Warhawk Almanac: A School by Any Other Name – 1951

The post-secondary school in Whitewater has undergone many evolutions. In its origins as a normal school, Whitewater’s curriculum originally revolved around training teachers and educators. Slowly the school added more fields of study such as Commercial (Business) Education. By 1951, the State Teachers College, Whitewater (now UW-Whitewater) had officially moved forward from its education training focus and, as a result, the school received a new name.            

01-514 old main postcard, Photo Collection, Old Main,Anderson Library Archives and Area Research, Anderson Library, University of Wisconsin – Whitewater, Whitewater, WI

On July 10th, 1951, the Board of Regents of Normal Schools met in the Capitol Building for a regularly scheduled meeting. In this meeting, the board voted on many important resolutions. The last resolution, Resolution 654, designated that all the schools represented by the board would become Wisconsin State Colleges. The schools included were: Eau Claire, La Crosse, Milwaukee, Oshkosh, Platteville, River Falls, Stevens Point, Superior, and, most importantly, Whitewater.[1] With this resolution, the new Wisconsin State College – Whitewater could choose to offer Liberal Arts degrees to its students, but that did not mean the college was going to abandon its teacher training programs. President Williams assured that the college would not only keep the teacher training programs, but work to make them stronger.[2] In fact, according to enrollment records, a Liberal Arts program was not offered to students until 1953. In its first semester, only 108 out of 726 students who enrolled chose to pursue a Liberal Arts degree.[3] Although the 654th resolution widened Whitewater’s capabilities by changing its name, it did not change the school’s dedication to producing quality educators.

6-MN-ww3407, Slide Collection, Anderson Library Archives and Area Research, Anderson Library, University of Wisconsin – Whitewater, Whitewater, WI.

[1] Board of Regents of Normal Schools, Proceedings of the Board of Regents of Normal Schools, July 10, 1951, University Archives, University of Wisconsin – Whitewater, Whitewater, WI.

[2] “New Building, New Degree, New Name, In Store for Whitewater College,” Summer School     Bulletin (Whitewater, WI), July 17. 1961.

[3] Whitewater State College, Enrollment Records, 1953, Provost box 17, University Archives, University of Wisconsin – Whitewater, Whitewater, WI.

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