Rahul Sharma (Editor)

Loma Linda University

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Type  Private
Provost  Ronald Carter, PhD
Undergraduate tuition and fees  25,680 USD (2010)
Endowment  436.7 million USD
Established  1905
Administrative staff  1,068
Phone  +1 909-558-4000
Motto  To make man whole
Loma Linda University
Affiliation  Seventh-day Adventist Church
President  Richard H. Hart, MD, DrPH
Address  11139 Anderson St, Loma Linda, CA 92350, USA
Founder  Seventh-day Adventist Church
Subsidiaries  Loma Linda University School of Medicine
Notable alumni  Heather Knight, T R M Howard, Frank Jobe, Cynara Coomer, Alan Nakanishi
Similar  La Sierra University, Pacific Union College, Andrews University, Western University of Health, California State University

History of loma linda university the pioneers

Loma Linda University (LLU) is a Seventh-day Adventist coeducational health sciences university located in Loma Linda, California, United States. The University comprises eight schools and the Faculty of Graduate Studies. More than 100 certificate and degree programs are offered by the schools of allied health professions, behavioral health, dentistry, medicine, nursing, pharmacy, public health, and religion. Curricula offered range from certificates of completion and associate in science degrees to doctor of philosophy and professional doctoral degrees. LLU also offers distance education. It is a part of the Seventh-day Adventist education system, the world's second largest Christian school system. The university is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). Its on-campus church has around 7,000 members. Loma Linda Academy, a Seventh-day Adventist K-12 school, is located nearby.


The university also hosts a branch office of the Ellen G. White Estate. Affiliated with Burman University and operating on the same campus, is Loma Linda University's Marital and Family Therapy master's degree program. Loma Linda is closing its program in Alberta and is no longer admitting students.

Loma linda university health facts figures


Loma Linda University had its beginning in 1905 when Seventh-day Adventists John Burden and Ellen G. White worked together to purchase the property and develop what became known as the Loma Linda Sanitarium.

In 1906, Ellen White recalled:

"While attending the General Conference of 1905, at Washington, D. C, I received a letter from Elder J. A. Burden, describing a property he had found four miles west of Redlands, five and one-half miles southeast of San Bernardino, and eight miles northeast of Riverside. As I read his letter, I was impressed that this was one of the places I had seen in vision, and I immediately telegraphed him to secure the property without delay. He did so, and as the result, Loma Linda is in our possession."

In February 1906, a council of church workers met at Loma Linda. It consisted of the faculty of Fernando Academy, the faculty of the Loma Linda school, and the executive committee of the Southern California Conference. John Burden reported their ideas to Ellen White in a letter dated February 14:

"...There was perfect agreement among all present in the conclusions reached and the plans laid. It would have done you good, Sister White, to see the spirit of unity, and the desire of all that the work at Loma Linda should be made just what the Lord designed it to be. (LLM 6.6)

After carefully considering the light that has been sent to us, and the counsel that has been given with reference to the school at Loma Linda, all were unanimous in their decision that it must be the Lord's plan that a medical missionary school should be carried forward here, with a course sufficiently complete to thoroughly qualify nurses for their professional duties, and to work as educators in medical evangelistic work; and also to qualify certain ones to stand at the head of our medical evangelistic work; and also to qualify certain ones to stand at the head of our medical institutions as fully accredited physicians. (LLM 6.7)

As we studied over what would be necessary for the school to accomplish this work, it seemed to us it would be necessary to employ two physicians as teachers in the school, a Bible instructor, and one other general school man. These four instructors, with the three physicians employed by the Sanitarium and such practical instructors as those qualified to teach practical hydrotherapy, practical nursing, healthful cookery, etc., would be a strong educational faculty for the qualifying of the two classes of workers, one as nurses, and the other as physicians to engage in evangelistic medical work. (LLM 7.1)

Now in order to give these evangelistic physicians standing in the world, it was thought we should secure a charter for the school, which would enable it to grant degrees to all who finished the prescribed course of study. Many, no doubt, would enter the field without waiting to secure a degree, possibly after studying one or two years, as there are many fields in which they could labor freely as medical missionary evangelists without a degree. But from the instruction in the testimonies, we understand that some should qualify as fully accredited physicians, hence the school should plan its course accordingly... (LLM 7.2)"

In 1906, The Loma Linda College of Evangelists was established. Courses included:

Religion: Bible Evangelism, Acts and Epistles, Missionary Methods, and Doctrines and Prophecies.

