Edward Waters University (EWU) is, distinctively, Florida’s oldest independent institution of higher learning as well as the state’s first institution established for the education of African Americans.
Edward Waters University began as an institution founded by blacks, for blacks. In 1865, following the Civil War, the Reverend Charles H. Pearce, a presiding elder of the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church, was sent to Florida by Bishop Daniel Alexander Payne. Observing the fast-paced social and political changes of the Reconstruction era, Rev. Pearce immediately recognized the need for an education ministry, as no provision had yet been made for the public education of Florida’s newly emancipated blacks. Assisted by the Reverend William G. Steward, the first AME pastor in the state, Pearce began to raise funds to build a school.
This school, established in 1866, was to eventually evolve into Edward Waters University. From the beginning, EWU was faced with both abject poverty and widespread illiteracy among its constituents resulting from pre-war conditions of servitude and historical, legally enforced non-schooling of African Americans. However, the school met the needs of its community by offering courses at the elementary, high school, college, and seminary levels. Construction of the first building began in October 1872 on ten acres of land in Live Oak. Further support for this new educational institution
came from numerous friends, including railroad magnate General M.S. Littlefield, state Treasurer Simon Conaber, and Lieutenant General William Gleason. In 1892 the school’s name was changed to Edward Waters University in honor of the third Bishop of the AME Church.
In April 2018, the Board selected Dr. A. Zachary Faison, Jr.as the 30th President and CEO. At age 37, Faison’s appointment made him the nation’s youngest sitting president and CEO of an HBCU.
With a history beginning in the dark yet hopeful days of Reconstruction, today’s Edward Waters University is living, thriving proof of the power of education and the resilience of deeply rooted educational institutions. The College continues to experience the triumphs and challenges characteristic of its rich history and the bold dynamic future to which it aims.
Edward Waters University (Cir. 1889)
The aftermath of the Great Fire of 1901
Students in the 70’s in front of the Hatcher-Stewart Science and Mathematics Building
“If there is anything more reprehensible than the practice of discriminiation upon a people because of race, color, religion, national origin or ancestry, it is for the people discriminated against to accept it without protest or resistance. It is an evidence of an utter lack of self-respect, the most priceless possession an individual or group can have, without which there can be no human dignity.”
– A. Philip Randolph, 1959
Asa Philip Randolph was a groundbreaking leader, organizer, and social activist who championed equitable labor rights for African American communities, becoming one of the most impactful civil rights and social justice leaders of the 20th century. His activism spanned 60 years, and included the organization of the largest labor union for Black workers in the United States and the coordination of two Marches on Washington (1941 and 1963).
Randolph spent the formative years of his early life in Jacksonville, Florida. He was born on April 15, 1889, in Crescent City, Florida, to an ordained minister in the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) church, the Rev. James William Randolph, and his wife, Elizabeth Robinson Randolph. In 1891, when he was three years old, his family moved to Jacksonville. He attended Edward Waters University (a Historically Black College founded in 1866) from ages fourteen to sixteen before transferring to the Cookman Institute (a Historically Black educational institute founded in 1872 and located in Jacksonville), from which he graduated as valedictorian in 1907.
In 1911, recognizing the constraints that racial segregation placed on his life in his native Florida, Randolph left Jacksonville for New York City. Initially he hoped for a life on the stage but redirected his talents to issues of fairness and equity in employment and civic life. During World War I, Randolph faced formidable odds as he worked to unionize African American shipyard workers and elevator operators. During this time, along with his friend and collaborator Chandler Owen, Randolph edited and published the Messenger magazine between 1917 and 1925, during which it served as a promotional vehicle for the Harlem Renaissance.
Randolph’s career as a labor leader took a new turn when he became the first president of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters in 1925, which by 1937 would become the first official African American labor union. After his victories in the arena of organized labor, in the 1940s, Randolph focused his attention on the larger goal of ending racial discrimination in government defense factories and desegregating the armed forces, both accomplished through presidential decrees. Becoming involved in additional civil rights work, he was a principal organizer of the proposed March on Washington in 1941, and the more famous 1963 March on Washington during which the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” speech.
On May 16, 1979, at age 90, Mr. Randolph passed away. He was cremated, and his ashes were interred at the A. Philip Randolph Institute in Washington, D.C.
