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University of North Dakota

University of North Dakota
Seal of the University of North Dakota
Motto Lux et Lex (Latin)
Motto in English Light and Law
Established 1883
Type Public, Space grant
Endowment $121.5 million[1]
President Robert Kelley
Provost Paul LeBel
Academic staff 790
Admin. staff 1,906
Students 14,697 [1]
Undergraduates 11,139 [2]
Postgraduates 2,556 [3]
Location Grand Forks, North Dakota, United States
Campus Urban – 549 acres (2.22 km2), 223 buildings, 5,330,000 sq ft (495,000 m2).
Colors Official colors: Green and Pink[2]
Common colors: Green, White, and Black
Sports 20 Division I
Nickname North Dakota Fighting Sioux
Affiliations North Dakota University System
Western Collegiate Hockey Association
Great West Conference
Website www.und.edu
Logo of the University of North Dakota

The University of North Dakota (UND) is a public university in Grand Forks, North Dakota, USA. Established by the Dakota Territorial Assembly in 1883, six years before the establishment of the state of North Dakota, UND is the oldest and largest university in the state and enrolls over 14,000 students.[3] UND was founded as a university with a strong liberal arts foundation.[4] UND offers a variety of professional and specialized programs, including the only schools of law and medicine in the state.[4] UND is known for its School of Aerospace Sciences which trains airplane pilots from around the world.[4] UND has also been named a space grant institution.[5]

Roughly half of the student body is from North Dakota.[4] UND's economic impact on the state and region is more than $1 billion a year and it is the second largest employer in the state of North Dakota, after the Air Force.[6] UND specializes in health sciences, nutrition, energy and environmental protection, aerospace, and engineering research.[4] Several research institutions are located on the UND campus including the Energy and Environmental Research Center, the School of Medicine and Health Sciences, and the USDA Human Nutrition Research Center.[4][7] The men's ice hockey team has won seven national championships and plays in the Ralph Engelstad Arena. The athletic teams compete at the Division I level.[4]



  President's Mansion


UND was founded in 1883, six years before North Dakota became a state.[8] Grand Forks native George H. Walsh submitted a bill to the Territorial Legislature of Dakota Territory that called for the new state of North Dakota's university to be located in Grand Forks.[8] The first classes were held on September 8, 1884. The first building at UND, Old Main, housed all classrooms, offices, dorm rooms, and a library.[9] In the 1880s, UND consisted of only a few acres of property surrounded by farms and fields.[9] At this time, the campus was nearly two miles west of the city of Grand Forks. Students living off campus had to take a train or a horse and carriage bus, dubbed the "Black Maria", from downtown to the campus.[10]

  20th century

  Early 20th century campus scenes

Gradually, more buildings were constructed on campus and a trolley system was built to connect the growing university to downtown Grand Forks. However, there were several major interruptions in the life of the university. In 1918, UND was the hardest-hit single institution in the country by the flu epidemic which killed 1,400 people in North Dakota alone.[11] Later that year, classes were suspended so the campus could become an army base for soldiers during World War I.[11] During the Great Depression, UND provided free housing to students willing to do manual labor on campus.[12] "Camp Depression," as it was called, consisted of railroad cabooses that housed eight male students each.[12] "Camp Depression" students did not get regular meals from the cafeteria and had to be satisfied with only free leftovers. However, a number of Grand Forks citizens often opened their homes and kitchen tables to many of these young men.[12]

After World War II, enrollment quickly grew to more than 3,000.[13] A large amount of housing had to be built on campus as well as several new academic buildings.[13] The 1950s saw the rise of the Fighting Sioux hockey tradition.[14] In the 1960s and 1970s, many student protests occurred at UND.[15] The largest occurred in May 1970 when over 1,500 students gathered to protest the Kent State shootings.[15] In 1975, enrollment swelled to a record 8,500. The 1970s also saw the establishment of the John D. Odegard School of Aerospace Sciences at UND. The 1980s and 1990s were another period of growth for UND.[16] However, the devastating 1997 Red River Flood inundated numerous buildings on campus and forced the cancellation of the remainder of the school year.[17]

  21st century

The turn of the 20th to 21st century was marked by the opening of two major athletic venues for UND athletics.[18] The Ralph Engelstad Arena which is used for hockey and the Alerus Center which is used for football both opened in 2001. Millions of dollars worth of construction and renovation projects have dotted the campus landscape in recent years. As part of a plan to improve student facilities on campus, UND has recently constructed a Wellness Center, a parking garage, and a new apartment-style housing complex. Today, issues facing UND include a move of its entire athletic program to Division I,[19] ongoing discussions regarding the Fighting Sioux nickname,[20] the fact that UND is located in a state with a shrinking population of potential students, and efforts to increase external contributions and funding.


