James R. Cope
Temple Terrace, Florida
Under date of February 24 the Sunday Tampa Tribune carried the following story which we believe will be of widespread interest:
"Florida College is the new name of Florida Christian College, President James R. Cope announced during a progress report concluding the annual lecture series last week.
"At the same time, Cope told 700 in the audience at Hutchinson Memorial Auditorium that Paul Hutchinson, donor of the auditorium in 1957, has signified his intention to leave his entire estate to the junior college.
"An El Centro, Calif. businessman, Hutchinson prefaced his gift with the statement that 'I have more confidence in the college today than when I made the original gift and am delighted to see that others have been inspired to help also.'
"Cope announced two other bequests at the same time and declared that increased support by Tampa area businessmen is 'an indication of local confidence in the college.'
"He pointed to a gift of $10,000 for the surfacing of the large parking lot near the auditorium and other resurfacing on the campus as one such bequest and to John T. Lewis' gift of a valuable set of periodicals to the school.
"Lewis is from Birmingham, Alabama.
"Cope said college officials intended to change the name of the junior college for a number of years and that confirmation was received from Tallahassee recently.
Not Church Supported
"Commenting on the name change, Cope said the 'Christian' in the name 'leave many people under the impression that the college is church supported and church controlled, whereas neither of these conclusions is accurate.'
"Florida College was used frequently as the school's name during the formative years, he declared and letterheads originally carried that name before the school opened.
"The junior college president said the primary reason for including 'Christian' in the school name probably had been to emphasize character training and 'a study of the Bible as a required part of the curriculum.'
"I would like to make it dear that the dropping of the term 'Christian' from the name does not mean that we have in any sense altered our emphasis upon the Bible as the basis for character building.
" 'This institution is not a theological seminary but a standard junior college with the Bible offered as required study of those who attend."'
"Hutchinson described 'an investment in Florida College today as an investment in the America of tomorrow' and said the 'greatest joy of my life has been to see the great pleasure and appreciation of these young people.
" 'I enjoy seeing the good that this money has done. People should not wait until they die to put their money to work for young people.'
"Florida College will embark on another 'first' later this year, Cope announced, with its first complete summer session on June 17.
"At that time, he said, the college will offer freshman courses along with a college readiness program for students who wish to correct high school deficiencies in order to obtain full college acceptance.
"The Florida College summer session will feature make-up courses for sophomores, Cope said."
Truth Magazine VII: 7, pp. 5