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Reinhardt University

Reinhardt University is a comprehensive university grounded in the liberal arts located in Waleska, Georgia, United States, with an off-campus center in Alpharetta, Georgia


7300 Reinhardt Circle


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Additional Information

College Type
Religious Affiliation
United Methodist Church
Campus Housing
Reiny The Eagle
Navy Blue Gold

College History


The college was established by a gentleman of Atlanta as a memorial to his father, and as long as he was able he gave it the support justified by ample means. It was like carrying a gold mine with all its profits to a starving people, only the profits in this case are very much more valuable than gold. To the barefooted boys and girls of that region, it has represented, and still represents, the dawn of hope, the illumination that belongs to knowledge, the uplifting of the spirit, and the widening of the fields of endeavor. From the first, the college has been carried on in the spirit of the broadest benevolence. � �Joel Chandler Harris, "The Little College," an early-1900s essay about Reinhardt University In 1883, former Confederate army Captain and Atlanta lawyer Augustus M. Reinhardt and his brother-in-law, former Lieutenant-Colonel John J. A. Sharp, commenced plans to open a school in Waleska. Both Reinhardt and Sharp had grown up in the Waleska area, and after the American Civil War had ended and the hardships of Reconstruction begun, both men wanted to provide a school for the local citizens of impoverished Cherokee County. Reinhardt, who had been a successful lawyer after the Civil War with the firm of Reinhardt & Hook in Atlanta and owned interest in a successful Atlanta street car line, went to the North Georgia conference of the Methodist Church and appealed for them to provide a strong minister and teacher to start the school. In return, he promised to offer this individual a yearly salary of $1,000. Sharp, who had owned a store, cotton gin and tobacco factory in the Waleska area before the Civil War, had retained some of his money after the war and was still active in the local area. Upon deciding to start the school with Reinhardt, he purchased a local saw mill and hired men in preparation to start construction on school buildings. 1885 Reinhardt Academy Administration Building In 1884, with the Methodist Conference answering Reinhardt's request by sending Emory College graduate Rev. James T. Linn as the school's first teacher, Reinhardt Academy opened for classes in an old cabinet and wood shop located at the southern edge of Waleska. The school had been named in honor of Reinhardt's father, Lewis W. Reinhardt, who had settled in the area in 1833 and had established a local church known as Reinhardt Chapel. Just a month after the school opened, a tornado struck Waleska, damaging a lot of property and injuring several people. The school, however, wasn't harmed and classes continued uninterrupted. An unexpected good from the tornado was that it felled a large amount of forest pine in the area. Seizing this ready supply of wood, school officials and local citizens had it cut up into lumber and began to construct Reinhardt's first permanent building. In January 1885, students moved out of the old cabinet and wood shop and into the school's newly completed, three-story framed building, which was capable of housing 11 classes of students. The school now had an official residence in the town. Over the next century, many buildings were built and land acquired, expanding the campus's physical presence to a 90-acre (360,000 m2) building site and over-all 540-acre (2.2 km2) college campus. Fire and or demolition over the years have left no trace of any of the original 19th-century buildings. In its over 125-year history, Reinhardt has undergone many name changes � Reinhardt Academy to Reinhardt Normal College to Reinhardt College to Reinhardt University � and grown its student body tenfold, while maintaining its close ties to the United Methodist Church.

College Specialty


The educational program emphasizes the study of the liberal arts, sciences and professional studies within the University's historic commitment to the United Methodist faith and tradition. The University affirms that learning is best facilitated through a partnership between faculty members and students where the integration of faith and learning is essential. Reinhardt University is committed to students who desire a small, caring community dedicated to personalized attention. It seeks students who are academically prepared and motivated to pursue a challenging educational experience. The University serves a population of traditional and non-traditional age students both as residents and commuters. The University is also committed to meeting the needs of a diverse student population including those students with distinctive learning needs. In addition, Reinhardt meets the ongoing educational needs of professionals and the local community. Reinhardt University seeks to educate the whole person by developing the intellectual, social, personal, vocational, spiritual/moral and physical dimensions of its students. Graduates are distinguished by attributes that are developed through personal interaction with the faculty, the staff and fellow students.



Jeff Clemmons, historian and author, "Rich's: A Southern Institution." Frank Gordy, founder of The Varsity restaurant chain. Herbert Gordy, founder of Gordy Tire. Sachi Koto, professional journalist, former news anchor for CNN Headline News. Drew Tyson, first athlete drafted from Reinhardt University into professional sports (baseball, Oakland Athletics, 17th round 2010) Terry L Coleman, JD . Speaker of The Georgia House Of Representatives



Rural, 540 acres (2.2 km2)