Bethany University is the oldest of the several Assemblies of God institutions of higher education. Founded in 1919 as Glad Tidings Bible Institute to be the training school for an inner-city ministry in San Francisco, the church and school enjoyed the next three decades an international reputation as a strategic source of Christian workers.
Today Bethany University offers flexible academic options that include campus, off-campus and online certificate and degree programs, on completion of which either a Credential/Certificate or one of the following degrees can be obtained: Associate of Arts, Bachelor of Arts, Master of Arts, or Master of Sciences. The affiliations Bethany University participates in include Assemblies of God as well as with some other Christian denominations/affiliations.
With student/faculty ratio 12:1, there is a great diversity of students including African-American, Asian-American and Pacific Islander-American, Caucasian, Hispanic, International, Native American and other nationalities.
Students actively participate in the sport life of the University. They take part in NAIA & California Pacific Conferences in such sports as men-basketball, baseball and soccer, women-basketball, soccer, softball and volleyball. Intramural sports include basketball, dodge ball, and flag football.
There are a number of student ministries, among which Drama Association, Men's Ministry, PUSH Ministries-prayer team, Roadtrip (Church relations), Skate Church, Surf Ministry, Urban Ministries, Veritas Forum, and Women's Ministry. Student clubs and organizations are also numerous and include class government, ministry leaders, residence leaders, student newspaper, student senate, yearbook, Dance Group, Speech and Debate, Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE).