A network of television and fiber-optic cable also connects all classroom buildings. Many of the residence halls are also the home of resource offices for students, such as Housing and Residence Life, the Dean of Students and Health Services offices. Throughout campus, there are several computer labs, supported by Information Services & Technology, available for student use. The campus has access to the Internet through the Alabama Supercomputer Authority. The University is recognized by the National Weather Service as “StormReady,” as campus is equipped with two severe weather shelters.
All areas of study have campus facilities with various features to accommodate their respective coursework.
The biology, chemistry and mathematics building, Harman Hall, contains 16 classrooms, 13 laboratory-lecture rooms and a computer room. Harman Hall also includes an atrium/courtyard within the center of the building containing one of the world’s largest geodes, weighing over 8 tons.
The modern, 10,000 square-foot Michael E. Stephens College of Business facility, Allison and Mike Stephens Hall, opened in 2020, features technology-enhanced classrooms, team study rooms, boardrooms, and event space. The adjoining Morgan Hall also houses several business-related classrooms as well as the Information Services and Technology offices.
Bloch Hall, built in 1915, was the first separate permanent classroom building on campus. It houses Family and Consumer Sciences, the Department of Art and the Coordinated Dietetics Program, as well as their classrooms, laboratories and studio spaces. Art students display their work in The Gallery at Bloch Hall, which is located on the lower level of the building.
The 3D Art Complex was constructed in 2015 and houses the Department of Art’s 3D program with modern amenities for sculpture, ceramics, woodworking and metal fabrication. The Art Department also has workspace in Sims House, Peterson Hall and the Anagama Kiln.
Wills Hall, the home of the College of Education and Human Development, houses classrooms, faculty offices, The Malone Center for Excellence in Teaching and an up-to-date microcomputer laboratory. Most Wills Hall classrooms provide cutting edge, multimedia-enhanced instruction.
Strong Hall, a state-of-the-art facility opened in Fall 2017, houses the Department of Communication. Majors in Communication Studies and Mass Communication learn their craft on industry-standard, digital equipment.
Humanities Hall houses the Department of English and World Languages. Humanities Hall contains three floors of classrooms, the Psychology Program lab, World Language lab the Harbert Writing Center and the newly renovated Merchants and Planters Auditorium.
University of Montevallo on Main (UMoM) is a striking building on Main Street. It opened as the home of the Department of Behavioral and Social Sciences in 2013 and features several modern classrooms.
Myrick Hall is the home of the Exercise and Nutrition Science program, part of the Department of Health and Human Sciences. Myrick Hall includes a technologically equipped classroom space, a gymnasium, performance laboratories and athletic locker rooms.
The Wallace Speech and Language Center houses the offices and classrooms of the Department of Communication Science and Disorders. Expanded in 1991, it includes a diagnostic center for the treatment of speech and hearing disorders.
The Department of Music is located in Davis Hall. It boasts soundproof practice rooms, a music technology laboratory, classrooms, and the LeBaron Recital Hall, featuring a Flentrop organ.
The 36,000-square-foot Center for the Arts, opened in 2020, is home to the Department of Theatre and features an art gallery, multipurpose classrooms and studios, a digital fabrication lab, a state-of-the-art performance venue and more. Known across campus as a “collaboratory,” the Center serves as UM’s hub for innovative, creative engagement in art and communication through academic, performance and production spaces, new equipment and the latest technology. The Center for the Arts is unique among collegiate facilities in the state of Alabama, because it brings together many academic disciplines previously spread out across multiple buildings on the UM campus.
Adjacent to campus, the Alabama Traffic Safety Center offers traffic safety teacher preparation coursework, as well as corporate-sector and public-sector driver training programs. The Center houses classrooms, a driving range and skid pad training facilities. Center personnel deliver motorcycle rider training at sites in Dothan, Huntsville and Montgomery, as well as on campus.
On campus, the last decade has seen 17 facility renovations and 13 new constructions. The University’s facilities are always changing and improving, making it a dynamic environment in which to learn and grow.
