University of Northwestern – St. Paul

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For other universities with a similar name, see Northwestern University (disambiguation).
University of Northwestern – St. Paul
Type Private
Established October 2, 1902
Affiliation Christian, Nondenominational
Budget $89.8 million (2016)[1]
President Alan S. Cureton, Ph.D.
Academic staff
Students 3,427
Undergraduates 1,800
Postgraduates 205
Location Roseville, Minnesota, USA
45°2′16″N 93°10′9″W / 45.03778°N 93.16917°W / 45.03778; -93.16917Coordinates: 45°2′16″N 93°10′9″W / 45.03778°N 93.16917°W / 45.03778; -93.16917
Campus 107-acre (43 ha) campus on Lake Johanna; 15 buildings
Newspaper The Examiner
Mascot Eagles

University of Northwestern – St. Paul is a private evangelical Christian college located primarily in Roseville, Minnesota, United States, and is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Established in 1902 as Northwestern Bible and Missionary Training School by Dr. William Bell Riley, a pastor at First Baptist Church of Minneapolis. Prior to July 1, 2013 the school was called Northwestern College.

Billy Graham served as the school's second president from 1948 to 1952.[2]

Mission statement[edit]

"University of Northwestern – St. Paul exists to provide Christ-centered higher education equipping students to grow intellectually and spiritually, to serve effectively in their professions, and to give God-honoring leadership in the home, church, community, and world."[3]

Undergraduate and graduate programs[edit]

The University of Northwestern offers 70+ areas of study,[4] six of which are through its FOCUS Adult Undergraduate Program. Northwestern offers six master's degrees.[5] Areas of undergraduate study offered include elementary and secondary education, music, business, psychology, broadcasting/electronic media, art, English, mathematics, criminal justice, life sciences, Biblical studies, Christian ministries and others. Areas of graduate study include education, human services, business administration, organizational leadership and theological studies. In addition to a mandatory daily chapel program featuring local, national, and international speakers, traditional undergraduate students are required to earn a minor in Bible by taking 30 credits of Bible classes throughout their college career.

Alternative education programs[edit]

The FOCUS Adult Undergraduate Program offers an Associate of Arts degree as well as degree-completion programs in accounting, business, psychology, ministries, and communication studies.

The Graduate Studies program offers the following graduate degrees:

  • Master of Organizational Leadership
  • Master of Arts in Theological Studies
  • Master of Divinity
  • Master of Arts in Human Services
  • Master of Arts in Education
  • Master of Business Administration

Other non-traditional programs include:

  • Online Programs
  • Early College
  • Postsecondary Enrollment Options (PSEO)

Science and mathematics[edit]

The University of Northwestern offers accredited bachelor of science and arts degrees in traditional and applied mathematics, mathematics education, biology, biochemistry, criminal justice, psychology and engineering sciences.[6]


The campus houses the KTIS-AM(Faith Network) and KTIS-FM(Life Network) radio stations, broadcasting contemporary Christian music and programming to the Twin Cities area. In addition to KTIS, which began broadcasting in 1949, University of Northwestern – St. Paul owns and operates media outlets in 9 other cities: KFNW-AM(Faith) and KFNW-FM(Life) in Fargo, ND; KDNW-FM(Life) and KDNI-FM(Faith) in Duluth, MN; WNWC-FM(Life) and WNWC-AM(Faith) in Madison, WI; KNWS-FM(Life) and KNWS-AM(Faith) in Waterloo, IA; KNWI-FM(Life) and KNWM-FM(Life) in Des Moines, IA; KNWC-AM(Faith), and KNWC-FM(Life) in Sioux Falls, SD, KLBF-FM(Faith) in Bismarck, ND; WNWW-AM(Faith) in Hartford, CT; and KJNW-FM(Life) in Kansas City, MO.

Until July 2010, University of Northwestern – St. Paul also owned WSMR in Sarasota, Florida; due to financial troubles, this station was closed down and sold to the University of South Florida, who reformatted the station with a classical music format. Also, in March 2012, the University of Northwestern sold KFNL in Fargo, North Dakota to Robert Ingstad's Mediactive, LCC, who would reformat the station with an active rock format.

