Trademark infringement brings on another name change for Summit University, formerly Baptist Bible College and Seminary

By Elizabeth Baumeister - | January 12th, 2016 7:06 pm

SOUTH ABINGTON TWP. — The board of trustees of Summit University of Pennsylvania, formerly Baptist Bible College and Seminary, will meet on Monday, Jan. 25 to discuss a new name for the institution.

This will be the university’s second name change since April 2015, and is necessitated by a trademark infringement, filed by Church Universal and Triumphant, Inc., which operates a religious school in Montana by the name of Summit University.

According to a document of the Montana District Court of Judge Susan P. Watters, the suit, which is ongoing, was filed July 23, 2015.

Mel Walker, vice president for communications and external relations at Summit University of Pennsylvania, said the institution was aware of the other Summit University at the time of the first name change, but did not anticipate a conflict.

“Our original assumption from our school was that we are different enough that that was not a problem, from what advice we had before,” he said. “We thought it was different enough.”

But, that wasn’t the case, and now the school aims to make things right.

“We are absolutely committed to doing the right thing, and our attorneys — we have a trademark attorney, and we talked to an intellectual property attorney — and we are going to work that out with them,” Walker said.

Once the board of trustees makes its decision, the necessary paperwork will be filed with the U.S. Department of Education, followed by a public announcement, the date of which remains to be announced.

“We love our community, we are very thankful for the Abingtons and for Clarks Summit, and so that’s important to us,” Walker said. “And our reputation certainly is important to us, and we are…committed to doing the right thing, and we’re going to work it out through the process, and we think it’s going to work out fine.”

School changed its name from Baptist Bible College in April 2015

By Elizabeth Baumeister

Reach Elizabeth Baumeister at 570-704-3943 or on Twitter @AbingtonJournal.