Skip to content
Office of the President

Dr. Steven W. Shirley

President

The North Dakota State Board of Higher Education appointed Dr. Steven W. Shirley president of Minot State University on February 27, 2014. He began serving as MSUís 11th president on July 1, 2014, leading the university into its second century of service. As the president of Minot State, Dr. Shirley also has oversight for Dakota College at Bottineau, a two-year college affiliated with MSU and located 80 miles northeast of Minot. Between the two campuses, there are more than 4,400 students, 450 full-time faculty and staff, and approximately 800 part-time staff and adjunct faculty.

Prior to joining Minot State University, Dr. Shirley served as president of Valley City State University from 2008 to 2014. Earlier in his career he was vice president and dean for student affairs at Dakota State University in Madison, S.D., and an assistant professor of business and director of study abroad at the University of Minnesota, Crookston. He also taught part-time at the University of North Dakota and South Dakota State University.

Dr. Shirley currently serves on the North Dakota University System Roles and Responsibilities Task Force and is a North Dakota representative for the American Association of State Colleges and Universities. He has served on the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics Council of Presidents and chaired the NAIAís National Eligibility Center Oversight Committee.

Previously, Dr. Shirley served on the Region IV-West Advisory Board for the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators, chaired the Dakota Athletic Conference and served as organizing chair for the North Star Athletic Association. He has also presented at regional and national conferences, including NASPA, the Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs, and NAFSA: Association of International Educators.

Dr. Shirley has a strong commitment to enriching community, university and system relationships. He is a member of the Minot Rotary Club and previously served as a club president of both the Valley City and Crookston Rotary Clubs. He served on the Valley City-Barnes County Economic Development Corporation board as well as the boards of directors of the Crookston and Madison Chambers of Commerce. He has also been a Junior Achievement volunteer, has taught English to adult learners abroad and has led several student and faculty groups overseas on cultural and exchange visits. He is a strong advocate for international education and study abroad, the focus of his Ph.D. dissertation research. Additionally, distance education is of great importance to Dr. Shirley. He believes a balance of educational opportunities and delivery methods at both the undergraduate and graduate levels is necessary for student and institutional success.

A Fargo native, Dr. Shirley earned his bachelorís and masterís degrees in business administration and his doctorate in teaching and learning: higher education, all from UND. Dr. Shirley also completed the Harvard Graduate School of Educationís Institute for Educational Management in Cambridge, Mass.

As a proud, fourth-generation North Dakotan with deep family roots in Minot, Dr. Shirley, along with his wife, Jennifer, and daughter, Anna, is excited to serve Minot State University and the Minot community.