CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – Former College of Charleston president Edward M. Collins Jr., has passed away, the school announced on Tuesday.
Collins, who died on April 10th, served as the college’s president from 1978 until 1985.
“When he assumed the presidency, Collins continued to follow the student-centered philosophy of his predecessor, President Emeritus Ted Stern,” the college said in its announcement.
College leaders say during his time with the school, he dedicated several buildings that had been planned during Stern’s tenure, including the long-awaited fine arts building, Albert Simons Center for the Arts.
Collins was born in McComb, Mississippi in 1931 and attended Millsaps College where he played football and tennis and was elected to the Millsaps College Sports Hall of Fame for both sports.
He went on to receive his Master of Divinity from Emory University, Master of Arts from the University of Iowa and his Doctor of Philosophy from Ohio University.
“President Collins inspired the campus community with his vision of the university in his speech: ‘Finding Roots and Gaining Wings’ – which served as the theme for the bicentennial celebration of the College’s charter,” said College of Charleston’s current president, Andrew T. Hsu, in a statement.
He went on to say, “Our campus community shares in his family’s sadness, but we also should take this moment to celebrate his many contributions as our 17th president and for his impact on generations of College of Charleston students and families.”
He will be buried at Hollywood Cemetery in McComb, Mississippi. A private family funeral will take place at Hartman-Jones Funeral Home on April 17, 2021.