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Berea's Appalachian Commitment Timeline

Larry D. Shinn: President 1994 - 2012


- Roughly 70% of students from the Appalachian Region.
- Larry B. Shinn becomes President.

1995 - Brushy Fork Institute receives $40,000 grant from Berea Citizen Foundation.

1996 - The campus and trustees reaffirm Berea’s commitment to the Appalachian region and approve reorganization and expansion of the Appalachian Center.

1997 - Berea is awarded a challenge grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to support the establishment of a chair in Appalachian Studies and an endowed archivist position.


- Berea College is awarded its first GEAR UP (Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs) grant in partnership with Rockcastle County Schools. GEAR UP is designed to increase the number of low-income students who are prepared to enter and succeed in postsecondary education.

- Berea becomes home to a federal TRIO Upward Bound Math and Science program which provides high quality college preparatory experiences for students from 9th-12th grades with an aptitude for math and science.

- Enlarged Appalachian Center moves into its current location; the new Appalachian Center forms an umbrella for many of Berea’s Appalachian Programs.

2000 - CELTS (Center for Excellence in Learning Through Service) is established to coordinate service learning and the student-led community service programs in order to educate students for leadership in service and social justice. Students for Appalachia, the name under which student service organizations had been gathered, merges into CELTS. 

2002 - The Entrepreneurship for the Public Good (EPG) Program is started. The program provides a multi-year learning experience for undergraduate students to practice and implement Entrepreneurial Leadership in rural communities of Central Appalachia.

2005 - Berea is awarded another GEAR UP grant, this time expanding its work to include students from Berea Community, Estill, Jackson, Lee, Madison and Rockcastle counties.

2006 - The mission of the Loyal Jones Appalachian Center is established.

2008 - Berea College achieves the elective Carnegie Classification for Community Engagement in the areas ofCurricular Engagement and Outreach and Partnerships, awarded by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. This classification recognizes the depth and breadth of Berea Colleges community-engaged work in Appalachia and beyond.

2009 - Grow Appalachia is founded in order to promote better food security and education throughout the Appalachian region.

2011 - Berea is awarded one of five Promise Neighborhood grants. Our Promise Neighborhood includes Clay, Jackson, and Owsley Counties and provides deep community supports for rural youth in these counties.