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Winona State University

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Title: Winona State University  
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Subject: Southwest Minnesota State University, Minnesota State University Moorhead, 2007 NCAA Division II football season, Winona, Minnesota, St. Cloud State University
Collection: 1858 Establishments in Minnesota, Buildings and Structures in Winona County, Minnesota, Buildings and Structures in Winona, Minnesota, Education in Winona County, Minnesota, Educational Institutions Established in 1858, North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, University and College Buildings on the National Register of Historic Places in Minnesota, Visitor Attractions in Winona County, Minnesota, Winona State University, Winona, Minnesota
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Winona State University

Winona State University
Motto A Community of Learners Improving Our World
Established 1858
Type Public
President Scott R. Olson[1]
Students 9,993 [2]
Location Winona, Minnesota, United States
Campus Small city
Colors Purple and White
Nickname Warriors
Mascot Wazoo
Website .edu.winonawww

Winona State University (WSU) is a public university in Winona, Minnesota, United States, with approximately nine thousand enrolled undergraduate and graduate students. Winona State University is the oldest member of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities System, the fifth-largest system of two- and four-year colleges and universities in the country, based on student enrollment. WSU offers more than 80 programs on its main campus, as well as select programs on its satellite Winona, West Campus and Winona State University—Rochester.

University rankings
Forbes[3] RNP
U.S. News & World Report[4] 61
Master's University class
Washington Monthly[5] 338


  • About WSU 1
  • History 2
    • Name changes 2.1
    • Quick facts 2.2
    • Programs 2.3
    • Student activities 2.4
    • Housing 2.5
    • Winona State facilities 2.6
  • Highlights 3
  • Athletics 4
  • University presidents 5
  • Notable alumni 6
  • International education 7
  • See also 8
  • References 9
  • External links 10

About WSU

The WSU main campus and its surroundings in Winona, Minnesota

Founded in 1858, Winona State's mission is to enhance the intellectual, social, cultural and economic vitality of the people and communities it serves: creating "a community of learners improving our world".

WSU is noted as being one of the earliest universities in the country to offer a "Laptop University" program, now known as the e-Warrior Digital Life and Learning Program. In this program each student, upon acceptance, is required to lease his or her choice of either an Apple Macintosh or Microsoft Windows based laptop directly from the university.[6] In 2013 WSU became the first public university in the Midwest to offer a tablet and a laptop to all students.[7] The purpose of this program is to increase the bond between education and technology.

Each student attending Winona State University pays a .43 cent per credit fee to fund the Minnesota State University Student Association, a student-led non-profit that advocates on behalf of all Minnesota state university students.


Model School Building and College Hall of the Winona Normal School
The Model School, now called Phelps Hall, the oldest building on campus
Winona State University is located in Minnesota
Winona State University
Location 416 Washington Street and 151 W. Sanborn Street, Winona, Minnesota
Area Less than one acre
Built 1915 (Model School), 1924 (College Hall)
Architect Clarence H. Johnston, Sr.
Architectural style Jacobethan (Model School), Collegiate Gothic (College Hall)
Governing body Winona State University
NRHP Reference # 13000884[8]
Added to NRHP December 3, 2013

Winona State University originated as a normal school, an institution specifically for educating and producing new elementary school teachers. In the 1850s Minnesota was on the American frontier and lacked trained teachers. Winona settler Dr. John Ford lobbied the Minnesota Legislature to establish normal schools and rallied more than $5,000 in local donations to establish the state's first such institution.[9] It was also the first tax-funded school west of the Mississippi River.[10]

Classes at the Winona Normal School began in September 1860, but the following year most of the male students as well as the principal and other staff left to serve in the American Civil War. The school closed from March 1862 to November 1864, and its first class graduated in 1866. The program soon added a laboratory school in which local children received education from faculty while students observed or, occasionally, led lessons themselves. The normal school quickly outgrew its original four-room building, but state funding and local donations of money and a plot of land led to the construction of a proper facility in 1869.[9]

The campus expanded with two new wings on "Old Main" in 1894, a library/gymnasium/kindergarten building—Ogden Hall—in 1909, and a women's dormitory—Morey Hall—in 1910. In 1915 a new building was constructed to house the laboratory school, and a second women's dormitory—Shepard Hall—appeared in 1920.[9]

The Winona State Normal School became Winona Teachers College in 1921 and was authorized to grant a four-year Bachelor of Education degree.[10] In December 1922 a fire broke out in Old Main and completely destroyed it, though no one was harmed as it was the middle of a term break. Local public buildings and churches offered space for classes and administrative business until a new main building, College Hall, could be constructed in 1924.[9]

The 1915 Model School Building, now Phelps Hall, and the 1924 College Hall, now Somsen Hall, were listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2013 for having local significance in education.[11] They were nominated as examples of the normal school movement, which helped shape public education in Minnesota. The Winona Normal School was Minnesota's first teacher training school and first laboratory school, and operated 1860–1971.[9]

