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Michigan State University (MSU) is a public research university in East Lansing, Michigan, United States. MSU was founded in 1855, then became the nation's first land-grant institution under the Morrill Act of 1862, serving as a model for future land-grant universities. The university was founded as the Agricultural College of the State of Michigan, one of the country's first institutions of higher education to teach scientific agriculture. After the introduction of the Morrill Act, the college became coeducational and expanded its curriculum beyond agriculture. Today, MSU is the ninth-largest university in the United States (in terms of enrollment) and has approximately 540,000 living alumni worldwide.
MSU pioneered the studies of packaging, hospitality business, supply chain management, and communication sciences. Michigan State frequently ranks among the top 30 public universities in the United States and the top 100 research universities in the world. U.S. News & World Report ranks many of its graduate programs among the best in the nation, including African history, criminology, industrial and organizational psychology, educational psychology, elementary and secondary education, osteopathic medicine, nuclear physics, rehabilitation counseling, supply chain/logistics, and veterinary medicine. MSU is a member of the Association of American Universities, an organization of 62 leading research universities in North America. The university's campus houses the National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory, the W. J. Beal Botanical Garden, the Abrams Planetarium, the Wharton Center for Performing Arts, the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum, the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams, and the country's largest residence hall system.
The Michigan State Spartans compete in the NCAA Division I Big Ten Conference. Michigan State Spartans football won the Rose Bowl Game in 1954, 1956, 1988 and 2014, and a total of six national championships. Spartans men's basketball won the NCAA National Championship in 1979 and 2000, and has enjoyed a streak of seven Final Four appearances since the 1998-1999 season. Spartans ice hockey won NCAA national titles in 1966, 1986 and 2007.
College of Agriculture and Natural Resources
The first college established at the nation’s pioneer land-grant institution, the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources at MSU has been pioneering advancements in agricultural and natural resources research, scholarship, and outreach for more than 160 years. The college provides innovative leadership in science, technology, design, management, biofuels, the bioeconomy, and global agriculture. Students learn to use the principles of science, technology, engineering, mathematics, business, and creative design in tackling some of the world’s biggest problems related to food, energy, and the environment. The wide selection of academic programs and career pathways include food, nutrition, and their applications to health; community, family, and youth development; agricultural production; technology, management, and design; food processing; biofuels, the bioeconomy, globalization, international development, and sustainability.
College of Arts & Letters
Students in the College of Arts & Letters explore human expression, human experience, and human values through a wide variety of disciplinary subjects, as well as through interdisciplinary study. The college hosts many majors and minors in literatures, languages, global religions, cultures, philosophy, arts, design, digital media, and theatre. Faculty and students represent diverse backgrounds and cultures and work together to challenge past assumptions and set future directions in the arts and humanities. Beyond traditional course work, the college provides student and faculty collaboration, interdisciplinary course offerings in the liberal arts, and opportunities to engage the greater MSU community as well as those outside of campus. Engaged and forward-thinking faculty and scholars educate students and bring public focus to the arts and humanities as the threads that weave together numerous shared cultures and traditions.
College of Communication Arts and Sciences
The College of Communication Arts and Sciences, the first of its kind in the nation, pushes the boundaries of communication research and teaching to improve lives and promote democratic values. Working side by side, students and faculty discover and explore the next communication frontiers. Its work is vital to understanding how people communicate effectively with each other to increase productivity, reduce health and safety risks, and improve quality of life around the world. The college hosts international conferences, leads federally funded research projects and cross-college collaborations, and offers ever-expanding opportunities for students, including study abroad, internships, and participation in national competitions.
College of Education
The College of Education has established a reputation for excellence and visionary thinking in its efforts to improve teaching and learning across the nation and world, particularly within the contexts of urban and global education. Faculty members in the college are committed to addressing the educational and physical needs of all learners and to working closely with educators, leaders, and policymakers in the field. With an intensive five-year teacher preparation program, rigorous undergraduate study in kinesiology and athletic training, and several nationally ranked graduate programs, the College of Education prepares leaders ready to make an impact on learning and human development around the world.
