Converse College
Admissions Office
Spartanburg, SC 29302

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Converse College
Spartanburg, SC 29302

College Description
Converse College is not for every woman. But for the student who is confident, adventurous, and talented–or who aspires to be–Converse is a place to grow and become.

Founded in 1889 as an independent, residential, liberal arts college for women in Spartanburg, South Carolina, Converse is consistently recognized by U.S. News & World Report as a top college and best value among colleges and universities in the South. Converse has also been named one of the Best 201 Colleges for the Real World. Throughout its history, Converse has produced strong leaders and thinkers who have used their Converse experience to expand women's roles in society and have significantly contributed to the advancement of the U.S.

Converse strengths range from the sciences, education, and interior design to music, politics, and theater. Nearly forty academic majors are offered in the College of Arts and Sciences and the Petrie School of Music–the nation's only comprehensive professional school of music within a liberal arts college for women.

In the coeducational graduate program, Converse offers master's degrees in education, the liberal arts areas, and music. Education specialist degrees are also available in marriage and family therapy, administration and supervision, and curriculum and instruction.

Small classes with individual attention are hallmarks of a Converse education, with the average undergraduate student–teacher ratio being an uncommon 9:1. The intimate classroom setting allows professors to challenge students through spirited and interactive discussions. Converse professors not only teach and advise, they know their students–as individuals.

Located in the upstate region of South Carolina, Spartanburg is a city full of beautiful scenery, historically significant sites, and friendly people. Mixing Southern culture and hospitality with diverse traditions and cultures of other countries, Spartanburg is South Carolina's melting pot.

More than 100 international firms–including German automaker BMW–make Spartanburg an international and cultural center. The city offers a multitude of internship and job placement opportunities. In fact, many local and regional companies visit the campus each year to recruit Converse graduates.

Spartanburg's proximity to the North Carolina mountains, the South Carolina coast, and major cities such as Atlanta and Charlotte make it a very attractive place to live. Greenville-Spartanburg International Airport is served by six major airlines.

Converse students use the world as their classroom, with opportunities to study on every inhabited continent of the world. The Nisbet Honors Program provides academically gifted students opportunities to conduct independent research with faculty mentors and gather socially to discuss intellectually challenging topics. An interdisciplinary program features seminars team-taught by faculty members from different fields who collaborate in the classroom throughout the course, enabling students to learn how different branches of learning approach collecting and interpreting evidence.

Academic Life
A required core curriculum introduces Converse students to a variety of subjects, developing in them an appreciation of Western culture and the liberal arts. Students are then able to choose a major–or two–in which to specialize. The Converse College Institute for Leadership is an optional program that provides formalized leadership development, physical fitness, and service learning.

The academic calendar consists of two 14-week terms and a four-week January term. During January term, students can take classes on campus or take advantage of the many opportunities for off-campus study programs, including internships and study travel.

Of the College's 76 faculty members, 85 percent hold the Ph.D. or other terminal degree, and full-time faculty members do all student advising. The student-faculty ratio in the undergraduate program is 9:1 overall and 7:1 in the Petrie School of Music. The College does not employ teaching assistants, and senior professors frequently teach freshman and sophomore classes. Faculty members are selected on the basis of teaching proficiency, scholarly competence, and ability to impart the excitement and value of learning.

Majors Offered:
Bachelor's degrees are in accounting; art (art education, art history, art therapy, and studio art); biochemistry; biology; business; business administration with concentrations in finance, international business, marketing, and organizational management; chemistry; computer science; economics; education (comprehensive special education, deaf and hard of hearing/interpreting, early childhood, educable mentally handicapped, elementary, emotionally handicapped, learning disabilities, and secondary); English; foreign language (French, German, and Spanish); history, interior design, mathematics; modern languages; music (composition, music business, music education, music history, performance, piano pedagogy, and theory); politics; psychology; religion; and theater.

Preprofessional programs include Army ROTC, arts management, predentistry, prelaw, premedicine, preministry, prenursing, prepharmacy, and publication and media.

Depending on the student's major and course of study, she can earn a Bachelor of Arts, a Bachelor of Science, a Bachelor of Fine Arts, or a Bachelor of Music degree.

The Individualized Major allows students to design an interdisciplinary degree program that links academic interests from at least three departments.

Off-Campus, Study-Abroad:
Converse offers full-year and semester-long study-abroad programs, through which students are able to study in Australia, England, France, Iceland, Spain, and many other countries. In addition, the Anne Morrison Chapman Study-Abroad Experience provides scholarships for students to participate in international study and travel programs led by Converse faculty members.

Campus Life / Campus Visit
While academic quality receives top priority, Converse also places great emphasis on building community and involvement through campus and residential life programs. More than sixty student organizations at Converse make it easy to find things to do and meet other people. Spartanburg is home to six colleges who collaborate both academically and socially through the College Town Consortium, making interaction with students from other colleges abundant. The Converse Fine Arts Series features events on campus throughout the year.