  A map of the University of North Dakota.

  Main campus

The main campus of the University of North Dakota sits in the middle of Grand Forks on University Avenue. The campus is made up of 223 buildings (5.33 million square feet) on 549 acres (2.22 km2).[4] The campus stretches roughly one and half miles from east to west and is divided by the meandering English Coulee. The western edge of campus is bordered by Interstate 29, the eastern edge is bordered with University Park, the Grand Forks railyards sit on the south side of campus, and the north side of campus is marked by U.S. Highway 2 which is called Gateway Drive in Grand Forks. The central and eastern areas of campus are the older sections and the northern and western areas are newer.

  Central campus and eastern campus

  Merrifield Hall, University of North Dakota

The central campus area is the oldest part of UND and contains many historic buildings.[21] This area is home to most academic buildings on campus. At the heart of campus sits the Chester Fritz Library, the largest library in North Dakota. The 82-foot (25 m) tower of the library is a familiar landmark on University Avenue.[21] Behind the library is the park-like setting of the central campus mall. The mall includes several statues and is a popular place for students to study. The mall is lined with historic buildings including Merrifield Hall, Twamley Hall, Babcock Hall, Montgomery Hall, and the old Carnegie Library.[21] The location of the first building on campus, Old Main, is marked with Old Main Memorial Plaza and the eternal flame of the Old Main Memorial Sphere.[21] Other buildings in the central part of campus include the School of Law, the North Dakota Museum of Art, Memorial Union, Gamble Hall, the J. Lloyd Stone Alumni Center, the Burtness Theatre, and Chandler Hall—the oldest remaining building on the UND campus.[22] The English Coulee flows along the western edge of the central campus area and on the western bank of the Coulee sits the Chester Fritz Auditorium and the Hughes Fine Arts Center. The historic 1907 Adelphi Fountain is located next to the Coulee as is the new Spiritual Center.[21][23]

On the eastern edge of the central campus area sits Memorial Stadium, the old Ralph Engelstad Arena, and the Hyslop Auditorium. These structures are all old athletic venues which have been replaced with new structures located elsewhere on campus. The eastern part of campus is also the home of the Energy and Environmental Research Center complex which includes the National Center for Hydrogen Technology. The Grand Forks Human Nutrition Research Center, which is operated by the United States Department of Agriculture, is also found in this part of campus.[7] A five-story parking garage sits directly at the corner of University Avenue and Columbia Road. At the extreme eastern portion of campus sits University Park which is operated by the Grand Forks Park District.

  Northern campus and western campus

  Ralph Engelstad Arena

To the north of the central campus area, along Columbia Road, sits the School of Medicine complex. The main School of Medicine building is the remodeled St. Michael's Hospital building which was built in 1951.[21] Other buildings in the medical school complex include the Biomedical Research Center and the Neuroscience Research Facility.[21] Further north sits an area that is called University Village. This land sat virtually empty for decades, but has recently been developed for UND, commercial, and residential purposes.[24] University Village is anchored by the $100+ million dollar Ralph Engelstad Arena which is used by the UND Fighting Sioux ice hockey teams. University Village is also home to the Betty Engelstad Sioux Center, the new Student Wellness Center, the UND bookstore, a condo development, a medical clinic, and several commercial properties.

  Clifford Hall

The western part of the UND campus is a newer area with modern styles of architecture.[21] This area is home to the John D. Odegard School of Aerospace Sciences (originally named the Center for Aerospace Sciences or "CAS") which includes Odegard Hall, Clifford Hall, Ryan Hall, and Streibel Hall.[21] Directly adjacent to the Aerospace Complex sits the Skalicky Business Incubator, the Ina Mae Rude Entrepreneur Center, and a Hilton Garden Inn. Ground was recently broken for the Center of Excellence for Life Sciences and Technology.[25] The western part of campus is also the location of most residence halls and student apartments. A new $20 million dollar student housing project called University Place recently opened on University Avenue.[26]

  Other facilities

UND operates a small campus consisting of several buildings at Grand Forks International Airport where aviation students train.[27] UND Aerospace also operates flight training centers in Crookston, Minnesota, Phoenix, Arizona, Spokane, Washington, and Williston, North Dakota.[28] UND owns and operates the Ray Richards 9-hole golf course south of the main UND campus.[29] The Fighting Sioux football team is a major tenant of the city of Grand Forks-owned Alerus Center. The School of Medicine operates several clinics throughout the state.[30]


The Council on Environmental Stewardship and Sustainability made up of representatives from various departments is exploring ways to improve sustainability. The campus’s current recycling system reduces UND’s overall waste stream by 20%. UND has conducted lighting retrofits and installed heat recovery systems and power management technology for peak and off-peak use adjustment. Students are involved in promoting sustainability via recycling and other initiatives. The University received a B- grade on the 2011 College Sustainability Report Card released by the Sustainable Endowments Institute.[31]


  Memorial Union building.