Eli Broad College of Business and the Eli Broad Graduate School of Management
Among the largest business schools in the nation and consistently ranked among the top business schools in the country, the Eli Broad College of Business and the Eli Broad Graduate School of Management, commonly referred to as the Broad College, have been accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International since 1953. The Broad College offers seven undergraduate majors, a Full-Time and Executive MBA, seven specialized master’s programs, seven doctoral programs, as well as an array of executive education programs and online certificates for business professionals. Faculty in the college are award-winning teachers and researchers, editors and reviewers of top journals, and former executives whose efforts combine in numerous research centers targeting specific topics for focused inquiry and in experiential labs that provide real-world opportunities for students.
College of Engineering
The College of Engineering prepares students to solve technical, as well as social, economic, and global problems while instilling the essence of engineering as the iterative process of designing, predicting performance, building, and testing. The college’s engineering programs provide future engineers with firm knowledge and understanding of the fundamental engineering sciences, engineering methods for the application of this knowledge, and the project management and communications skills to bring designs to fruition. Programs require a strong base in mathematics, computing, and the sciences as the tools of the engineer. An engineering education provides a teams-based, systems approach to societal problems and therefore prepares students for a wide range of career options, including those outside engineering.
The MSU Graduate School serves as an advocate for graduate education to the university and beyond, and works to enhance the quality of graduate education at Michigan State University in all its diverse dimensions.
The Honors College at Michigan State University is one of the nation’s most distinctive and extensive honors programs, serving talented, committed students who wish to pursue and achieve academic excellence. The college strives to ensure an enriched academic, social, and cultural experience for its members and create an environment that fosters active, innovative learning. It emphasizes individualized program planning rather than a tightly prescribed set of courses. Honors College members have the opportunity and are encouraged to design their own individualized programs of study; enroll in dynamic Honors classes, interactive seminars, and graduate courses; participate in faculty-led research projects; and join with other Honors College students who share their curiosity and enthusiasm to enjoy the intimacy of a small college along with the advantages of a major research university.
College of Human Medicine
The College of Human Medicine is committed to educating exemplary physicians and scholars, discovering and disseminating new knowledge, and providing critical health services at home and abroad. The college’s footprint spans the state of Michigan and beyond, enhancing communities by providing outstanding primary and specialty care, promoting the dignity and inclusion of all people, and responding to the needs of the medically underserved. Founded in 1964, the College of Human Medicine is nationally recognized as one of the nation's pioneers of community-based medical education. Clinical practice, research, and undergraduate and graduate medical education take place across seven campuses through affiliations with local hospitals, physicians, and other health care providers.
James Madison College
James Madison College provides a liberal education in public affairs for undergraduates. The college is dedicated to the highest standards of excellence, both for students and for faculty and staff. The curriculum and individual courses are multidisciplinary, cultivating in students the skills of rigorous thought, lucid prose writing, and articulate speech. The residential environment nurtures a collegium of scholars among students, faculty, and staff. The world-class resources of the wider university enrich the program as a whole. James Madison College was established in 1967. Since then the college has graduated numerous Rhodes, Truman, Marshall, and Fulbright Scholars, National Science Foundation Fellows, MSU’s first Mitchell Scholar, and regularly represents a high percentage of Michigan State University's Phi Beta Kappa class.
College of Law
The MSU College of Law, formerly the Detroit College of Law, leads cutting-edge initiatives focused on ethics, human rights, and entrepreneurial lawyering that provide rich learning opportunities and fuel the college’s upward trajectory of national and international reputation and reach. MSU Law offers a comprehensive curriculum that is constantly evaluated with an eye toward emerging trends to ensure graduates are ready to take on the latest challenges in the field of law. Students can customize their education from among 14 focus areas, 10 clinical programs, hundreds of externship locations, five study abroad programs, and more. MSU Law’s integration with Michigan State University also allows students to complement legal studies with a variety of cross-disciplinary courses and dual-degree programs.