There are several sites in Jacksonville that pay tribute to the legacy of A. Philip Randolph. He is the namesake of the A. Philip Randolph Academies of Technology, A. Philip Randolph Boulevard (formerly Florida Avenue), and the adjoining A. Philip Randolph Park on Jacksonville’s east side.
Phase One Instructions
In accordance with the advisement of the State of Florida and the City of Jacksonville authorities, EWU Administration has scheduled EWU staff the phased return to normal on-campus operations, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday beginning Monday, July 6, 2020. EWU faculty will return to campus on August 6, 2020.
As we transition back to campus, we ask for your patience, understanding, adaptability and flexibility, as this is a new experience for us all. It is imperative that all faculty, staff and students actively commit to adhering to the new processes that will be implemented to ensure the safety and wellbeing for one another, our families and our communities. It starts with each one of us and I believe together as a team we can rise to the challenge.
Consideration will be given for the implementation of alternative work arrangements for those employees who fall within the following parameters. These self-identified individuals are asked to contact the Office of Human Resources as soon as possible via email at email@example.com for further instructions:
- Aged 65 and above
- Pre-existing health conditions
- Chronic medical conditions or immunocompromised conditions that may prohibit their immediate return to on-campus work.
As previously communicated, EWU is continuing to adhere to all recommended regulations and guidelines from government authorities related to the containment of COVID-19. As an attempt to ensure safety, we will be distributing personal protection equipment (PPE) along with cleaning/sanitization supplies to all faculty and staff for the purpose of minimizing cross-contamination and maintaining individual work space in between Sodexo scheduled cleaning protocols. Laptops and webcams will also be assigned to support on-campus virtual meetings during this process. Employees are required to wear their ID badges and should contact the IT Helpdesk via firstname.lastname@example.org obtain an ID badge prior to July 6, 2020. All employees are required to properly wear the face mask provided by EWU or pre-approved face masks covering the nose and mouth when on campus. Masks are not required when the employee is in the office alone.
ALL employees are asked to respect this process. Employees resistant to complying with wearing face masks and all other precautionary protocols will be sent home. We have proactively implemented several preventative measures outlined below.
Preventative measures currently in place include:
- Utilizing no-touch thermometers to check for existing fevers.
- Deep cleaning and Sanitization Protocols: We have implemented deep cleaning and disinfection protocols for the entire campus community. These protocols will be enforced in addition to our already rigorous sanitization standards in place. Please be advised that Sodexo will need to access your office, so please be prepared to provide access if they do not have keys to your area. To contact cleaning facilities directly, please email or call 904-470-8164.
- We have placed posters that encourage wearing personal protection equipment (PPE), social distancing, , , and at various building entrances and other workplace areas where they are likely to be seen.
- Provided no-touch disposal receptacles for use by employees.
- To enforce social distancing, we have altered direct access with employees, continuing with virtual meeting orders, closed bathroom stalls, minimized the elevator use, placed floor marking and provided directional signage to control the movement throughout the campus.
- Directed employees to clean their hands often with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60-95% alcohol, or wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Soap and water should be used preferentially if hands are visibly dirty.
- Provided soap and water in the workplace. We have ensured that adequate supplies are maintained.
- Best Practices for Personal Health: Human coronaviruses are usually spread from an infected person to others through the air by coughing and sneezing, close personal contact (such as shaking hands), touching an object or surface with the virus on it, then touching your mouth nose or eyes before washing your hands, or (rarely) fecal contamination.
To reduce your risk of infection: Always wear provided masks unless you are in your office space alone. Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands, and avoid close contact with people who are sick. Please refrain from gathering in groups. Please continue to practice appropriate social distancing, 6 feet.
Employee Travel: Travel for faculty and staff is suspended indefinitely, with exceptions authorized by the President & CEO only.
Travel: If any faculty or staff have traveled to any areas (nationally or internationally) where cases have been reported, please immediately notify the University of such. If exposed to the virus, we are asking those individuals to self-isolate as recommended by the CDC, the World Health Organization and the U.S. State Department.
Meetings: Staff and other meetings should be conducted by phone or video conference per the advisement of the area Vice President.
Classes: As of now, EWU requires all summer courses are to be delivered online. As such, students and faculty will remain off-campus.
Lunch: When leaving campus for lunch, please remain mindful of social distancing, proper hygiene and the risks of contracting COVID-19.
