April 1, 1909
Gov. George Donaghey signs into law Act 100, which established four “public schools of agriculture” and divided the state into four districts, with a school to be located in each district.
September 28, 1909
Gov. Donaghey makes appointments for the First District Agricultural School Board of Trustees:
- Hon. J. J. Bellamy, Smithville, Lawrence County
- Dr. O.N. Hammett, Paragould, Greene County
- W.L. Banks, Smithdale, Cross County
- J.B. Lewis, Jonesboro, Craighead County
- Sen. C.E. Bush, Antioch, White County
March 28, 1910
Jonesboro, Arkansas selected to be site of First District Agricultural School over Paragould and Mountain Home. Community leaders and residents pledged $40,000 and 200 acres for the new school.
June 1, 1910
Victor C. Kays appointed principal of the new school.
September 7, 1910
Work starts on the site of the new school.
October 3, 1910
The first day of classes begins for 189 students at the First District Agricultural School, temporarily located in the old Elks Lodge above the T.J. Ellis Jewelry Store at Main Street and Washington Avenue in Jonesboro.
November 12, 1910
The Masonic Order sets the cornerstone to the Administration Building.
A class of three boys and two girls are the first graduates of the school.
The Animal Husbandry Endowment Association is formed, and brings the first Holstein cattle to the state of Arkansas.
Aggie receives its first federal grant to fund beef breeding experiments.
September 1, 1918
The school begins work as a junior college.
Construction begins on a YMCA building for campus that will provide apartments for faculty and students. It is constructed almost entirely through student labor.
The Alumni Association is formed.
The school becomes “First District Agricultural and Mechanical College.” The athletic teams become the “gorillas.”
A 74,290 square-foot armory/gymnasium is completed and is the largest gym in the state.
A four-year degree program is initiated.
January 11, 1931
Fire destroys the Administration Building, which houses the school’s records and most of its classroom space. Some records, kept in a cast-iron vault, are charred but readable. Classes resumed the next day in other campus buildings, including the dairy barn.
November 28, 1932
R.E. Lee Wilson Hall is completed and first classes are held.
A&M becomes Arkansas State College through Act 222 of the Arkansas General Assembly.
The Reserve Officers Training Corps program is established.
The Commons Building is built.
The Army Administration School is established, the sixth such unit in the nation and the first in the state.
V.C. Kays retires following nearly 33 years of service to the institution. Horace E. Thompson, a graduate of the Class of 1925, succeeds Kays as president.
Horace Thompson resigns as president, and V.C. Kays re-fills the position temporarily.
Dr. William J. Edens is appointed as Arkansas State’s third president.
The first Greek organizations are chartered on campus—the Alpha Pi Chapter of Sigma Pi Fraternity, the Delta Theta Chapter of Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity and the Epsilon Zeta chapter of Alpha Gamma Delta Sorority.
The Student Government Association is formed.
March 21, 1951
President Edens resigns from ASC; Dean J. Walter Turner serves as acting president until a replacement can be found.
April 3, 1951
Dr. Carl R. Reng is named president of Arkansas State College and leads the institution through the next 24 years of growth.
Master’s degree graduate programs are initiated.
Beebe Junior College becomes a branch of Arkansas State College, and the name is changed to known as ASU-Beebe.
Walter Strong and Fred Turner become the first African American students on campus.
The Indian Club is founded to support the institution’s athletic programs. The club starts with 24 members.
May 17, 1957
KASU signed on the air with the words, "Good afternoon everyone. KASU-FM, an educational non-commercial station, now begins broadcast operations on this day, the seventeenth of May, 1957."
Full curriculum extended-day classes are offered, providing classes on Tuesday and Thursday nights.
Tau Kappa Epsilon Fraternity initiates Elvis Presley as an honorary member.
University Hall is built.
The Dean B. Ellis Library, named after the mathematics professor who taught for more than four decades, is completed. It houses one of the region’s first museums.
