Our Story

For over 120 years, Humphreys University has been serving the Central Valley with quality, affordable, and accessible higher education.

Humphreys has evolved from a secretarial and vocational school, to a two-year degree granting institution, to a four-year degree granting institution, to a regionally accredited undergraduate, graduate, and law school. Our mission has always been to offer student-oriented instruction in career-oriented fields, with a foundation in liberal arts. Never focused on mass-production, Humphreys is committed to small class sizes, quality service, personalized attention, and meeting the needs of individual students.

Our history informs our future. As the university grows and adapts to the needs of students and the community, it continues to maintain its unique character and core focus on the individual, contributing to the personal development and advancement of its students. We are honored to be a part of this great community and to contribute to the growth and success of our students.



The purpose of Humphreys University is to provide effective instruction and related learning experiences to students. The University views itself primarily as a teaching institution. The founder of the University believed that any sound program must be concerned first with meeting the educational needs of the individual student and, second, with ensuring the program (for most students) contains elements of general and career or professional education. The University has maintained this simple philosophy throughout its long service to the community.

Humphreys University seeks to serve both general and career objectives. The University seeks ways to keep classes small, offer some instruction on an individualized basis, maintain a close relationship between faculty and students, provide a significant introduction to general education for students who seek specialized occupational objectives, and conversely, to provide an appreciation of career or professional goals for students who pursue general educational objectives.


Mission Statement

Humphreys University prepares students for meaningful careers and professions through a high- quality educational experience, strongly informed by the liberal arts, and directed to the specific and changing needs of students from diverse ethnic, cultural, economic, and educational backgrounds.



Humphreys University dates its founding in the fall term of 1896, when John R. Humphreys, Sr., assumed academic administration of the Stockton Business College, Normal School, and Telegraphic Institute. There are scattered records and some graduating class pictures in the files of the College dating back to 1875. The College has been in continuous service to the central San Joaquin Valley since that time, making it the first institution of higher education in the area. The philosophy and objectives of its founder have remained with the College, remaining a small, independent College dedicated to post-secondary education and serving the educational needs of its students and the community.

In 1937 the founder of the College died and his son, John R. Humphreys, Jr., who had assumed academic administration of the College in 1934, became the second President. The name of the College changed several times since its inception, becoming known as “Humphreys College” on July 25, 1947, when it was reorganized and incorporated as a nonprofit educational corporation under the California Education Code. Under this corporate charter and related bylaws, Humphreys College is held exclusively for educational purposes by a Board of Trustees whose membership consists of alumni, educators, distinguished citizens, and friends of the College.

In 1950 the Trustees established a non-accredited, four-year night law school. Shortly thereafter, a law school campus was established in Fresno, but this campus no longer exists under Humphreys College control. In 1973, the Trustees took the first steps toward accreditation of the law school by the Committee of Bar Examiners of the California State Bar. This accreditation was granted in August of 1983.

In 1965 the Trustees provided funds for the construction of a new academic building in north Stockton, with the campus moving to its current location in 1966. In 1974 construction was started on the student center, the student housing complex, and recreational facilities.

In 1972 the College was accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges.

Since June of 1992, the College has been accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Senior College and University Commission. Therefore, all certificates and degrees granted by the College (including the School of Law) are accredited.

In 1980 administration of the College was assumed by Robert G. Humphreys, grandson of the founder, upon the retirement of John R. Humphreys, Jr., thereby becoming the College’s third President.

In 1987 Humphreys College began offering courses through Modesto Junior College, eventually establishing a campus in Modesto.

In 1991 the College purchased four buildings west of
the Stockton campus student housing complex. Renovations of the buildings allowed the College to add new undergraduate and law libraries, classrooms, faculty offices, law school administrative offices, the Registrar’s Office, study lounges, and conference room facilities.

The College again expanded its physical facilities in 2004 when it added two new buildings totaling approximately 24,000 square feet. The College’s libraries were moved to a new library building which houses both the law and undergraduate libraries as well as administrative offices for the newly renamed Drivon School of Law. The classroom and office building added another eight classrooms to the College and includes 18 faculty offices, several administrative offices, and a student lounge. A large central courtyard provides an attractive location for students to sit and study outside and is used for commencement ceremonies. In 2010, the College began construction of another classroom building, providing an additional ten classrooms, and replacing the dorm facility, which was torn down to provide space. The additional space was necessitated by the significant growth in enrollment beginning in 2007 and bringing total enrollment in excess of 1,200 students.

Upon the retirement of Robert G. Humphreys in 2015, the trustees of the College appointed Robert G. Humphreys Jr., great-grandson of the founder, as the College’s fourth President.

In the fall of 2016, the Board of Trustees authorized the changing of the name of Humphreys College to Humphreys University. Both the Trustees and President Humphreys, along with the college community, concurred that the name change better reflected the current mission of the University and its goals for the future.

Throughout its long history, the College has provided quality instruction at the post-secondary level. While kept current, the curriculum today is still clearly related to the curriculum as it was when the College was founded, focusing on both liberal arts and career preparation. The expansion of the College, both in Stockton and Modesto, shows the commitment Humphreys University has to the community and the growth of educational opportunities for all.



