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Main Building and Ladies' Dormitory

The establishment of Minot Normal School was not an event that happened by chance. It was, instead, the result of two very important phenomena that occurred in North Dakota during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. As the nation struggled in economic recession, the Progressive movement was born, intent on steering the nation into social and economic improvement moral rectitude through legislative reform. Education was viewed as a primary method for accomplishing this task.  Considerable attention was given to improving the quality of education provided in North Dakota, which resulted in legislation mandating that teachers possess a standard mastery of curriculum in order to teach in common schools across North Dakota.




Old Main Cornerstone

In combination with the significant population influx during this period, particularly in the northwestern region of North Dakota, the need for the normal school in the northwestern portion of the state became apparent. This was a need the state was ultimately willing to accommodate, and funding was eventually provided for the establishment and maintenance of Minot State Normal School in 1913.

The foundations laid in 1913 established more than just the physical structure of a building, however. This was the birth of an institution, begun with the purpose of providing quality education for aspiring individuals. Although the programs of the institution have changed over the years, along with its name, the mission of providing educational opportunity continues today; it is in MSU's roots, and these roots run deep.