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Kutztown University Foundation

Wiesenberger Alumni Center
15197 Kutztown RD
P.O. Box 151
Kutztown, PA 19530

P: 610-683-4110


Kutztown University Foundation History

A Long Tradition of Success

Alumni Reunion Banquet - Class of 1899

For more than 30 years, the Foundation has been proudly fulfilling its mission of raising funds to benefit the students and programs of Kutztown University.  On July 1, 1983, when Kutztown State College formally became Kutztown University, the George B. Hancher Memorial Scholarship Fund and Kutztown College Foundation merged to become Kutztown University Foundation.

Our first elected officers were President Samuel P. Smith, Vice President Warren E. Ringler, Secretary Jeanne Esser and Treasurer Otis J. Rothenberger.  William J. Sutton of Allentown, who had been executive director of the Kutztown College Foundation, was appointed by the officers to continue in that role for the new KU Foundation.

In its first year, the KU Foundation exceeded its fundraising goal of $90,000, by raising more than $121,000 from 3,318 donors.  The situation in 1983 was eerily similar to that faced by institutions of higher education today. Colleges and universities then were also pushing to increase sources of private support in the face of declining levels of state and federal funding.

The Foundation continued its forward momentum, steadily increasing annual fundraising results. During fiscal year 2017, the KU Foundation raised more than $3 million to support scholarships, endowment, academic programs, capital building projects and more. 

As the Foundation looks ahead to formulating its next major campaign, we recognize that the University's funding priorities may change, but our mission remains constant. We are proud to partner with this great institution of higher education to support today's students and to build the financial resources that will benefit thousands of new students for generations to come.

Kutztown University (KU) traces its origins to the Fairview Seminary. In 1860, Henry R. Nicks opened Fairview Seminary as a select school where more advanced subjects than those offered in the area were taught. In 1864, Nicks opened a new Maxatawny Seminary on the site where KU s Old Main stands today. With growth, efforts were made to convert the seminary into a public state normal school. On September 15, 1866, Maxatawny Seminary officially became Keystone State Normal School (KSNS). KSNS was dedicated to preparing students for the teaching profession. With emphasis placed on student life and the school s Pennsylvania German heritage, this book tells the story of KU from its modest beginnings as a teacher training school to its current mission of providing high-quality education."


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