The Carl R. Reng Center is completed. The new student union provides a focal point for activities and incorporates game rooms, the Woodlands cafeteria and the Wigwam snack bar, as well as a barber shop, bowling alley, book-store and various meeting spaces.
Jerry Rook is named to the All-America team in basketball.
Kays Hall is built to house Arkansas State’s female students
The Administration Building is built west of Wilson Hall.
January 1, 1966
V.C. Kays dies.
January 17, 1967
The Arkansas General Assembly votes to grant Arkansas State College university status, and the name of the institution becomes Arkansas State University on July 1.
The Fine Arts Center is completed. Faculty refer to it as the “Taj Mahal.”
ASU-TV begins broadcasting.
The Laboratory Sciences Center is opened for classroom and laboratory work.
The Football Indians are Southland Conference Champions.
ASU’s nursing program is instituted. The program is housed first in the Radio-TV Building.
Lt. Col. Frederick Turner, ROTC instructor and ASU alum, becomes the first African-American instructor in military science, and Dr. C. Calvin Smith becomes the first African-American classroom instructor on the ASU campus.
Freshmen are no longer required to wear beanies on campus.
The 50th anniversary of the college newspaper, The Herald, is celebrated.
ASU track star Thomas Hill wins the bronze medal in hurdles at the Munich Olympics.
The College of Education is fully accredited.
September 28, 1974
Indian Stadium opens for the 1974 season.
Women's basketball is introduced to ASU.
Ross Pritchard becomes president of ASU following the retirement of Carl R. Reng.
Football team goes undefeated.
The nursing program is moved to State Hall (Commons Building) after a $1 million renovation.
The Arkansas State University Foundation, Inc. is established to receive, solicit, accept, hold and administer private gifts in support of educational programs associated with Arkansas State University.
Carl Whillock is appointed to lead ASU as president.
Carl Whillock resigns the presidency. Eugene W. Smith serves as interim president.
ASU has its first network-televised football game on ABC.
Ray Thornton becomes president of ASU and serves until 1984.
The building that is home to the College of Communications and College of Education is opened.
February 15, 1984
Dr. Eugene W. Smith, a 1952 ASC alum, becomes the eighth president of ASU.
ASU athletes bring home medals from the Los Angeles Olympics. Al Joyner is the gold medal winner in the triple jump, while Earl Bell brings home bronze in the pole vault.
ASU celebrates its 75th anniversary.
Roger Carlisle, a member of the ASU art faculty, designs the Arkansas Sesquicentennial stamp issued by the United States Postal Service.
The ASU Convocation Center opens. Spring Commencement is the first event held in the new Convocation Center, with Governor Bill Clinton as guest speaker.
Jonesboro resident and Arkansas State University Alumnus Debbye Turner becomes Miss America.
July 1, 1992
Arkansas State University begins its first capital campaign.
Eugene W. Smith retires as ASU’s president.
White River Vo-Tech becomes a part of ASU-Beebe; it later attains stand-alone status and becomes ASU-Newport.
ASU Football moves to Division I-A level.
ASU grants its first doctoral degree in educational leadership to Jane Jamison of Jonesboro.
July 13, 1992
John Mangieri becomes the newest president of Arkansas State University.
ASU baseball is played on George Kell Field in the new J.A. “Ike” Tomlinson Stadium.
New athletic logo replaces “Runnin’ Joe.”
Dr. Robert Hoskins is appointed interim president of Arkansas State.
Dr. Mossie Richmond is appointed as acting president following the sudden illness of Dr. Robert Hoskins, who died days later.
September 1, 1994
Dr. Eugene W. Smith returns as interim president of Arkansas State University while a nationwide search for a new president is conducted.
May 11, 1994
The Judd Hill Foundation makes a $1 million gift to the Arkansas State University Foundation to endow the Judd Hill Chair in Environmental Biology. It is the first million-dollar gift to the university’s foundation.
April 24, 1995
The Sturgis Trust, operating in memory of Roy and Christine Sturgis, makes a $1 million gift to the ASU Foundation to fund scholarships to Arkansas State University’s brightest students.
