Most of you know that Winona State University was founded as a normal school, a place to train teachers on the American frontier. What you may not know is that from the very beginning we were recognized globally as innovators in teacher education, and that the “Winona Model” was influencing how teachers were prepared around the world back in the 1870s. In the years since, we’ve continued our proud tradition of teacher education and our College of Education remains a major component of what makes WSU great.
As the needs of students and schools change, we find ourselves contemplating a “New Winona Model” – a way for Winona State to lead the nation in teacher preparation in the future, responding to technology, diversity, new theories of learning, and other aspects of the 21st century landscape. To serve that vision, we have submitted a revised capital bonding request to the MnSCU System Office to begin a dramatic renovation of Wabasha Hall. This renovation will improve the technological, experiential, and collaborative learning experiences of students by providing a state-of-the-art, flexible, high-tech environment. We believe this is one of the most important contributions WSU can make to improving our world.
The many facilities proposals received by the MnSCU System Office are now being reviewed and ranked by peers. Soon we can expect a list of all the projects statewide, and then it will be for the legislature and governor to provide bonding for the most worthy ideas. One way or the other, we are committed to preparing excellent teachers for our P-12 schools.