Academic Catalog

History of Cornerstone University

Cornerstone University, an evangelical Christian university, is committed to equipping students to effectively engage the cultures of our world for Christ. As a multi-denominational institution, Cornerstone University offers 77 undergraduate and 16 graduate programs on the Grand Rapids Campus or our Online Campus, with programs organized for all students within our 6 schools:

  • Cornerstone Theological Seminary
  • Asia Biblical Theological Seminary
  • School of Business & Innovation
  • School of Education & Human Services
  • School of Health, Science, & Technology
  • School of Ministry, Media & the Arts

The University also produces Cornerstone University Radio WCSG – 91.3 FM.

Founded in 1941 as the Baptist Bible Institute, the school offered evening classes twice a week in the educational wing of Wealthy Street Baptist Church in Grand Rapids, Mich. Over the years, the school continued to flourish, eventually developing into a four-year Bible college and seminary. The Board of Trustees altered the name of the institution from Grand Rapids Baptist College and Seminary to Cornerstone College and Grand Rapids Baptist Seminary in 1993, changing the name to Cornerstone University in 1999.  The name of the Seminary changed in 2023 from Grand Rapids Theological Seminary to Cornerstone Theological Seminary.

Under the visionary leadership of Dr. W. Wilbert Welch, the school relocated to its current 132-acre campus in 1964. That same year, the college became a member of the American Association for Bible Colleges. In 1972, the school was approved by the State of Michigan as a degree-granting college of arts and sciences, and five years later, the Higher Learning Commission granted regional accreditation. In 1993, Grand Rapids School of Bible and Music was joined to the institution for the preservation of its rich heritage and academic records. Also that year, the school launched the Adult and Continuing Education (ACE) program to serve the expanding non-traditional student population of Michigan.

Cornerstone University currently enrolls more than 2,000 students, providing a Christ-centered education under the direction of our 12th president, Dr. Gerson Moreno-Riaño.