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Southwest Minnesota State University

Sweetland Hall, the newest residence hall at   SMSU, has many housing options for students.
Take the first steps of your future at SMSU, a college featuring small class sizes and academic support to help you achieve your academic goals. SMSU is both "big enough" and "small enough." At SMSU, you will get to know your professors personally, and their doors are always open. We want you to succeed; that's what we're all about. We have the amenities you've come to expect, and you'll meet students from both near and far. Check us out:

School Highlights

Southwest Minnesota State University is celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2017-18. SMSU is an accredited liberal arts institution and a member of the Minnesota State system. The university offers personal attention other universities can’t match, a private school quality education at an affordable public school price. Southwest Minnesota State University is fully accessible and offers 50 undergraduate majors and minors, four associate degree majors and four master’s programs. A number of “two-plus-two” programs with community colleges within the Minnesota State system makes it seamless to move from an associate degree to a bachelor’s degree.

  • A challenging and supportive academic environment at a university where professors, not graduate assistants, teach.
  • Value: The same tuition rate for 12 to 18 credits, and out-of-state students pay in-state tuition.
  • An exercise science degree offered at a trio of Twin-Cities-based community colleges: Normandale, Anoka-Ramsey and North Hennepin.
  • The world’s first bachelor’s degree in culinology, approved by the Research Chefs Association.
  • A campuswide Undergraduate Research Conference each December, where 35 percent of our students give presentations on their scholarly work.
  • Coed Living and Learning Communities: residential communities that share an academic or a special interest with the residents of their house. These include agriculture house, culinology house; access, opportunity and success community; fine arts community; exercise science house; and the Mustang Traditions house.
  • A full complement of ag programs, including agricultural education, agribusiness management, agricultural solutions, agronomy and agriculture, a 2+2 program with seamless credit transfer opportunities.
  • Our Honors Program offers qualified students a rigorous, challenging curriculum with a focus on the individual student's potential talents, interests and abilities.
  • SMSU graduates get jobs: Ninety-nine percent of our recent grads are employed; 10 percent continue their education following graduation.
  • SMSU has been honored for both its affordability and its educational return on investment; parents and students appreciate SMSU's bang for the buck.
  • SMSU has been designated a Military Friendly School; a large Veteran's Service Center where our military students can study and meet other veterans.
  • SMSU has many opportunities for students to become leaders on campus; involvement in all aspects of campus life is encouraged.
  • Students have many opportunities for internships within their academic interest areas.
  • A versatile Alumni Plaza, a central gathering place for students and a site for a variety of campus events: concerts, barbecues, speakers, performances and out-of-classroom academic and social events.
  • Renovated, state-of-the-art science labs.
  • A campus-wide emphasis on Civic Engagement, and a collaboration with United Way on a website designated for volunteer opportunities.
  • The new Marshall Regional Track and Field Complex, the finest facility of its kind in southwest Minnesota.
  • Major visit days include  SMSU Homecoming Sept. 30; Mustang Days, Oct. 19-20; A Day at SMSU, Nov. 18; Hawaiian Night, Feb. 3, 2018; Junior Visit Day, March 24, 2018.
  • An Academic Commons area that offers academic support services that augment an educational experience that includes small class sizes, a supportive faculty and staff, and opportunities to become involved.
  • Our online course offerings help those with busy lifestyles earn a degree. We want to make your academic dream a reality!
  • On- and off-campus master's degrees in education, special education, physical education: coaching of sport and business (MBA).
  • A campus that embraces diversity; 265 international students from around the globe, representing 26 countries.
  • An updated wireless network puts you online from anywhere on campus; numerous computer labs and computer kiosks are spread across the university.
  • A campus built with accessibility in mind; interconnected academic buildings means 72 degrees, even in the middle of winter.
  • The Mustangs have a proud and successful athletic tradition, and compete in the NCAA Division II Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference. The volleyball and men's basketball teams reached the Sweet 16 in their respective sports last year.
  • A new Museum of Indigenous Americans, which joins the Natural History Museum on campus.
  • The Mustang wheelchair basketball team is one of just nine intercollegiate programs in the nation.
  • Over 90 clubs and organizations where students can pursue their interests.

