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University Relations records

Identifier: ua-00875

Scope and Content Note

This large collection contains the administrative records of University Relations, including communication materials created before the establishment of the department in 1945. Since University Relations is the central communications office of the University, the collection covers all aspects of the University of Minnesota, including schools and departments, faculty, University sponsored events, student groups, and student activities. In addition, a significant part of the collection is comprised of information on non-University events, organizations, people, buildings and travel, including the Big Ten Athletic Conference, the American Heart Association, Human Rights Day, Masonic Dinners, the National Academy of Science, the Peace Corps, and state parks.

The collection primarily contains secondary materials, such as clippings, brochures and advertisements on various subjects regarding University of Minnesota schools and events, as well as activities and issues related to higher education in general. Materials consist of publications, correspondence, mailings, awards, speeches, reports, clippings, scrapbooks, research information, and miscellaneous files.

Folders on similar topics have not been physically brought together; materials on any topic may be found in a variety of boxes. Also, because of the size and scope of the collection, folder titles on similar topics are not always consistent. For example information on the University of Minnesota's Art Gallery may be found under Gallery or Museum. Researchers should try multiple, related search terms to find all relevant information on a single topic.


  • 1910-2001


Language of Materials

Collection materials in English

Use of Materials

Items in this collection do not circulate and may be used in-house only.


Researchers may quote from the collection under the fair use provision of the copyright law (Title 17, U.S. Code). Requests to publish should be arranged with the University of Minnesota Archives.

Historical Note

University Relations is the central communications office of the University of Minnesota. Established by the Board of Regents in 1945, University Relations was created to bolster the communication avenues with people both inside and outside of the University. The department was to strengthen public relations at the University by coordinating public contact from the Extension Division, the news service, alumni association, the campus radio station KUOM, and the publications office of University Farm. William Lee Nunn, professor of economics at the University of Newark and labor relations officer during World War II, was appointed as the first director of University Relations in June 1945.

Currently, University Relations is comprised of five units: Government and Community Relations, News Service (Media Relations), Marketing Communications, Internal Communications, and Office of Business Relations. In addition, U Relations maintains strong ties to the University of Minnesota Foundation and Alumni Association. "University Relations works to develop relationships with people both internal and external to the University through timely and accurate communications." (University Relations home page,


170 boxes (170.0 cubic feet))


Collection contains the records of University Relations at the University of Minnesota.


The initial donation was arranged into a loose alphabetical arrangement. Later accretions had no arrangement. To integrate later accretions, the collection is intellectually arranged in alphabetical order according to the folder name. The collection has not been physically reorganized to match the alphabetical list.

Source of acquisition

The collection was transferred to University Archives in multiple donations from 1949-2004.

University Relations Records, 1910-2001
Karen Spilman
July 2005
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English

Collecting Area Details

Contact The University Archives Collecting Area