Loved Banner Blue and Gold"
|1904 – Workers
laying the walkway in front of the
first Administration Building.
|1915 – Transport
wagon greeting students at the train.
purpose of the Normal School at Kearney was to prepare
teachers to work in both primary and secondary schools.
In the first decade of the 20th century, Americans became
more interested in not only the subject matter taught
in schools, but more importantly, the methods of teaching.
Normal Schools, established throughout the United States, were devoted to these educational methods in order to create better-qualified
June 19, 1905, the Nebraska State Normal School at Kearney
offered its first classes. Unfortunately for the students
and faculty, construction on the campus forced the first
classes to be held in the Kearney High School. In September,
classes moved to the Normal School campus. At this time,
campus consisted of only a former hotel, converted into
student housing, and a new, grand Founders Hall, which
housed classes as well as administrative offices. By
December, 400 students were enrolled at the institution.
Students at the Normal School worked toward a two-year
degree and were instructed not only in teaching methods,
but also mathematics, geography, English and psychology
as well. Elective courses offered ranged from the sciences,
such as zoology and chemistry, to the arts, including
drawing and music. In the early years of the Normal School,
students and faculty endured the growing pains of the
institution. Classes were often held in rooms with no
heat, and the school soon found its single academic building
was not enough to house all of its classes. Despite these
constraints, enrollment continued to climb throughout