The Oliver Cromwell Carmichael Library includes a collection of approximately 185,000 print books, 200,000 e-books, 1,200 print and microfilm journal titles and numerous DVDs, CDs and music scores. More than 125 electronic databases provide access to thousands of online journals, streaming videos and digital reference materials. The library has over 50 computers (including 20 iMacs.), scanners and printers available for student use and lends Chromebooks and digital cameras.
The EBSCO electronic classroom provides space for students to receive hands-on instruction. Professional librarians teach research skills through information literacy programs customized for undergraduate, upper-level and graduate students. Librarians also offer research consultations and reference assistance in-person as well as via chat and email.
Milner Archives and Special Collections preserves the institutional memory of the University of Montevallo from its founding in 1896 to the present day. The archives include College Night scrapbooks, records of student organizations, material pertaining to alumni, University publications, photographs, scrapbooks and artifacts. Digitized collections include UM yearbooks, newspapers and bulletins, as well as the W.M. “Mac” Wyatt collection of digitized newspapers from the early 20th century Montevallo and Calera area.
The Pat Scales Special Collections Room houses a research collection of children’s and young adult literature. The collection includes signed, first edition Newbery and Caldecott award books, interactive (pop-up) books, children’s books of historical significance, intellectual freedom papers, correspondence and marginalia.
The Luis Benejam Music Library, part of the Carmichael Library collection, was named for Luis Benejam, violinist and composer- in-residence at the University for many years. The Benejam Music Library includes audio equipment, sound recordings and music scores, including manuscripts of Benejam’s works. Many of Benejam’s original manuscripts are housed in the University’s archives.
The Digital Media Lab and 3D Print Lab offers expertise to faculty and students who are doing transformative work in digital media and 3D printing. Students and faculty can find assistance with audio and video editing, audio recording, scanning and 3D modeling. The Digital Media Lab includes Macs, scanners and software to create multimedia projects for classes.
The Information Services and Technology Solution Center is located on the ground floor of the library. Faculty, staff and students can walk up to the Solution Center Help Desk and ask for assistance to solve technology or computer issues.
The Learning Enrichment Center (LEC) is located on the ground floor of the library. More information about the LEC can be found in the Student Services and Activities section of this Bulletin.
Materials not owned by Carmichael Library can be obtained through interlibrary loan at no cost to students, faculty and staff. Through the BACHE Consortium, students can also borrow library material from Birmingham-Southern College, Miles College, Samford University and UAB’s Sterne Library by presenting a valid UM ID card.
The Malone Center for Excellence in Teaching
The Malone Center for Excellence in Teaching models and promotes the use of innovative ideas and practices that will enhance teaching, learning and instructional technology use. It offers a wide range of resources and services that support and guide UM faculty and students in striving to continually improve teaching and learning experiences.
The Malone Center sponsors a number of professional development programs designed to support faculty in the use of evidence-based instructional approaches, to promote the integration of innovative instructional technologies, and to foster students’ academic success. Regular programs include faculty book clubs and monthly interactive workshops.
The Malone Center also provides instructional support services that include instructional technology support, instructional design and assistive technology assistance. An instructional technologist is available to support faculty integration of technology into traditional and online classrooms by working with faculty to connect their teaching to an available and appropriate technology. An instructional designer is available to work collaboratively with faculty to develop learning modules for hybrid and online course delivery. An assistive technology specialist is available to ensure all digital materials used for instruction are ADA compliant; services include closed captioning videos, tagging PDF documents and more.
The Malone Center is home to several innovative and technology-enhanced spaces. These spaces facilitate small group and class meetings that focus on collaboration. The Digital Café in Wills Hall 114 is designed as a technology-enhanced but casual meeting space. It is perfect for small group discussions and seamlessly supports break-out sessions within a single space. The Malone Center’s computer lab, the Fusion Lab, in Wills Hall 115 is where technology, ideas, and pedagogy fuse. It contains 14 student computer work stations and a teaching station with standard classroom technology. The Go2 Learning Studio in Wills Hall G2 is the Malone Center’s newest and most innovative space, designed for technology-enhanced, collaborative workshops. It is also equipped for HyFlex instruction via Zoom. The Lightboard Studio in Wills Hall 111 allows for recording innovative, high quality course videos.