Lyman Briggs College
The Lyman Briggs College is a residential college that bridges the gap between science and the humanities through interdisciplinary teaching and research. It provides students with a fundamental core science education in mathematics, chemistry, biology, and physics. The core program also addresses historical, philosophical, and societal concerns and consequences of modern science, technology, the environment, and medicine. The majority of Lyman Briggs students pursue programs leading to advanced graduate study in the natural sciences or professional programs related to medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine, allied health, education, or law. The philosophy of inclusion and innovative teaching methods at Lyman Briggs College have attracted internationally recognized faculty and staff from a variety of disciplines.
College of Music
The College of Music is recognized as a leader for its innovative approach to nurturing musical excellence, training musicians who perform on the world’s most prestigious concert stages and developing outstanding educators and scholars who make a difference across the nation and around the globe. The college is a training ground for composers, conductors, educators, performers, and scholars who build on its record of international accomplishments in performance and national reputation of innovative music education. Students study with world-renowned musicians, scholars, educators, and composers who bring exceptional skill and experience to their art. The faculty’s numerous awards, publications, and outstanding performances around the globe reflect their commitment to musical excellence.
College of Natural Science
The College of Natural Science promotes excellence in research, teaching, and public service across the biological, physical, and mathematical sciences. Its innovative undergraduate and graduate programs prepare students to be leaders in an increasingly sophisticated scientific and technological society. These programs grow and evolve in an environment that values multidisciplinary and cross-college collaborations and builds on the advantages that a diverse student body brings to a dynamic community of scholars. Steadfast in its land-grant mission, the college strives to enhance student learning, promote basic scientific understanding of nature, and develop the technical and human resources necessary to address the current and future needs of society.
College of Nursing
The mission of Michigan State University’s College of Nursing is to enhance the health of communities by providing excellence in nursing education, research, and practice. Spartan nurses worldwide improve outcomes in chronic illness, healthy lifestyles, and the health and wellbeing of individuals and their families. Across all ranks, faculty in the college receive support for their research from several NIH institutes. Current scientific and interdisciplinary research strengths include cancer, gerontology, physical activity, nutrition, chronic illness management, and obesity and associated conditions. The college offers an undergraduate program leading to the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and graduate programs leading to the Master of Science in Nursing (MSN), the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP), and the Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing (PhD).
College of Osteopathic Medicine
The Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine (MSUCOM) is committed to excellence in osteopathic education, research, international outreach, and service. Faculty researchers explore treatments and cures for some of the most pressing health challenges facing humankind while preparing future physicians to respond to public need in a dynamic health care environment. The college provides a professional osteopathic physician educational program leading to the Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) degree, as well as Master of Science (MS) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree programs. The college also offers a dual-degree program that allows students who wish to become medical scientists to pursue a DO and a PhD simultaneously. MSUCOM is integrated with 47 Michigan community hospitals and 31 federally qualified health centers in the Statewide Campus System for pre- and postdoctoral education.
Residential College in the Arts and Humanities
The Residential College in the Arts and Humanities (RCAH) is an interdisciplinary college offering a Bachelor of Arts degree in arts and humanities for students interested in the growing global connections between literature, history, ethics, culture, world languages, the visual and performing arts, and civic engagement. Its faculty, staff, and visiting artists are committed to teaching and to scholarship that enhances the collaborative learning process. RCAH students live and learn together in the historic Snyder-Phillips Hall. From this home base, students can explore the diverse resources of one of the nation’s most distinguished public research universities. They also learn to communicate and navigate within the evolving cultures of the contemporary world through study abroad and study away programs.
College of Social Science
The College of Social Science at Michigan State University is a community of scholars committed to creating, disseminating, and applying knowledge in the social, behavioral, and economic sciences. The college is the largest and among the most diverse at MSU and offers 13 major disciplines. Nearly 400 tenured and tenure-stream faculty provide instructional, research, and outreach services within its eight departments, three schools, and seven centers and institutes. Scholars in the college are diverse and dynamic intellectual leaders who seek to understand and address the myriad challenges facing our world at local and global scales through collaborative learning and responsive engagement with people and communities.