Humphreys University is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC).

The court reporting program is approved by the Court Reporters Board of California, and the Humphreys University Drivon School of Law is accredited by the Committee of Bar Examiners of the State Bar of California. The teacher credentialing program is approved by the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing. As required by the Commission, Humphreys University will notify the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing within 30 days if its regional accreditation status changes.

Drivon School of Law is accredited by the Committee of Bar Examiners of the State Bar of California.

Study at, or graduation from, this law school may not qualify a student to take the bar examination or be admitted to practice law in jurisdictions other than California. A student who intends to seek admission to practice law outside of California should contact the admitting authority in that jurisdiction for information regarding its education and admission requirements. SB1281 Compliance Form

For additional information on the California Bar passage rates see the State Bar of California website here: https://admissions.calbar.ca.gov/Examinations/Statistics.aspx



Humphreys University is a member of the Association of Independent California Colleges and Universities, the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities, the College Board, and the American Council on Education.

Humphreys University also participates in a number of academic and professional organizations, including the American Association of Academic Deans, the California, Bay Area, and National Court Reporters Associations, the National Association of the Education of Young Children, the California Business Education Association, Professional Secretaries International, the California and National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators, the National Association of College and University Business Officers, the Pacific Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admission Officers, Reporting Association of Public Schools, and the Western Association of College Admission Counselors.


Stockton Campus

Since its inception, Humphreys University has been a major community facility in Stockton and central California. Until 1924, it was the only institution of higher education in the area.

Most of Humphreys’ students are from San Joaquin and the seven neighboring counties. Some students are from outside this valley and several foreign countries.

Stockton is a growing, vibrant city with a population of over 300,000. At the head of the great California Delta–a thousand miles of navigable waterways within a sixty-mile radius–Stockton provides the area with an international inland port and a variety of water activities. The ski slopes and lakes of the Sierra are only one to two hours to the east; San Francisco and the sunny beaches of Northern California are an hour and a half to the west; and the opportunity to study a major state legislature in operation at the state capitol, Sacramento, is only forty-five minutes to the north. One of the world’s most productive agricultural valleys surrounds the city of Stockton.

The weather in Stockton is mild and dry, with temperatures ranging from thirty degrees in the winter to one hundred degrees in the summer. The people of Stockton are active and friendly, and there is an abundance of community facilities within walking distance of the University: theaters, shopping centers, restaurants, banks, parks, churches, hospitals, other colleges/universities, sports facilities, community centers, and public libraries.

Academic Facilities

Humphreys University is located in north Stockton, about five miles from downtown. The University moved to this eight-acre campus from downtown Stockton in 1966. The campus is one block east of Pacific Avenue, a major thoroughfare in Stockton. Public transportation runs directly to the campus.

The main academic building houses several classrooms, computer labs, and administrative offices. The west campus is composed of four buildings, which house the Academy of Business, Law and Education (ABLE), a charter high school operated as a subsidiary non-profit corporation by Humphreys University. Both the main and west campuses have outdoor courtyard areas with ample space for students to study, eat lunch, or gather with friends. Recently, the physical plant was expanded by approximately 24,000 square feet, consisting of two new buildings constructed on vacant land on the campus. The library building houses the university library, a student lounge, and the administrative offices of Humphreys University Drivon School of Law. The classroom building includes eight classrooms, as well as 18 faculty offices and administrative offices. A central courtyard provides an attractive place for students to gather and socialize outside and is served by a wireless Internet network. In addition, another 15,000-square-foot facility was added in 2010 providing ten additional classrooms.

The University’s library is a major learning center, not only for students and faculty, but also for alumni and the community. Extended hours of operation provide a convenient and easily accessible community resource. A branch of the Stockton Public Library is directly across the street from the University with a large general collection which is available to all students.

The University libraries’ open stacks and reading area provide easy access to reference and circulating collections. Periodicals, cassettes, DVDs, and videos are available on request in the circulation area. Requests for interlibrary loan of monographs and periodicals, state, federal, and international government publications may be made at the reference desk. Additionally, the library provides students access to several online databases and e-libraries, with access to numerous peer-reviewed journals, magazines, and newspaper articles.


Modesto Campus

The Humphreys University Modesto branch campus is located in north Modesto in Stanislaus County. Modesto is a thriving community with a population of over 200,000. Modesto offers many outlets for the dramatic arts through several local organizations including the symphony, ballet, opera, and cultural scenes. Technology is positioning Stanislaus County as a global center for agribusiness. Due to its central location in the state, Modesto has become a prime destination for tourism. With over 72 city parks, the area offers many recreational opportunities. The Modesto campus is located within walking distance of several shopping centers and restaurants.

Facilities include classrooms, computer laboratories, faculty offices, bookstore, a student lounge, and a reference library. School housing is not provided in Modesto. Rooms and apartments are readily available within walking distance of the campus and throughout the community. The Modesto Transportation Center provides bus connections to anywhere in the county including two stops within one block of the Modesto campus.