As we enter our 140th year, join us in reflecting on the remarkable 139th! In 2017 Brenau set records in athletics and academics, received outstanding reviews for cultural programs and the arts, and fulfilled promises for positive impact on the community and throughout the region with the development of health care professional studies and other programs. We hope you enjoy these visual highlights from the past 12 months.


Golden Tigers Softball Team Marks Record-Setting Season on New Home Field

On Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, the Golden Tigers began play at Ernest Ledford Grindle Athletics Park, which is Phase I of a $6.2 million project about two miles from the Gainesville campus.

The Golden Tigers closed the season with a program-best 52 wins, including a 31-game streak. The SSAC Champions were the first team ever to earn a perfect 26-0 record in conference play. It reached No. 2 in the nation, the highest national ranking in program history.

Kelsey Payne high fives Talladega College players after after the opening double header at the Pacolet Milliken Field at the Ernest Ledford Grindle Athletics Complex between the Brenau Golden Tigers and Talladega College. Brenau won both games 9-1. (AJ Reynolds/Brenau University)


Maddox Dempsey reacts while crossing the finish line during the Dempsey Dash 5K, a race celebrating the memory of Brenau's longtime Executive Vice President and CFO Wayne Dempsey, on Saturday, March 11, 2017. (AJ Reynolds/Brenau University)

Brenau Hosts Inaugural Dempsey Dash 5K in Gainesville, Georgia

The inaugural Dempsey Dash 5K on March 11, 2017 celebrated the life of longtime Brenau Executive Vice President and CFO Wayne Dempsey, who died in 2014. Proceeds go to the scholarship endowment named for Dempsey that benefits education and health sciences students. Join us for the second Dempsey Dash on Saturday, March 10.

Brenau Swimmer Wins NAIA Event for Fourth Consecutive Year

Golden Tigers four-time All-American swimmer, Courtney Hayward captured the NAIA national 1650-yard freestyle championship on Saturday, March 4, 2017 with a time of 17 minutes, 19.77 seconds on Saturday in Columbus, Georgia. Previously in her career, the Australian, who graduated in May, won the 400 individual medley her first three years competing for Brenau. The Brenau team finished the season No. 4 in the nation.

Courtney Hayward, a senior psychology major from Townsville, Australia, gets a hug after winning the the 1650 yard freestyle during the NAIA Swimming and Diving Championships on Saturday, March 4, 2017 in Columbus, Ga. (AJ Reynolds/Brenau University)


May Queen Sara Hubaishi stands under the May Pole. (AJ Reynolds/Brenau University)

Brenau Alumnae, Students Participate in Traditional ‘May Day’ Reunion

More than 200 Women’s College alumnae returned to campus April 8-9, 2017 for Alumnae Reunion Weekend and May Day festivities. The May Day celebration was highlighted by the presentation of the May Court, crowning of the May Queen and wrapping of the May Pole. President Schrader crowned then-senior Sara Hubaishi from Stone Mountain, Georgia, as the 2017 May Queen.

Track & Field Wins Fifth Consecutive Conference Championship

The Brenau track & field team won its fifth straight Southern States Athletic Conference Women’s Track and Field Championship in April 2017 – a title for each year in team history. That qualified for the first time three members of the Golden Tigers team, Ismaelle Occeus, Sydney Romine and Cheyenne Wells – to compete in the NAIA outdoor track and field national championships.

Ismaelle Occeus, a senior from Lawrenceville, Ga., center, leads teammates in a cheer after the second day of the SSAC Outdoor Track & Field Championship in Mobile, Ala. Brenau won their 5th straight SSAC conference championship. (AJ Reynolds/Brenau University)


From left to right Tessa Cornwall, Hannah Cothran, Brian Dunegan, Devon Durman and Natalie Espinoza-Hensley during the White Coat Ceremony for members of the Brenau Doctor of Physical Therapy Class of 2020. (AJ Reynolds/Brenau University)

2017 Physical Therapy Cohort Fills Brenau’s Three-Year Program

While the typical Brenau student may take the summer off, those in the Department of Physical Therapy just got started in May 2017 as part of the third 40-member cohort in the physical therapy doctoral program. That brought the three-year Brenau doctoral program to its full 120-student complement – the last step to full accreditation.


Gainesville Campus Welcomes Record 398 New Students

Wednesday, Aug. 23, 2017 marked the traditional “move-in” day at the Women’s College, which represents about a third of the university’s total enrollment. A record 398 new students that day registered for fall classes, checked into residence halls and began orientation into the world of Brenau. Classes began Aug. 28.

Rachel Chapman hangs pins photos on a cork board while moving into her dorm room in Crudup Hall. (AJ Reynolds/Brenau University)
From left to right, Yolanda Xuan Guan, Coco Keyi Huang, Odett Xiaomeng Ni and Michael Zihan Shao, all 2+2 students in a partnership with Anhui Normal University in China, work together to examine a sample while testing the water quality on Lake Lanier. (AJ Reynolds/Brenau University)

Brenau Welcomes 44 Students from Chinese Partner Institution

Twenty-six new students and 18 returning from Anhui Normal University in China arrived in Gainesville in August for classes at Brenau University as part of the 2+2 partnerships between the universities. The partnerships allow students who have completed the first two years of their degree program at Anhui Normal University to complete the final two years of their undergraduate educations at Brenau.


Homecoming Weekend Includes Alumni Awards for First Time in Brenau History

Modifying tradition, Brenau added its annual Alumni Awards Ceremony to Homecoming Weekend activities Sept. 29-30, instead of honoring recipients during Alumni Reunion Weekend in April. Alumni Awards honor those who have made a lasting impact both on the university and in their community. Last year also marked the first year any alum – not just Women’s College graduates – could be nominated for an alumni award.

Terry Capers, BU '14 and winner of the Service to Brenau Award, poses for photos with a group of cheerleaders during the homecoming celebrations at Brenau University. (AJ Reynolds/Brenau University)


Brenau health sciences students Bethany Green, Chandy Henson, Savannah Blalock, Dean of the Ivester College of Health Sciences Gale Starich, Ivie Hall and Martis Ferguson unveil renderings of the future letterings of Brenau's Downtown Center and Brenau East in Gainesville during an event announcing the naming of the Brenau University Ivester College of Health Sciences. (AJ Reynolds/Brenau University)

Brenau Exceeds Fundraising Goal, Names Ivester College of Health Sciences

What better way to end the year than with a bang? Brenau University surpassed the target amount of its multiyear $40 million ForeverGold campaign more than six months ahead of schedule, thanks to gifts from the Melvin Douglas and Victoria Kay Ivester Foundation. A ceremony on Wednesday, Dec. 13, 2017, recognized the foundations’ most recent contributions totaling $3.5 million – designated for support of health science programs – and celebrated the naming of the Ivester College of Health Sciences. We extend a heartfelt thank-you to the Ivesters, and to all of you, who helped making 2017 great.

General inquiries:, +1-770-534-6299 or +1-800-252-5119 | Admissions:, +1-770-534-6100 or +1-800-252-5119 ext. 6100