Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania

Last updated
Shippensburg University
Type Public
Established1871;150 years ago (1871)
Endowment $36.9 million (2019) [1]
President Dr. Charles E. Patterson, interim [2]
Academic staff
302 full time
130 part time
Undergraduates 6,942 full-time
Postgraduates 1,311 full-time
Location, ,
United States
Campus Rural, 200 acres (810,000 m²)
Athletics NCAA Division IIPSAC
Nickname Raiders
MascotBig Red
Cumberland Valley State Normal School Historic District
USA Pennsylvania location map.svg
Red pog.svg
Usa edcp location map.svg
Red pog.svg
LocationRoughly bounded by N. Prince St., Stewart, Old Main, Gilbert and Henderson Drs., Shippensburg, Pennsylvania
Area7 acres (2.8 ha)
Architect Samuel Sloan
Architectural style Second Empire architecture, Classical architecture
NRHP reference No. 85000076 [3]
Added to NRHPJanuary 11, 1985

Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania (Ship or SU) is a public university in Shippensburg, Pennsylvania. It is part of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education. Founded in 1871, it later became the first teachers college in Pennsylvania. Shippensburg University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.



Old Main Shipoldmain.JPG
Old Main

The commonwealth legislated the State Normal School for "the education and training of teachers" in the seventh district (7 counties) to be in Shippensburg, [4] and in 1871 the cornerstone was laid [5] for the 212 ft (65 m) building [5] designated the Cumberland Valley State Normal School. [6] [7] In 1917 the school was purchased by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.[ citation needed ]

On June 4, 1926, the school was authorized to grant the Bachelor of Science in education degree in elementary and junior high education. The school received a charter on October 12, 1926, making it the first normal school in Pennsylvania to become a state teachers college. On June 3, 1927, the State Council of Education authorized the school to change its name to the State Teachers College at Shippensburg.

The business education curriculum was approved on December 3, 1937. On December 8, 1939, Shippensburg State Teachers College became the first teachers college in Pennsylvania and the fourth in the United States to be accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and (Secondary) Schools.

H. Ric Luhrs Performing Arts Center was completed in Fall of 2005. Shipluhrs.JPG
H. Ric Luhrs Performing Arts Center was completed in Fall of 2005.
Keystone marker for the university Ship Happens Keystone Marker.jpg
Keystone marker for the university

The State Council of Education approved graduate work leading to the master of education degree on January 7, 1959. On January 8, 1960, the name change to Shippensburg State College was authorized.

The arts and sciences curriculum was authorized by the State Council of Education on April 18, 1962, and the Bachelor of Science in business administration degree program was initiated on September 1, 1967.

On November 12, 1982, the governor of the Commonwealth signed Senate Bill 506 establishing the State System of Higher Education. Shippensburg State College was designated Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania effective July 1, 1983.

Since 1985, many of the original historic buildings of the campus, including Old Main, are listed in the National Register of Historic Places. [8]


Shippensburg University offers more than 100 undergraduate programs in the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Education and Human Services, and the John L. Grove College of Business. It also offers more than 50 master's degree programs, 2 doctoral programs, and 3 post-bachelor or post-master's certificate programs in 17 fields of study in the School of Graduate Studies. The university is accredited by Middle States Commission on Higher Education and specific degree programs are accredited by AACSB International, ABET, Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences, Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications, American Chemical Society, Council on Social Work Education, Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs, International Association of Counseling Services, National Council for the Accreditation of Teachers, and Council for Exceptional Children.

Schools and colleges

The Office of Professional, Continuing, and Distance Education (formerly the Office of Extended Studies) also offers a variety of courses, workshops, training sessions, continuing education, and credit and non-credit courses.


The U.S. News & World Report again ranked Shippensburg University among the top universities in the North in its annual review "America's Best Colleges 2021." It also ranked Ship #25 in the "Top Public Schools" category. [9]

Lehman Library Shiplehmanlibrary.JPG
Lehman Library


The Ezra Lehman Memorial Library provides digital access to its holdings, the holdings of the State Library and 24 other academic libraries, a variety of full-text databases, electronic books, and Internet sites. The library collection includes over 2+ million items, including bound volumes, microform pieces, periodicals, audiovisual titles, government documents, and The Shippensburg University Archives. The Information and Computing Technologies Center maintains a campus network with a number of computer labs for student use. Each student at SU receives an email account and access to the Internet.


Shippensburg University is an NCAA Division II school and one of eighteen schools to compete in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC). The school maintains intercollegiate programs for baseball, basketball (Men & Women), cross country (Men & Women), field hockey, football, lacrosse (Men & Women), soccer (Men & Women), softball, track and field (Men & Women), swimming (Men & Women), tennis (Women), volleyball (Women) and wrestling. Several club sports, such as rugby (Men & Women), Ultimate Frisbee and the inline hockey team, also participate in independent leagues. The home venue of the university's football and track & field programs is Seth Grove Stadium. The team name is the Raiders, and the mascot is "Big Red," a red-tail hawk wearing a pirates hat. The team colors are blue and red.

Notable alumni



Entertainment and media



Business and education

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  1. As of June 30, 2019. "U.S. and Canadian 2019 NTSE Participating Institutions Listed by Fiscal Year 2019 Endowment Market Value, and Percentage Change in Market Value from FY18 to FY19 (Revised)". National Association of College and University Business Officers and TIAA. Retrieved September 20, 2020.
  2. "Provost to continue serving as SU president through search process". Public Opinion (Chambersburg) . 2017-01-26. Retrieved 2017-02-14.
  3. "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places . National Park Service. July 9, 2010.
  4. Pennsylvania (2009-09-08). School Laws of Pennsylvania, with Appendix - Pennsylvania, Its, Pennsylvania. Dept. of Education, Pennsylvania. Dept. of Public Instruction . Retrieved 2013-10-05.
  5. 1 2 "Full text of "Alumni news bulletin"" . Retrieved 2013-10-05.
  6. "Cumberland Valley State Normal School" (Google News Archive). The Star and Sentinel. June 16, 1871. The counties of Cumberland, Adams, Fulton, Franklin, Bedford, Huntingdon and Blair comprise the Seventh Normal School district of the State. The Normal School for this district is being built at Shippensburg and will be known as the Cumberland Valley State Normal School. The building is 212 feet long and over 150 feet wide.
  7. "Cumberland Valley State Normal School" . Retrieved March 16, 2016.[ dead link ]
  8. "Cumberland Valley State Normal School Historic District". 2006. Retrieved 2007-01-08.
  9. "Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania | Shippensburg University | Best College | US News". Retrieved 2015-02-21.
  11. Horn, Douglas (KBR, Inc.) (March 29, 2010). "Statement of Douglas Horn Before the Commission on Wartime Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan" (PDF). Denton, TX: University of North Texas. p. 2.
  12. Rhodes, Lisa R. (April 1, 2011). "Division commander settles into new job". Washington, DC.

Coordinates: 40°03′40″N77°31′19″W / 40.061°N 77.522°W / 40.061; -77.522