Henderson State University is a public, liberal arts institution located in Arkadelphia, Arkansas. It is one of two originally established as a four-year, degree-conferring institution in Arkansas, and is the second oldest university under state administration.
Originally opening as Arkadelphia Methodist College in 1890, the institution was converted to Henderson College, and then to Henderson-Brown College in the 1900s.
Later, in the state-wide Arkansas Methodist Conference, it was decided to operate the Henderson-Brown College and Hendrix College in Conway as a single unit. As a result Hendrix-Henderson College (now Hendrix College) was started on the Conway campus and the Arkadelphia campus was surrendered to the state of Arkansas.
The state legislature started Henderson State Teachers College at this site. In 1967, the Teachers College changed to Henderson State College and in 1975, to Henderson State University.
The academic units of the university are Graduate School, Honors College, Matt Locke Ellis College of Arts and Sciences, Teacherís College, and School of Business.
Bachelors degrees are offered in Arts, Business Administration, Fine Arts, Music, Science, Education, and Nursing. Pre-professional programs in Dentistry, Engineering, Law, Medicine, Pharmacy, Physical Therapy, Optometry, and Veterinary Medicine, and the Associate of Applied Science degree are included in the academics.
The Center for Language Proficiency (CLP) of the university, a community partnership project, offers lifelong learning in language development. Yoga and water aerobics are provided through Health, Physical Education, and Recreation Department.
Huie Library is a three-story structure offering a comprehensive collection of about one-half million items needed for teaching and research. Arkansas Hall, with a 965-seat auditorium, Carpenter-Haygood Stadium, Garrison Activity, and Conference Center, Reddie Athletic Center, and Caddo Cafeteria are among the other facilities on campus.
The Captain Charles C. Henderson House, listed in the National Register of Historic Places, provides lodging and a meeting space for university and public use.