Emporia State celebrates 149th birthday

February 15, 2012

Samantha Beye, representing ESU students, and Dr. DeWayne Backhus, retired professor representing the Kellogg Society, cut the birthday cake during ESU's Founder's Day celebration.Love for ESU was in the air on Valentine's Day as more than 220 people attended a birthday luncheon for Emporia State University.

ESU faculty, staff, students, alumni and members of the Emporia community came together for the 149th Founders' Day luncheon.

President Michael D. Shonrock addresses the crowd during the 149th Founder's Day luncheon. The theme was Proud Past ... Focused Future.Emporia State President Michael D. Shonrock, who took the university's reins on Jan. 3, left those attending with a question to ponder: "If we could do anything, what one thing should we do to make Emporia State University better?"

Emporia State was founded in 1863 as Kansas State Normal School. "Normal" schools were the name of institutions designed to train teachers. Through the years, the mission has evolved beyond teacher education to embrace a number of disciplines. ESU offers 27 master's degrees and has one doctoral program in library and information management.

After its first 60 years, the name changed to Kansas State Teachers College (1923-1974) then to Emporia Kansas State College (1974-1977) and finally Emporia State University in 1977.

Plans already have begun to celebrate ESU's sesquicentennial in 2013.

The crowd listens to President Michael D. Shonrock during the 149th Founders' Day luncheon.



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