University of Mount Olive to Celebrate Founding

MOUNT OLIVE- University of Mount Olive will celebrate 59 years of Christian higher education at its annual Founders Day event on Tuesday, November 23, at 11:00 a.m. in Southern Bank Auditorium. The Founders Leadership Award, sponsored by Dr. and Mrs. W. Burkette Raper, will be presented during the Founders Day service. Employees celebrating continued years of service to the College will also be recognized during the celebration. The Reverend John Robert Williams, Jr. will deliver the keynote address.

Williams attended University of Mount Olive in 1971 in preparation for ministry. On January 1, 1973 he was ordained by the Eastern Conference. Williams graduated from Atlantic Christian College in 1976 with a bachelor of arts degree.  He then went on to attend Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, Wake Forest, NC. In January of 1980 Williams moved his family to Black Mountain to the campus of Cragmont where he and his wife, Arlinda, also a MOC alumnus, have served as resident managers for 30 years. The Williams’ daughter, Alison, and son-in-law, Stan Johnson, are both MOC alumni. The Williams have one grandson, Ryan.

In his presentation Williams will speak about the rich history of University of Mount Olive as it was chartered in 1951 and opened the following year with six students at Cragmont Assembly. The institution was originally named Mount Allen Junior College.  In 1953, the College moved to Mount Olive and the name was changed to University of Mount Olive. Twenty-two students enrolled during the first collegiate year after the relocation.

The public is invited to attend this historic event in the life of the College.

University of Mount Olive is a private institution rooted in the liberal arts tradition with defining Christian values. The College, sponsored by the Convention of Original Free Will Baptists, has locations in Mount Olive, New Bern, Wilmington, Goldsboro, Research Triangle Park, Washington and Jacksonville. For more information, visit