Brenau University in Gainesville, Georgia, USA, founded in 1878, is a private, not-for-profit, undergraduate- and graduate-level higher education institution with multiple campuses and online programs. Currently the university enrolls about 2,800 students who seek degrees ranging from two-year Associate of Arts through doctorates. With a curriculum that blends professional preparation informed by the liberal arts, Brenau degree tracks include a special “early college” program for exceptional high school-age students. Terminal degrees include a Master of Fine Arts in Interior Design and a Doctor of Nursing Practice. The main campus of the Georgia-based institution, which includes the Brenau Women’s College, is in Gainesville with other campuses in Augusta, Kings Bay and in two metro Atlanta locations, Norcross and Fairburn. Brenau’s 2012 ranking as one of the top 15-best higher education values in the Southeast by U.S. News & World Report marks the university’s sixth consecutive year in that position for the magazine’s America's Best Colleges guidebook. In 2012 Brenau online programs scored high in national rankings by U.S. News & World Report, including a #9 in the nation "Honor Roll" listing for graduate degree tracks in Brenau's College of Education. Brenau University also has been cited as one of the best universities in the Southeast by The Princeton Review. The Chronicle of Higher Education accorded Brenau “honor roll” status as one of the top 10 best colleges and universities to work for in its 2011-12 survey rankings and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution in 2012 listed Brenau as one of metro Atlanta's best workplaces. Academically, Brenau comprises four colleges: Fine Arts & Humanities, Health & Science, Business & Mass Communication, and Education. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools reaffirmed full accreditation for Brenau in 2011. Brenau was founded in 1878 as a private institution f r the education of women. W.C. Wilkes, the institution’s first administrator, is credited with building many of the historic buildings that still stand today. Although founders initially called the institution a Baptist seminary for women, it has never been affiliated with or governed by any religious organization. Through the years Brenau evolved from a proprietary college to a not-for-profit institution governed by an independent Board of Trustees. Although the residential undergraduate Brenau Women's College remains as the cornerstone of the institution, other undergraduate programs on campuses, and all graduate and online programs, admit both men and women. In 1900 H. J. Pearce purchased the institution and renamed it Brenau, a linguistic blend formed from the German word brennen, “to burn”, and the Latin aurum, “gold”. Its motto is “As Gold Refined by Fire”. Brenau College remained privately owned until 1911 when a board of trustees assumed stewardship of the college, as remains the case today. In 1928, Brenau created a female, residential, college-preparatory school serving grades 9 through 12. In the late 1960s, Brenau began offering evening and weekend classes to both men and women apart from Women's College classes. Brenau College became Brenau University in 1992 by a vote of the Board of Trustees, a name change that reflected the comprehensive programs of study, the diverse student body, new and stricter employment criteria for professors, and the scope of available graduate programs. Brenau offered its first online programs in 2002 to meet needs of students who, because of professional or personal responsibilities, were unable to attend classes on campus. The institution is led by Dr. Ed Schrader, its ninth president, who has held the position since January 2005. Brenau is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and several subject-specific accrediting organizations.