Student Enrollment and Demographics

  • Total number of students served: 8,780
  • Full-time students: 31%
  • Part-time students: 68%
  • Percent female: 59%
  • Percent male: 40%
  • Percent students of color: 9%

Largest Programs

Five largest: Exercise Science, Business Management, Early Childhood Education, Elementary Teacher Education, Biology

Unique Programs

Agricultural education, RN to BSN, culinology, hospitality management, agronomy, agricultural solutions, broadcasting & digital media, professional writing and communication, supply chain management, environmental science, creative writing, teaching of English as a second language, exercise science, bachelor of applied science degrees


• On Campus
Approximately 1,000 students live on campus in residence halls that offer numerous housing options. The newest, Sweetland Hall, features two two-person rooms sharing a common shower/restroom, with sinks in each room. Living & Learning Communities are houses whose residents share a common interest. There are six Living & Learning Community houses: agriculture house, culinology house; access, opportunity and success community; fine arts community; exercise science house; and Mustang Traditions.


• Bus • Other
Bus service in Marshall is available to students free of charge. Two routes, one of which begins every half hour, take students to convenient stops within the community. There is also a taxi service available. Bus service through Jefferson Lines is also available to locations outside of Marshall.


• On Street • Off Street
You will find plenty of parking spaces available for students living in the residence halls, and for those commuting to campus.


Admission requirements

Southwest Minnesota State University generally will accept you as a first-year student if you can answer “yes” to at least one of these questions:

  • Did you graduate in the top half of your high school graduating class?
  • Did you score 21 or higher on the ACT standardized test?
  • Did you receive a combined score of 990 or higher on the SAT standardized test?

Check with the admissions office for details. Even if you don’t meet the minimum requirements, you may be considered for admission under special provisions.

What courses do I need to take in high school?

You should have completed these courses in high school:

  • Four years of English, including composition, literature and speech
  • Three years of math, including two years of algebra, one of which is intermediate or advanced algebra, and one year of geometry
  • Three years of science, including one year each of a biological and a physical science, all with significant laboratory experience
  • Three years of social science, including one year each of geography and U.S. history
  • 3 years of specified electives. Students should have completed 3 years of coursework in at least 2 of the following: world language, world culture or the arts.
  • Two years of a single world language, including non-English native languages and American Sign Language

The University will evaluate each applicant’s credentials individually and note any deficiencies. Students admitted with deficiencies may be required to take additional coursework during their first year of attendance.
Students failing to meet the above class rank, ACT or preparation requirements may still be considered for admission under the Academic Opportunity-FYE program and should contact the SMSU Office of Admission for further details or criteria.

Apply online

Using the e-application, you may apply to Southwest Minnesota State University and other schools in the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system.


SMSU: Where You Belong
There's a reason that's our slogan. SMSU offers a broad-based curriculum with strong education, business and liberal arts programs. You can also choose unique majors like agronomy, agricultural education, exercise science, environmental science, professional writing and communication, supply chain management and culinology. At SMSU, it's about you. A challenging, yet nurturing, academic environment combined with the types of amenities you expect from your college choice. Your success story begins at SMSU. Check us out at:

Program Title Award
Accounting BS
Accounting AS
Accounting CERT
Agribusiness Management BS
Agribusiness Management AS
Agricultural Communications and Leadership BS
Agricultural Education BS
Agricultural Solutions BS
Agriculture BAS
Agronomy BS
Applied Computational Mathematics BS
Art BA
Art Teacher Education BS
Autism Spectrum Disorders GC
Biology BA
Business Administration MBA
Business Administration BS
Business Administration AS
Chemistry BA
Chemistry Education BS
Coaching CERT
Communication Arts & Literature Educ-Comm Studies BS
Communication Arts, Literature/Secondary English BS
Communication Studies BA
Communication Studies:Broadcasting & Digital Media BS
Computer Science BS
Culinology BS
Early Childhood Education BS
Early Childhood Special Education BS
Education MS
Educational Administration and Leadership EDSP
Educational Studies BS
Elementary Teacher Education BS
Emotional or Behavioral Disorders GC
English BA
Environmental Science BS
Exercise Science BS
Finance BS
History BA
Hospitality Management BS
Individualized Interdisciplinary Studies BA
Individualized Interdisciplinary Studies BS
Justice Administration BS
K-12 Principal GC
Law Enforcement Administration BAS
Learning Disabilities GC
Liberal Arts and Sciences AA
Life Science/Biology Education BS
Literature BA
Literature Creative Writing BA
Management MS
Management BS
Management BAS
Marketing BAS
Marketing BS
Marketing AS
Mathematics BA
Mathematics Education BS
Medical Laboratory Science BA
Music BA
Music Teacher Education BS
Nursing BSN
Philosophy BA
Physical Education BS
Physical Education Teaching BS
Physical Education: Coaching of Sport MS
Political Science BA
Professional Writing and Communication BA
Psychology BA
Reading GC
Social Work BS
Sociology BA
Special Education MS
Special Education Director GC
Special Education-Academic & Behavioral Strategist BS
Superintendent GC
Supply Chain Management CERT
Teaching English as a Second Language GC
Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL) K-12 BS
Theatre Arts BA

