The University of North Alabama traces its origin to LaGrange College, which was established in 1830 at LaGrange, Alabama, by the Methodist Church, and then to its successor, Wesleyan University, established in Florence in 1855. In 1872, the school was established as a State Normal School, the first of its kind in the South. Across the years, the continued growth of the institution in size, scope, and purpose is reflected by a series of name changes: Florence State Teachers College (1929), Florence State College (1957), Florence State University (1968), and the University of North Alabama (1974).
The University occupies over 200 acres in Florence, Alabama, which is located just north of the Tennessee River and is the largest of four cities that make up an area referred to as the “Shoals.” According to the Shoals Area Chamber of Commerce website, the entire metropolitan area has a population of approximately 143,000 people.
The University is a state-assisted, coeducational institution offering undergraduate and graduate degree programs. It is organized into four academic colleges: arts, sciences and engineering, business and technology, education and human sciences, nursing.