April 3, 1995
U.S. President and Arkansas native William Jefferson Clinton dedicates the eight-story bell tower that highlights the expansion of the Dean B. Ellis Library and integrates it with the ASU Museum.
July 1, 1995
James Leslie Wyatt becomes the tenth president of Arkansas State University.
July 1, 1995
ASU establishes a campus at Mountain Home, Arkansas, to be known as ASU-Mountain Home.
June 30, 1996
ASU’s first-ever capital campaign ends successfully after five years with charitable gifts made to the ASU Foundation totaling more than $21 million.
KASU celebrates 40 years of public radio service to the university and the region.
Arkansas State begins offering a doctoral degree in Environmental Science.
Jonesboro residents Wallace and Jama Fowler presents a $5 million gift to the university toward the construction of a performing arts center. At the time, it is the largest gift in the history of the ASU Foundation.
A class of 80 students begins degree work at what quickly becomes ASU-Heber Springs, a satellite campus of ASU-Beebe.
March 12, 1999
The men’s basketball team appears in the NCAA Tournament for the first time.
July 4, 1999
The Hemingway-Pfeiffer Museum and Educational Center opens in Piggott, Arkansas as the university's first off-campus heritage site.
The Equine Center, home of Garry Meadows Arena, opens at the northeastern corner of the campus.
Collegiate Park, a new concept in upperclassman student housing, is completed.
ASU Men’s Rugby Club receives national recognition, winning the National Championship Division II, Plate Division.
Fowler Center, named for Wallace and Jama Fowler, opens as the region's new home for civic, arts and community activity.
A third doctoral degree, in Heritage Studies, is offered. The first class has 14 students.
September 13, 2002
ASU alumna Kathy Brittain White makes a $2 million gift to the ASU Foundation to establish the Horizon Institute of Technology.
November 14, 2002
ASU President Dr. Les Wyatt announced a $2.8 million gift to the ASU Foundation from the estate of ASU alumnus James L. Thompson.
July 1, 2001
Delta Technical Institute at Marked Tree merges with Arkansas State University and becomes the ASU Technical Center.
First nurse anesthesia program in the State of Arkansas is established at Arkansas State University.
July 1, 2003
Foothills Technical Institute merges with ASU-Beebe to become ASU-Searcy, a technical institute of ASU-Beebe.
Darrell and Charlotte Pugh Cooper of Clarkston, Michigan make a gift of more than $2 million toward the construction a new alumni center on the ASU campus.
March 24, 2004
The $18 million Student Union opens on the ASU campus. Students began working toward the new building in 1997, when the Student Government Association voted to assess students a $10 per credit hour fee to pay for the facility.
April 22, 2004
The Judd Hill Foundation makes a second gift to the Arkansas State University Foundation to endow the Judd Hill Chair in Agricultural Biotechnology.
September 18, 2004
A public celebration is held to mark the opening of the Arkansas Biosciences Institute. The ABI was created as the major research component of the Tobacco Settlement Proceeds Act of 2000, which was approved in the general election by 64 percent of Arkansas voters.
September 10, 2005
The Judd Hill Foundation makes its third $1 million charitable gift to the Arkansas State University Foundation to construct Judd Hill Center, home of the ASU Foundation.
Dr. Robert L. Potts is selected as the first chancellor of Arkansas State University-Jonesboro. Dr. Les Wyatt becomes first president of the Arkansas State University System.
The Southern Tenant Farmers Museum opens in Tyronza, Arkansas as the university's second off-campus heritage site.
The largest gift in ASU history--$14.5 million--is made to the ASU Foundation from the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation for the construction of the Reynolds Center for Health Sciences.
The Lakeport Plantation opens in Lake Village, Arkansas as the university's third off-campus heritage site.
October 12, 2007
Beck PRIDE Center (Personal Rehabilitation, Individual Development and Education) established to assist injured military personnel who have served in defense of the United States.
