About Coker College
Coker College is a four-year, private, co-educational, liberal arts college located in Hartsville, South Carolina. Coker has some of the smallest class sizes on any U.S. college with an average of 12. U.S. News and World Report, in its annual review of colleges, named Coker one of America's best colleges in 2008. Hartsville, in north-central South Carolina is a small town with an approximate population of 8,000. Cultural events in Hartsville include the free Jazz! Carolina Festival, co-hosted by Coker College, RenoFest, a bluegrass music festival, and theater, dance, musical theater, and vocal performances at the college. Coker owns the Sory Boathouse on Prestwood Lake, which offers canoeing and kayaking, as well as the Kalmia Gardens. The botanical gardens is next to the Segars-McKinnon Heritage Preserve, a wildlife reservation and black water swamp.
Major James Lide Coker chartered the private Welsh Neck High School in 1894. In 1908, South Carolina created a public school system and Major Coker converted the high school to Coker College for Women. Until 1944, the college was affiliated with the Southern Carolina Baptist Convention, but now is independent and non-denominational. Coker officially admitted male students in 1969.
The art department at Coker College offers a concentration in graphic design. The department teaches basic studio skills as well as computer technology and emphasizes individual expression. The instructors insist that students experiment with an assortment of media and challenge their creativity. Learning in the art department is hands-on and involves museum and gallery trips and visits from professional artists. Coursework for the graphic design concentration includes design theory, typography, computer-aided design, and production. This prepares students for careers in advertising, web design, publishing, or for further, graduate study.
Students may also concentrate in photography within the art department. Photography students learn both the technical and artistic aspects of taking pictures. Students prepare for careers as studio or commercial photographers or for graduate school.
Coker's performing arts department offer a theater major for students interested in all aspects of performing plays. The department teaches students leadership, creativity, and confidence, in addition to the skills of performing. Theater students participate in school productions in a variety of ways. They learn to be playwrights, performers, directors, or set, lighting, or costume designers.
To be considered for financial aid, students must fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. This determines what type of aid students are eligible for. Types of aid include federal and state grants, federal loans, private loans, and scholarships. South Carolina residents are also eligible for the state's Lottery Tuition Assistance.
Coker College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS). Additionally, SACS gave Coker special commendations for student-faculty interactions and attractive campus grounds.