Jun 23, 2024  
2020-2021 Undergraduate Catalog 
2020-2021 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

College of Liberal Arts

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206 Minné Hall
email: CLA@winona.edu
College of Liberal Arts website
Peter Miene, Dean
Rita Rahoi-Gilchrest, Associate Dean


The mission of the College of Liberal Arts (CLA) is to offer degree programs in the arts, humanities, and social sciences as well as in specialized professional and occupational areas. The College also seeks to provide a comprehensive base of liberal arts studies as the foundation of all degrees. These dual facets of our mission translate into two major responsibilities for CLA faculty members:

  • Providing a broad array of quality programs in the liberal arts and related professional fields
  • Providing the majority of the General Education curriculum to all WSU students

The specific goals for the College of Liberal Arts are:

  1. Develop a depth of knowledge in a primary liberal arts discipline.
  2. Develop breadth through knowledge and appreciation of the arts, humanities, and social sciences beyond one’s primary discipline.
  3. Provide an intellectual, social, and cultural atmosphere for the development of self-education and lifelong learning.
  4. Make individuals aware of the rights and responsibilities they have to themselves and a democratic society.
  5. Prepare individuals to meet the career challenges of a rapidly changing and multicultural society. Contribute to the development of basic and applied knowledge in the liberal arts fields.


More than 90 percent of the CLA faculty have terminal degrees in their fields from prominent universities. Many are widely known for their scholarly and creative efforts as well as for their excellence as teachers. Specific faculty qualifications are listed on each department’s individual pages in this catalog.

Career Opportunities

The opportunities for career education after pursuing degrees within the College of Liberal Arts are many and varied. BA degrees in all the College’s disciplines provide opportunities for employment or preparation for advanced degree work in those areas. BS (teaching) degrees educate students for careers in teaching art, music, communication arts and literature (English and speech), Spanish, social science/history, and TESOL (teaching English as a second language). Departments within the College of Liberal Arts offer specific professional preparation in such areas as criminal justice, mass communication, paralegal, and public administration.

Equally important in career planning is the fact that a liberal arts education provides students with career skills that are useful in many professions not listed above including business, law, and medicine. These transferable skills provide considerable vocational choice and career flexibility.

Research, Community Service, and Partnerships

The College supports faculty/student research, community service, and partnerships with business and nonprofit agencies in a variety of ways. Examples of community partnerships include Theater du Mississippi, the Frozen River Film Festival, and the Great River Shakespeare Festival.

Several departments encourage or require internships, capstone experiences, and community service opportunities, which involve working with the City of Winona, Home and Community Options, Project FINE, the Women’s Resource Center, the Olmsted County and Winona County Prosecutor’s Offices, the Winona County Historical Society, Fastenal Company, Bluff Country Co-op, and many others.

Study Away/Study Abroad

The College strongly encourages students to consider study abroad. Many short-term or semester program opportunities are available in most regions of the world to help students meet major, minor, or graduation requirements. For more information, email: studyabroad@winona.edu or consult the study abroad website.


In addition to general College of Liberal Arts scholarships, several departments offer scholarships for their specific majors. Such scholarships are available in Art & Design, Communication Studies, English, History, Legal Studies/Paralegal, Mass Communication, Music, Political Science/Public Administration, Psychology, Sociology/Criminal Justice, and Theatre and Dance. Consult the CLA scholarships website for more details.


The majority of the College of Liberal Arts faculty offices and facilities are located in Minné Hall or the Robert A. DuFresne Performing Arts Center. The Art Department is located in Watkins Hall; the Psychology Department and the Mass Communication Department are in Phelps Hall. The Dance Studio is located in Memorial Hall.

Graduate Degrees Offered by the College of Liberal Arts

The College offers Master of Arts degrees in Literature or TESOL and Master of Science degrees in English.  See the Graduate Catalog for program descriptions and other pertinent information.

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