Mount Senario College was founded in 1962 by the Servants of Mary Catholic Order, serving rural northwestern Wisconsin. However, as early as 1930 Eau Claire State Teachers College had offered classes in Ladysmith and College of St. Scholastica offered college classes after 1952. In the early 1970’s Mount Senario became a non-sectarian college with a board of trustees. Even with an enrollment of around 800, it was never strong financially; still in 1997 the school was debt free. Reports by Rust and Kurtz suggest that at that time the school began making poor financial decisions. Instead of working at fundraising and creating endowments, Mount Senario concentrated on building programs to increase enrollment. In particular, the school focused on creating strong athletic programs.