|Clinton College was one of many schools established by the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church during Reconstruction to help eradicate illiteracy among freedmen. The oldest institution of higher education in Rock Hill, South Carolina, it has operated continuously for 115 years. In 1894, Presiding Elder Nero A. Crockett and Rev. W.M. Robinson founded Clinton Institute and named it for Bishop Caleb Isom Clinton, the Palmetto Conference presiding bishop at the time. Incorporated as Clinton Normal and Industrial Institute on June 22, 1909, the school was authorized to grant state teacher certificates. By the late 1940ís, the college attracted 225 students per year and owned approximately 19 acres, several buildings, and equipment valued at several million dollars. Under Dr. Sallie V. Moreland, who retired in 1994 after 49 years of stellar service, the school charter was amended to create Clinton Junior College. When Dr. Cynthia L. McCullough Russell assumed leadership, the school prepared for accreditation, attained during the tenure of Dr. Elaine Johnson Copeland.
In keeping with its rich 115 year tradition, Clinton College offers an academic environment that not only promotes intellectual growth, but also fosters positive moral, ethical, and spiritual values. It has a proud heritage as a Christian college, striving to prepare men and women to be lifelong learners, active participating citizens, and good stewards of society.