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BCF Press Release



February 3, 2016

Press Photo

BCF President Thomas A. Kinchen meets with The Baptist College of Florida Trustees in the private dining hall in the Deese Center which houses the Glory of God Fine Art Collection.

When the Board of Trustees met at The Baptist College of Florida (BCF) campus in Graceville in January 2016, they reflected on the school’s great history, celebrated its present opportunities and anticipated its even greater future. According to BCF President Thomas A. Kinchen, “This is a most significant time in the life of this unique school. At a time when Christianity and higher education are both under close scrutiny and increasing outside pressures in our culture, BCF has the opportunity to make fantastic contributions to changing our world. This is the perfect time for Christ centered, Bible based schools to make an indelible mark on our world.”

Trustees approved the annual audit report for the college’s last fiscal year. Auditors indicated that the school received an “unmodified” opinion which is the highest possible rating. The seventy-three year old college continues to operate in the black and carry no long term debt. “This is testimony to the provision of our Lord and the good stewardship of our faculty and staff,” stated Kinchen. Noting the effects of several years of decreasing income from Cooperative Program income and the general economy’s negative impact on student retention, Trustees approved the administration’s recommendation to decrease the current operating budget which runs through June 30, 2016, by 3.5 percent. Kinchen noted that the needed cuts have already been made without the need for personnel actions. He also expressed gratitude to God and Florida Baptists for their recent increased Cooperative Program giving which will lead to the college receiving a portion of the convention’s budget overage in receipts for 2015.

The Trustees received an update on an enhanced Safety and Security program for the Graceville campus as well as an update on an enhanced marketing and promotion plan for student recruitment and retention. The BCF President noted, “We have a safe and good place for students to study and grow. In fact, we were recognized as the third safest campus in the State of Florida. However, we are always working to make the environment even better.”

When Trustees met for their plenary session, they made history by holding the first board meeting in the recently completed Deese Center located on the Graceville campus. The center houses dining facilities for the campus as well as a private meeting room which houses the College’s Glory of God Christian Fine Art Collection. The board viewed initial architectural drawings of the next major building project on campus which will house the Teacher Education program. The Kinchen Center, named by Trustees in honor of the President and First Lady’s 25th anniversary at the college, will feature a design that will “honor Baptists’ historical involvement in education and point to their even greater future.” With over seventy-five percent of the funding having already been raised, construction should begin within the next few months. Student housing was also on the agenda for Trustee discussion. Renovation of many of the housing units is in various stages of completion with plans for a new generation of townhomes for couples and families in the planning stages.

The meeting concluded with board members approving reports, obtaining information on future events and upcoming sessions, welcoming new board member Rachel Rollyson and the election of officers. For more information on The Baptist College of Florida, contact 800.328.2660 ext. 460 or visit the website at www.baptistcollege.edu.