Gentle ridges crisscross the heavily wooded countryside around Montevallo.
Orr Park, located within walking distance to the University, is home to the unique tree carvings of Tim Tingle and features walking trails, picnic facilities and benches bordering a preserve along Shoal Creek.
The town of approximately 4,200 residents is seven miles from Interstate 65 and U.S. 31. Near the geographic center of Alabama, Montevallo is about 35 miles south of Birmingham and 60 miles north of Montgomery. State highways 25, 119 and 155 intersect at Montevallo. Several major airlines serve the Birmingham airport, and there is a small municipal airport in Calera, within 10 miles of campus.
The American Village is located on Highway 119, just a few miles north of the city of Montevallo. Created by legislative act in 1995 and dedicated in November 1999, the American Village is the first civic education campus in the country built to provide experience-based learning for young people. In addition, the Alabama National Cemetery, a 479-acre facility owned and operated by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, is also located in Montevallo on Highway 119.
Nearby Oak Mountain State Park offers 10,000 acres of hiking, boating, swimming, golf, tennis and fishing, plus a 5,000-seat outdoor amphitheater. Historic Brierfield Ironworks Park features a pool and facilities for picnicking or camping.
Alabaster, the 16th largest city in Alabama, is located just 10 miles north of Montevallo and offers a variety of shopping and entertainment options. The Propst Promenade in Alabaster, a 685,000-square-foot shopping center, contains more than 40 stores and is the largest shopping center in Shelby County. Additionally, Alabaster has a multi-screen theater, mini golf, arcade and parks for visitors to enjoy.
An industrial center since the 19th century, the nearby “Magic City” is now a world leader in health-care technology. The city’s Kirklin Clinic is a masterpiece of renowned architect I. M. Pei, and the Birmingham Museum of Art is a cultural resource.
The Birmingham Civil Rights Institute commemorates the city’s recent history as a center of the struggle for racial justice. The Institute’s museum makes innovative use of video, artifacts and interactive displays, and its facilities regularly house programs and exhibits concerning human rights. Other Birmingham-area attractions include a zoo, botanical gardens, the Five Points South district and Sloss Furnaces, a historic landmark that also serves as a unique gathering place for concerts and festivals. The Parkside area of downtown Birmingham is home to Railroad Park and Regions Field, home of the Birmingham Barons. Birmingham is home to the Riverchase Galleria, one of the largest shopping malls in the nation, as well as The Summit and several factory outlets, specialty shops and boutiques. Birmingham is also home to the McWane Science Center, a hands-on science and technology center.
Montevallo is a public university and receives slightly less than 38 percent of its annual operating budget from state appropriations. Thirty-three percent of the budget is derived from tuition and fees. Other income and gifts provide the balance for annual operations. Private charitable gifts and bequests are an increasingly important source of funds. Through the Annual Fund, Comprehensive Campaign and other giving programs, alumni, parents, students and friends provide additional support for scholarships, academic and athletic programs, research, equipment and special recognitions. Tax-deductible gifts for University programs, scholarships, and other uses are received by the University of Montevallo Foundation. The Foundation is an autonomous, private, non-profit corporation governed by a Board of Directors.
Organized in 1902, the University of Montevallo National Alumni Association helps maintain ties between the University and its alumni. Everyone who has graduated from the University is eligible for active membership in the Association. Students can also participate through the Student Alumni Association of Montevallo. The Mary Lee Garrett Brown Alumni Center is located in Reynolds Hall. Alumni chapters meet in all parts of Alabama and in other states. An elected Board of Directors manages the affairs of the association. In addition to planning special events and educational opportunities for alumni, the association awards the prestigious Alumni Honors Scholarships.