The safety and well-being of EWU students, faculty and staff members is our top priority. We are closely monitoring guidance by the CDC, World Health Organization and other public health authorities, taking proper health precautions where warranted. We are also encouraging the college community to take any signs of illness seriously and seek medical attention as needed.
Guidelines for Suspected Illness and When to Stay/Go Home:
- Employees who have symptoms of acute respiratory illness are to stay home and not come to work until they are free of fever (100.4° F [37.8° C] or greater using an oral thermometer), signs of a fever, and any other symptoms for at least 24 hours, without the use of fever-reducing or other symptom-altering medicines (e.g. cough suppressants). Employees should notify their supervisor and stay home if they are sick.
- Employees who appear to have acute respiratory illness symptoms (i.e. cough, shortness of breath) upon arrival to work or become sick during the day will be sent home immediately to seek medical consultation.
- Employees who are well but who have a sick family member at home with COVID-19 should notify their supervisor, the Office of Human Resources, and refer to CDC guidance for of their potential exposure.
To protect EWU from COVID-19 while ensuring continuity of operations, all sick employees should stay home and away from the workplace, respiratory etiquette and hand hygiene should be encouraged, and routine cleaning of commonly touched surfaces should be performed regularly.
In the next coming weeks, you will be receiving an influx of information to guide us through this process. We ask that you please utilize it as requested. Please check periodically for updates and information via the University website at, campus email, and the University’s social media outlets, as these are the primary means of communication. Further, you may also follow updates from the local news affiliates.
The Edward Waters University administration thanks you for all you are doing to respond to the coronavirus. We will continue to reassess our practices based on developments and will advise you of any changes. Additionally, we encourage all of you to reach out to your immediate supervisor with any questions that may arise. Understandably, this is a time of uncertainty and stress; however, we appreciate your commitment to EWU in the face of these unprecedented challenges.
As we transition on Monday, March 23, 2020 to an “Interim Remote Work Period” via a teleworkmodality during this COVID-19 outbreak, we want to ensure that the intentions and expectations of performance and productivity are clearly communicated to all faculty and staff of Edward Waters University (EWU). Working from home does not constitute time-off or a relaxed work ethic. Rather, Telework is executing the same work obligations, but in an alternative location.
Remote working is most efficient when employees and supervisors communicate, plan and respond. Therefore, employees approved to work remotely from home on a temporary basis must:
- Be equally, if not more intentional, on response time
- Answer phones within three (3) rings, unless assisting others
- Check and clean voicemails regularly; adjust voicemails greetings appropriately
- Continue to use prompt and courteous EWU greetings when answering calls/emails
- Read and reply to emails on a heightened level for continuity and seamless process management
- Be prepared to meet as normal/as needed via virtual/teleconference meetings per Supervisor direction
- Be mindful of background noise
Please understand that as you work from home, consistent communication is critical as email and telecommunication will be the only lifelines between internal and external constituents. Failure to timely respond to directives from your supervisor and/or job related requests for support from students, faculty, staff, and outside business partners and constituencies may constitute non-compliance and result in the use of vacation time. Therefore, ensure your availability and conduct yourself as if present in your on-campus office.
Employees approved to telecommute must have the following items to ensure appropriate functioning of remote work environments include:
- Computer or laptop
- Internet (Comcast/Xfinity and Spectrum are offering free internet service)
- Forwarding land line or cell phone number to receive EWU calls
- Access to EWU remote desktop, files (electronic/paper), and other materials necessary for continued workflow
Specific details will be emailed by Mr. David Simfukwe, Director of Information Technology
& Telecommunications regarding directions on call forwarding and remote access to campus. Faculty and staff can also contact the IT Help Desk at 904-470-8179, or their immediate supervisor for area related questions and issues.
Please contact the Office of Human Resources for additional questions and/or clarity regarding the Interim Remote Work Report via email at HumanResources@ewc.edu or call 904-470-8237 or 904-470-8230.
Starting September 7, 2021 from 10:00am-1:00pm and occurring the first week of every month EWU students can walk-in &/or make an appointment to secure a time slot for the various workshops offered:
- Mondays : Mock Interviews (20 minute increments) -Students should come in dressed with professional attire and a description of the employment opportunity they are preparing for &/or seeking. Practice interviews will take place to help them prepare.
- Tuesdays: “Talk Tuesday”- consults will be done with students. They can come into the Career Center for career tests, guidance, questions &/or discussions on career-related topics.
