Bethel University - Indiana

The information on this page was last updated 1/30/2023. If you see errors or omissions, please email: [email protected]


Bethel University is a Christian liberal arts college, founded in 1947 in Mishawaka, Indiana. Bethel is a Christian community of learners dedicated to building lives of commitment for leadership in the Church and the world.

Contact information

Mailing address:
Bethel University
1001 Bethel Circle
Mishawaka, IN 46545


Phone: 800-422-4101

Email: [email protected]

Organization details

EIN: 350935587

CEO/President: Barbara Bellefeuille, Ed. D


Board size: 21

Founder: Daniel Brenneman, J. A. Huffman

Ruling year: 1948

Tax deductible: Yes

Fiscal year end: 06/30

Member of ECFA: No

Member of ECFA since:


Bethel remains steadfast in its vision and commitment to provide a Christ-centered education that equips leaders to make a Kingdom impact in the church and the world.

Mission statement

The mission of Bethel University, affiliated with the Missionary Church denomination, is to be a community of learners building lives of commitment for leadership in the Church and world. Bethel's liberating academic programs challenge the mind, enlarge the vision, and equip the whole person for lifelong service.

Statement of faith

We believe:

God is the Creator and Sustainer of all things, and the Author of salvation.

The Bible is the divinely inspired, only infallible, authoritative Word of God, and the unchanging rule of faith and practice.

Man's relationship to God, which was lost through sin, is restored through faith in the redeeming work of Christ, God's divine Son.

The Church comprises people who are born of the Spirit and empowered by him to live a holy life devoted to the fulfillment of the Church's Great Commission.

The personal return of Christ will bring about the end of the present age, the judgment and the beginning of the glorious age to come.

Donor confidence score

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Transparency grade


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Financial efficiency ratings

Sector: Colleges/Universities

CategoryRatingOverall rankSector rank
Overall efficiency rating428 of 103146 of 127
Fund acquisition rating826 of 1032109 of 127
Resource allocation rating352 of 103242 of 127
Asset utilization rating238 of 103116 of 127

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Balance sheet
Receivables, inventories, prepaids$2,923,956$3,418,463$2,451,883$3,942,860$2,223,664
Short-term investments$8,642,786$9,218,111$8,162,127$9,761,177$9,261,886
Other current assets$0$0$0$0$0
Total current assets$18,155,604$16,098,038$15,442,483$18,734,208$15,664,537
Long-term investments$0$0$0$0$0
Fixed assets$27,994,043$29,480,663$30,409,289$31,465,464$32,529,191
Other long-term assets$2,539,692$2,996,001$2,722,128$2,578,265$2,004,912
Total long-term assets$30,533,735$32,476,664$33,131,417$34,043,729$34,534,103
Total assets$48,689,339$48,574,702$48,573,900$52,777,937$50,198,640
Payables and accrued expenses$2,539,034$3,319,227$2,992,168$4,499,257$6,216,523
Other current liabilities$4,383,099$1,349,986$2,006,574$2,278,782$2,277,698
Total current liabilities$6,922,133$4,669,213$4,998,742$6,778,039$8,494,221
Due to (from) affiliates$0$0$0$0$0
Other long-term liabilities$1,891,920$724,068$735,715$1,351,417$925,659
Total long-term liabilities$16,845,864$17,159,404$18,978,308$23,030,807$21,085,340
Total liabilities$23,767,997$21,828,617$23,977,050$29,808,846$29,579,561
Net assets20202018201720162015
Without donor restrictions$8,585,787$12,757,954$10,685,828$9,354,031$8,808,245
With donor restrictions$16,335,555$13,988,131$13,911,022$13,615,060$11,810,834
Net assets$24,921,342$26,746,085$24,596,850$22,969,091$20,619,079
Revenues and expenses
Total contributions$3,495,935$5,710,604$2,533,424$5,130,072$1,969,901
Program service revenue$36,162,134$37,127,993$38,493,500$39,134,497$39,094,552
Membership dues$0$0$0$0$0
Investment income$279,337$312,045$406,847$320,394$389,067
Other revenue$68,635$345,770$481,966$319,077$189,473
Total other revenue$36,510,106$37,785,808$39,382,313$39,773,968$39,673,092
Total revenue$40,006,041$43,496,412$41,915,737$44,904,040$41,642,993
Program services$35,113,865$34,561,394$36,044,464$35,029,646$35,806,686
Management and general$4,252,907$6,269,601$4,335,556$6,495,096$6,051,737
Total expenses$40,391,222$42,004,125$41,743,722$42,646,183$43,176,818
Change in net assets20202018201720162015
Surplus (deficit)($385,181)$1,492,287$172,015$2,257,857($1,533,825)
Other changes in net assets$0$0$0$0$0
Total change in net assets($385,181)$1,492,287$172,015$2,257,857($1,533,825)


Gregg ChenowethPresident$270,731
Barb BellefeuilleVP of Academic Services$134,285
Terrell ElamVP For Enrollment Management$131,489
Shawn HoltgrenVP For Student Development$103,264
Jerry White Started 0VP For Admin & Finance, CFO$54,138
Matthew Lentsch StartVP Institutional Advancement$52,318

Compensation data as of: 6/30/2020

Response from ministry

No response has been provided by this ministry.

