Saginaw Valley State University


Saginaw Valley State University is a public school with more than 10,000 students in University Center, Michigan. It is classed as a Master’s College and University I by the Carnegie Institute.

Diversity and critical thought are both at the core of the university mission. As put in the mission statement, “By fostering an environment of inquiry and openness that respects the diversity of all whom it serves, the University prepares graduates whose leadership and expertise contribute to the advancement of a pluralistic society.”


Information Summary

Ranks 23rd in Michigan and 816th overall. See the entire top 2,000 colleges and universities list
Overall Score (about) 82.7
Total Cost On-Campus Attendance $22,254
Admission Success rate N/A
ACT / SAT 75%ile scores 26 / 1200
Student Ratio Students-to-Faculty 23 : 1
Retention (full-time / part-time) 77% / 62%
Enrollment Total (all students) 8,515


The newest of Michigan’s public schools, the university was first founded in 1963 as a private liberal arts college but became state-supported two years later. The institution received university status in 1987. In 2013, the 50th anniversary brought not only celebrations but an economic summit to campus to launch new growth in the coming years.


Saginaw Valley State University 2
Saginaw Valley State University


Undergraduate and graduate programs are divided among five colleges: The College of Arts & Behavioral Science; the College of Business & Management; the Crystal M. Lange College of Nursing & Health Sciences; the College of Education; and the College of Science, Engineering, & Technology.

Bachelor’s degrees are offered in a variety of fields within the various academic colleges. Degrees at the bachelor’s level can be received in such areas as athletic training, computer science, economics, general business, marketing, political science, physics, and social work. Minors include creative writing, gerontology, German, and legal studies. Graduate programs are offered in business administration, communication and multimedia, education, nursing, and administrative science. The Educational Specialist (Ed.S) degree is offered in 6 areas.

SVSU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association.

Most Popular Fields of Study

Unique Programs

The university has a strong reputation for education programs not quite like those at other schools. Educational resources include the Bilingual/ Bicultural Center, the Partnership in Preparing Quality Teachers, the Math and Science Center, and Continuing Education. Continuing education has 250 online courses for professional development. The Math and Science Center serves local schools and children in grades K-12 by providing teacher education and student activities to improve math and science skills in students.


The admissions department has no stated application deadline, but encourages students to begin applying the summer between their junior and senior year of high school. Applications can be submitted online. Students who are enrolled in high school at the time of application will need to have their official final high school transcripts sent after graduation to the Admissions Office.

As part of their application, students should submit high school transcripts and ACT or SAT test scores. Students must generally meet the following minimum requirements: high school GPA of 2.5 and ACT of 17.

Transfer students and international students must meet varying requirements depending upon their prior educational background.

Students applying to graduate programs should consult the individual department and/or school to which they are applying for deadline and application material requirements. Applications can be submitted online. General requirements include the GRE or other appropriate test scores (such as the GMAT), a resume, a one page personal statement, letters of recommendation, and a bachelor’s degree.

Financial Aid

Tuition and mandatory fees at Saginaw Valley State University were $5,078 for the 2004-2005 academic year for in-state, undergraduate students attending full-time. Students applying from out of state and graduate students have higher costs.

Financial aid is available in the form of grants, scholarships, and loans. Work-study programs are also available from both the state of Michigan (for Michigan residents) and the federal government. Students who seek financial aid will need to fill out the Federal Student Financial Aid Form, available on-line.

Graduate students may also receive financial aid in the form of teaching or research assistantships, including a stipend and a waiver of some or all of the tuition and other fees. Graduate students should consult with their individual department about what sort of assistantships or fellowships are available and about the details of the application process. There are several scholarships specifically for graduate students distributed through the departments.

Special financial aid programs for minority or non-traditional students include two endowed scholarships, a travel scholarship, and an equity grant.

Student Financial Aid Details

Ranks 4052nd for the average student loan amount.
Secrets to getting the best scholarships and financial aid in Michigan.


Student life includes opportunities in a diverse range of activities and organizations. There are academic and professional groups, Greek fraternities and sororities, recreation groups (including the Paintball Club and the Hip Hop Dance team), religious groups, political and cultural groups, and special interests such as the choral society and the forensics team. Cultural venues on campus include a sculpture museum, a theater, and an art gallery. Students have a wide choice of regular films and musical events. Students can write for the newspaper, the Valley Vanguard, or for the literary magazine, Cardinal Sins.

Student Enrollment Demographics

Student Graduation Demographics


Saginaw Valley State University is an NCAA Division II School. Teams compete in the Great Lakes International Athletic Conference. Men’s sports include baseball, basketball, bowling, cross country, football, golf, soccer, and track & field. Women’s sports include basketball, cross country, softball, soccer, tennis, track & field, and volleyball. The sports teams are supported by a spirit squad, which includes a dance team and a mascot. The team nick-name is the Cardinals.

Local Community

The green, sprawling campus is located in University Center, Michigan, in the area between Bay City, Saginaw, and Midland. The town of Bay City has a population of approximately 36,000, while Saginaw is quite a bit larger with 62,000 people.

The city of Saginaw boasts a children’s zoo, a Japanese cultural center and tea house, regular festivals and concerts, and numerous riverside activities. Bay City is home to a community theater, boat and trolley tours, and a popular state recreation area with trails and wetlands.

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