Top 11 Best NAIA Schools in Missouri

Do you want to be a student-athlete? or do you have any dream of furthering your university education in one of the best schools in the United States of America that is an NAIA group?

In this article, you will get to know the NAIA schools in Missouri that you can easily get into and fulfill your dream of becoming a well-trained student-athlete.

Currently, there are only 14 NAIA schools in Missouri that engage in both male and female sports and most of these schools are fully accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the United States.

Are NAIA schools in Missouri 4 years?

All the NAIA schools in Missouri are four years schools, unlike NJCAA schools which are usually 2-3 years of study.

What are the best NAIA schools in Missouri?

Generally, there are 14 accredited NAIA schools in Missouri, most of them are private universities/colleges but this article is all about the top 10 best NAIA schools in Missouri you can get into as an international or traditional student without encountering any form of discrimination be it race or color, job employment or scholarships opportunities.

Top Ten (10) best NAIA schools in Missouri

  • Avila University
  • Central Methodist University
  • Columbia College
  • Cottey College
  • Hannibal LaGrange University
  • Evangel University
  • Culver-Stockton College
  • Harris-Stowe State University
  • Missouri Baptist University
  • Park University
  • Williams Woods University

Avila University

This is a 4 year private Roman Catholic university in Kansas City, Missouri with its 13 buildings situated on a campus of 50 acres in Kansan City.

The athletic team of this school is called the Eagles, they are a strong member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA).

Avila university’s athletic team competes in 14 intercollegiate varsity sports, they are primarily competing in Kansas Intercollegiate Athletics (KCAC) since the 2018-2019 academic year.

And have also competed in the Heart of American Athletic Conference (HAAC) and the Midlands Collegiate Athletic Conference (MCAC).

The university is made up of three colleges, the College of Liberal Arts & Social Sciences, the College of Professional Schools, and the College of Sciences & Health.

Sports for women at Avila University

  • Softball
  • Basketball
  • Bowling
  • Cheerleading
  • Soccer
  • Dance
  • Volleyball
  • Wrestling

Sports for men at Avila University

  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Bowling
  • Football
  • Soccer
  • Wrestling

Click here to visit the school website

Central Methodist University

A private university in Fayette, Missouri accredited to award bachelor’s degrees, master’s, and associate degrees.

Central Methodist is affiliated with the United Methodist Church and they are a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA).

The athletic team of this university is called the Eagles, and they compete in 19 intercollegiate varsity sports.

They notably competed in the Missouri College Athletic Union (MCAU) from 1924-1971 and primarily competed in the Heart of America Athletic Conference (HAAC) from the 1991-1992 academic year.

Central Methodist Men’s Sports

  • Cross Country
  • Golf
  • Soccer
  • Track & Field
  • Football
  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Bowling
  • Wrestling

Central Methodist Women’s Sports

  • Basketball
  • Volleyball
  • Cross Country
  • Bowling
  • Golf
  • Soccer
  • Track & Field
  • Wrestling
  • Softball

Click here to visit the school website

Columbia College

This is a 4-year non-profit private college located in Columbia Missouri. It came into existence in 1851 as a nonsectarian but historically related to the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ).

At Columbia, both traditional and nontraditional students are provided with quality education which helps them to achieve their true potential.

The programs offered in this college include;

  • Computer & Mathematics
  • Business Management & Human Resources
  • Accounting & Finance
  • Arts & Music
  • General Studies
  • Humanities
  • Marketing & Entrepreneurship
  • Nursing & Health
  • Sciences
  • Social Sciences

Other additional programs; Entrepreneurship, education abroad, honors program, and English for academic purposes.

The athletic team of this college is called the Cougars. A member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) and they are primarily competing in the American Midwest Conference (AMC) from 1986 to 1987 academic year.

The Cougars compete in 18 intercollegiate varsity sports.

Columbia College Men’s Sports

  • Lacrosse
  • Track & Field
  • Soccer
  • Golf
  • Cross Country
  • Basketball
  • Baseball

Columbia College Women’s Sports

  • Bowling
  • Competitive Dance
  • Basketball
  • Competitive Cheer
  • Track& Field
  • Volleyball
  • Softball
  • Golf
  • Soccer
  • Cross Country

The Cougar has a club and scholarship fund that will support and sponsor a student-athlete of Columbia College sports activities on and off the field and court of play.

Click here to visit the school website

Cottey College

This is a four-year private independent women’s college in Nevada, Missouri established in 1884.

The college is the best liberal arts & women’s independent college in the midwest and a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA).

Cottey provides comprehensive and empowering knowledge in a confidential intellectual setting that transforms women to reach their highest potential across 15 bachelor’s degree programs.

