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Fact Book

About SMSU

Southwest Minnesota State University is a four-year public university offering a high-quality education in the liberal arts and professions to prepare students for a life that is successful both personally and professionally.

Founded in 1963 and opened in 1967, Over the years, SMSU has grown into a university of choice with high national rankings, producing scholars who become the leaders, thinkers and entrepreneurs of the future.

Our Mission

Southwest Minnesota State University prepares students to meet the complex challenges of this century as engaged citizens in their local and global communities. Our comprehensive degree programs, taught in the liberal arts tradition, are dedicated to connecting students' academic and practical professional development experiences in southwestern Minnesota to the wider world.

Our Vision

Southwest Minnesota State University is a university of choice.

Our Leadership

Dr. Kumara Jayasuriya was appointed by the Minnesota State system and began his duties July 1, 2019. President Jayasuriya is the tenth permanent president of SMSU.


SMSU is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music, the Minnesota Board of Teaching, the Council on Social Work Education, the National Alliance of Concurrent Enrollment Partnerships (NACEP), the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), and The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, 230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 2400, Chicago, IL 60602; (800) 621-7440. For more information about the Higher Learning Commission visit their website:

Academic Units

  • College of Arts, Letters, & Sciences
  • College of Business, Education & Professional Studies

University Governance

Southwest Minnesota State University is a member of the Minnesota State system, governed by a 15-member board of trustees. Trustees are appointed by the governor and confirmed by the Minnesota State Senate. For more information about the Minnesota State system visit their website at

Majors and Minors

A list of majors and minors can be found in SMSU's academic catalog.

Our Students

Our Alumni

Our Mustang Athletics

NCAA Division II

Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference
National Intercollegiate Wheelchair
Basketball Association

* Track & Field Competes in Indoor/Outdoor Seasons

Our Faculty and Staff

Our Tuition and Affordability

SMSU does NOT charge out of state tuition

Psychology Program Ranked

SMSU's Psychology program is ranked 13th in the country in 2019 by

Nursing School Honor

SMSU is ranked No. 5 in the 2019 Best Online RN to BSN Nursing Schools in Minnesota by

MONEY Magazine Recognition

Southwest Minnesota State University has been named by MONEY Magazine as one of the 2018 Best Colleges in America.

MONEY Magazine

Return on Investment

SMSU ranked sixth in the state of Minnesota for lifetime return on investment. A total of 145 colleges in the state were analyzed, public and private, with 22 ranked. SMSU ranked highest of the Minnesota State 4-year institutions and was one of only two public institutions in the top 6.


SMSU was recognized as a “Minnesota 20-30 Club” institution with annual tuition below $20,000 and graduate earning average above $30,000.

The College Database

THE MUSTANG PROMISE: Within six months of graduation, you’ll be employed or enrolled in grad school. If not, come back to enroll in one of SMSU’s graduate programs with your first semester of tuition on us. THAT’S OUR PROMISE.

In this unique program, you’ll work with your faculty advisor and the SMSU Career Services staff throughout your college career to take steps that have been proven to lead to success in the job search. If you do your part and still don’t land a job related to your major within six months of graduation, we’ll give you FREE TUITION for your first semester in one of our master’s degree programs. Visit our website for full details:

Athletic Highlights for 2018-19 Year

SMSU Athletics had another exceptional year in 2018-19, not only on the field of play, but more importantly off, as well.

  • SMSU student-athletes compiled a 3.05 GPA.
  • A total of 90 student-athletes named Academic All-NSIC (GPA of 3.20 or higher).
  • A total of 17 student-athletes received All-NSIC accolades.
  • SMSU Athletics earned the 2018 NCAA Division II Award of Excellence for “HyVee Kids Fit.”
  • Five student-athletes named All-Region.
  • Six student-athletes named All-American.
  • Football student-athlete Jon Dicke was named first-team CoSIDA Academic All- American for the second straight year.
  • Dicke named to the 2018 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team and was honored at the 2019 Allstate Sugar Bowl in New Orleans.
  • Dicke also named the 2018 NSIC Glen Galligan Award winner as the top football student-athlete in the NSIC.
  • Volleyball team advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the 15th straight year and 16th overall.
  • Volleyball student-athlete Taylor Reiss was named the Division II Player of the Year for the second straight season.
  • Reiss also named the Honda D2 Female Athlete of the Year.
  • Reiss named a second team CoSIDA Academic All-American.
  • Reiss led Division II in kills per set, points per set, and total kills
  • Men’s basketball team advanced to the 2019 NSIC Tournament championship game for the third straight season.
  • Men’s basketball student-athlete Ryan Bruggeman became the first SMSU player to be selected to play in the NABC Division II
  • All-Star game.
  • Bruggeman set the SMSU school record for career points.
  • Women’s track & field student-athlete Rebecca Manteuffel became the first SMSU female to earn NCAA Outdoor All-American honors, placing eighth in the discus.
  • Manteuffel also qualified for the 2019 NCAA Indoor Championships.
  • Wheelchair basketball placed fifth at the 2019 NWBA National Tournament.
  • Wheelchair basketball student-athlete Ryan Kile named a 2019 NWBA Scholar All-American.
  • Wrestling student-athlete Cortez Arredondo finished first at the 2019 NCAA Super Region championships and advanced to the NCAA Championships.
  • Wrestling student-athlete Giffin Osing advances to the 2019 NCAA Championships.
  • SMSU tennis team advances to the NSIC Tournament for the first time since 2010 and finished the season with 13 victories, the program’s highest since 1992.
  • Softball student-athlete Emma Grote and baseball student-athlete Jayden Fleck both named 2019 CoSIDA Academic All-District.
  • SMSU men’s basketball ranked 25th in Division II in attendance.
  • SMSU volleyball ranked 14th in Division II in attendance.

