Peru State College's History

Peru State College’s “Campus of a Thousand Oaks,” a member of the Nebraska Statewide Arboretum, is nestled in the hills of historic southeast Nebraska on the Missouri River. The College offers a mix of innovative online and traditional classroom undergraduate and graduate programs, including online graduate degrees in education and organizational management. Nebraska’s first college, established in 1867 as a teacher training school with one building and 60 students, has transformed over the past century and a half into a state-of-the-art institution offering diverse, multifaceted educational programs to around 2,000 students. Peru State College has long been a wellspring of leadership, an invaluable resource for communities and businesses, and a source of accomplished graduates known for their excellent education and professional competence. The College has enjoyed considerable support from the State of Nebraska, with more than $52 million of campus renovation projects funded over the last ten years. While we serve students around the globe, Peru State retains a special commitment to serve the residents and needs of the southeast Nebraska community through education, research and public service programs.


Peru State College provides students of all backgrounds access to engaging educational experiences to strengthen and enrich communities, Nebraska and the world.


Peru State College will be renowned for transforming student lives through personal and engaging educational experiences.


Peru State College lives its mission and vision through engagement in the classroom, engagement across campus, and engagement in the region and beyond while valuing:

  • Pride
    We proudly celebrate our history as Nebraska’s first college, our heritage of educating all students, and our tradition of achievement by students, alumni, faculty, and staff. We cherish the stately Campus of a Thousand Oaks entrusted to us.
  • Excellence
    We pursue excellence through best practices and innovation in scholarship, teaching, research, and student development. We commit to providing exceptional facilities and resources supporting an engaged collegiate experience.
  • Resilience
    We recognize resilience as a key factor in success. We provide support and encouragement to achieve high standards by cultivating passion and perseverance.
  • Unity
    We embrace unity as a diverse and inclusive community. We believe in creating a culture of respect, mutual support, and understanding. We lead and model this culture on campus, in the region, and around the world.

Memberships and Accreditation

Peru State College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. The Commission’s website address is http://www.hlcommission.org/ and the telephone number is 312-263-0456 . The College has been accredited by the organization since 1915. In 2012, Peru State College received continuing accreditation for the next 10 years from the Higher Learning Commission.

Peru State College has continuing accreditation by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education.

Full membership is maintained in the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education and the American Council on Education.

The College is also a charter member of the Nebraska Council on Teacher Education.

Peru State College is a member institution of the Nebraska State College System.