Food service for students is provided in Anna Irvin Hall, a central dining facility. Faculty, staff and visitors may use the dining hall on a per-meal basis. A food-service firm operates the dining services under contract on a seven-day schedule when classes are in session. Students with special dietary needs may present a copy of the diet to the Food Services Manager; such diets are prepared in the cafeteria. Additional food options are located in the Wilkinson Student Life Center in Farmer Hall and Carmichael Library.
University holidays, which are listed in the University Calendar, are winter and spring vacations, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day and Thanksgiving. There are no classes during University holidays. The cafeteria and residence halls, except Brooke, Lund and Peck Halls, are closed during the Thanksgiving holiday and winter and spring vacations.
The University recognizes the value of technology, both as an instructional medium and in fostering essential skills that will benefit students after graduation. Students are encouraged to use computers whenever possible in their class preparation and study. Computers are available across campus for student use either in general-purpose or discipline-specific laboratories, or in multimedia classrooms. The general-purpose lab, located in Carmichael Library, has Apple® and PC formats for student use.
Students also have access through the Internet to a variety of information about the University and outside educational resources. From the Current Students link on the top of the University’s website, students may access Banner Self Services, Canvas, UM Email, other services and department-specific information. UM email is an official method of communication between the University and students. UM email accounts are provided free of charge. Students are responsible for regularly checking their UM email accounts in a timely fashion. For more information on UM email, refer to the “Communications with Students” section in this chapter. A local area network connects all academic buildings and each residence hall room.
Communications with Students
The University uses an email system and post office boxes, to officially communicate with students. Each undergraduate student is assigned a UM email address, and resident undergraduate students are assigned a mailbox in the campus post office, which is located in Farmer Hall. Both are provided at no charge to registered students. Students are responsible for checking their email accounts and post office boxes in a timely fashion and on a regular basis.
UM email is the official means of communication among students, faculty and administrators at the University of Montevallo - and may be the official means of communication between students and their instructors. Students may receive very important UM emails from various offices on campus for which some timely response will be required. The official email system for students is identified by userID@forum.montevallo.edu and can be accessed via the Current Students link at the top of the University’s website.
Students should remember that:
- They are responsible for monitoring and managing their account regularly, even during breaks.
- They are responsible for all announcements, requests and/or sensitive information delivered to their UM email account, including information provided by the instructors of courses in which they are enrolled.
- They may electronically forward their UM email to another email address (e.g., @hotmail.com, @gmail.com), but at their own risk. The University is not responsible for the handling of forwarded email. Having email forwarded does not absolve students from the responsibilities associated with communication sent to their official UM email address.
- Questions regarding UM email accounts should be directed to Information Services & Technology at (205) 665-6512 or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
UM Alert Emergency Contact System
The University of Montevallo utilizes a state-of-the-art, rapid-alert system called UM Alert. This system provides members of the UM community with the most-advanced rapid communication program currently available for schools.
UM Alert enhances the timeliness of UM’s emergency communications and provides the University with a convenient and effective tool for informing students, faculty and staff of human or natural threats. Through UM Alert, members of the University community, whether on campus or not, can be notified within moments of an urgent event. Emergency messages are sent via telephone (landline and mobile), voice mail, text messaging and email. Students can sign up for UM Alert via a link on the Police Services’ webpage on the University website.
The University telephone service is toll-free in the greater-Birmingham area. Students living on campus may arrange for telephone service through the local provider.
Students should retain this Bulletin throughout their enrollment at the University. It contains essential information for prospective and enrolled students and the general public regarding admission requirements, course listings, curricula, academic standards and general regulations.
The Fledgling, published on the University’s website by the Student Government Association, contains the traditions and regulations of the University.
Vallo Voice, the official weekly campus-wide communication news source for faculty and staff, is distributed through email by the Marketing and Communications Department.
The alumni magazine, Montevallo Today, is published three times per year and is mailed to alumni and friends of the University.