MHU President’s Office


Mars Hill University, a liberal arts university rooted in the Christian faith, is a diverse community, welcoming students, faculty, and staff from across the nation and the world. We recognize our diversity as a strength, and will continue to offer unwavering support for all members of our community regardless of faith tradition, nation of origin, or immigration status.

A Letter from Dan Lunsford, Mars Hill University President

Welcome to the Mars Hill University website and to our campus. Whether you are a student, an alum, or a new member of the Mars Hill family, we’re excited to have you here.

We at Mars Hill are proud of our academic offerings, our athletics programs, and our student life opportunities. From our Center for Community Engagement to our award winning sports teams and student organizations, Mars Hill University emphasizes active learning. Our students have many chances to give to the community through volunteer programs, tutoring young children, collecting donations for area food banks, and participating in community clean-up projects, just to name a few. Our students have a positive effect on the lives of people in our larger community here in Madison County, as well as in adjoining counties.

Mars Hill University was founded more than150 years ago, and celebrated its sesquicentennial in 2006-07. Much of the history of western North Carolina and the southern Appalachian region has been our own, and it’s an important part of how our university community has developed over the past century and a half. Thanks to our groundbreaking regional studies program, our students have the opportunity to learn more about this heritage and help keep it alive.

Mars Hill is also alive with the sound of music and opportunities in other fine and performing arts. Whether a student wants to pursue a major in theatre arts or visual arts, or simply have fun in a clogging class for an elective course, our fine arts programs offer a wide range of excellent options. Students can choose to participate in one of 16 performing ensembles, play a role in one of our theatre productions, or enjoy the many other cultural offerings on campus.

We encourage students to be full participants in campus life through the student activities program and the Student Government Association. I am very impressed with the student leaders on campus; they will, in my opinion, be strong representatives of the university community and will be advocates for their peers throughout the year.

I feel very fortunate to have experienced what was then Mars Hill College as a student in the 1960s and now to serve the university as its president. I invite you to explore this website to begin your own voyage of discovery through our university and to see for yourself why Mars Hill is such a special place.


Dan G. Lunsford, Ed.D., ’69