Adams State University
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Adams State University
Adams State University
Adams State University seal.png
Former names
Adams State Normal School
Adams State College
MottoGreat stories begin here
TypePublic university
Academic affiliations
American Association of State Colleges and Universities
PresidentDr. Cheryl D. Lovell
Students3,467 undergraduates
Location, ,
United States
ColorsGreen and white
AthleticsNCAA Division II - Rocky Mountain
MascotGrizzly bear
Adams State University logo.png

Adams State University is a public university in Alamosa, Colorado. The university's Adams State Grizzlies athletic teams compete under the auspices of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference.


Adams State was founded in 1921 as a teacher's college. Billy Adams, a Colorado legislator who would later become a three-term governor of Colorado, worked for three decades before obtaining the authorization to found Adams State Normal School in 1921, to provide higher education opportunities for teachers from remote and rural areas of Colorado, such as the San Luis Valley, and see them work in those same areas. In 1926, Harriet Dalzell Hester became the university's first graduate.[1] She became the school's first librarian and an Alamosa County school superintendent. In 2012, the institution's name changed from Adams State College to Adams State University.[2]

The university gained some national attention in 2016 when its online classes came under scrutiny. The university's regional accreditor, the Higher Learning Commission, placed the university on probation.[3] In 2018, the probation was lifted and the university's status was restored to "Accredited."[4]

The university also came into the national spotlight when it placed president Beverlee McClure on leave after employees lodged complaints about her "caustic behavior."[5] Dr. Cheryl D. Lovell, PhD was named the interim president and appointed to serve a 12-month term beginning July 1, 2018.[6]


Presidents have been:[7]

  • Ira Richardson (1925-1950)
  • William Newson (1950-1952)
  • Fred J. Plachy (1952-1966)
  • John A. Marvel (1966-1977)
  • Milton Byrd (1978-1980)
  • Marv Motz (interim) (1980, 1993-1994)
  • William M. Fulkerson, Jr. (1981-1993)
  • J. Thomas Gilmore (1995-2002)
  • Lee Halgren (interim) (2002-2004)
  • Richard A. Wueste (2004-2005)
  • David Svaldi (2005-2015)
  • Beverlee J. McClure (2015-2018[8])
  • Matt Nehring (Interim, Spring 2018)
  • Cheryl D. Lovell (2018-present)


Adams State University's campus is located in the heart of the San Luis Valley. All of the university's academic and residential buildings are located on its contiguous 90-acre (36.4-hectare) campus.

Academic buildings

The main administration building and oldest building on campus is Richardson Hall, named after the school's first president, Dr. Ira Richardson. The home of the math and science curriculum, Porter Hall, is named for alumnus William A. Porter, the creator of E-Trade and a major benefactor of the school. McDaniel Hall, named for donor and emeritus faculty member Dr. John McDaniel, is the main venue for English, psychology, history, sociology, and teacher education classes.

Campus edifices for the performing arts include the Adams State University Theater (erected in 2001), the Music Building (which underwent major renovations in 2011) and the Leon Memorial Concert Hall.

Athletic facilities

There are two gyms and an indoor pool. The Rex Activity Center for student recreation includes weights, exercise bikes, rock climbing wall, and racquet ball courts. Plachy Hall includes the gym and indoor pool and field house as part of the Athletics Department.

The Rex Stadium has undergone major renovation including the addition of the Residence at the Rex. The new complex includes suites for game viewing. The new residence hall provides one of the most impressive views, with a view of Mount Blanca (one of the 14ers of Colorado) to the east and overlooking the track and football field to the west. A new $750,000 video-tron screen displays action and replays at one end of the field.


There are currently six on-campus apartment complexes (Houtchens, McCurry, Moffat, Petteys, Savage and Residence at the Rex) that include private bedrooms for two to three students, a kitchen/living room and private bath, in addition to three traditional dormitory halls (Conour, Coronado and Girault). Most entering freshmen are housed in Coronado and Girault Halls.[9] The main cafeteria, La Mesa Dining Hall, in the Student Union Building is newly renovated.


The school's sports teams are now called the Grizzlies and were formerly known as the Indians. They participate in the NCAA's Division II, and in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference. Athletic groups include:

  • Baseball: Men's NCAA Division II (restarted in 2012 after a 35-year hiatus)
  • Basketball: Men's NCAA Division II, Women's NCAA Division II, Men's Intramural, Women's Intramural
  • Cross-Country: Men's NCAA Division II, Women's NCAA Division II
  • Football: Men's NCAA Division II
  • Golf: Women's NCAA Division II
  • Indoor Track & Field: Women's NCAA Division II, Men's NCAA Division II
  • Lacrosse: Men's NCAA Division II, Women's NCAA Division II
  • Outdoor Track & Field: Women's NCAA Division II, Men's NCAA Division II
  • Soccer: Women's NCAA Division II, Men's NCAA Division II, co-ed Intramural
  • Softball: Women's NCAA Division II, co-ed Intramural
  • Swimming: Men's NCAA Division II, Women's NCAA Division II
  • Volleyball: Women's NCAA Division II, Men's Club, co-ed Intramural
  • Wrestling: Men's NCAA Division II

Notable alumni


  1. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2008-05-16. Retrieved .CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  2. ^ Adams State College. Adams State becomes a University Archived 2017-01-04 at the Wayback Machine viewed June 1, 2012.
  3. ^ "Public Disclosure Notice on Adams State University" (PDF). Higher Learning Commission. February 25, 2016. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2018-02-22. Retrieved 2018.
  4. ^ "Public Disclosure: Adams State University status changed from "Accredited - On Probation" to "Accredited" Effective: June 28, 2018" (PDF). June 28, 2018.
  5. ^ Jeremy Bauer-Wolf (February 21, 2018). "President Accused of Bullying". Inside Higher Ed. Retrieved 2018.
  6. ^ "ASU board appoints Cheryl D. Lovell interim president". Retrieved .[permanent dead link]
  7. ^ "History of Adams State University - - Retrieved October 2, 2009" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on May 16, 2008. Retrieved 2008.
  8. ^ Valley Courier
  9. ^ Adams State University at Locate Colleges
  10. ^ Meyer, John (2015-05-30). "Joe Vigil to receive Legend Coach award from USA Track & Field". Retrieved .
  11. ^ McMillan, Greg (2012-09-04). "The Vigil Acceleration Workout - How to gain that extra finishing gear". Retrieved .
  12. ^ (2018-10-27). "Road to the Top by Coach Joe I. Vigil Ph.D. (1995-05-04) Hardcover". Retrieved .

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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