The following degrees are available from Southwest Minnesota State University

  • Associate of Arts
  • Associate of Science
  • Bachelor of Applied Science
  • Bachelor of Arts
  • Bachelor of Science
  • Bachelor of Science in Nursing
  • Certificate
  • Education Specialist
  • Graduate Certificate
  • Master of Business Administration
  • Master of Science

Program minors

Advertising design, art/graphic design, agriculture economics, criminal justice, pre-law, developmental adapted PE, coaching, physics, public administration, human services, acting/directing, health communication, hotel/lodging management,indigenous nations & Dakota studies, nutrition, public relations, design technical theatre, writing, Hispanic studies, human resource management, supply chain management, reading, religious studies, women's studies, filmmaking

Pre-professional programs

Chiropractic, dentistry, engineering, law, medicine, nursing, occupational therapy, optometry, pharmacy, physical therapy, veterinary medicine

Program emphases

Sports management, recreation, public relations, farm management, ag finance, graphic design, art studio, human resources management, supply chain management, music management, culinary management, hotel & event planning, corporate wellness, allied health, coaching and human performance, exercise specialist, financial planning & investments, school-age recreation, youth-at-risk

Tuition & finance

Tuition and Fees $8,619.00
FAFSA Code:002375

How to apply for financial aid
Your key to receiving financial aid to help pay your college costs is filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA form. Many students don’t realize they could qualify for grant money and federally guaranteed loans, so be sure to find out by filling out the form.

Complete the FAFSA after Jan. 1 of your senior year. Find the form online at or pick up the form at your school counselor’s office. For help with completing the form, go to your high school counselor or the financial aid office at the college or university you plan to attend.

The FAFSA determines your eligibility for one or more of the following types of financial aid:

Scholarships are a great source of aid, and you do not need to pay them back. Many scholarships are available for students with special interests and backgrounds. Talk to your guidance counselor about what kind of scholarships you can get.

You may be eligible to receive federal and state grants of $300 to more than $7,000 per year. You do not need to pay these back.

Work study
Work study programs give you the opportunity to work on campus or with approved off-campus employers to earn money to pay for college. Work study jobs are often very flexible, allowing you to work around your classes and personal schedules.

Student loans
You also may be eligible for student loans, which must be paid back. Student loans usually have a lower interest rate than other kinds of loans.

Other ways to save

No out-of-state tuition
Students from other states don’t always have to pay higher tuition if they want to attend Southwest Minnesota State University. If you live in another state, or country, you'll pay in-state tuition at SMSU. It's as simple as that.

Tax credits
Some college students also benefit from two federal tax credit programs, the American Opportunity Tax Credit and the Lifetime Learning tax credit. These may apply to you or your family, depending on your financial circumstances.

Veterans are welcomed at SMSU. If you’ve served in the armed forces, you might be eligible for help with paying for college. Stop by our on-campus veterans centers for information, support and assistance. Also, check with the campus financial aid office about benefits from the new Minnesota GI Bill. Or go to

Campus Life

Over 90 clubs and organizations, including student government, newspaper, radio & TV, literary magazine, fine arts, social, environmental, recreational, political, sports, leisure activities and academic clubs and organizations help students learn while they become involved. Students are encouraged to become involved through the Center for Civic Engagement. SMSU has an outlet for your varied interests.