UND has ten academic divisions:[32]

Altogether, UND offers 89 undergraduate majors, 63 undergraduate minors, 57 master's programs, 23 doctoral programs, two professional programs (medicine and law), and a specialist diploma program in educational leadership.[33] UND also has an interdisciplinary program that allows students to obtain a degree in virtually any course of study.[34] A collection of online classes and degree programs are offered for students around the nation and world.[35] UND is one of only 47 public universities in the United States that has both accredited schools of law and medicine.[4] Nearly all professors hold the highest degree available in their profession and UND is fully accredited.[4] On campus, academic classrooms range from smaller rooms capable of seating around twenty students to large lecture bowls capable of seating hundreds at a time. Many areas have wireless access for laptops and technologically equipped classrooms enable professors to offer interactive lectures. UND offers 1,000 computer workstations for student use and computer labs can be found in the libraries, Memorial Union, and in several academic areas.[4]


  Chester Fritz Library

UND has three major libraries which, together, form the largest system of research libraries in the state of North Dakota.[36] The Chester Fritz Library is the largest library in the state.[37] It houses 1.4 million volumes, provides access to approximately 28,000 electronic journal subscriptions, and owns over 20,000 electronic books.[38] It also serves as a U.S. patent and trademark depository and a government document depository.[36] UND's special collections department is known for its genealogical resources, including Norwegian Bygdeboker, or Norwegian farm and town records.[39] Branches of the Chester Fritz Library include the Energy and Environmental Research Library, the F.D. Holland Geology Library, and the Gordon Erickson Music Library.[36] The School of Law operates the Thormodsgard Law Library[40] and the School of Medicine operates the Harley E. French Library of the Health Sciences.[41]

  Division of Continuing education

The division offers many distance learning and online degree programs. It offers undergraduate level programs in Chemical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Electrical Engineering and Mechanical Engineering.

It also offers graduate level programs like MBA, Applied Economics, Educational Leadership, Forensic Psychology, Social Work, Public Administration and Nursing.

They also offer a Doctoral level program in Educational Leadership, with some on campus face to face requirements.


UND is classified by the Carnegie Foundation as a doctoral/research-intensive institution.[42] This level of research activity is shown in UND's research statistics which, in fiscal year 2006, included program awards that reached $94.3 million, sponsored program expenditures that reached $81.2 million, and an overall research portfolio that included $315 million in total ongoing and committed accounts.[43] Research activity at UND focuses on health sciences, nutrition, energy and environmental protection, aerospace, and engineering.[4] As a major component of the Red River Valley Research Corridor, UND operates many research units including the Energy and Environmental Research Center, the School of Medicine, the Center for Rural Health, the Center for Innovation, the Upper Midwest Aerospace Consortium, the Bureau of Governmental Affairs, the Bureau of Educational Services and Applied Research, and the Social Science Research Institute.[44] The Energy and Environmental Research Center, located on the eastern fringes of the UND campus, has been recognized as a leader in researching cleaner, more efficient forms of energy.[45] The EERC operates a number of research units at UND including the National Center for Hydrogen Technology.

In May 2006, students from UND unveiled a new space suit that they had developed to be used by astronauts that may someday travel to Mars. The students were working off of a $100,000 grant from NASA and the suit was tested in the Badlands of western North Dakota. The suit weighs 47 pounds and costs only a fraction of the standard $22 million cost for a NASA spacesuit. The suit was developed in just over a year by the students.[46]


  Alerus Center, home of UND football

UND's athletic teams currently bear the name of the Fighting Sioux. The NCAA has demanded that the name be changed claiming it is insensitive to native Americans.[47] Although the official school colors of UND are green and pink, this color combination is rarely employed outside of official or ceremonial applications. The colors are representative of North Dakota's state flower, the Wild Prairie Rose.[2] The official athetic teams colors of UND are Green and White adopted in the 1920s.

UND is currently in Division I. The hockey teams play in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association and all other teams currently play in the Great West Conference but will join the Big Sky Conference in 2012.

