Northwestern was established in 1884 in the old Bullard Mansion atop a hill overlooking the bustling river port city of Natchitoches. The campus grew as the school expanded from a two-year degree for teachers at Louisiana State Normal School to the four-year education degree at Louisiana Normal College in 1921. In 1944, the school became Northwestern State College and Northwestern State University in 1970.

Today, 140 years later, three columns remain of the original structure on what is now called Normal Hill in a National Historic District, the oldest continually occupied site for higher education in Louisiana. The campus expanded to the south and west as the school grew, satellite campuses developed in Shreveport, Alexandria and at Fort Polk, and today its Distance Learning Program allows students around the world to study at Northwestern.

NSU Traditions highlights the achievements of its alumni and students as well as the traditions of our campus. Yet with all the growth, the heart of the university is still its people. Those people over the years have made great strides in society. Traditions are a part of any institution, and Northwestern prides itself on what has developed in its history.

Please explore through these sites what is the spirit of Northwestern and how it has evolved from that small teaching training program to a worldwide provider of quality educational services.