  • Academic Commons
  • Academic Commons/Writing Center
  • Barnes & Noble Campus Store
  • Career Services
  • Counseling Center
  • Cultural Diversity & Inclusion
  • Disability Services
  • Financial Aid
  • Fitness Center
  • Food Service/Dining Services
  • Graduate Studies Offices
  • Health Services
  • International Student Services
  • Library
  • SMSU Daycare Center
  • SMSU Foundation
  • Star Alert System
  • Student Advising
  • Student Employment Services
  • Student Success Office
  • TRIO Student Support Services
  • Technology Center
  • Transfer Assistance
  • University Public Safety
  • Veterans Resource Center
  • Accounting Club
  • Am Marketing Assoc/Collegiate Chapter
  • Art Club
  • Biology Club
  • Broadcast Education Assoc
  • Chemistry Club
  • Criminal Justice Club
  • Culinology Club
  • Education Minnesota Student Program
  • English Club
  • Exercise Science
  • Family and Child Educators
  • Graduate Student Club
  • Graphic Design Club
  • History Club
  • Honors Club
  • Marketing Club (AMA Coll Chapter)
  • Math & Computer Science Club
  • Philosophy Club
  • Psi Chi
  • Psychology Club
  • Sci,Tech,Eng & Math Club(STEM)
  • Sociology Club
  • Sports Mgmt & Rec Team
  • Student Hospitality Organization
  • Student Mentors for Academic Success
  • Student Social Work Association
Arts and literature
  • William Whipple Gallery
Broadcasting and journalism
  • Media Club
  • Media Club
  • National Broadcast Society
  • Perceptions Literary Magazine
  • The Spur
Career and professional
  • DECA
  • Enactus
  • Forensics
  • Society of Human Resource Management
  • Society of Leadership and Success
  • SW Investment Grp & Mgmt Assoc
Cheerleading and dance teams
  • Cheerleading
  • Dance Team
  • Show Stoppers
Community and human services
  • Habitat for Humanity
  • Lion's Club
Ethnicity, language and culture
  • Black Student Union
  • Club Latino
  • Hmong Student Organization
  • Le Club Francais
  • Oyate
  • Spanish Club
  • United Global Leaders Yearning Success
Farming and agricultural
  • Ag Club
  • Postsecondary Ag Students
Gender and sexuality
  • Gay Lesbian Bi-sexual Transgender Ally
Health and fitness
  • Boost Alcohol Conciousness Concern
  • Colleges Against Cancer
  • Wellness and Human Performance
International students
  • African Student Associatrion
  • Bridges International
  • International Student Organization
  • Nepalese Student Association
Military and veterans
  • Veteran's Association
Personal development
  • Center Student Leadership & Involvement
Politics and society
  • Campus Greens
  • College Democrats
  • College Republicans
  • Political Science Association
  • Student Act Fee Allocation Committee
  • Student Association
Recreational and club sports
  • Bowling Club
  • Cross Country Ski Assoc
  • Intramural Sports
  • Mustang Martial Art
  • Power Hockey Club
  • Rugby Football Club
  • Shotokan Karate Club
  • Soccer Club
  • Tae Kwon Do
  • Track & Field Club
  • Ultimate Frisbee Club
  • Women's Rugby Club
  • Yoga Club
Religious and spiritual
  • Campus Crusade for Christ
  • LuMin
  • Muslim Student Association
  • Newman Club
  • Shine On
Social organizations
  • Chess Club
  • League of Legends Club
  • Mustang Anime Otaku
  • Mustang Game Club
  • Mustang Maniacs
  • Residence Hall Association
  • Student Activities Committee
  • Students Today Alumni Tomorrow
  • Trading Card Game Club
Special interest
  • American Sign Lang (ASL)
  • Dungeons & Dragons
  • Environmental Awareness Club
  • Feminist Club
  • Mustang Game Club
  • Non-Traditional Student Organization
  • University Sportperson's Association
Students with disabilities
  • Access Association
  • Access Club
Theater, dance, music
  • Band
  • Chorale
  • Concert Choir
  • Drama Club
  • Jazz Ensemble
  • Marching/Pep Bands
  • Symphonic Band
  • Theatre
  • Vocal Ensemble
  • Wheelchair Basketball
  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Cross Country
  • Football
  • Track & Field
  • Wrestling
  • Basketball
  • Cross Country
  • Golf
  • Soccer
  • Softball
  • Tennis
  • Track & Field
  • Volleyball
  • Womens Swimming & Diving(2019-20)
Southwest Minnesota State University
Southwest Minnesota State University
1501 State St.
Marshall, MN 56258
Toll-Free: (800) 642-0684
Local: (507) 537-6286
TTY: (800) 627-3529