General: History, Languages, Mathematics, English, Music, Piano and Organ.

Industrial: Science of Gardening, Practical Gardening, Electrical Mechanics, Carpentry, Cookery, Accounting, Sewing.


The 1910 Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook enters the school as 'Loma Linda College'. It adds the legal title, 'College of Medical Evangelists of Loma Linda' (CME) and notes that the school was chartered as a Medical College in 1909. At the General Conference Committee Council held at Takoma Park, April 5–15, 1910,

"The following action was taken : —

"Whereas, It is advised that a medical school be equipped and conducted at Loma Linda, Cal.; and,—
Whereas, The Pacific Union Conference of Seventh-day Adventists has petitioned that the General Conference join it in this undertaking; therefore,—

"Resolved, I. That the General Conference unite with the Pacific Union Conference [and other union conferences] in establishing a medical school at Loma Linda, Cal.
2. That we authorize the officers of the General Conference to appropriate one thousand dollars, or any fraction thereof, for the above purpose, during the year 1910.

Later that same year, the minutes for the 187th Meeting of the General Conference Committee, December 2, recorded:

"G. A. Irwin spoke of the opening of Loma Linda Medical College. There are about 130 helpers and students in the family, and the Board is putting up a dormitory for 60 people. They need also a laboratory, this being an urgent need."

1910 to 1919

In 1911, Church worker Sarah Turner, of Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, visited Loma Linda and sent the following letter to the Canadian Union Messenger:

"A Visit at Loma Linda. Dear Readers, You have no doubt read of Loma Linda in some of our papers, but I do not know of any thing ever appearing in the MESSENGER concerning it. I might say, it is one thing to read about it, and another thing to visit it, and to see for yourself. For three weeks it was my privilege to visit there. Loma Linda is certainly in keeping with what its name implies--Hill Beautiful. It is located in an ideal spot, and, in my opinion, is as pretty as pictured. To receive a training there must be deemed a privilege. The advantages and opportunities are excellent, and come up to one's expectations.

"Judging from appearances and the testimonies given by the students, a good class of young people are in training who seem possessed with the true missionary spirit, desiring to lay all on the altar of service. The training is thorough in all lines; nothing is regarded as menial. The spiritual interest of all is carefully guarded; the word of God and the Testimonies being held up as the only standard. "One is impressed with the quickness and quietness with which all work is done. Perfect harmony seems to prevail in all lines. We were reminded of the words of Holy Writ,--"Let all things be done decently and in order."

"Young people desiring an education to prepare themselves for the Lord's work, but through lack of finances are unable to attend our colleges, are at this place enabled to pay expenses by work. It is an extremely busy place, no need of any one being idle, and thereby a tool for the enemy. There are two hundred students here in training. "It is not the aim to have many people settle at Loma Linda. Only those are wanted who are needed to carry on the work, or are in training. The Lord has set his seal to the work here. By his direction it was established, and by him it has been carried on and sustained. Those receiving training here certainly increase their responsibility. "I read with interest the reports in the MESSENGER each week, and the work and workers are remembered at the throne of grace. May all be filled with determination to be faithful till Jesus comes is my prayer. Yours in the truth. SARAH E. TURNER. St. Helena, Cal."

Early Clinical Developments

From 1913 to 1962, the university taught basic sciences in Loma Linda, but sent its students to Los Angeles for clinical experience.

Ellen White promoted rural settings for Adventist schools, but to train medical students, the school needed clinical experience. Loma Linda Sanitarium did not have such a clinic. The American Medical Association would not recognize the medical college if it did not provide adequate clinical experience for its students.

In 1905, the American Medical Association formed their Council on Medical Education. Dr. Nathan Porter Colwell (1870–1936) became its first secretary the next year.

