Every Christian is a minister and every Christian must prepare to communicate the gospel wherever God has placed them, whether in a church ministry context, teaching in a Christian school, a stay-at-home mother, or even, and especially, in secular employment!

If you are looking for somewhere to learn more about God and grow your faith, Fruitland Baptist Bible college is for you!

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What People Are Saying

I've never had a single professor at Fruitland who tried to trick you or trip you up. Fruitland professors want you to grasp the material and succeed.
Tom Beck
Fruitland Graduate
Many times people would ask me, "Why are you going to Fruitland? Are you going to be a preacher?" No, I don't feel called to preach. I feel called to be a confident and faithful layman in the church the Lord has placed me in. I want to be able to teach others, so that they can teach others, and the gospel can spread. The most important thing I have benefited from by coming here is the Word. Because of my time here, when it comes to something I don't understand in the Word, I have tools to study, to pray, to figure out, because is this not the most important thing in the world: to be able to understand what God is saying to us?
James Sneed
Fruitland Graduate
Fruitland is a wonderful opportunity for education. You are hearing every single day in the classroom from not just professors, but practitioners.
Steven Blanton
Professor of Biblical Exposition 201/202, Alumnus of Fruitland
It's the community and the fellowship of Fruitland that I value the most and what sets Fruitland apart from many other schools is the community and the accountability that you get here. It's really a family atmosphere, and you connect so much deeper here.
Rachel Dawkins
Fruitland Graduate

Over 75 Years of Fruitland

Fruitland has always been about training up servants of the Lord for the work of His ministry.

The History of Fruitland

The campus of Fruitland Baptist Bible College has been dedicated to Christian education since 1899. In that year a Christian high school was founded to serve local and boarding students. Local Baptists began the school and later formed a partnership with the Home Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. Fruitland College offered a Christian secondary education until the school was closed in 1936. The property was purchased later by the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina with the possibility of developing a conference center. The facilities were used for that purpose during the summer for several years.

Dr. J. C. Canipe, who was pastor of the First Baptist Church of Boone, North Carolina, began classes there to assist local pastors who had little opportunity for formal training. Dr. Canipe was also the Director of Evangelism for the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina. In 1946 the State Convention invited Dr. Canipe to move the classes he was offering to the Fruitland campus and Fruitland Baptist Bible College was born. Dr. Canipe was the first president and Fruitland was part of the Missions Division of the NC Baptist Convention.

Dr. Canipe served until his retirement in 1960. Fritz Hemphill, a pastor from Hickory, NC became president. He served until his resignation and was succeeded by Gary Harthcock, a layman and a leader in lay-evangelism in the state. He served until he and his wife were appointed missionaries to Antigua in the West Indies. Alex Booth, who had been serving as Dean, became the next president and served until his retirement in 1989. Mack Roberts, a pastor from Fayetteville, NC succeeded Dr. Booth as president. After the resignation of Mack Roberts, Randy Kilby became the sixth president of Fruitland in July, 1994. He came from a position as Vice President of Admissions at Georgetown College, Georgetown, Kentucky. Following Randy’s untimely death in 1997, Dr. Kenneth Ridings was named the 7th President of the college. He was born and reared in Fingerville, SC, and was Professor of Homiletics since 1968. Our 8th and current president David Horton served as president of the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina from 2003 to 2005, he also served as pastor of Gate City Baptist Church in Greensboro for 16 years.

Fruitland transitioned from being a ministry of the Missions Division of the state convention to being an agency of the General Board of the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina and has a rotating Board of Directors. The school continues to make every effort to be “true to God’s Word and loyal to His purpose.”