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President's Desk

President’s Column: Enrollment, Committee Visit, Teacher Events

Oct 9, 2023

Greetings from Valley City State University!

The temps outside are certainly giving a preview of the changing of the season from fall to – do I dare mention it – winter. Many folks who keep track of annual trends such as first snow have reminded me that was almost exactly one year ago when we experienced our first significant snowfall. Like many, my hope is that the weather will stabilize and provide our farmers ample opportunity for a successful harvest season!President Alan LaFave

We have many exciting updates to share with you regarding the fall semester here at VCSU. Our campus continues to see the results of the efforts of faculty, staff and community in making VCSU such a special and outstanding place.

Once again, we have been recognized in the U.S. News and World Report rankings. For the third consecutive year we ranked as the top public regional college in North Dakota and placed second among public regional colleges in the Midwest. The Midwest includes North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Nebraska, Michigan, and Kansas. We were also ranked as a Best Value School, a top performer on Social Mobility, and a Best College for Veterans. This year marks the 26th consecutive year we’ve been included in these rankings.

As you likely know, our Fall 2023 enrollment has surpassed all previous records and exceeds 1,700 students for the first time in our history. With 1,754 students enrolled this fall, we continue to grow. We were the only four-year regional institution in ND to show growth in both headcount and FTE this fall. Our FTE of 1,112 is the highest it has been in the past three years and the third highest in our history. We welcomed 310 new students, including freshmen and transfers. Our high school dual credit numbers increased by 37 students from 395 to 432, and our NDSU collaborative elementary education program grew by 9 students from 106 to 115.

These numbers help illustrate the importance of the overall enrollment picture and the many different types of students that contribute to our campus. This energy and momentum would not have happened without a concerted effort on the part of our entire faculty and staff, and I extend thanks and appreciation to all!

We are pleased and honored to be hosting the October 2023 meeting of the ND Legislative Interim Higher Education committee. They will be on campus Tuesday, Oct. 10, and Wednesday, Oct. 11. Their visit will include a tour of VCSU and a variety of topics and presentations from the North Dakota University System, Valley City State University, Mayville State University, and Department of Public Instruction. You can find a detailed agenda of events here:

Many of the events will focus on teacher shortages and graduation trends in teacher education programs. I’m very pleased to report that VCSU continues to lead in these efforts, with 151 education graduates this past year and over 1,500 alumni teaching throughout North Dakota.

To continue growing the education workforce, VCSU will be hosting to “Tomorrow’s Teacher Education Visit Days.” The days are scheduled for Wednesday, Oct. 25 and Wednesday, Nov. 8 from 9:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., these visit days will be tailored for students considering or wanting to learn more about becoming a teacher. Prospective students will have an opportunity to meet and interact with our faculty, staff, and students in the School of Education at VCSU. More information and registration materials are available at:

As always, we welcome you to visit campus and enjoy the beauty of the final fall colors. We appreciate and thank the entire community for your support of VCSU. Go Vikings!