"From that time he made numerous contributions to the subject of medical education. As secretary of the Council he bore a large share of the responsibility for direct investigation and report on medical schools, for aiding the trend of discussions at the annual conferences on medical education, and for setting forth clearly the facts in relationship to medical education in the United States."

Adventists leaders interested in developing the medical school met with Dr. Colwell. He visited the campus and gave counsel on how to proceed.

E. E. Andross, President of the Pacific Union Conference of Seventh-day Adventists and Chairman of the Board for the College of Medical Evangelists, reported on a special meeting of the constituency of the college convened at Loma Linda, January 27, 1913. A large number of General Conference men were in California at time. Andross called this meeting in order to benefit from their counsel. In his report, he wrote:

While it is not the purpose of those carrying the responsibility in this institution to make it conform to the world in anything that affects the vital principles of this message, yet so far as the educational standard erected by state law or advocated by the medical associations is concerned, it is our purpose to meet these standards, and to place the institution on such a basis as to enable it to graduate physicians who, from an educational viewpoint, will stand even in the eyes of the world, without prejudice. We have been instructed that the education of our physicians should be of the highest order, so that no sensible physician would have the opportunity of saying that the graduates were not proficient.

This will require an investment in a clinical hospital and in dispensary work.

On September 29, 1913, the College of Medical Evangelists opened the First Street Dispensary in the heart of Los Angeles.

Los Angeles Hospital

The December 16, 1915 Review and Herald reported on the General Conference Committee's Biennial Council which met in November at Loma Linda:

"In order to equip and properly complete the medical college at Loma Linda, Cal., it will be necessary to build in Los Angeles a hospital requiring an outlay of approximately $60,000. The constituency of the medical college voted to erect this building when the funds have been provided, so that there will be no further increase of indebtedness. A memorial presented, suggesting that the necessary funds to this end be raised by the women of the denomination, and that a committee of sisters be appointed to promote this work..."

World War I and a 'B' Rating

In the May 30, 1918 edition of the Review and Herald, E. E. Andross, still president of the Pacific Union Conference, reported:

During the present school year, 192 students have matriculated. A number of our students in the medical course were taken in the first military draft, but, in the providence of God, these have all been returned, and are to be permitted to complete their course and to spend one year in addition in hospital interne work before being called into army service. The rating of the college by the American Medical Association has recently been raised from " C " to " B" grade, placing it, with the Federal authorities, in the class of acceptable medical colleges. We are profoundly thankful to God for the manifest tokens of his favor.

The United States federal government exempted medical students from the military draft. But they would only recognize 'A' and 'B' rated medical schools. The College of Medical Evangelists only had a 'C' rating. The California state authorities supported a higher rating. After a nationwide effort, Percy T. Magan and colleagues persuaded Dr. Colwell to visit the school and determine whether a 'B' rating could be given. After the AMA's visit, the rating was upgraded to 'B'. Medical students who had already left for their military duties returned to finish their medical training.

Margaret Rossiter White, Historical Records Librarian at Loma Linda, writes:

"This tremendous victory called for an appropriate celebration at Loma Linda. New Year's Day, 1918, was appointed Jubilee Day, and invitations were sent to, all the doctors and their families on the Los Angeles and Loma Linda faculty, members of the Loma Linda church and their families, members of the surrounding churches, including the faculties of the Glendale Sanitarium and Paradise Valley Sanitarium, and everyone else they could think of who had a special interest in the college. A free dinner was offered for students, nurses, and visiting physicians, and special guests. The church was decorated with plants, ferns, flowers, and holly; the orchestra offered some "good triumphant pieces"; Miss Katherine Hansen sang, in her lovely contralto voice, "God Will Take Care of You" (by special request from Dr. Magan). Dr. Magan was master of ceremonies, and Elder John Burden had been asked to make "the big speech." All in all, it was a great occasion, a combination of Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's. And not the least thankful among the joyous crowd were the boys who had returned from camp (all but one), to continue their studies in the College of Medical Evangelists.


