Overview and Historical Context

Overview and Historical Context

From its inception, the institution that became Millersville University was committed to the ideals of teacher training and classical learning as essential components of public education and enlightened citizenship. Millersville University (MU) began as an Academy established in the 1850’s to provide more education for local pupils than what was then available in Lancaster public schools. On November 5, 1855, the academy became Lancaster County Normal Institute, the first school of its kind in the state.  In 1927, Millersville became a State Teachers’ College and was empowered to grant the Bachelor of Science in Education degree. With another name change in 1959 to become Millersville State College, the institution broadened its mission and curriculum into other disciplines and in 1963, was authorized to grant the Master of Arts degree. In July I, 1983, with the passing of Senate Bill 506 creating the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE), Millersville State College became Millersville University of Pennsylvania.

Institutional Mission

Millersville University seeks to prepare its students to live in an increasingly diverse, multicultural, and technologically complex society. It accomplishes this by offering a curriculum that is rich and multifaceted, by serving as a model of a pluralistic community and by providing leadership in the regard to the greater community.  The university has established the Office of Social Equity and Diversity with a cabinet member at its helm of affairs to champion its mission of diversity excellence. 

Unique University Characteristics

Located in the north east,  in scenic Lancaster County, Pennsylvania with direct access to regional and international airports,Millersville is a comprehensive, public regional university and one of the 14 public universities in the PASSHE system. In addition to its 250 acres of gently rolling landscape on the Millersville campus, it recently added a downtown campus at 42 North Prince Street in Lancaster. To meet the technological and creative needs of the students of the future , the university also recently renovated and expanded the School of Education building, the Winters Visual and Performance Arts Center, the Library and the Student Memorial Center.  MU is committed to offering its diverse students a high quality, comprehensive university experience of exceptional value. It has consistently ranked well in U.S. News and World Report under the category of “Top Public Universities in North region.” In 2010, MU was awarded the Carnegie classification for Civic Engagement and in 2011 it received the re-affirmation of its accreditation from the Middle States Commission for Higher Education.

Millersville University provides a comprehensive range of baccalaureate programs in arts, sciences, education and professional majors. Additionally, it offers graduate programs in those fields where there is both need and corresponding institutional strength. Some of its unique graduate programs are interdisciplinary or offered collaboratively with other PASSHE institutions including the Master of Social Work and Master of Science in Emergency Management. Millersville University offers 55 bachelor’s degrees, and its college of Graduate and Professional Studies offers 62 graduate programs including 22 master’s degrees and 40 certification programs.

Dedicated to providing nationally recognized programs that embrace the liberal arts, the University provides academic opportunities which are supported by outstanding faculty who are also accomplished scholars, artists and practitioners and are supported by a talented and dedicated professional staff.

Student enrollment currently stands at 8725 (7644 undergraduates and 1081 graduate). The University employs 229 full-time faculty, 98% of who have their terminal degrees, 122 part-time faculty and 540 full-time staff members and administrators.

The current President, Dr. James Anderson assumed office in April this year after the retirement of Dr. Francine McNairy who led the University for 19 years, first as a Provost and then President. The University’s operation is predicated upon its seven strategic directions which are linked to the University’s promise “Providing Education Opportunity Second to None” and to which all the divisions within the university align their strategic plans. These strategic directions fully support the vision of the university which states, “the Millersville University experience will empower students to make a significant difference in the communities where they will live and work.” Millersville University is nationally recognized for the quality of its programs. The university and its various programs are accredited by their professional associations.