November 3, 2007
Groundbreaking for the Donald W. Reynolds Center for Health Sciences.
November 16, 2007
Arkansas State University - Heber Springs campus opens and will serve as a center of ASU-Beebe.
February 28, 2008
The athletic nickname and mascot, 'Indians' and the Indian Family, are officially retired during a halftime ceremony at the men's basketball game between ASU and Louisiana-Monroe.
March 13, 2008
Red Wolves becomes the "new face" of ASU & ASU athletics. A roll-out ceremony takes place at the Student Union to unveil the new mascot & imagery for the Red Wolves.
April 4, 2008
Groundbreaking for the Student Recreation and Wellness Center.
May 25, 2008
Implosion of Twin Towers, a landmark men's residence hall for more than 40 years.
May 27, 2008
Groundbreaking for new campus facilities including the Honors College Residence Hall, a Student Apartment Complex, and the Delta Center for Economic Development.
June 23, 2008
Alumni Association launches brick campaign for former students and friends to leave legacy on the terrace of the New Cooper Alumni Center.
Master of Social Work Program begins.
September 11, 2008
Arkansas State University - Jonesboro reaches a record enrollment of 11,551.
September 11, 2008
Grossology (the impolite science of the human body), opens at the ASU Museum as a three-month Arkansas Discovery Network exhibition and brings in 15,404 visitors.
September 20, 2008
Cooper Alumni Center hosts first event during Homecoming.
September 20, 2008
Groundbreaking for the Liberal Arts Building.
October 28, 2008
Arkansas Small Business Development Center implements Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center (ASBTDC).
January 14, 2009
Four Arkansas universities created by Act 100 of 1909 launched their centennial celebrations today with a joint public re-enactment and re-signing of their founding legislation at the Rotunda of the State Capitol. The four schools included Arkansas State University in Jonesboro, Arkansas Tech University in Russellville, Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia, and the University of Arkansas at Monticello.
February 4, 2009
Ellen Strong, ASU's first female African-American graduate (1964), dies.
February 10, 2009
School Psychology track for degree program receives national approval by the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP).
February 26, 2009
University College, Learning Support Services (LSS), announces creation of new department, two new programs, the Learning Support Center (LSC) and Structured Learning Assistance (SLA).
April 1, 2009
Arkansas State University begins celebrating its 100-year anniversary during 2009-2010. The Founder's Day Re-dedication of the Arch began April 1, 2009, with the commemoration of the university's founding, and will conclude October 3, 2010, marking the Centennial of the first day of classes.
April 17, 2009
ASU receives more than $1.75 million from U.S. Department of Commerce, Economic Development Administration. The EDA grant goes toward completion of the Arkansas State Biosciences Institute Commercial Innovation Center (ABI-COM) business incubator and is part of the grant funding to assist the economic recovery effort in Arkansas following severe storms, flooding and tornados that occurred in 2008, for regional economic development.
May 11, 2009
Arkansas State University-Jonesboro announces a new English as a Second Language (ESL) Licensure Endorsement program. ASU-Jonesboro is the only university in the region to offer such a program.
May 29, 2009
The newly renovated Chickasaw Student Services Center is dedicated as the Eugene W. Smith Hall in honor of president emeritus, Dr. Eugene Smith.
September 25, 2009
The Donald W. Reynolds Center for Health Sciences is dedicated at a special ceremony as part of the ASU Centennial Weekend public events.
October 15, 2009
Dedication of the Delta Center For Economic Development (DCED) facility.
October 28, 2009
Mike Medlock, chair of the ASU Board of Trustees, dies. Mr. Medlock received his first appointment in February 2000 and was re-appointed in March 2005.
December 20, 2009
Former administrator, faculty member Dr. Don Wright dies. Dec. 20. Dr. Wright joined the faculty in 1970 in the Department of Educational Administration and served as the vice president of academic affairs until his retirement in 1997.
December 24, 2009
Professor Emeritus, Dr. C. Calvin Smith, the first African-American faculty member at Arkansas State University, dies.