College of Veterinary Medicine
One of the oldest veterinary colleges in the nation, the MSU College of Veterinary Medicine serves as an essential resource for the state of Michigan and the world. It provides unparalleled training for future veterinarians, world-class care for animals, and groundbreaking research aimed at attaining better health for animal and human populations. The college is organized into six departments: Large Animal Clinical Sciences, Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, Pathobiology and Diagnostic Investigation, Pharmacology and Toxicology, Physiology, and Small Animal Clinical Sciences. The Veterinary Medical Center provides expert care to animals in need, treating more than 20,000 small animal patients per year and more than 2,000 large animals. The college also is home to the Diagnostic Center for Population and Animal Health—one of the leading veterinary diagnostic labs in the world—and several research centers.
History of MSU
February 12, 1855
May 13, 1857
May 14, 1857 – Five faculty members taught 63 students in three now nonexistent buildings (College Hall, Saint’s Rest, and a brick horse barn).
1862 – MSU was the nation’s pioneer land-grant university and the prototype for the entire land-grant system created when President Lincoln signed the Morrill Act in 1862. The act granted lands to each loyal state to support a college “where the leading object shall be, without excluding other scientific and classical studies and including military tactics, to teach such branches of learning as are related to agriculture and the mechanic arts . . . in order to promote the liberal and practical education of the industrial classes in the several pursuits and professions of life.”
- 1855 – Agricultural College of the State of Michigan
- 1861 – State Agricultural College
- 1909 – Michigan Agricultural College
- 1925 – Michigan State College of Agriculture and Applied Science
- 1955 – Michigan State University of Agriculture and Applied Science
- 1964 – Michigan State University
Governing body changes
- 1855 – State Board of Education
- 1861 – State Board of Agriculture
- 1959 – Board of Trustees
Michigan State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Some individual programs, schools and colleges are recognized by the accrediting agencies in their respective fields. Information about the accreditation of individual programs, schools, and colleges is included in program descriptions in Academic Programs.
The university is a member of the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities, Association of American Universities, American Council on Education, American Council of Learned Societies, Association of Graduate Schools, Council of Graduate Schools, Committee on Institutional Cooperation, and International Association of Universities.
- In its 2015-16 rankings, Times Higher Education World University Rankings ranked MSU 99th in the world. Michigan State ranks 101-150 in the world in 2016, according to the Academic Ranking of World Universities.
- The 2016 QS World University Rankings placed it at 160th internationally. In its 2017 edition, U.S. News & World Report ranked it as tied for the 33rd-best public university in the United States, tied for 82nd nationally and 78th globally.
- The university has over 200 academic programs. U.S. News ranked MSU's graduate-level programs in elementary teacher's education, secondary teacher's education, industrial and organizational psychology, and nuclear physics first in the nation for 2016.
- U.S. News also ranks MSU third nationally for graduate education in African history and fourth nationally for graduate education in Educational Psychology.
- The Eli Broad College of Business was ranked No. 42nd among undergraduate institutions nationally by Businessweek. Ninety-four percent of the school's graduates received job offers in 2014.
- The 2016 U.S. News ranked Michigan State's undergraduate supply chain management/logistics program in the Eli Broad College of Business 1st in the nation. In addition, the Eli Broad College of Business undergraduate accounting program is ranked 13th, the master's accounting program is ranked 15th, and the doctoral program is ranked 11th, according to the 2013 Public Accounting Report's Annual Survey of Accounting Professors.
- The MBA program is ranked 19th in the U.S. by Forbes magazine.
- The College of Communication Arts and Sciences was established in 1955 and was the first of its kind in the United States.\
- The college's Media and Information Studies doctoral program was ranked No. 2 in 2007 by The Chronicle of Higher Education in the category of mass communication.
- The communication doctoral program was ranked No. 4 in a separate category of communication in The Chronicle of Higher Education's 2005 Faculty Scholarly Productivity Index, published in 2007.The college's faculty and alumni include eight Pulitzer Prize winners and a two-time Emmy Award winning recording mixer.
- Other programs of note include criminal justice,hospitality business, packaging,political science,dietetics and communications.
- The Sustainable Endowments Institute awarded Michigan State with an overall grade of "B" on the 2009 Campus Sustainability Survey, including "A"s in the categories of Administration, Transportation, Endowment Transparency, and Investment Policies.