The Converse College Student Government Association (SGA) is the second oldest in the Southeast and has been active for more than ninety years. As an energetic student voice on campus, the SGA serves as an umbrella for sixty campus clubs and organizations. SGA also maintains important communication links between the College's administration and the students. The Converse Honor Tradition, which has been an integral part of student governance for more than eighty years, ensures that self-discipline, shared confidence, and community integrity are maintained on the campus.

Facilities and Resources
Converse's 86-acre campus includes seven residence halls, each with laundry facilities, study rooms, kitchens, and lounges with cable television. Each room has computer, cable TV, and telephone connections.

Phifer Science Hall is a new 26,000-square-foot facility designed for instruction in the natural sciences. Phifer contains cutting-edge laboratories, multimedia teaching technology, and computing equipment that allow faculty members to utilize new teaching methods and technology. Science majors are provided space for upper-level research.

The Sally Abney Rose Physical Activity Complex houses a soccer field, tennis courts, a multipurpose practice field, and the Weisiger Center–a 29,000-square-foot complex housing basketball and volleyball courts, fitness training rooms, locker rooms, coaches' offices, and physical education offices.

Blackman Hall houses the Petrie School of Music. It features more than thirty practice rooms–most with baby grand pianos–soundproof classrooms, faculty teaching studios, an electronic piano lab, and a music media lab with twenty-two iMacs and the latest in music software. Daniel Recital Hall is a 340-seat auditorium cited in Chamber Music America as an exemplary performance facility.

Milliken Fine Arts Building is home to the Department of Art and Design. Faculty studio lofts overlook classrooms, allowing students greater interaction with the work of faculty artists. The building houses a CAD and graphic design lab, darkrooms, ceramic kiln and sculpture yards, bronze casting, and a historic preservation studio. A permanent collection of fifty-two prints, includes works by Joan Miró, Salvador Dalí, Helmut Newton, and Andy Warhol. Milliken Art Gallery is filled with works by a wide variety of professional artists.

Wilson Hall houses the College's administrative offices, the Office of Admissions, Gee Dining Hall, Hazel B. Abbott Theatre, and the Laird Studio Theatre. The five towers on the front are named for the values held dear to Converse: friendship, loyalty, honor, service, and reverence. On display in the lobby of Wilson is the Converse Honor Pledge, signed by every new student.

Twichell Auditorium is home to Petrie School of Music performances and other campus events and also to community groups such as the Greater Spartanburg Philharmonic and Ballet Spartanburg. Built in 1899 and renovated in 1989, this 1,500-seat auditorium houses a fifty-seven-rank Casavant Freres organ with more than 2,600 pipes and is known for its outstanding acoustics. The auditorium has hosted such famed artists as Chet Atkins, George Burns, Duke Ellington, Burl Ives, Itzhak Perlman, and Yo-Yo Ma. It is named as a historic John Philip Sousa site.

The fully automated Mickel Library contains more than 180,000 books and subscriptions to more than 700 periodicals, the Gwathmey Music Library (one of the largest music libraries in the Southeast), and the Writing Center.

Two arts and sciences classroom buildings, Kuhn Hall and Carmichael Hall, complete the academic faculties on campus.

Sports/Varsity Athletics
Converse students actively support the College's NCAA Division II athletics in basketball, cross-country, soccer, tennis, and volleyball.

The Athletic Department encourages the growth of each student – emotionally, socially, physically, and academically. Our athletic program enhances our strong academic curriculum. We are resolved to continue to promote excellence in women’s education.

Financial Aid /Scholarships
Converse is dedicated to providing every capable student with the opportunity to experience a Converse College education. Approximately 95 percent of freshmen receive some form of financial assistance through scholarships, federal student assistance programs, loans, and work-study programs. Scholarships and grant awards range up to the full comprehensive fee. Residents of South Carolina may also qualify for South Carolina Tuition Grants, ranging up to $3360 for freshmen. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is required of all applicants for financial assistance.

Each year, Converse awards $5 million in scholarships in academics, athletics, leadership, music, theater, and visual arts. These awards are not based on financial need, so the FAFSA is not required. The awards are renewable for three additional years.

Admission Requirements / Application
Admission to Converse College is an individualized, informative, and interactive process. Students are encouraged to apply as early as possible in their senior year of high school. Early decision admission applications are due by November 15. Sixteen units of high school academic work are recommended. In addition to high school transcripts and SAT or ACT scores, personal interviews, previous extracurricular activities, demonstrated exceptional talent, and seriousness of purpose may be used as additional admissions criteria. Converse College participates in the Advanced Placement Program administered by the College Entrance Examination Board.

Transfer students are accepted each semester from accredited institutions. Limited scholarship programs are available to transfer students.

To begin the application process, students must send a completed application for admission, a $35 nonrefundable application fee, an official transcript of at least six semesters of secondary school, and official SAT I or ACT scores for freshmen, a teacher recommendation form, and a graded writing sample.


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