Mission Statement

Bethel University, affiliated with the Missionary Church, is a Christian community of learners dedicated to building lives of commitment for leadership in the church and the world. Bethel provides liberating academic and co-curricular programs to challenge the mind, enlarge the vision and equip the whole person for lifelong service.

Campus waterfall in the fall


Bethel University is affiliated with the Missionary Church.

Bethel University is a special place. . .

Founded in 1947 by a group of Missionary Church visionaries, the goal was to create leaders for the world. In the seven decades that have passed since then, we have succeeded in that mission! While some things have changed on campus, we've continued to be intentional as we guide students along in their spiritual journey and path to academic success in some key ways:

  • Spiritual formation of our students is about creating a holistic approach for each student’s spiritual journey and personal discovery. That begins with being true to God and his word.
  • Mentoring is a part of the Bethel community where students have opportunities to connect with their peers, faculty, staff and even alumni. At Bethel, students build lifelong relationships that will continue well past graduation.  
  • Academics in over 50 areas of study provide students opportunities to explore, grow and prepare for their future careers.  Each field of study is rich with knowledgeable professors seeking the success of our students

Every fall, students return to campus ready to grow and ready to engage in experiences that will shape them for their future roles in the world. From undergraduate programs that train nurses to sign language interpreters to musicians to athletes, our students impact the world. Our students are offered many opportunities through task force trips, internships and, finally, in their careers.

We are able to offer more grad courses now than in the past through an expanded online program. Bethel University offers graduate programs online, on campus and some as hybrids. We offer master’s degrees in business administration (Online MBA), education (including Master's in Education Online, a school administrator license, Special Education Licensure Online, Transition to Teaching Licensure Program – On campus (evening courses), Master of Reading and Literacy Online, Online Masters Degree in Educational Leadership), ministry (Master of Ministry Degree Online), Nursing (,Educator's track and Administrator track), Teaching, Theological Studies (Master of Ministry and Master of Arts in Theology).

The experiences don’t end when students leave campus. In our Bethel Community Stories section, we share stories about our alumni, as well as reports on current students, donors, faculty, staff and friends who we hope provide inspiration and seeds of wisdom.

Bethel Community Stories


Our History

The roots of Bethel University run deep.  Mennonite Brethren in Christ (MBC) founder Daniel Brenneman first called for a training institute in 1893. Then, for many years, J. A. Huffman pressed the case for a Christian liberal arts college, even suggesting the name Bethel, meaning “house of God.” Formal church approval finally came in 1944, and land was purchased in Mishawaka, Indiana, during 1946 under the leadership of Q. J. Everest, Seth Rohrer, and Warren Manges. Twenty-seven-year-old Woodrow I. Goodman (1947-1959) was appointed the first president, at that time the youngest in the United States.

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