In 2005, High Point University President Nido Qubein announced a plan to transform HPU. More than a decade later, this transformational institution has expanded academic programs, improved academic facilities, technology, student housing, student life, athletics and more.
The transformation was strategically designed to provide students with an extraordinary learning environment. HPU is first and foremost an institution of higher education, but there is more. The HPU “experience” creates an inspiring environment that compels students to learn, grow and create value. It’s about creating an atmosphere that educates students from within.
An inspiring environment creates value that complements the classroom. Here are five examples:
World-class facilities simulate real-world environments
People rise to the level of environment in which they live. Whether students are in class, a residence hall or one of the library learning common spaces throughout campus, students are consistently surrounded by excellence.
The facilities at HPU, including the 43,000-square-foot Cottrell Hall or the LEED Certified School of Education, foster academic success. The trading room features a live stock ticker and trading software; executive boardrooms allow students to present themselves in a corporate setting; two TV studios equipped with state-of-the-art technology ensure students will be comfortable in a real-world newsroom. Another new facility on campus is Congdon Hall, home to the Congdon School of Health Sciences and Fred Wilson School of Pharmacy. At $120 million total, these programs and this facility reflect the single largest investment in HPU’s history. Students have already begun to study in the state of the art laboratories such as the Human Biomechanics and Physiology Lab, the Virtual Reality and Clinical Gait Analysis Laboratory and much more.
These facilities are one of the many reasons why U.S. News and World Report ranks HPU the Most Innovative College in the South.
“High Point gave all the business majors not only an amazing program, but also the perfect environment. Being surrounded with such sophisticated technology at our grasp gave me a competitive edge when competing with other candidates for internships and work experience opportunities.”
Meka Timlic, 2015 graduate
Associate service manager at AT&T’s headquarters in Atlanta
Lessons in leadership
HPU students learn from the world’s top executives and thought leaders. These include commencement speakers such as Josh Groban and Condoleezza Rice, as well as National Board of Advisors members including General Colin Powell, Apple co-founder and HPU’s Innovator in Residence Steve Wozniak and other distinguished visionaries.
When students meet with these accomplished leaders, something beautiful happens: they discover the art of the possible. These innovators become advocates for the success of our students — real people with real words of advice, stories of failures and success, and encouragement.
The impact on the students is profound. The simple lesson learned — I can do it.
“Dr. Qubein hosted an entrepreneur round table event. This event was a once in a lifetime opportunity to listen and learn from five very successful entrepreneurs telling their story and giving advice to the future business men and women of the world. I took what I learned from this event and applied the knowledge to my company CollegeMeans. Through this event I was able to get in contact with Bryan Young, CEO of BEC, who has created and designed my website.”
Andrew Brooks, 2014 graduate
Co-founder of CollegeMeans
Positive culture promotes personal initiative
Dr. Qubein frequently tells audiences, “To be a great person, walk hand-in-hand and side-by-side with great people.”
He goes on to tell faculty and staff on campus, “We live, they watch, they learn.” It means that students are paying attention to their actions, and they need heroes, models and mentors to positively influence their lives and actions.
That’s why HPU creates an atmosphere of excellence. When faculty and staff choose to be extraordinary, they model values of service, joy, generosity, gratitude and respect. When students are surrounded by peers who have a positive attitude, they begin to understand that nothing is impossible for the individual who is willing to work hard enough and smart enough.
And when students graduate and pursue professional careers, employers see the distinct differentiation in candidates who embrace excellence.
“To me ‘Choose to be Extraordinary’ is a way of life,” says senior Ali Kudlick. “I have so many opportunities presented to me every day, but when you wake up you have to choose to take those opportunities, be the best person you can be, and work every single day to make those things happen.”
“On one interview I remember being asked by a managing partner of a firm, ‘What is it with you High Point students? You are different.’ A number of my peers had also interviewed with the same firm and the managing partner complimented us on our ‘soft skills’ saying that we stood out against the other schools in the area – both big and small.”
Casey Hiers, 2014 graduate
Tax accountant at DDS Financial in Atlanta
A 460-acre “classroom”
Flags from more than 52 nations fly along the Gene and Jane Kester International Promenade to honor each international student’s home country. Quotations, selected by faculty, provide ideas for reflection. Sculptures of significant historical figures inspire students to pursue their goals.
The Mariana H. Qubein Arboretum and Botanical Gardens bring holistic learning to life throughout HPU’s 460-acre classroom. For example, assistant professor of political science Dr. Martin Kifer takes students on a guided walk around the Promenade, stopping at the sculptures of civil rights leaders. It prompts students to an intellectual, out-of-classroom discussion about how these leaders changed the course of history.
It’s just one of many ways HPU provides students with unique educational opportunities.
“Every day, I had the opportunity to walk across a beautiful campus; go in and out of buildings that looked like they belonged in magazines; interact with professors that prepared me for a professional career; and learn from HPU President Dr. Nido Qubein that anything worth doing is worth doing with excellence.”
Seth Spencer, 2015 graduate
Pursuing Masters of Accountancy at North Carolina State University
Engaging events foster connection
The HPU campus thrives on connection.
There’s the Activities Fair, during which students get plugged in with clubs and causes that interest them. There are Greek organizations, which present leadership and service opportunities.
There are guest lectures, concerts, theatre performances, art festivals and more to expose the HPU family and the community to the arts. There are 16 Division 1 athletic events to attend, dozens of intramural teams and 34 club sports teams on which to participate.
All these events exist to teach students to thrive in collaborative environments, to build relationships and connect the dots wherever they go.
“You only get four years, so make the best of every opportunity that is thrown your way. Whether your involvement is through extracurricular activities, Intramurals, Greek Life or any of the organizations at HPU, get involved and be active in that group. You will build relationships, make connections and be exposed to countless experiences that will help you enormously as you enter the real world.”
Kyle Prates, 2015 graduate
Account development manager at Creative Office Pavilion in Boston