Our Assets and Financial Data

The Campus

Financial Data*

Revenue Total
Expenses Total
Assets Total

Our SMSU Foundation

SMSU Foundation | 800-260-0970

The SMSU Foundation is served by a 31-member board consisting of alumni and friends of the institution who strive to advance the mission of the Foundation in support of SMSU. The SMSU Alumni Association, Minnesota Ag & Rural Leadership (MARL) and Mustangs Booster Club organizations all fall under the leadership of the SMSU Foundation and are served by their own respective boards. These three organizations each have distinct missions that serve a broad range of constituents.


Our Role in the Economy

Impact of Southwest Minnesota State University - Southwest Minnesota State University generates $173.1M in exonomic impact per year - $9.6M in state and local revenue - $2.4M in community contributions - 649 graduates annually - supports and sustains 1,421 Jobs
These numbers demonstrate the impact of Southwest Minnesota State University and our role as an anchor institution. This report illustrates the exonomic vitality and enriched quality of life that the University brings to Marshall and the broader region. - President, Connie J. Gores

Southwest Minnesota State University’s impact on the regional economy is calculated to be $173.1 million, according to a study commissioned by the Minnesota State system. This includes a direct impact of $86.3 million, and an indirect/induced impact of $86.8 million.

The University supports and sustains 1,421 jobs annually, according to the study. SMSU directly employs 417 people.

An estimated $2.4 million in charitable donations and volunteer activities are generated annually by SMSU faculty, staff and students.

SMSU faculty, staff and students donate an average of $469,715 annually to local charitable organizations.

Faculty, staff and students donate over $1.9 million in volunteer time annually.

Our Strategic Plan

SMSU is proud of its tradition of excellence, which is guided by the University's ongoing strategic planning process. Since its founding, enabled and inspired by the people of Southwest Minnesota and the surrounding region who dared to dream of a university on the prairie, Southwest Minnesota State University has been a center for learning.

Each successive generation of students, faculty, and staff, with the support of the community, has contributed to the ongoing success of the institution. To learn more about our strategic planning process, visit our website at

Our Recent Highlights

We serve approximately 7,000 students in both undergraduate and graduate programs through on-campus, remote site and online delivery.

One of the top nationally-accredited concurrent enrollment programs in Minnesota, serving 5,528 students across the state with an emphasis on providing continual professional development and networking opportunities for high school teachers who deliver College Now courses. Concurrent enrollment courses are offered in 110 Minnesota high schools, making it the largest such program in the state.

Master of Science in Education Learning Communities provide graduate programs statewide.

A total of six ag-related majors within the School of Agriculture. Southwest Minnesota’s economy revolves around agriculture, and graduates from these degree programs are leaders in their respective communities.

The only Bachelor of Science in Culinology® degree in the United States.

SMSU’s RN to BSN program serves nurses in southwest Minnesota who want to earn that BSN degree while still working full-time. Convenience is the key; we tailor our program with the working nurse in mind.

SMSU graduates find jobs: We boast a 99% job placement rate.

Recognition as a Military Friendly University, and a Yellow Ribbon Campus. SMSU supports its veterans and their families as they pursue their academic goals.

We offer an Agricultural Education degree program, the only such program in the Minnesota State system. Agriculture teachers are in high demand in the region/state, with 3 jobs for every graduate.

SMSU’s growing Exercise Science Program is offered at a trio of Twin Cities community colleges: Normandale, North Hennepin and Anoka-Ramsey.

SMSU ‘s annual tuition and fees are $8,907. All students—in-state, out-of-state and international—pay in-state tuition rates. Reciprocity rates may apply for students from some states.

Living and Learning Communities allow students to reside in a residence hall with others who have similar interests.

A pair of environmental learning centers — one on campus, the other six miles away — that give students unique study/research opportunities.

A collaborative agreement with city and Marshall Schools resulting in a new Marshall Regional Track & Field Complex on campus, the finest of its kind in southwest Minnesota. SMSU and Marshall High School also have collaborative agreements to share facilities for football and soccer.

Our Community

SMSU is located in Marshall, Minnesota, a friendly, growing community of 14,000. Marshall, named one of America’s Best Small Cities, is an easy drive from the Twin Cities, St. Cloud, Sioux Falls, SD and Fargo, ND. Marshall is also the proud home of Schwan’s Company, Ralco Nutrition, Action TrackChair, along with major employers USBank, Archer Daniels Midland, and Avera Marshall Regional Medical Center. Marshall is also home to the new Red Baron Arena & Expo.

For more information about Marshall visit:

Our Mustang Family

Please consider referring future Mustangs to the Office of Admission online at:

If the student you refer enrolls, you will be entered in a drawing for one of two $25 Barnes & Noble gift cards. Referral winners will be notified at the beginning of each new semester and recognized on SMSU Today.

Contact the Office of Admission:

Published by:
SMSU Advancement Office and
Data Management & Institutional Research Office
1501 State Street · Marshall MN 56258

Last Modified: 10/10/19 2:36 PM