Student life @MSU
East Lansing is very much a college town, with 60.2% of the population between the ages of 15 and 24. President John A. Hannah's push to expand in the 1950s and 1960s resulted in the largest residence hall system in the United States. Around 16,000 students live in MSU's 23 undergraduate halls, one graduate hall, and three apartment villages. Each residence hall has its own hall government, with representatives in the Residence Halls Association. Yet despite the size and extent of on-campus housing, the residence halls are complemented by a variety of housing options. 58% of students live off-campus, mostly in the areas closest to campus, in either apartment buildings, former single-family homes, fraternity and sorority houses, or in a co-op.
In 2014 there were approximately 50,085 students, 38,786 undergraduate and 11,299 graduate and professional. The students are from all 50 states and 130 countries around the world.
With over 3,000 members, Michigan State University's Greek Community is one of the largest in the US. Started in 1872 and re-established in 1922 by Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity, Alpha Gamma Rho fraternity, and Alpha Phi sorority; the MSU Greek system now consists of 55 Greek lettered student societies. These chapters are in turn under the jurisdiction of one of MSU's four Greek governing councils: National Panhellenic Conference, North American Interfraternity Council, National Pan-Hellenic Council, and Independent Greek Council. National Pan-Hellenic Council is made up of 9 organizations, 5 Fraternities and 4 Sororities, that were founded on Historically Black College and Universities (HBCU's). The Interfraternity Council and the Women's Panhellenic Council are each entirely responsible for their own budgets, giving them the freedom to hold large fundraising and recruitment events. MSU's fraternities and sororities hold many philanthropy events and community fundraisers. For example, in April 2011 the Greek Community held Greek Week to raise over $260,000 for the American Cancer Society, and $5,000 for each of these charities: Big Brothers Big Sisters, The Listening Ear and previous charities include: the Make-a-Wish Foundation (MSU Chapter), Share Laura's Hope, The Mary Beth Knox Scholarship, and the Special Olympics, in which fraternity and sorority members get to help each other participate.
The Associated Students of Michigan State University (ASMSU) is the all-university undergraduate student government of Michigan State University. It is unusual amongst university student governments for its decentralized bicameral structure, and the relatively non-existent influence of the Greek system. The structure has since changed to a single General Assembly as part of reorganization in the late 2000s. ASMSU representatives are nonpartisan and many are elected in noncompetitive races. Their mission is to enhance the individual and collective student experience through education, empowerment, and advocacy by education to the needs and interest of students. Some services they offer include: free blue books, low cost copies and printing, free yearbooks, interest free loans, funding for student organizations, free legal consultation, and iClicker and graphing calculator rentals.
Students pay $18 per semester to fund the functions of the ASMSU, including stipends for the organization's officers and activities throughout the year. Some students have criticized ASMSU for not having enough electoral participation to gain a student mandate. Turnout since 2001 has hovered between 3 and 17 percent, with the 2006 election bringing out 8% of the undergraduate student body.
Student-run organizations beyond student government also have a large impact on the East Lansing/Michigan State University community. Student Organizations are registered through the Department of Student Life, which currently has a registry of over 800 student organizations.
The Eli Broad College of Business includes 27 student organizations of primary interest to business students. The three largest organizations are the Finance Association (FA), the Accounting Student Association (ASA), and the Supply Chain Management Association (SCMA). The SCMA is the host of the university's largest major specific career fair. The fair attracts over 100 companies and over 400 students each year.
Activists have played a significant role in MSU history. During the height of the Vietnam War, student protests helped create co-ed residence halls, and blocked the routing of Interstate 496 through campus. In the 1980s, Michigan State students convinced the University to divest the stocks of companies doing business in apartheid South Africa from its endowment portfolio, such as Coca-Cola. MSU has many student groups focused on political change. Graduate campus groups include the Graduate Employees Union and the Council of Graduate Students. Michigan State also has a variety of partisan groups ranging from liberal to conservative, including the College Republicans, the College Democrats and several third party organizations. Other partisan activist groups include Young Americans for Freedom and Young Americans for Liberty on the right; Young Democratic Socialists, Students for Economic Justice, Young Communist League and MEChA on the left. Given MSU's proximity to the Michigan state capital of Lansing, many politically inclined Spartans intern for state representatives.