The athletic team of this college is called the Comets and they compete in 9 intercollegiate varsity sports, primarily competing in the American Midwest Conference (AMC) since the 2022-2023 academic year.

They have also competed as an NAIA Independent within the continental athletic conference from 2018-2022.

Cottey College varsity sports

  • Flag Football
  • Softball
  • Cross Country
  • Basketball
  • Volleyball
  • Indoor/Outdoor Track & Field
  • eSports
  • Golf

Click here to visit the school website

Culver-Stockton College

This college was founded in 1853 by members of the disciples of Christ Church in Canton, Missouri and the college is a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA).

Culver-Stockton offers its major/minors through online undergraduate programs, graduate programs, and pre-professional programs.

The athletic teams are called the Wildcats and they compete in 22 intercollegiate varsity sports. This college is primarily competing in the Heart of American Athletic Conference (HAAC) since the 1980-1981 academic year.

They also competed as an NAIA Independent from 1971-1980 and in the Missouri College Athletic Union (MCAU) from 1924-1971. The women’s lacrosse team currently competes in the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference (KCAC).

Culver-Stockton men’s sports

  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Bowling
  • Football
  • Golf
  • Soccer
  • Track & Field
  • Volleyball

Culver-Stockton women’s sports

  • Basketball
  • Volleyball
  • Bowling
  • Golf
  • Softball
  • Soccer
  • Lacrosse
  • Track & Field

Click here to visit the school website

Evangel University

Established in 1995 as a private Christian university and seminary located in Springfield, Missouri. It is affiliated with the Assemblies of God and the headquarter of this Christian denomination is located in Springfield.

This university was founded in 1995 as the first national pentecostal school of art and science by the general council of the Assemblies of God accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Evangel university nurtures students and teaches them how to combine their Christian faith with every aspect of their life and the level of commitment to faith, learning, and way of life expressed by students of this college has attracted a wide range of Christians and believers.

As a student of Evangel university, you will be equipped with relevant training, hands-on experience, a variety of internships, and job shadowing opportunities.

About 154 different degree programs are offered at Evangel university across 9 departments.

  • Business department
  • Behavioral and Social Sciences department
  • Communication department
  • Humanities department
  • Theology and Church Ministries department
  • Kinesiology department
  • Music department
  • Natural and Applied Sciences department
  • Education Department

Formerly known and addressed as Crusaders, the athletic team of this school is currently the Valor and they are members of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA).

They compete in 17 intercollegiate varsity sports and competed in the Heart of American Athletic Conference (HAAC) since the 1987-1988 academic year.

In 2022, this university athletic team joined the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference (KCAC) to showcase their talents which will officially kick start in the 2023-2024 academic year.

Men’s Sports at Evangel University

  • Basketball
  • Football
  • Baseball
  • Golf
  • Track & Field
  • Cross Country
  • Soccer
  • Tennis
  • Cheer

Women’s Sports at Evangel University

  • Volleyball
  • Track & Field
  • Basketball
  • Softball
  • Tennis
  • Soccer
  • Golf
  • Cross Country
  • Cheer

Tuition fees: $12, 583

Click here to visit the school website

Hannibal LaGrange University

This is one of the NAIA schools in Missouri, it’s a four-year private Christian university in Hannibal, established in 1858 in affiliation with the Missouri Baptist Convention.

This university is fully accredited by the Higher Learning Commission to offer undergraduate programs and two fully online graduate programs, a master of science in education and a master of arts in leadership.

The university is focused on providing excellent education in both liberal arts and professional studies that will prepare graduates for personal growth and career effectiveness.

There are 16 educational departments at Hannibal-LaGrange University.

  • Theater Department
  • Nursing Department
  • Natural Science Department
  • Music Department
  • Mathematics Department
  • History Department
  • Exercise and Sport Science Department
  • English Department
  • Education Department
  • Criminal Justice Department
  • Computer Science Department
  • Communication Studies Department
  • Christian Studies Department
  • Business Department
  • Behavioural Science Department
  • Arts Department

HLGU athletic teams are called the Trojans and they are a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) primarily competing in the American Midwest Conference since the 1986-1987 academic year. They currently compete in 12 intercollegiate varsity sports.

HLGU Men’s sports

  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Cross Country
  • Soccer
  • Track & Field
  • Coed Sports

HLGU Women’s sports

  • Basketball
  • Cross Country
  • Soccer
  • Softball
  • Volleyball
  • Track & Field

Click here to visit the school website

Harris-Stowe State University

Here is another accredited NAIA school in Missouri, the school was established in 1857 as a historically black public university in St. Louis, Missouri, and currently offers 50 majors, minors, and certificate programs in education, business, and arts & sciences.

