We have a long history of creating bright futures.

You can trust a university with over 125 years of history shaping students’ futures. Start your journey toward success at CWU.

The Path to Becoming CWU

Founded in 1891, Central Washington University has a rich history beginning as the Washington State Normal School, serving future elementary and junior high teachers.

Historical image of the Washington State Normal School practicumThe original student body consisted of 50 pupils ranging in age from 15-50, with many only possessing an eighth-grade education. Despite challenges throughout war times and the Depression, it flourished as a teaching school, and in 1937 became accredited as an official College of Education.

Enrollment and program expansion continued, including a land acquisition that doubled the size of the campus to 226 acres. In 1974, the school underwent its final name change to Central Washington University. The quest for excellence and modernization continued with the adoption of technology and the drive to deliver cutting-edge buildings and classrooms to students like you, complementing the vast array of degree programs now available.


Look Back at CWU

Discover your path at CWU and start your own journey toward a successful future today.

CWU News

CWU Business faculty dedicated to helping small-town small businesses grow

November 29, 2023


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November 29, 2023


CWU Teacher Academies ambassador visits the White House

November 27, 2023


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