Peru State College
Peru State College is a public four-year liberal arts institution located in Peru, Nebraska, in the Midwest region of the United States.
Peru State College was originally incorporated under the name Mount Vernon School (sometimes reported as Mount Vernon Seminary or Mount Vernon College) on December 2, 1865, under the management of the Methodist Episcopal Church, after the need for a local institution was discussed November 11, 1865. The school was named after the community in which it was located, on a bluff above the Missouri. The town of Mount Vernon was supplanted by a community located at the base of the hill, whose original settlers came from Peru, Illinois. The Nebraska Territorial Legislature chartered the school on February 12, 1866, under the name Peru Seminary and College. The executive committee of the school deeded the grounds to the State of Nebraska in June 1867, making it the first state-supported college in Nebraska on June 20, 1867, with the first classes held on October 24, 1867. The name was also changed to Nebraska State Normal School. This is also considered the official date of the school's establishment. The name would change twice more before being changed to the current name of Peru State College in 1963. The name changed to Nebraska State Teachers College at Peru in 1921, and in 1949 it changed to Peru State Teachers College. During World War II, the Peru campus of the Nebraska State Teachers College hosted a unit of the US Navy V-12 officer training program, which served as an alternative military route for college students who were drafted during the war. The State of Nebraska established the Nebraska State College System by statute in 1978, and Peru State College was placed by statute under the control of the new governmental body at the same time. In 1998 the Nebraska State College System evaluated the possibility of closing Peru State College, or moving its campus to another location, among other options, and voted unanimously in 1999 to move Peru State to nearby Nebraska City, Nebraska. However, the legislature concluded that moving the college would have been too costly, and lawmakers decided instead to pump millions of dollars into campus renovations with the understanding the college would work quickly to boost growth. In 1999 the Nebraska Unicameral Legislature introduced bill LB631, aimed at merging Chadron State College and Wayne State College into the University of Nebraska system, while turning Peru State College into a community college. A competing bill, LB650, was introduced about the same time but with the intent of funding Peru State College $7 million for renovations. In 2003 rumors spread again about the possibility of closing Peru State College as part of a set of proposals to help save money in the Nebraska education system. Peru State College has been pushing forward, and in 2007 celebrated a record 472 graduates, with student enrollment ballooning even higher. Credit was given largely to its online education programs, which it was reported funded about 30 percent of campus initiatives. This period of growth has been referred to by one college administrator as "the Renaissance".
Peru State College serves the community through education, research, and public service programs. Our mission is to excel as a comprehensive liberal arts college that encourages student learning with educational priorities in baccalaureate and graduate teacher education, as well as undergraduate programs in business, the humanities, and the sciences. We value free-inquiry, professional development, research enhancing our educational role, and public service related to and supportive of instruction. Peru State College serves students from throughout the state, nation, and world but retains a special commitment to serve the residents and needs of Southeast Nebraska.
Nebraska State Teachers College Clair Armstrong Callan - US Congressman for Nebraska Melvin O. McLaughlin - US Congressman for Nebraska Peru State Teachers College Floyd James Fithian, Ph.D. - Commander in the US Navy, US Congressman for Indiana Robert Dinsmore Harrison - US Congressman for Nebraska
Rural, 104 acres (42 ha)