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The University of Minnesota is a large university with several campuses spread throughout the U.S. state of Minnesotamarker. There are four primary campuses in the Twin Citiesmarker, Duluthmarker, Crookstonmarker, and Morrismarker. In addition, university services are available in Rochestermarker, and a campus was open in Wasecamarker for a time. The university also operates several research facilities around the state, including some large tracts of land. The other major higher education network in the state is the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities System (MnSCU).


The flagship Twin Cities campus is by far the largest in the system, with a total enrollment of 50,883. That made it the fourth-largest campus in the country at the time. Duluthmarker reported 10,366, Crookston had 2,346, and Morrismarker had 1,686 students, bringing the system-wide total to 66,099 for fall semester 2007 (numbers for Rochester are apparently counted separately).

The colors of the university, which are used system-wide, are maroon and gold.

Twin Cities

Minneapolis Campus at night.

Because of its size and several decades of history prior to the addition of other campuses, the University of Minnesota Twin Cities (sometimes abbreviated UMTC) is what most people think of upon hearing "University of Minnesota." It can actually be subdivided into multiple parts. Most significantly, Minneapolismarker and neighboring Saint Paulmarker (actually, the suburb of Falcon Heightsmarker) each have distinct campuses. The Minneapolis and St. Paul campuses are connected via a dedicated bus transitway. The buildings on each campus are connected by a series of underground tunnel and above-ground skyways called The Gopher Way. The campus has 50,883 students currently enrolled.

The original University of Minnesota building in Minneapolis, 1875.
The Minneapolis portion is the largest and has a number of colleges dedicated to a variety of subjects. Minneapolis' campus can be further subdivided into the East Bank (main portion) and West Bank, as the Mississippi River flows through it. Students become well-acquainted with the double-decker Washington Avenue Bridgemarker that connects the two sections. There are a number of distinguished graduate and professional schools on the Minneapolis campus, notably the University of Minnesota Law Schoolmarker, Medical School, Carlson School of Managementmarker, School of Public Healthmarker, and Hubert H. Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs. In addition, Minneapolis houses many research facilities such as The Cancer Center.

The Saint Paul campus is more focused on agriculture, though several other subjects are taught there. Due to the workings of the U of M phone system, both campuses have 612 area code (Minneapolis) telephone numbers instead of the 651 code that would be expected for the Saint Paul portion. The Minnesota State Fairgroundsmarker is also located in Falcon Heights.

The mascot for the Twin Cities campus is Goldy the Gopher, and the sports teams are called the Minnesota Golden Gophers. They participate in the NCAA's Division I-A and in the Big Ten Conference. Its hockey program competes in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association.

Among the graduates from this campus are two former U.S. Vice Presidents, Hubert Humphrey and Walter Mondale, former NAACP president Roy Wilkins, several Nobel prize winners, several athletes such as Ric Flair, Kevin McHale, Dave Winfield, Patty Berg, Brock Lesnar, Curt Hennig, Shelton Benjamin, Bobby Jackson of the NBA, and composer Yanni. Folksinger Bob Dylan famously attended the University and was a part of its thriving "West Bank" music scene, but did not graduate. A wide variety of medical and technological innovations have taken place there as well. For instance, the Internet Gopher protocol was created at the Twin Cities campus. A predecessor of sorts to the World Wide Web, it was named after the school mascot.

Campus media includes the Minnesota Daily newspaper, The Wake Student Magazine, and 770 Radio K (KUOM), an AM radio station that is probably the oldest in the state.


The University of Minnesota Duluthmarker (UMD) became part of the system in 1947, though the campus has a history stretching back to 1895 when it was formed as the Normal School at Duluth. Their teams are nicknamed Bulldogs. Campus media includes the KUMD FM band radio station.


The Crookston campus (UMC) joined the university system in 1966. Their mascot is Regal the Eagle, and the school nickname is Golden Eagles.


The Morris campusmarker (UMM) joined the system in 1960 as the system's public liberal arts college. Their teams are nicknamed Cougars. The school operates an FM radio station, KUMMmarker.


The Rochester campus has offered classes since 1966. The campus is located in University Square, in downtown Rochester, Minnesota.


The Waseca campus opened in 1971, but was closed in 1992. Their mascot was the ram. The University still operates an agricultural outreach program in the city. Campus buildings became part of a low-security federal prison (see Federal Correctional Institution, Wasecamarker).


Presidents of the U of M
Name Dates
William Watts Folwell 1869–1884
Cyrus Northrop 1884–1911
George Vincent 1911–1917
Marion Burton 1917–1920
Lotus Coffman 1920–1938
Guy Stanton Ford 1938–1941
Walter Coffey 1941–1945
James Morrill 1945–1960
O. Meredith Wilson 1960–1967
Malcolm Moos 1967–1974
E. W. Ziebarth 1974–1974 (interim)
C. Peter Magrath 1974–1984
Kenneth H. Keller 1984–1985 (interim)

Richard J. Sauer 1988–1989 (interim)
Nils Hasselmo 1989–1997
Mark G. Yudof 1997–2002
Robert H. Bruininks 2002–present
The University of Minnesota was founded in Minneapolismarker in 1851 as a college preparatory school, seven years prior to Minnesota's statehood. As such, the U enjoys much autonomy from other operations of the state government. The school was closed during the American Civil War, but reopened in 1867. Minneapolis businessman John Sargent Pillsbury is known today as the "Father of the University", and aided the campus through financial troubles as a regent, state senator, and governor. The Morrill Land Grant Colleges Act also helped provide funding for the U.

Folwell Hall
1869 the school reorganized and became an institution of higher education. William Watts Folwell served as the U's first president. An official residence known as Eastcliffmarker has been used by six university presidents since 1958. The 20-room house, originally built by lumber baron Edward Brooks, was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2000.

During the traditional autumn through spring year, classes are not held on Thanksgiving Day or the Friday after, and the school traditionally has an extended break covering Christmas and New Year's Day. Classes don't resume in January until the day after Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. A week-long spring break occurs after the eighth week of the spring term, which sometimes coincides with Easter.

Sources of funding

The University of Minnesota system has one of the largest endowments among public universities in the country. As of 2007, the University of Minnesota maintained an endowment of $2.8 billion. Also, as a public university, the system received an estimated $641 million from the State of Minnesotamarker. The university's total budget for FY 2006 was $2.36 billion.

Additional properties

There are many other research and outreach centers across the state owned by the university. As of September 2004, these areas plus the campuses are spread across 28,300 acres (44 miles² or 115 km²). Other areas owned by the state and university bring this up to a total of 57,200  acres (89 miles² or 231 km²)

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