About MWSU

Achieving Excellence, Transforming Lives

Missouri Western State University, located on more than 700 acres in St. Joseph, Mo., serves Missouri and surrounding states. Originally founded as St. Joseph Junior College in 1915, Missouri Western was transformed into a four-year college in 1969 and became a full member of the State of Missouri system in 1977. In 2005, Missouri Western received university designation and changed its name to Missouri Western State University.

Today, Missouri Western offers certificates, associate’s, bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Student-centered, high-quality instruction emphasizes experience-based learning and community service.

Our Vision, Mission, Values

Missouri Western State University will set the standard for excellence in student development and community leadership.


Missouri Western State University is a learning community focused on students as individuals and as members of society. Missouri Western offers students at all stages of life the opportunity to achieve excellence in the classroom and beyond, as they prepare to be leaders in their work and in their communities. As a leader itself, Missouri Western is committed to the educational, economic, cultural and social development of the people and the region that it serves.


Service: We share the common purpose of serving students, one another, and the people of the region.

Quality: We are committed to the quality of our programs, our students, and our partnership with the people of the region.

Enthusiasm: We are enthusiastic about learning and confident that we can make a difference in the lives of students through their learning.

Freedom: We promote the free exchange of ideas that makes education liberating and democracy unique.

Respect: We act as individuals and as a campus community with respect for diversity and for the best in human potential.

Courage: We seek the challenge and adventure of shaping the future with an increasingly global perspective.