The men's ice hockey team has won seven national championships and has been runner-up five times. Both the men's and women's ice hockey teams play at the Ralph Engelstad Arena. The football team won the Division II national championship in 2001 and was the runner-up in 2003, and play at the Alerus Center. The basketball teams play in the Betty Engelstad Sioux Center. The women's team has won three national championships in 1997, 1998, and 1999 and was runner-up in 2001. A notable UND athletic alumnus is NBA coach and former player Phil Jackson. Many UND alumni have played in the NHL including: New Jersey Devils winger Zach Parise and center Travis Zajac, Los Angeles Kings defenseman Mike Commodore, Chicago Blackhawks forward and captain Jonathan Toews, former NHL goalie Ed Belfour, and St. Louis Blues center TJ Oshie.

  Fight song

It's For You, North Dakota U (or North Dakota U) is a fight song of the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks, North Dakota.[48] The song was composed by Franz Rickaby in 1921.[49]

  Student life

  Students skating on roller blades in front of the Medical School building.
Historic enrollments:[50]
1890 24
1900 124
1910 490
1920 1,124
1930 1,765
1940 1,757
1950 2,653
1960 4,491
1970 8,129
1980 10,217
1990 11,885
2000 11,031
2010 14,194 [4]

  Student body

Currently, over 13,000 students attend classes on the UND campus each year.[5] About half of the student body is from North Dakota and the other half is made up of students from all 50 states and over 50 other nations.[51] The ratio between male and female students is about even.[51] Demographically, about 90% of the student body is caucasian.[51] Students can choose to live on or off campus. On campus, there are 14 residence halls[52] and 800 student apartment units,[53] as well as twelve fraternities[54] and six sororities.[55] There are over 230 student organizations at UND[56] as well as an intramural sports program called RecSports.[57] The student body is represented by the Student Government. Student Government is composed of three branches: executive, legislative, and judicial. The executive branch consists of six executives who each have different areas of focus. The legislative branch consists of 23 student senators who represent each academic and residential district. The judicial branch consists of seven justices that deal with judicial matters when necessary. In addition, four standing committees are committed to enhancing university life for all students. The four standing committees are: University Programming Council (UPC), Student Activities Committee (SAC), Multicultural Awareness Committee (MAC), and Board of Student Publications (BOSP). In addition, five Administrative Assistants assist with all areas of Student Government.[58]

  Greek life

Member chapters include:


Pi Kappa Alpha, Delta Upsilon, Beta Theta Pi, Kappa Sigma, Sigma Nu, Sigma Chi, Sigma Alpha Epsilon, Sigma Phi Epsilon, Lambda Chi Alpha, Delta Tau Delta, Pi Kappa Phi, Alpha Tau Omega


Delta Gamma, Alpha Phi, Kappa Alpha Theta, Alpha Chi Omega, Pi Beta Phi, Gamma Phi Beta

  Other Student Organizations

InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, Campus Crusade For Christ, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and the Newman Center are some of the many Christian and religious groups operating on campus. The Dakota Space Society (affiliated with the School of Aerospace Sciences) works to educate and enlighten members and non-members about the benefits of space with membership open to all students from any field of study in both the undergraduate and graduate areas.


There are a number of cultural offerings on the UND campus. The North Dakota Museum of Art, the official art museum of the state of North Dakota, is located in the heart of campus and offers exhibits throughout the year.[59] The Burtness Theater and the Chester Fritz Auditorium regularly feature theater and concert events.[60][61] The Ralph Engelstad Arena also occasionally features non-athletic events including concerts. The nearby city-owned Alerus Center hosts several concerts each year as well as other events. In addition to these facilities, the city of Grand Forks is home to other theaters and museums.[62] Each year, UND hosts the University of North Dakota Writers Conference.[63] This is a week long event that brings together prominent American and foreign writers. Past participants have included Truman Capote, Tennessee Williams, Eudora Welty, Tom Wolfe, Allen Ginsberg, Louise Erdrich, Chuck Klosterman, and Gary Snyder.[64] A film festival is held in conjunction with the conference.