- Wednesdays: “Wednesday Writing”- Students will be able to work on resumes, cover letters, portfolios, etc.. at the career center and have them reviewed.
- Thursdays: “Teach Me Thursday” – Every first Thursday of the month, a specific topic will be discussed. (i.e. personal development, networking, co-working, benefits of social media within certain career fields, guests will also be requested to speak on various topics as well, etc…)
- Fridays: “TGFO” Thank God for Opportunities- New jobs/internship announcements will be posted on the EWU Career website. EWU students can also come into the office to discuss available opportunities as well.
- Complete clearance with the Office of Student Accounts.
- The Non-refundable $100 Housing Reservation Fee MUST be paid to reserve a room.
- Register for Housing with 12 credit hours, YOU MUST HAVE 12 CREDIT HOURS TO KEEP YOUR ROOM RESERVATION.
BE EDUCATED. BE EMPOWERED. RESERVE YOUR SPACE!
- Make sure you are financially cleared for the Fall 2021 semester.
- Register for Housing with 12 credit hours, YOU MUST HAVE 12 CREDIT HOURS TO KEEP YOUR RESERVATION.
- Students must pay a non-refundable $100 Reservation Fee at the EWU Cashier’s Window, online by visiting the Student Account’s page, or over the phone by calling 904-470-8246.
- Clear all institution holds. Holds will prevent room assignments.
- Check your available financial aid, or other funding sources, to be certain you have enough funding for your educational costs. See your financial aid counselor. Don’t procrastinate!
- Communicate with Preferred Roommate about where you will reside – Both must qualify for selected building.
- Housing assignments are made on a first come, first serve basis. Incomplete applications will not receive room assignments until all requirements are satisfied.
August 31, 2019 07:00:00 PM
The Edward Waters University Emergency Management Team continues to closely monitor Hurricane Dorian, which is expected to be a Category 4 hurricane upon landfall in Florida.
Due to the easterly trajectory of the storm and its current speed, it has been determined that movement of the remaining on-campus students from their residence halls to the JWJ facility will not occur until further notice. Cafeteria hours will operate regular weekend hours on Sunday, September 1st and adjusted hours for Monday, September 2nd. Brunch will be from 11:00a.m. – 1:00p.m. and dinner will be from 5:00p.m. – 6:00p.m.
Be advised, you will receive official communication from the University via email, social media, the EWU Website, and Tiger Alert throughout the duration of the storm. We will continue to monitor weather conditions and update you accordingly.
The Mission of Residence Life and Housing is to provide a living learning experience that that supports all residential EWU students. We strive to create a safe wholesome living and learning environment that is conducive to the overall development of our students that aids in their academic success, leadership development, positive decision making and responsible citizenship. Services are provided to our students in a friendly, courteous and efficient manner which helps to promote academic success.
Mr. Quentin McBeth
Assistant Director of Housing Operations
August 16, 2019
*All incoming Freshmen students are mandated to be in attendance for this occasion. Freshmen female attire is black skirts and white blouse. Male Freshmen attire is black dress pants, white collar shirt and neck tie.
Jacksonville, Fla. – Edward Waters University is proud to announce that the Department of Business Administration has been granted the highly esteemed International Accreditation Council for Business Education (IACBE) accreditation — a nationally and internationally based accreditation. The Department initiated a relationship with IACBE through membership status. Over the years, the EWU Department of Business Administration has proven itself worthy of this highly sought after status.
“The Department of Business Administration strives to prepare our students for responsible positions in business, industrial, and government entities. This accreditation signifies that we are training our students beyond the basic standards. In addition, we are training our students to be confident, competent, ethical, and responsible business managers and leaders in the today’s society,” said Dr. Francis Ikeokwu, chair of the business department at Edward Waters University. “We will continue to apply our students and push them as they develop and graduate from our program and the University.”
According to their Web site, the IACBE’s accreditation principles are designed to promote and stimulate excellence in business education, and each accreditation principle is linked to one or more characteristics of excellence in business education. IACBE accreditation signifies that the business curriculum and co-curricular experiences provide students with the knowledge and skills needed to function effectively in business and industry. For more information on IACBE visit http://www.iacbe.org.
Edward Waters University has received specialized accreditation for its business programs through the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education (IACBE) located at 11374 Strang Line Road in Lenexa, Kansas, USA.
For a listing of accredited programs, click here.