The MSU Office of Sustainability works with the University Committee for a Sustainable Campus to "foster a collaborative learning culture that leads the community to heightened awareness of its environmental impact." The University is a member of the Chicago Climate Exchange, the world's first greenhouse gas emission registry, and boasts the lowest electrical consumption per square foot among Big Ten universities. The University has set a goal of reducing energy use by 15%, reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 15%, reducing landfill waste by 30% by 2015.
The university has also pledged to meet LEED-certification standards for all new construction. In July 2009, the University completed construction of a $13.3 million recycling center, and hopes to double their 2008 recycling rate of 14% by 2010. The construction of Brody Hall, a residence hall of Michigan State University Housing, was completed in August 2011 and qualified for LEED Silver certification because the facility includes a rain water collection tank used for restroom fixtures, a white PVC roof, meters that will monitor utilities to make sure they are used efficiently, and the use of recycled matter and local sources for building materials.
The Environmental Steward's program support's president Simon's "Boldness by Design" strategic vision to transform environmental stewardship on campus within the seven-year time frame. Environmental stewards promote environmental changes among co-workers and peers, be points of contact for their department for environment-related concerns, and be liaisons between the Be Spartan Green Team and buildings.
The Student Organic Farm is a student-run, four-season farm, which teaches the principals of organic farming and through a certificate program and community supported agriculture (CSA) on ten acres on the MSU campus. The certificate program consists of year round crop production, course work in organic farming, practical training and management, and an off-site internship requirement.
MSU has a variety of campus media outlets. The student-run newspaper is the The State News and free copies are available online or at East Lansing newsstands. The paper prints 28,500 copies from Monday through Friday during the fall and spring semesters, and 15,000 copies Monday through Friday during the summer. The paper is not published on weekends, holidays, or semester breaks, but is continually updated online at statenews.com. The campus yearbook is called the Red Cedar Log. Red Cedar Review, Michigan State University's premier literary digest for over forty years, is the longest running undergraduate-run literary journal in the United States. It is published annually by the Michigan State University Press.
MSU also publishes a student-run magazine during the academic year called Ing Magazine. Created in 2007 by MSU alumnus Adam Grant, the publication is released at the beginning of each month and publishes 7 issues each school year. MSU also publishes a student-run fashion and lifestyle magazine called VIM Magazine once a semester.
Electronic media include three radio stations and one public television station, as well as student-produced television shows. MSU's Public Broadcasting Service affiliate, WKAR-TV, the station is the second-oldest educational television station in the United States, and the oldest east of the Mississippi River. Besides broadcasting PBS shows, WKAR-TV produces its own local programming, such as a high school quiz bowl show called "QuizBusters". In addition, MSU has three radio stations; WKAR-AM plays National Public Radio's talk radio programming, whereas WKAR-FM focuses mostly on classical music programming. Michigan State's student-run radio station, WDBM, broadcasts mostly alternative music during weekdays and electric music programming nights and weekends.
Services of MSU
- Spartan Stadium
- Breslin Student Events Center
- Daugherty Football Building/Skandalaris Football Center
- Berkowitz Basketball Complex
- Munn Ice Arena
- Jenison Field House
- McLane Baseball Stadium (Kobs Field)
- DeMartin Stadium (soccer)
- Forest Akers Golf Courses
- McCaffree Pool
- Ralph Young Field (field hockey/track)
- Old College Field
- MSU Tennis Facility
- and three intramural facilities
Culture and entertainment
- Broad Art Museum: committed to exploring global contemporary culture and ideas through art
- Wharton Center for Performing Arts: four venues–Cobb Great Hall, Pasant Theatre, MSU Auditorium, and Fairchild Theatre–host a variety of cultural events
- Breslin Student Events Center: state-of-the-art arena hosts special events such as concerts, commencements, ice shows, sporting events, banquets, conventions, and trade shows
- MSU Museum: offers anthropological, biological, folklife, geological, and historical exhibits and programs
- Abrams Planetarium: houses a Digistar 5 computer graphics planetarium projector and a 150-seat Sky Theater
- Horticulture Gardens: six distinct gardens over 7.5 acres provide a living laboratory where plants and people grow together