The Dakota Student is UND's student newspaper. Students, along with staff at the UND TV Center, put on a live weekly television show called Studio One that is broadcast throughout the region.[65] Dimensions, a twice-yearly promotional publication, features stories on faculty, staff, and the University.[66] The University Letter serves as the faculty and staff newsletter of UND.[67] The Alumni Review is published by the UND Alumni Association and Foundation.[68] The North Dakota Quarterly, a literary journal, is edited at UND.[69] The North Dakota Law Review, published by the School of Law since 1924, serves as the journal of the State Bar Association of North Dakota.[70] UND currently owns two public radio stations: KUND-FM and KFJM.[71] KUND-FM rebroadcasts the Prairie Public radio network, which also carries National Public Radio programming. KFJM broadcasts some Prairie Public and NPR programming, but also broadcasts some locally-produced programs. KFJM was one of the first college radio stations in the United States and is the second oldest station in North Dakota.[72] UND operates two local cable television channels. One operates as an information billboard and also features a weekly student-produced news program entitled Studio One.[73] The other channel, The Fighting Sioux Sports Network, is operated in conjunction with local ABC affiliate WDAZ-TV.[74] FSSN broadcasts all home hockey games and several away games each year. It also broadcasts several football and basketball games during the school year. The Fighting Sioux Sports Network is carried on cable television in North Dakota, Minnesota, and South Dakota by Midcontinent Communications. It is also available throughout the entire North American continent via Free-To-Air satellite. The campus residence halls include a movie channel, Residence Life Cinema, on cable channel 17. The University separately licenses movies for showing on this channel.[75]

  Notable people and alumni

  Sen. Byron Dorgan
  Carl Ben Eielson

Alumni of the University of North Dakota have become notable in a variety of different fields including politics and government, business, science, literature, arts and entertainment, and athletics.[76] Eight Governors of North Dakota were educated at UND, including Fred G. Aandahl,[77] Louis B. Hanna,[78] Lynn Frazier,[79] William Langer,[80] John Moses,[81] Ragnvald A. Nestos,[82] Allen I. Olson,[83] and Ed Schafer, who was also the US Secretary of Agriculture from 2008–2009.[84] Many U.S. Senators and Representatives of North Dakota were also graduates of UND, including former Senator Byron Dorgan[85] and former Representative Earl Pomeroy.[86] Former United States House of Representatives Majority Leader Dick Armey is a UND graduate.[87] Ronald Davies, a UND graduate and former federal judge, became a part of history when he ordered the integration of Little Rock Central High School during the American Civil Rights Movement.[88] UND alumni who went on to notable careers in the business world include current president and CEO of Cargill Gregory R. Page,[89] current president and CEO of the Buffalo Wild Wings restaurant chain Sally J. Smith,[90] current CEO of Forum Communications William C. Marcil,[91] former Las Vegas casino owner and UND philanthropist Ralph Engelstad, former President and CEO of Jossey-Bass Publishers Lynn D. W. Luckow,Founder and President of Summit Brewing Company Mark O. Stutrud,[92] and former CEO of American Skandia and founder of WealthVest Marketing Wade Dokken.[93]

In the realm of science, notable UND alumni include important contributor to information theory Harry Nyquist,[94] pioneer aviator Carl Ben Eielson,[95] Arctic explorer Vilhjalmur Stefansson,[96] engineer and 2008 IEEE-USA president Russell Lefevre, NASA astronaut Karen L. Nyberg,[97] and leading NASA manager John H. Disher

Alumni who have become notable through literature include the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright and author Maxwell Anderson,[98] Rhodes scholar and poet Thomas McGrath,[99] essayist and journalist Chuck Klosterman,[100] and novelist Jon Hassler.[101] UND graduates have become editors of major magazines: Carroll Eugene Simcox of The Living Church, former Ebony editor Era Bell Thompson[102] and former LIFE editor Edward K. Thompson.[103] Alumni who have become notable in arts and entertainment include actor Sam Anderson[104] and America's Next Top Model winner Nicole Linkletter.[105] Former UND students who have gone on to notable careers in athletics include former NBA player and current NBA coach Phil Jackson,[106] ice hockey player who played in the 1980 Winter Olympics "Miracle on Ice" game Dave Christian,[107] NHL professional ice hockey players Ed Belfour, Tony Hrkac, Jonathan Toews – captain of the Chicago Blackhawks, Zach PariseNew Jersey Devils, Travis ZajacNew Jersey Devils, T.J. OshieSt. Louis Blues, Ryan BaydaPittsburgh Penguins, Drew StaffordBuffalo Sabres, Brian Lee – Ottawa Senators, Matt SmabyTampa Bay Lightning, Matt JonesToronto Maple Leafs, Mike CommodoreColumbus Blue Jackets, Jason BlakeAnaheim Ducks, Ryan JohnsonVancouver Canucks, NFL professional football players Jim Kleinsasser – and Dave Osborn, both of the Minnesota Vikings, CFL professional football players Weston Dressler, David Griswold – Saskatchewan Roughriders.[108]


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Coordinates: 47°55′20″N 97°04′24″W / 47.9222°N 97.0734°W / 47.9222; -97.0734



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