Name changes

Architectural sculpture above an entrance to Somsen Hall.
  • First State Normal School of Minnesota (1858)
  • Winona Normal School (1873)
  • Winona State Teachers' College (1921)
  • Winona State College (1957)
  • Winona State University (1975)

Quick facts

  • Enrollment: 8,753
  • Total number students served: 9,549
  • Undergraduate programs: 65
  • Graduate Programs: 12
  • States Represented: 32
  • Countries Represented: 55
  • Average class size: 24
  • Student to faculty ratio: 21:1
  • Percent students of color: 5.3%
  • Full-time students: 87.2%
  • Part-time students: 12.8%
  • Percent female: 62.3%
  • Percent male: 37.7%



  • Nursing, elementary education, business administration, biology, exercise science
  • Child advocacy studies, composite materials engineering, master's and doctoral program in nursing, paralegal, aviation and airway science, music business, graphic design, and public administration (the only MNSCU school offering a degree in Public Administration).

Special options:

  • Program minors: Adventure tourism, airway science aviation, biochemistry, business law, dance, electronics, geography, global studies, intercultural communication, international business, sustainability.
  • Emphases & options: Advertising, broadcasting, journalism, photojournalism, public relations, law enforcement, corrections, cell and molecular biology, ecology, water resources management, professional Sales
  • Preprofessional programs: Dentistry, engineering, law, medicine, mortuary science, optometry, pharmacy, physical therapy, physician assistant, veterinary medicine

Student activities

Student activities: Student government and more than 210 social, service and professional clubs and organizations for academics, fine arts, athletics, media, culture and cultural issues, and religion. The university also sponsors professional cultural programs and student theatrical, musical and dance performances.


More than 2,500 students choose to live on the Winona State University campus each year, and on-campus residents enjoy resources and experiences that complement their academic work. The university features six residence halls on campus, including a new residence hall that opened in fall 2010. Three additional residence halls and the University Apartments at East Lake are connected by shuttle bus to the central Winona campus. Numerous off-campus rental housing opportunities are available within five blocks of campus.

Winona State facilities

Integrated Wellness Complex


  1. e-Warrior Digital Life and Learning: WSU is the first public university in the Midwest to offer a tablet and a laptop to all students. Students are provided an iPad mini or Android-based tablet along with a Mac or PC laptop, and enjoy wireless access from anywhere on campus.
  2. A Community of Learners Serving Our World: Community service is a core university-wide commitment, with more than one million volunteer hours logged by WSU students over the last six years.
  3. Sustainability @ WSU: Winona State is all about going green. The university is a signatory of the American Colleges and Universities Presidents Climate Commitment and a partner in Sustain Winona, a community-based initiative dedicated to energy conservation, renewable energy technologies and pollution prevention strategies.
  4. Starting a Journey of Lifelong Wellness: The university’s state-of-the-art Integrated Wellness Complex aligns health, wellness, and academic and recreational programs and services into a single facility on the university’s tobacco-free campus.
  5. A Tale of Two Villages: The Education Village in Winona, which received initial funding during the 2013-14 Minnesota legislative session, and the STEM Village in Rochester, currently in the design/build phase of the project, are bold, responsive, community-based initiatives that will provide existing and future teachers with the preparation, support and inspiration they need to be successful in the 21st century classroom.
  6. Offers academic majors, preprofessional options, master's options and doctoral program at its campuses in Winona and Rochester.
  7. Home of the Gundersen National Child Protection Training Center, offering experience and training for professionals from the judicial system, social services and law enforcement from across the nation.[14]
  8. Lead institution in HealthForce Minnesota, a collaborative program that aims to advance Minnesota as a leader in health care education, practice, research and innovation. HealthForce initiatives include Scrubs Camps, which offer hands-on health care experience for students in grades nine to 12 and adults age 18 and up.
  9. As part of the Path to Purple initiative, Winona State works with Rochester Community and Technical College to offer programs in which students are able to begin their undergraduate education at the college and transfer to the university's Winona or Rochester campuses.
  10. In addition to offering upper-division undergraduate degree programs and courses, the Rochester campus also offers an array of graduate programs in the colleges of education and nursing, including a doctorate of nursing practice.
  11. Daily campus visits at 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. Monday through Friday. Visits include tours of the campus and residence halls and a meeting with an admissions counselor.
  12. College of Business accredited by AACSB International.[15]


Baseball pitcher Mike Wasilik in 2014

Winona State University competes in Division II NCAA athletics and its teams are called the Warriors. It is a member of the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference for most sports, except for women's gymnastics (Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference).

The school's first national championship came in 1985 when the gymnastics team took the NAIA Gymnastics title, along with claiming four individual champions and 11 All-American honors, along with National Coach and Gymnast of the Year honors. That same year, the Warrior gymnastics team competed in the NCAA Division II nationals in Springfield, Massachusetts, taking home the third-place trophy, the first team at Winona State to compete in both affiliations at the national level. Again in 1987, the Warriors claimed the NAIA national title, this time paced by one individual champion and seven All-American honors. Two gymnasts were also named Academic All-Americans for their outstanding academic achievements in the classroom. The National Coach of the Year award also went to the WSU head coach.