'A' Rating

In Los Angeles, November 3, 1922, Dr. Colwell met Dr. Evans, of Loma Linda, and Dr. Magan, of Los Angeles. They gave him a tour of the Boyle Avenue hospital block. At a luncheon held at the Athletic Club of Los Angeles attended by fifteen of the leading physicians of Los Angeles and the Pacific Coast, Dr. Colwell shared his thoughts on the medical college:

"...When the Seventh-day Adventists first started, a number of us felt they were doomed to defeat. I told them over and over again not to make a start. But today I confess that their faith has triumphed over my unbelief. Some years ago Dr. Magan took me over the place which their hospital plant now covers. It was then a mass of weeds and cockleburs, and there were two or three sorry-looking animals feeding upon it. Dr. Magan remarked to me that someday they would have a great medical institution there. I thought to myself: "You poor soul; you do not know what you are talking about. You will never be able to have a first-class medical school." But today I walked over that same block covered with beautiful buildings and a veritable hive of medical activity. I have not completed my inspection yet, but I am almost certain as to the kind of a report I will make; and I am sure you will be satisfied with it."

On November 16, 1922, Dr. Colwell reported that the Council on Medical Education had granted an 'A' rating to the College of Medical Evangelists.

Accreditation of Pre-Medical Programs in Adventist Colleges

The medical world, under the leadership of men like Dr. Colwell and W.E. Musgrave, was quickly developing standards for medical education and for the quality of hospitals. The requirements for accreditation developed as well. The July 12, 1923 Review and Herald presented the addresses given at the Educational Convention held at Colorado Springs, Colo., June 5–19, 1923. In an article entitled 'Separation from the World in Education', W.E. Howell, former President of the Loma Linda College of Evangelists (1906) and at the time of the article, the Secretary, or director, of the SDA General Conference Education Department expressed concern for where dependence on accreditation would lead Adventist schools. Under the subtitle 'Medical Standardization,' he said:

"While our teachers were resorting to centers of learning in increasing numbers, followed to no small degree by student graduates and undergraduates, a new menace arose from an unexpected quarter. Wisely or unwisely, our medical college had linked up with an organization (AMA) which assumed the task of defining and dictating standards for medical schools, with a view to eliminating incompetent institutions. While the step we took looked innocent enough at first, the inevitable result of tying up an institution of our own with an organization of entirely different aims, soon showed itself in a surprising way. A new standard was promulgated, requiring that all entrants to a standard medical college should present their credits from a school that was registered as standard by an association of educators who had assumed a similar task of standardizing literary schools.

The 47th General Hospital

During World War II, the CME sponsored the 47th General Hospital. The college's Alumni Journal, August 1946, reports:

"... The 47th was an affiliated hospital unit in the United States Army sponsored by the College of Medical Evangelists. The Unit left the States under the command of colonel Ben E. Grant, '20 January, 1944, and upon arrival at New Guinea was stationed at Milne Bay until July 1945. At that time the 47th General Hospital, commanded by Colonel Earl B. Ray, '29, was transferred to the Philippine Islands, and established at Villasis on Luzon Island for two months..."


University Status and Name Change

In 1961 the college was upgraded to university status and renamed after the city. All its science and clinical faculty were consolidated within the city by 1962.

On July 9, 1967, the university opened the Loma Linda University Medical Center with more than 125 patients from the old community hospital. The university also operated the Seventh-day Adventist liberal arts college in Riverside from 1967 to 1990, which is now known as La Sierra University.

In 1980, the state designated LLU the only Level I trauma center in San Bernardino, Riverside, Inyo and Mono counties, which comprise more than a fourth of the state's land mass. About 1,600 emergency helicopters land there each year.


In October 1984, at Loma Linda University Medical Center, Baby Fae became the first human to receive a heart of a baboon. The transplant appeared to be successful, but Baby Fae died 21 days later of heart failure due to rejection of the transplant.

In 1991, B. Lyn Behrens became the first female president of LLU. Serving until March 2008, she was succeeded by Richard Hart, who had previously served as LLU's chancellor.

