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The Reverend Dr. Lillie A. Burgess Makes History as Benedict College’s First Female Campus Minister

 The first virtual campus worship service will be held on Sunday, August 16, 2020 at 1 p.m.

COLUMBIA, SC– (August 12, 2020) – Benedict  College announced today that the Reverend Dr. Lillie A. Burgess was appointed the campus minister for Benedict College. Dr. Burgess will be the first female to lead the campus ministry in the 150-year history of  College. The Benedict College family and friends are encouraged to join Dr. Burgess for the first virtual campus worship service on Sunday, August 16, 2020, at 1 p.m.   Register in advance at: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_FmMLQ5oGTXKEZUlLW8i0-Q

“Dr. Burgess is no stranger to Benedict College or the South Carolina faith community,” said Dr. Roslyn Clark Artis, President and CEO of Benedict College. “She is a dedicated spiritual leader who has a heart for teaching from educating scholars at Benedict Tigers to impacting lives in Tanzania; she represents the BEST of BC!”

Dr. Burgess has taught Religion and Philosophy at Benedict College for several years. Through her academic achievements, religious studies experiences, and fact-finding cross-cultural experiences in Kenya, Tanzania,  Uganda, East Africa, Santo Domingo, and Haiti, she has become one of the most sought-after speakers on enhancing spiritual growth. Dr. Burgess has led 33 volunteer missions to East Africa.  She has developed two new curriculums entitled Foundations of Christian Education and Synoptic Gospels  that are presently being taught at Benedict College, churches and conventions.

She is the recipient of numerous awards to include the  South Carolina Order of the Palmetto Award, AT& T Teachers of Excellence Award, and named a ‘Hero’ by the Red Cross campaign for Haiti Earthquake Disaster Relief Efforts. Dr. Burgess has been honored by Benedict College for leading the Campaign of Women’s Association who contributed the largest amount for the 2015 Founder’s Day and the Midlands Baptist Church Community Foreign Missions Award. Dr. Burgess received an undergraduate degree in Bible and Church Ministries and a Master of Christian Education and Biblical Studies from Columbia International University, Columbia, SC. She earned a doctoral degree in Comparative Religion with Concentration in Islam Religion at Union Institute and University, Cincinnati, OH.

About Benedict College

Founded in 1870 by a woman, Bathsheba A. Benedict, Benedict College is a private co-educational liberal arts institution with over 2,100 students enrolled in its 25 baccalaureate degree programs. Defying trends, Benedict College maintains an equal male and female student population. This Midlands HBCU welcomes students from all 46 counties in South Carolina, 30 states across America, and 26 countries around the world. 

Benedict offers several high-demand fields of study in STEM, Cyber Security, Mass Communication, Sport Management, Business Administration, Engineering, Computer Science, Biology, and Education. The College also has a diverse faculty of which 80 percent are full-time, and 60 percent hold doctorates or the equivalent. 

Over the past ten years, three out of five Benedict College graduates have attended professional or graduate schools. There are over 17,000 proud Benedict Tigers throughout the nation. Benedict College has been a community leader for over 150 years and is a significant contributor to South Carolina and the region. Contributing $130 million and 1,218 jobs in total local and annual economic impact, a Benedict graduate working full-time throughout his or her working life can expect to earn $1.1 million in additional income because of their Benedict College degree. 

The College made front-page news in the spring of 2018 when it became the first South Carolina college to lower its tuition by 26 percent. Cutting tuition drew praise from the Commission on Higher Education, South Carolina’s education oversight body. The commissioner noted that the move Benedict College made should be applauded because it offers families affordability and students greater access to higher education. 

Benedict College has been highly regarded and exceptionally ranked for its programs by several academic and traditional publications.  For example, Benedict College was ranked as one of the top baccalaureate colleges in the nation by Washington Monthly magazine for creating social mobility and producing cutting-edge scholarship and research.  In 2019, Benedict College received the 2019 ACE/ Fidelity Investments Awards for Institutional Transformation and was named the HBCU of the Year by HBCU Digest

Benedict College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award baccalaureate and masters degrees. Five of the College’s degree programs hold national accreditation: The School of Education, Social Work, Environmental Health Science, Arts and Sciences and the Tyrone Adam Burroughs School of Business and Entrepreneurship. 

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