Green initiatives connected to Morris campus history
Since its founding in 1887, the Morris campus has been home to three public educational institutions. As the needs of the region and state changed, the campus changed, too.
The campus began as a working farm and boarding school for American Indian children. In 1910, the campus became the West Central School of Agriculture (WCSA), a residential agricultural high school. The “ag school” gave Minnesota farm kids the chance to receive a high school education and specialized vocational training.
By the late 1950s, western Minnesota needed higher education facilities. In 1960, after intense lobbying by the region’s leaders, the Minnesota Legislature established the University of Minnesota, Morris on the WCSA campus. The four-year, residential college offered rural students a high-quality, low-cost liberal arts education close to home.
Now, as energy and environmental issues grow more pressing, the Morris campus is responding to this need—one that brings the liberal arts college back to its roots in agriculture and land stewardship.
The campus community has advanced sustainable, environmentally focused initiatives since 2001. Led by students seeking change, today these efforts have grown to levels of national leadership and touch nearly all aspects of campus life.