Swails courting four year college
Breakfast with the mayor was not just a meet and greet last week but a venue for breaking news in the world of education.
Mount Pleasant Mayor Billy Swails, whose term ends in November, announced that he and other town officials are courting Francis Marion University in the hopes that the school will create a Mount Pleasant campus.
Francis Marion University is one of South Carolina’s 13 public, coeducational universities. As one of the state’s six comprehensive institutions, FMU provides a strong liberal arts education.
During the breakfast meeting, Swails told the crowd that he has had detailed conversations with FMU officials and is talking to legislators and community leaders about the possibility.
“Some are on board and some are not,” he said.
“It is no secret we have always wanted a four-year college in Mount Pleasant,” he added.
Efforts to reach public officials were unsuccessful.
The university offers a broad range of undergraduate degrees and a select number of graduate programs in serving the needs of communities, businesses and industries of the Pee Dee region.
Francis Marion is the only state university located in the Pee Dee region, and many of its students are the first in their families to go to college.
All faculty members have advanced degrees, and 81 percent of the full-time faculty hold doctoral or terminal degrees.
While 95 percent of its students come from South Carolina, the university enrolls students from 36 states and 16 foreign countries, allowing students to experience the diversity of people from other cultures.
The student-faculty ratio is 15 to 1, and the average class size is 21.
The average age of undergraduates is 21, while the average age of graduate students is 36.
The university offers to the community programs and services in continuing education, technical and professional assistance, industrial and economic development and artistic and cultural enrichment.
Many cultural activities (concerts, lectures, plays, art exhibits, planetarium and observatory shows and film series) are offered free to the public.
The university has an NCAA athletic program with six sports each for men and women.
The University’s school colors are red, white and blue, and the mascot is a patriot.
(Read the Moultrie News to stay updated on developments of this breaking news at www.Moultrienews.com).