In the three years following, the gymnasts finished strong in the NCAA II regional competitions and managed to send individuals to the Division II nationals in 1986 (2) and 1987 (1). In 1989, the team represented the school at the Division II nationals in California after a record-breaking season.

The WSU football team won the NSIC conference championship ten times in a 15-year span (1993–2007). The Warriors have also appeared in postseason playoffs 5 times. During the 1993 season they appeared n the NAIA I playoffs and in the NCAA II playoffs 2001, 2003, 2004, and 2006. They have also participated in the Mineral Water Bowl in 2000, 2002, and 2012.

The men's basketball team won the 2006 NCAA Men's Division II Basketball Championship, the first NCAA title for the University.[16] On March 7, 2007, the Men's Basketball team won its 53rd consecutive regular or post season victory, beating the Division II mark set by Langston University of Oklahoma. The streak ended at 57 on March 24, 2007 with a loss at the Division II Championship game to the Barton College Bulldogs 77-75 on a last-second shot. On March 29, 2008, the Men's Basketball team defeated Augusta State University 87-76 to win its second NCAA Division II National Championship in three years.

Winona State's baseball team played for national championship on June 4, 2011, faced West Florida in Cary, N.C., in the final of the NCAA Division II World Series, and finished second.

The women's 2012 cross-country team qualified for the NCAA DII National Cross-Country Championship, placing 9th place overall. Two runners earned All-American status and set the new school record with a time of 21:11 in the 6K race.

University presidents

The Winona State University library, named for former university president Darrell Krueger.
  • John Ogden (1860–1862)
  • William F. Phelps (1864–1876)
  • Charles A. Morey (1876–1879)
  • Irwin Shepard (1879–1898)
  • Jesse F. Millspaugh (1898–1904)
  • Guy E. Maxwell (1904–1939)
  • O. Myking Mehus (1939–1943)
  • Arthur T. French (1939, 1943–1944)
  • Nels Minne (1944–1967)
  • Robert A. Dufresne (1967–1977)
  • Robert A. Hanson (1977–1983)
  • Thomas F. Stark (1983–1988)
  • Darrell W. Krueger (1989–2005)
  • Judith A. Ramaley (2005–2012)
  • Scott R. Olson (2012–present) [17]

Notable alumni

International education

The International Services Office is the initial contact for all international students. They have the training and experience to help with the concerns and issues of international students.

The staff welcomes students to campus and assists them with the transition to life at an American university. Upon arrival at WSU, students visit the International Student Office to pick up an arrival packet. International students participate in an orientation program, where thy review immigration regulation, find answers to questions, get to the know the university and the community, receive registration information, and learn about the requirements of the Cross-Cultural Scholarship program.

Winona State University provides scholarship opportunities for International Students.

Cross-Cultural Scholarship

The Cross-Cultural Scholarship offers International Students the ability to pay at the resident rate of tuition. Scholarship recipients share their culture with Americans as part of the requirement of the Cross-Cultural Outreach Program.

The Cross-Cultural Scholarship The Cross-Cultural Scholarship is available to all International students who qualify for admission at Winona State University and hold a F-1 Student Visa. These scholarships are equivalent to the difference between the resident rate of tuition and non-resident rate of tuition. Since tuition is based on a tuition band, the amount of the scholarship for the Academic Year of 2004 - 2005 is valued at an estimate of USD $4,534 based on 24 - 36 semester credits. Fall enrollees receive the scholarship for the academic year and Summer School. Spring Semester enrollees receive the scholarship for Spring Semester and Summer School.

Application And Renewal Process For Cross Cultural Scholarship Prospective International Students are invited to apply for the Cross-Cultural Scholarship by completing the application. The application will be reviewed as soon as it is received and a decision will be made concerning your possible selection as a scholarship recipient. An award letter clarifying the details of the scholarship will accompany the I-20 form at the time of Admission. Renewing the scholarship for your second year at the University is a simple process by completing the following:

The Cross-Cultural scholarship is a substantial source of savings for International Students.

Presidential Honor Scholarship

Presidential Honor Scholarships at Winona State University are designed especially for International Student freshmen with no transfer credits. Students must provide ORIGINAL TOEFL or SAT score to be eligible for the Presidential Honor Scholarship

Application And Renewal Process for the Presidential Honor Scholarship Prospective International Students are invited to apply for the Presidential Honor Scholarship by completing the application. The application will be reviewed as soon as it is received and a decision will be made concerning your possible selection as a scholarship recipient. An award letter clarifying the details of the scholarship will accompany the I-20 form at the time of Admission.

Winona State University has established many sister school relations with colleges and universities around the world, including Tamkang University in Taiwan, Hebei University of Technology in Mainland China, Akita University, Tokyo International University, Toyo University in Japan, Soonchunhyang University, Chung-Ang University in South Korea, and universities in Malaysia, Mexico, Spain, Egypt, Hong Kong, Australia, etc.

See also


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External links

  • Official website
  • Winona State University Athletics website

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