The mission statement for the University of Northwestern - St. Paul's media ministry is: "The purpose of Northwestern Media is to lead people to Christ and to nurture them in their spiritual growth through Christ Centered media!"

In addition to KTIS, University of Northwestern – St. Paul operates a Campus radio station, The Remnant, and a Student television station. The Remnant is a station that broadcasts on KTIS HD4 as well as a live Internet stream. In 2011, The Remnant won its third straight College Radio Station of the Year award from the National Religious Broadcasters.


Music at Northwestern has a long and proud heritage of serving the college and the greater Twin Cities area through its preparation of students to serve in their homes, churches, and communities through Christian leadership. Ensembles include nationally renowned Northwestern Choir and Orchestra, as well as Jazz Band, Symphonic Band, Varsity Men's Chorus, Women's Chorale, and numerous chamber ensembles. The Music Department is fully accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music. Majors include Music Education, Music Performance, Music Composition and General Music. A music minor is available to those who want a concentration of coursework in music but have other educational goals.


The University of Northwestern - St. Paul's sponsors 20 varsity intercollegiate athletic sports, including football, women's volleyball, men's and women's soccer, men's and women's cross country, men's and women's golf, men's and women's basketball, baseball, softball, men's and women's indoor and outdoor track, men's and women's tennis, and men's and women's lacrosse. Northwestern is a member of the NCAA Division III, a Division I member of the National Christian College Athletic Association, and is one of nine full-time members of the Upper Midwest Athletic Conference (UMAC). Prior to its NCAA Division III membership, which began on a full-time basis prior to the 2008-2009 academic year, the Eagles were a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA).

Since becoming a Division III member in 2006,the schools teams have been invited to 20 NCAA Tournaments. In 2015 two University of Northwestern - St. Paul teams advanced to NCAA Sweet 16 appearances in men's basketball and women's volleyball. The Eagles volleyball team has advanced to eight consecutive NCAA Tournaments, 2 Sweet 16's (2015 & 2017), a Final Four (2016), and was a recipient of the NCAA's Sportsmanship Award for all divisions in 2009. The men's basketball team has also advanced to seven straight NCAA national tournaments. The University of Northwestern - St. Paul became the first college football team in modern history to play two games on the same day. On October 8, 2005, under head coach Kirk Talley, the Eagles defeated Trinity Bible College 59–0 in a 12 noon kickoff before defeating Macalester College 6.5 miles down Snelling Avenue at 7 p.m. that night, 47–14.[7] The UNW football team has won two NCCAA Victory Bowls in 2000 and 2008. The University of Northwestern - St. Paul men's basketball team won the 2010 NCCAA Division I Men's Basketball National Tournament, defeating King College (Tennessee), for its first ever Division I championship by a score of 58–54.[8]

University of Northwestern - St. Paul athletic and recreation facilities [9] consist of the Ericksen Center (1996) (volleyball, men's and women's basketball) and the Reynolds Field complex (2014), which houses the Johnson Tennis Complex and 100 percent artificially turfed fields for baseball, softball, football, soccer and lacrosse. The outdoor facility also offers a running and jumping pit for track and field participants, a stadium, and four locker rooms.

In addition to the Eagles' success on the court and field of play, the University of Northwestern - St. Paul's coaching staff has an average tenure of over 10 years, with five head coaches logging at least 15 years at UNW.


University of Northwestern – St. Paul is a member of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities.

The FOCUS Adult Undergraduate program is a member of the Twin Cities Adult Education Alliance.

The Music Department is fully accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music.

Presidents of University of Northwestern – St. Paul[edit]

  • William Bell Riley 1902 to 1947
  • Billy Graham 1948 to 1952
  • Dr. Richard Elvee 1953 to 1956
  • Dr. Curtis B. Akenson 1957 to 1966
  • Dr. William Berntsen 1966 to 1985
  • Dr. Donald Ericksen 1985 to 1997
  • Dr. Wesley Willis 1997 to 2000
  • Dr. Alan Cureton 2002 to Present

Notable alumni[edit]

See also[edit]

  • Northwestern University The large elite research university situated in Evanston, Illinois and commonly referred to as "Northwestern." Unaffiliated with the University of Northwestern - St. Paul


External links[edit]