The Repository @ St. Cloud State

Open Access Knowledge and Scholarship

Date of Award


Culminating Project Type


Degree Name

Sports Management: M.S.




School of Health and Human Services

First Advisor

Mark E. Moore

Second Advisor

Susan Becker

Third Advisor

Gretchen Tiberghien

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.


Since the late 1800s women have participated in some form of athletic activity on the St. Cloud State University campus. It was not until the 1960s that a women's intercollegiate athletic program was introduced to the SCSU campus by Fran Bleick and Gladys Ziemer. Since the 1960s, the SCSU women's athletics program has grown to support 11 teams, competing at some of the highest levels of athletic competition.

As women's athletics at SCSU continues to grow, it is important to have a documented history of the program so that future generations of male and female athletes will understand the significance of these women's contributions to St. Cloud State.


A history of the St. Cloud State men's athletics department was written in 1980 by Dr. John Kasper. The Husky Tradition: A History of Men's Athletics at St. Cloud State University chronicles the inception of SCSU men's athletics in the early 1900s to 1980. It provides an overview of the coaches and athletes who represented SCSU athletics. In addition, it chronicles the growth of collegiate athletics and the many associations that SCSU athletics became affiliated with over the years. There is no counterpart to Dr. Kasper's book that chronicles women's athletics at St. Cloud State University.


Intercollegiate Women's Athletics at St. Cloud State University began in the 1960s and quickly grew through the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s. In the 1960s and early 70s athletics for women was new to everyone, including the athletes, coaches, and administrators. Many of the early athletes had their first athletic experience at the collegiate level. By the 1980s the formation of conferences and regional and national competition provided a basis for the women's sports teams. As the program reach the 1980s and 1990s, it became more competitive and several women's teams enjoyed unprecedented success winning conference championships, and advancing to regional and national tournaments.

Among the significant findings was the amount of information that had been documented by former athletes, coaches, and administrators. This documentation helped to create a chronology of events resulting in the history of women's athletics at St. Cloud State University. An open-ended questionnaire was used to gather information about former and current athletes and coaches experiences in SCSU women's athletics. The answers to the questionnaire provided insight and anecdotal evidence of the athletic experience for women at SCSU.

The progress of women's athletics at SCSU has resulted in great success for female athletes on this campus. It has become an accepted program that has reached beyond the SCSU community into regional and national recognition for its teams and athletes. The findings are important because they tell the reader where SCSU women's athletics started, where we have been, and even hints at what the future holds.



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