Saint Mary's University of Minnesota

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Saint Mary's University of Minnesota
Saint Mary's University of Minnesota Seal.svg
Latin: Universitatis Sanctæ Mariæ
MottoVirtus et Scientia
Motto in English
Virtue and Knowledge
Religious affiliation
Roman Catholic (Lasallian)
Endowment$53 million (2015)[1]
Budget$88.9 million (2016)[2][3]
PresidentRev. James P. Burns, IVD
Academic staff
Undergraduate: 96 full-time, 41 part-time;
Graduate: 400 adjunct
Location, ,
United States

44°02′41″N 91°41′46″W / 44.044753°N 91.696143°W / 44.044753; -91.696143Coordinates: 44°02′41″N 91°41′46″W / 44.044753°N 91.696143°W / 44.044753; -91.696143
ColorsRed, White, & Navy             
AthleticsNCAA Division IIIMIAC
AffiliationsIALU, ACCU, CIC, NAICU
Saint Mary's University of Minnesota logo.svg

Saint Mary's University of Minnesota, (SMU) is a private Catholic university in Winona, Minnesota. Graduate and professional programs are offered at facilities in Winona, the Twin Cities, Rochester, Apple Valley, Minnetonka, and Oakdale, Minnesota; and various course delivery sites around Minnesota and Wisconsin; Jamaica, and Nairobi, Kenya.[4] The institution was founded in 1912 and is associated with the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools.

The university had a Fall Semester 2015 total enrollment of 5,900 students, including 1,171 traditional undergraduates on campus and approximately 4,729 graduate students primarily online or at satellite locations.[2]


Bishop Patrick Richard Heffron founded Saint Mary's College in 1912, a men's college operated by the Winona Diocese. Heffron Hall, a residential hall was built in 1920, and named after Bishop Heffron. By 1925 it became a four-year liberal arts college. In 1933, it was taken over by the De La Salle Christian Brothers, a religious order whose main charism is teaching. It became a co-educational university in 1969 and later purchased the campus and buildings of the former College of Saint Teresa, a women's college in Winona that ceased operations in 1989. In recent years, portions of the Saint Teresa campus were sold to Winona State University and Winona Cotter High School.

During the 1980s the main Winona campus underwent vigorous growth. Constructed during this decade were the Ice Arena (1986), Performance Center, including Figliulo Recital Hall and Joseph Page Theatre (1987), Brother Charles Hall science addition (1987), Gilmore Creek Residence (1989), and Christian Brothers Residence (1989). More recent additions include McEnery Center (1993), Gostomski Fieldhouse and Jul Gernes Pool (1994), pedestrian plaza (1994), Pines Hall residence (1995), Hendrickson Center (1996), The Heights (1997), Oscar and Mary Jane Straub Clocktower and Court (1999), Hillside Hall residence (2001), ice arena addition (2004) and the soccer field / track complex in 2008. A new residence hall named Brother Leopold was built in 2012, which includes an outdoor recreation center donated by the Winona ski club.

Beginning in 1985, then-president Brother Louis DeThomasis launched a series of new, non-traditional graduate and professional programs. The Schools of Graduate and Professional Programs, using a variety of course delivery methods and locations, is now one of Minnesota's largest graduate schools. SGPP programs are delivered at the Twin Cities campus, Rochester center, Apple Valley center, Minnetonka center, Oakdale center, and at locations around Minnesota and Wisconsin. Saint Mary's also operates two institutes at Tangaza College in Nairobi, Kenya: the Maryknoll Institute of African Studies, and Christ the Teacher Institute of Education. The university has a partnership with Catholic College of Mandeville, Jamaica. In 2011, the Twin Cities campus added Harrington Mansion and Saint Mary's Event Center to its expanding facilities on Park Avenue in Minneapolis.

In 1995, Saint Mary's College was renamed Saint Mary's University of Minnesota to reflect the expanded role of graduate and professional programming, and to distinguish Saint Mary's from schools with similar names.


Years President
Founder Bishop Patrick R. Heffron
1912–1918 Monsignor William E.F. Griffin
1918–1933 Monsignor John H. Peschges
1933–1942 Brother Leopold Julian Dodd, FSC
1942–1943 Brother Landrick Jerome Fox, FSC
1943–1950 Brother Joel Stanislaus Nelson, FSC
1950–1956 Brother J. Ambrose Groble, FSC
1956–1963 Brother Basil Rothweiler, FSC
1963–1969 Brother Josephus Gregory Robertson, FSC
1969–1976 Brother George Pahl, FSC
1976–1984 Brother Peter Clifford, FSC
1984–2005 Brother Louis DeThomasis, FSC, Ph. D
2005–2006 Brother Craig J. Franz, FSC, Ph. D
2006–2008 Brother Louis DeThomasis, FSC, Ph. D
2008–2018 Brother William Mann, FSC, D.Min.
2018–Present Rev. James P. Burns, IVD


Saint Mary's University has a wide variety of degrees offered. The university offers bachelor's, master's, and doctorate degrees for both traditional and non-traditional students. In addition to the degrees, Saint Mary's also offers teaching licensures, certifications, and pre-professional programs. Both undergraduate and graduate programs offer online learning. Men study for the priesthood at the adjacent Immaculate Heart of Mary Seminary, owned and operated by the Diocese of Winona.


Its sports teams are nicknamed the Cardinals (previously the Redmen) and compete as a member of the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC). There are 21 NCAA Division III varsity sports teams at Saint Mary's. The Saint Mary's fastpitch softball team won the 2000 NCAA Division III National Title. That title was the university's first and so far only national team title. In 1955, the college administration elected to discontinue football as a sport at the university. A task force was formed in 2005 to study the feasibility of adding football, but the proposal was rejected in 2006 by a unanimous vote of the board of trustees.

There is an on-campus cross country ski and running trail in the bluffs and valleys of the 450-acre campus. Athletic facilities are being renovated and expanded. Upgrades were recently made to basketball, baseball and softball. A challenging disc golf course was installed in the bluffs and valleys around campus in 2007. A state-of-the-art outdoor track and soccer complex, and a high-and-low ropes course, were added in 2008. Snowmaking equipment for the trails was recently donated by the Winona ski club.

Saint Mary's has long had a friendly crosstown rivalry in non-conference athletics with NCAA Division II member Winona State University, which is the regional public university that is part of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system.

Notable alumni[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "US News Best Colleges 2015". US News Education Rankings and Advice. US News Corp. Retrieved 22 February 2016.
  2. ^ a b c "Fast Facts". Overall Fast Facts. St. Mary's University of Minnesota. Retrieved 22 February 2016.
  3. ^ Kennedy, Patrick. "Minnesota Nonprofit 100". StarTribune News. Minneapolis StarTribune. Retrieved 16 December 2017.
  4. ^ About SMU
  5. ^ "Frank Billock". Retrieved October 27, 2015.
  6. ^ "Fritz Cronin". Retrieved October 27, 2015.
  7. ^ "JOHANNS, Mike, (1950 - )". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved October 19, 2012.
  8. ^ "John McDonough Bio - Chicago Blackhawks - Team". Chicago Blackhawks and the National Hockey League. Retrieved October 27, 2012.
  9. ^ "Pioneers of the Medical Device Industry". Minnesota Historical Society. Missing or empty |url= (help)

External links[edit]