On February 9, 1988, the Board of Trustees of Samford University authorized the establishment of the School of Divinity beginning in the 1988-1989 academic session. In one sense this action fulfilled the founding purpose of the University adopted in 1841 which provided for "the establishment of a Theological Institution, connected with the college hereinafter established."
In December, 1988, the Samford Board of Trustees voted to name the school the Beeson School of Divinity in honor of Ralph Waldo Beeson and his late father, John Wesley Beeson. Ralph Beeson provided the largest gift from a living individual in Samford history to establish the first divinity school at a Baptist college or university in the nation. Beeson Divinity School is open to persons from all Christian denominations.
Mr. Beeson's founding vision was that Beeson Divinity School would be a place that trains "pastors who can preach." Although many of our students and graduates find places of service outside the pulpit, our aim is to give special attention to the pastoral ministry.
Beeson Divinity School is one of ten schools that make up Samford University.