206 Minné Hall (507.457.5017)
College of Liberal Arts
Ralph E. Townsend (Dean)
Peter Miene (Interim Associate Dean)
The mission of the College of Liberal Arts 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 two facets of the mission translate into the two major responsibilities for 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:
- Develop a depth of knowledge in a primary liberal arts discipline.
- Develop breadth through knowledge and appreciation of the arts, humanities, and social sciences beyond one’s primary discipline.
- Provide an intellectual, social, and cultural atmosphere for the development of self-education and lifelong learning.
- Make individuals aware of the rights and responsibilities they have to themselves and a democratic society.
- 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.
Over 90 percent of the liberal arts faculty members 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.
The opportunities for career education within the College of Liberal Arts are many and varied. The 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 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, but including business, law, and medicine. These skills have general applicability, and they 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 departments that encourage faculty/student research include Psychology and History. Examples of partnerships include the National Child Protection Training Center and the Child Advocacy Program, Theater du Mississippi for 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; the Women’s Resource Center; Olmsted County and Winona County Prosecutor’s Offices; the Winona County Historical Society; Fastenal Company; and others.
The College also supports study abroad opportunities, including a joint degree arrangement with Soonchunhyang University in Seoul, South Korea; study of Spanish language and culture at the University of Granada; and study abroad agreements with Southern Cross University in Australia, Akita International University in Japan, and Hebei University of Technology in China. In addition, there are opportunities available through other universities.
In addition to general university scholarships, several departments offer scholarships for their majors. Such scholarships are available in art, communication studies, history, music, paralegal, sociology, psychology, and theatre. Contact the appropriate department for more details.
The majority of the liberal arts faculty offices and facilities are located in Minné Hall or the 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 a Master of Arts and a Master of Science in English. See the Graduate Catalog for program descriptions and other pertinent information.