Loma Linda University celebrated the Grand Opening of its new 150,000-square-foot (14,000 m2) Centennial Complex on October 28, 2009. The complex includes new classrooms, two 100-seat amphitheaters and more than 100 workstations with labs for dental, medical, physical therapy and graduate students. Updated technology allows the university to link to several areas around the globe. Additionally, the complex houses simulation labs where students can practice medical skills on live actors and sophisticated robotic mannequins. The complex was expected to bump up the university's growth by 25 percent from its current enrollment of 4,000 students to 5,000 students by 2010.

Loma Linda Mayor Bob Christman said, "The city wouldn't even be here if the university and medical center weren't here. It's had a significant, beneficial impact on the city. In fact, in my opinion, it's had a significant, beneficial impact on the entire Inland Empire."

Grants and funding

The University applies for and receives grants from various organizations. Some of the research grants include:

  • California Walnut Commission for walnut research
  • Pfizer Public Health & Government Group for public health television and Internet programming
  • NSF Partnership for Innovation Grant in partnership with the Larta Institute
  • Federal government support

    The special relationship between Loma Linda University and Representative Jerry Lewis, R – San Bernardino, first came to light in a Pulitzer Award winning expose written by Jerry Kammer. Lewis has lent significant help in funding important school operations. From 1998-2003, Loma Linda has received $167.2 million in federal funds, the number one academic recipient in the country receiving nearly $60 million more than the runner up, the University of South Florida. In 2000, it was the single largest recipient of higher education grants at $36 million. Several grants were from the Department of Defense, plus $5 million from NASA for space radiation research. Critics point out that the brother of Lewis is employed by Loma Linda University. In 2008, Loma Linda University received nearly $9.5 million of which $5 million came from the Department of Defense.

    Academic programs

    Loma Linda University offers more than 100 degrees and certificate programs in the following Schools:

  • School of Allied Health Professions
  • School of Behavioral Health
  • School of Dentistry
  • School of Medicine
  • School of Nursing
  • School of Pharmacy
  • School of Public Health
  • School of Religion
  • Faculty of Graduate Studies
  • School of Public Health

    The Loma Linda University School of Public Health was founded in 1967. The school is an accredited member of the Association of Schools of Public Health (ASPH). The Master of Public Health (MPH) degree is offered with the following concentrations:

    MPH concentrations

  • Biostatistics
  • Distance Learning
  • Environmental & Occupational Health
  • Epidemiology
  • Global Health
  • Health Policy and Leadership (Also offered as MBA program in Health Policy and Management)
  • Health Education
  • Health Geoinformatics
  • Maternal and Child Health
  • Nutrition
  • Peace Corps program
  • Preventive care
  • Public Health Practice
  • Additional degrees offered

    The School of Public Health also offers a Master of Science MS, Master of Business Administration MBA, Doctor of Public Health DrPH, and Certificates in various programs.

    School of Behavioral Health

    The Loma Linda University School of Behavioral Health was created in 2012 to unite LLU's behavioral health disciplines. The school's departments and the degrees they offer are listed below:

  • Counseling and Family Sciences: Child Life Specialist (MS), Clinical Mediation (Certificate), Counseling (MS), Drug and Alcohol Counseling (Certificate), Family Life Education (Certificate), Marital and Family Therapy (MS, DMFT, PhD), School Counseling (Certificate)
  • Psychology: Psychology (PsyD, PhD)
  • Social Work and Social Ecology: Criminal Justice (MS), Gerontology (MS), Social Policy and Social Research (PhD), Social Work (MSW)
  • Division of Interdisciplinary Studies: Play Therapy (Certificate)
  • Dual Degrees: Bioethics/Social Policy and Social Research (MA/PhD), Clinical Ministry/Marital and Family Therapy (MA/MS), Social Work/Criminal Justice (MSW/MS), Social Work/Gerontology (MSW/MS), Social Work/Social Policy and Social Research (MSW/PhD)
  • The School of Behavioral Health also provides outpatient services at the Behavioral Health Institute.

    Medical Center

    The Loma Linda University Medical Center, in Loma Linda, California, admits more than 30,000 patients per year. LLUMC, as it is commonly known, also houses the Loma Linda University Children's Hospital, Proton Treatment Center, Transplantation Institute & Liver Center, and Loma Linda International Heart Institute.


    Loma Linda University Wikipedia