Biola University celebrated its 114th birthday today, Feb. 25, 2022. For 114 years, Biola has remained faithful to its founding principles and commitment to its mission to provide biblically centered education, scholarship and service — equipping men and women in mind and character to impact the world for the Lord Jesus Christ.
Biola University President Barry H. Corey reflected on Biola’s roots and the significance of Biola’s mission recently in his published article, “A Mission Retrospective,” which explores the six founding principles that still define Biola today: Scripture, scholarship, virtue, evangelism, reconciliation and access.
“Though we began as the Bible Institute of Los Angeles, it was more than biblical devotion that defined our early years,” wrote Corey. “It was also a commitment to instruction in the knowledge of the truth, what we might say today as a commitment to thinking deeply and biblically about everything. It was obeying Jesus’ command to make disciples. It was nurturing the Spirit-led virtuous life. It was welcoming those into a reconciling community. And it was providing an education both accessible and affordable.”
Corey emphasized the importance of looking back on Biola’s history in order to stay true to the mission of the university in today’s changing world, an echo to the changing culture, trials and tribulations Biola’s founders faced in the institution's early days.
“Looking back calls us to know the principles our founders had in mind and to defend them, to preserve them, to advance them,” said Corey.
As Biola looks to its future and continues to transform students to impact the world for Christ, the university hosted events and activities throughout the week to celebrate Biola’s birthday. Biola’s Office of Alumni and Family Relations hosted I Heart Biola Week, complete with activities for students, staff, faculty and alumni to participate in such as writing appreciation notes and decorating tote bags. On Thursday, a Biola heritage exhibit was hosted in the library, allowing visitors to walk through Biola’s past, view historic photos of Biola’s inaugural classes and look through early editions of the yearbook. Today, cupcakes, balloon animals and merriment at the Fluor Fountain rang in year 114. Biola also hosted a live remote broadcast of KKLA 99.5 FM, which included interviews with Corey, Dr. Joy Qualls and a Biola student.
Since 1908, Biola has stood as a beacon of hope for the intellectual, spiritual and moral growth of its students. As the only national university to require a Christian commitment of its faculty, students and staff, Biola University is building on its legacy of impacting the world for the Lord Jesus Christ. Recently, Biola was recognized by U.S. News and World Reports in the top tier of America’s best national universities.