UNK Facts

UNK- The University of Nebraska at Kearney (pronounced “car-nee”) was founded in 1905 as the Nebraska State Normal School. UNK has grown from 96 students in its first year to over 6,500 today. The Normal School became Nebraska State Teachers College in 1921 and then Kearney State College in 1963, when its mission broadened to include a more diverse curriculum. Through the action of the state legislature, Kearney State College became the University of Nebraska at Kearney on July 1, 1991.

UNK is known as the home of the Lopers. The University of Nebraska at Kearney is one of only two NCAA schools to be nicknamed the Antelopes (Lopers for short). The Antelope name became associated with the school thanks to the student newspaper. In December of 1910, the staff chose the creature, calling it “the swiftest, most beautiful, and most graceful animal in the western plains.” The paper continued, in its first edition, “(Antelope) appeals as a fitting emblem of the school located on the broad prairies of Nebraska, where the antelopes once roamed so freely.” Adopted soon after by the athletic department, the short term of “Lopers” didn’t appear until 1950’s when the local daily paper, The Kearney Hub, began using the term. The student paper quickly picked up on “Lopers” and the word has stuck ever since.

The colors for the university are blue and gold. The campus is composed of 36 buildings and sits on 235 acres of land. The campus is home to over 160 student organizations, 4 sororities, and 10 fraternities. The programs of study at UNK consist of 176 undergraduate majors and 23 pre-professional programs. Students enjoy individual attention with the student faculty ratio being 21 to 1 in the undergraduate upper level division. The University of Nebraska at Kearney is a premier residential university for undergraduate education.

The student housing on campus is composed of 10 residence halls, 2 Greek complexes, and an apartment style complex. Students come from all of Nebraska’s 93 counties and 38 states. The university’s strong international presence is reflected with students from 46 countries. The university emphasizes excellent teaching, scholarship, and service in accomplishing its goals.

UNK has a special commitment to undergraduate education and is proud of the quality and accomplishments of its students. Senior Political Science major, Clayton Thyne is one exemplary student at UNK. Thyne recently received the prestigious Harry S. Truman Scholarship. Marty C. Gutowsky, also a senior Political Science major is currently a semi-finalist for a Rhodes Scholarship. The UNK Construction Management Program in the Industrial Technology Department has been working with the University of Rostock in Rostock, Germany. Students were recently involved in construction of the first wood structures in northern Germany. The Construction Management Program at UNK has grown from 10 to 122 majors since 1991 and boasts placement 100% placement of graduates.

UNK recently entered an agreement with National Collegiate Network (NCN) of Tokyo, Japan. NCN will bring approximately 60 Japanese students per year from the nation’s best high schools to UNK to study in four-year bachelor degree programs under the supervision of Japanese speaking counselors. The university and NCN will be working closely to help guarantee success for these students. The UNK Music Department will be performing during the special convocation to be held during President Clinton’s visit to Nebraska. Nebraskats Swing Choir, under the direction of Dr. Annabell Zikmund, has made numerous national and international tours. Among the performance venues have been Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Japan, Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic, Washington D.C., and California.

The UNK Choraleers, directed by David Bauer, have performed extensively throughout the United States including recent concerts at Carnegie Hall and the Mormon Tabernacle. The Symphonic Band/”Pride of the Plains” Marching Band, directed by Neal Schnoor, is the largest of the U.N.K. instrumental ensembles. The group consists of 93 members and will perform “Hail to the Chief” upon the President’s arrival to the Health and Sports Center.

For more information on these stories please contact:

Political Science Students Excel: contact James Scott, Political Science Chair at (308) 865-8506
Construction Management Program: contact Ken Larson, Industrial Tech. (308) 865-8292
National Collegiate Network: contact Jerry Fox, Director of International Ed. (308) 865-8246
Nebraskats Swing Choir: contact Dr. Annabell Zikmund, (308) 865-8608
Choraleers: contact David Bauer, (308) 865-8609
Symphonic Band: contact Neal Schnoor, (308) 865-8631