Southern University College (also known as Southern UC) attained its current status in 2012. It was previously known as Southern College - established in 1990 as the first non-profit institute of higher education in Malaysia to provide a local educational channel for high school graduates who could not further their studies in foreign countries or gain admission to other local tertiary educational institutions.
Historically, Southern UC has its origin 46 years ago (in 1975) in Foon Yew High School, Johor Bahru, offering an Advanced Studies Programme. In 1986, the Foon Yew Board of Directors applied to the Ministry of Education to set up a community-funded college. Through the persistent effort of the Chinese community leaders, approval was subsequently obtained from the Ministry of Education in 1990 to establish Southern College.
Southern UC is located in the Skudai area of Johor Bahru, Malaysia, an Iskandar Malaysia Economic Zone area. Its campus land is sized at 33 acres, mainly donated by philanthropist Mr Seow Wan Heong. Following the Iskandar Malaysia Economic Zone development, Southern UC will be one of the important educational institutions in Malaysia and has poised itself to become an international educational institution. The Southern UC campus is a scenic spot, rich in Chinese traditional colours and a multicultural atmosphere that encompasses the spirit of co-existence and multi-culturism.