As a student of this university, you will be provided with a rich and engaging academic experience that will nurture your intellectual curiosity and also help you build authentic skills that will prepare you for success in a diverse society.

This university is also accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) primarily competing in the American Midwest Conference (AMC) in the 1986-1987 academic year.

The university athletic teams are called the Homets and they compete in 12 intercollegiate varsity sports. Their men’s basketball team won the American Midwest Conference tournament championship in 2017 and 2018.

Harris-Stowe Men’s sports

  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Soccer
  • Track & Field

Harris-Stowe Women’s Sports

  • Basketball
  • Soccer
  • Track & Field
  • Softball
  • Volleyball

Click here to visit the school website

Missouri Baptist University

This university is among the three universities of the Missouri Baptist Convention located on the 68-acre site near Creve Coeur and town and county in west St.Louis County off highway 64-40, Missouri.

Over 50 undergraduate and graduate degree programs are offered at this university through their schools of nursing, business, education, fine arts, humanities, natural sciences, interdisciplinary studies, health & sports sciences, counseling, and social & behavioral sciences.

This learning environment challenges students to dig deep and discover their God-given passions and also prepares them for a life of service and success.

Missouri Baptist athletic teams are called the Spartans and they are a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) primarily competing in the American Midwest Conference (AMC) since the 1986-1987 academic year.

They currently compete in 28 intercollegiate varsity sports.

Missouri Men’s Sports

  • Football
  • Cross Country
  • Golf
  • Lacrosse
  • Soccer
  • Tennis
  • Basketball
  • Baseball
  • Bowling
  • Track & Field
  • Wrestling
  • Volleyball

Missouri Baptist Women’s Sports

  • Soccer
  • Golf
  • Lacrosse
  • Softball
  • Stunt
  • Cross Country
  • Beach Volleyball
  • Basketball
  • Bowling
  • Dance
  • Tennis
  • Volleyball
  • Wrestling
  • Track & Field

And also CO-ED sports which include cheer and esports.

The estimated tuition fee for Missouri Baptist University is $15, 126.

Click here to visit the school website.

NAIA SCHOOLS IN MISSOURI

Park University

This is a non-profit private4 University in Parkville, Missouri established in 1875. It is one of the best NAIA schools in Missouri for international students, they welcome over 260 international students from 60 different countries annually.

If you are an aspiring teacher looking for where to get the best education that will enhance your goals and bring out your full potential then Park university is the best option.

The school academic standards have officially been approved by the State of Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education for teacher education and other school professional programs.

Park is generally approved by the Higher Learning Commission and a variety of online courses are offered through Acadeum, a consortium of accredited colleges and universities that offer online courses.

The athletic team of Park is called the Pirates, they primarily competes in the Heart of American Athletic Conference (HAAC) since the 2020-2021 academic year. they have also competed in the American Midwest Conference and Midlands Collegiate Athletic Conference.

Currently, this university athletic team competes in 18 intercollegiate varsity sports.

Park University Men’s Sports

  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Golf
  • Track & Field
  • Soccer
  • Volleyball
  • Cross Country

Park University Women’s Sports

  • Basketball
  • Golf
  • Soccer
  • Cross Country
  • Softball
  • Track & Field
  • Beach Volleyball
  • Volleyball

Click here to visit the school website

Williams Woods University

A private university located in Fulton, Missouri. This university was founded in 1870 and accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Over 600 students from the U.S and numerous countries are enrolled in this school annually to undergo their undergraduate, graduate, online, and certificate programs.

Williams Woods’s learning environment challenges and engages students and also supports them until their journey of career and potential discovery is completed.

This university is accredited by the Higher Learning Association and an active member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA).

The athletic team of this university is called the Owls. They play in 19 intercollegiate varsity sports primarily competing in the American Midwest Conference (AMC) since the 1993-1994 academic year.

Williams Woods University Men’s sports

  • Tennis
  • Basketball
  • Baseball
  • Bowling
  • Cross Country
  • Golf
  • Soccer
  • Track & Field

Williams Woods University Women’s sports

  • Basketball
  • Bowling
  • Cross Country
  • Golf
  • Softball
  • Volleyball
  • Soccer
  • Tennis
  • Track & Field

Click here to visit the school website

Conclusion

To know more about the NAIA schools in Missouri provided above, please do well to visit the school website for more information. There you will get detailed information about the courses available in each school, their tuition, application details, scholarships, requirements, and other vital pieces of information.

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