The information below was provided to MinistryWatch by the ministry itself. It was last updated 1/30/2023. To update the information below, please email: [email protected]


The roots of Bethel University run deep. Mennonite Brethren in Christ (MBC) founder Daniel Brenneman first called for a training institute in 1893. Then, for many years, J. A. Huffman pressed the case for a Christian liberal arts college, even suggesting the name Bethel, meaning "house of God." Formal church approval finally came in 1944, and land was purchased in Mishawaka, Indiana during 1946 under the leadership of Q. J. Everest, Seth Rohrer, and Warren Manges. Twenty-seven-year-old Woodrow I. Goodman (1947-1959) was appointed the first president, at that time the youngest in the United States.


Bethel College opened in the fall of 1947 with 94 students. During that same year, the MBC became the United Missionary Church. The Administration Building was completed in 1951, the first of many projects dependent upon sacrificial giving and volunteer labor.


Bethel established some 11 academic programs during its first decade, capped by the Teacher Education Program in 1955. Intercollegiate athletic programs were approved in 1958, with the first intercollegiate basketball game played in 1959.

1970s - 1980s

On March 31, 1971, President Ray P. Pannabecker (1959-1974) and Dean Wayne J. Gerber welcomed North Central Association accreditation. Bethel College grew steadily until it reached an enrollment of about 500. The college flourished because of what President Steven R. Cramer has called its "human endowment"-an extremely loyal, faithful, and hard-working faculty, staff, administration and Board of Trustees.

Bethel College continued moving forward under the presidencies of Albert J. Beutler (1974-1981), James A. Bennett (1982-1988), and Walter L. Weldy (interim 1988-1989). Among the more notable additions and innovations were the adult programs, the division of nursing, and the Otis Bowen Library, which anchored a new architectural style. In 1986, the baseball team won the first of what would become over 40 team national championships.


Bethel experienced a remarkable renaissance under the presidency of Norman V. Bridges (1989-2004). A dynamic team of administrators, repeated record enrollments, greatly expanded curricular offerings, the hiring of nationally known scholars, an aggressive, aesthetically attractive plan of campus development, and notable periods of spiritual renewal have helped make Bethel College a school of choice for many from the region.

In addition to a burgeoning traditional student body, adult and graduate degree programs have helped fuel the growth of the college. With notable new majors in Sign Language Interpreting, Environmental Biology, Criminal Justice, Philosophy, and Spanish complementing traditional strengths in Music, Theatre, Religion, Business, and the service professions, Bethel College increasingly reflects a national and international student body. The college also participates in a broad range of study abroad programs and annually sends out dozens of students on Task Force ministry teams around the world.

Dr. Steven R. Cramer was inaugurated in 2004 as the sixth president of Bethel College, and his tenure extended the pattern of strong, progressive leadership. During his presidency, the music department received NASM accreditation and the campus became more intentional in its multi-ethnic programming. Senior administrators worked to secure the long-term financial future of Bethel during a period of national economic crisis. Dr. Dennis D. Engbrecht continued as Senior Vice President.

A $6.9 million addition to the Middleton Hall of Science is just one in a long string of major construction and landscaping projects since the early 1990s, including Founders Village Apartments, the Middleton wing for Nursing, an enlarged Dining Commons, the Everest-Rohrer Chapel/Fine Arts Center, Wiekamp Athletic Center, Shiloh Prayer Chapel, the campus ponds and waterfall, Morey Soccer Field, Taylor Memorial Chapel, Jenkins Stadium, Sailor Residential Center, Miller/Moore Academic Center, Campus Store, and a new west campus entrance and a renovated Helm. A series of land acquisitions have shattered the myth that the main campus is landlocked. The Elkhart campus and the nursing program at Grace College are two of several emerging extension centers for Bethel.


With the appointment of Dr. Gregg Chenoweth as the new president in 2013, Bethel College stands on the threshold of a new era, but does so deeply rooted in a past sustained by faith. "Forward, with Christ at the helm."


Bethel College becomes Bethel University on May 6.


Over 40 athletic team national championships.

Program accomplishments

45 National championships for Bethel Pilots in the NAIA and NCCAA
22,000 hours of community service by Bethel students during the academic year
50+ areas of study