WVSU Mission Statement
Founded in 1891, West Virginia State University is a public, land-grant, historically black university, which has evolved into a fully accessible, racially integrated, and multi-generational institution. The University, “a living laboratory of human relations,” is a community of students, staff, and faculty committed to academic growth, service, and preservation of the racial and cultural diversity of the institution. Its mission is to meet higher education and economic development needs of the state and region through innovative teaching and applied research.
The undergraduate education at the University offers comprehensive and distinguished baccalaureate programs in business, liberal arts, professional studies, sciences and social sciences. The University provides master’s degrees and other opportunities for graduate education.
West Virginia State University offers flexible course schedules in traditional classrooms, in non-traditional settings, and online. With the goal of improving the quality of our students’ lives, as well as the quality of life for West Virginia’s citizens, the University forges mutually beneficial relationships with other educational institutions, businesses, cultural organizations, governmental agencies, and agricultural and extension partners.
The following values guide our decisions and behavior:
- academic excellence;
- academic freedom;
- advancement of knowledge through teaching, research, scholarship, creative endeavor and community service;
- a core of student learning that includes effective communication, understanding and analysis of the interconnections of knowledge, and responsibility for one's own learning;
- lifelong growth, development and achievement of our students;
- development of human capacities for integrity, compassion and citizenship;
- our rich and diverse heritage;
- personal and professional development of our faculty and staff; and
- accountability through shared responsibility and continuous improvement.
West Virginia State University is a vibrant community in which those who work, teach, live and learn do so in an environment that reflects the diversity of America. Our comprehensive campus provides vast opportunities for our students. We take great pride in our accomplishments and envision building upon our baccalaureate and graduate programs and our excellence in teaching, research, and service.
WVSU students will tell you that there's a lot to love about their university - from the many opportunities to learn and grow ... to the faculty and staff who support them on their journey to a successful future.
Location - WVSU is located just a few miles from Charleston, the capitol of West Virginia, and within easy driving distance from major cities in five bordering states.
Size - With fewer than 3,000 students and a student faculty ratio of 15:1, students are able to learn in a comfortable, supportive environment, while experiencing the opportunities associated with a much larger university.
Campus - You'll love our campus, a beautiful setting with lots of green space and a great quad area for studying outside in the fresh air, or tossing around a football with newfound friends.
History - Founded in 1891 as a Historically Black College, WVSU has evolved to serve a population that is richly diverse in ethnicity, geography, residential/communter, high school graduates and adult learners.
Alumni - WVSU graduates can be found in positions of leadership and public service throughout West Virginia and the world.
Take the next step in your education by discovering the WVSU difference. Be part of a campus environment that has a rich history and a culture of active alumni support, while pursuing your dreams with the help of a faculty dedicated to your success.
Our History Runs Deep
West Virginia State University was founded under the provisions of the Second Morrill Act of 1890 as the West Virginia Colored Institute, one of 19 land-grant institutions authorized by Congress and designated by the states to provide for the education of black citizens in agriculture and the mechanical arts. West Virginia was one of the states that maintained segregated educational systems at that time.
From 1891 to 1915, the original Institute offered the equivalent of a high school education, vocational training, and teacher preparation. In 1915, the West Virginia Collegiate Institute began to offer college degrees. Under the leadership of President John W. Davis, the academic program was expanded and new buildings were constructed, and in 1927, the Institution was accredited by the North Central Association; in 1929, it became West Virginia State College. Over the next decades, WVSC became recognized as one of the leading public institutions of higher education for African-Americans.
In 1954, the United States Supreme Court gave its historic decision outlawing school segregation. The consequence of this decision for West Virginia State College was a rapid transition to an integrated institution serving a predominantly white, commuting, and older student population. Enrollment quadrupled during the following decades.
Meanwhile, by a decision of the West Virginia Board of Education, WVSC was compelled to surrender land-grant status, the only one of the 1890 institutions to do so. Only after a 12-year effort was the college's land-grant status fully restored, in 2001 by an act of Congress.
In 2004, the West Virginia Legislature approved WVSC's transition to University status, and today WVSU offers 22 bachelor's degrees and four master's degrees. With a rich history, and promising future, WVSU is positioned to become the most student-centered research and teaching, land-grant university in West Virginia, and beyond.
Learn With Us
WVSU students work hard. Our faculty and staff also work hard to help our students find challenge, opportunity, passion, and the confidence to realize their dreams.
WVSU offers a variety of areas of study in the arts, sciences, business, education and professional studies.
Whatever your area of interest, WVSU offers the means for you to continue to learn and grow.
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