Founded in 1849 as Michigan State Normal School, the first normal school created outside the original 13 colonies, it became the Michigan State Normal College in 1899, then Eastern Michigan College in 1956, and finally Eastern Michigan University in 1959. Education, Arts and Sciences and the Graduate School were the first three colleges in the newly created university. Several major expansions followed shortly afterward, including the addition of the College of Business in 1964, the College of Health and Human Services in 1975 and the College of Technology in 1980. More recently, extended programs were added such as Continuing Education, the Centers for Corporate Training, the World College and numerous community-focused institutes.
Physically, the campus has grown with the construction of the Terrestrial and Aquatic Research Facility (1998), the Convocation Center (1998), the Bruce T. Halle Library (1998), the John W. Porter College of Education Building (1999), the Everett L. Marshall College of Health and Human Services Building (2000), the Village residence hall (2001) and University House (2003). A new Student Center opened in 2006.
Total student population averages about 23,000, of whom roughly 5,000 are graduate students. Most programs are undergraduate or master's level, although the university has doctoral programs in Educational Leadership, Technology, and Psychology. John Fallon III, Ph.D., EMU's twenty-first President, began his tenure on July 15, 2005. Fallon was fired on July 15 following a unanimous vote by the board of regents in the wake of the Laura Dickinson murder scandal.
Adonijah Strong Welch, 1851-1865
David Porter Mayhew, 1865-1870
Charles FitzRoy Bellows, 1870-1871
Joseph Estabrook, 1871-1880
Malcolm MacVicar, 1880-1881
Daniel Putnam, 1880-1886 (non-contiguous)
Edwin Willits, 1883-1885
John Mayhelm Barry Sill, 1886-1893
Richard Gause Boone, 1893-1899
Elmer A. Lyman, 1900-1902
Lewis Henry Jones, 1903-1911
Charles McKenny, 1912-1933
John M. Munson, 1933-1948
Eugene B. Elliott, 1948-1965
Harold E. Sponberg, 1965-1974
James Brickley, 1974-1978
John W. Porter, 1979-1989
William E. Shelton, 1989-2000
Samuel A. Kirkpatrick, 2001-2004
Craig D. Willis, 2004-2005
John A. Fallon, III, 2005-2007
Susan Martin, 2008-present
EMU is located in Ypsilanti, a city west of Detroit and eight miles (13 km) east of Ann Arbor. Detroit Metro Airport is a fifteen minute drive from campus. The school is a culturally diverse learning and teaching community set in a small city environment, amid a major metropolitan area. Students not only from Metro Detroit and across Michigan state are attracted to the school's atmosphere and location; EMU is well known nationally and internationally as well. The university's site is composed of an academic and athletic campus spread across , with 122 buildings.
Like all colleges and universities in the United States, under the Crime Awareness and Campus Security Act (1990), EMU reports its on-campus crime statistics to the Michigan State Police and publishes the numbers on the Campus Safety website. Ypsilanti crime rates can be compared to other cities using Detroit Michigan Crime Statistics and Data Resources website.
The EMU campus includes several buildings with sculpture by Corrado Parducci.
Ethnicity (non-foreign nationals)
Academic profile (freshmen class of 2005)
Student life blends easily with off-campus activities as well. EMU's campus is within walking distance of Depot Town, Ypsilanti's historical shop area where students go for ice cream, games of pool, and live music. Washtenaw Avenue, the main street that runs along the south end of the campus, holds several coffee shops and restaurants where students study, eat, and listen to (or take part in) live performances. The Tower Inn, for instance, is less than a five-minute walk from Pray-Harrold, and is actually owned by a husband and wife who are both EMU alum.
Also part of the EMU Student Media Office is Cellar Roots, the school's student-run literary and fine arts magazine. Cellar Roots celebrated its 35th anniversary in 2006 with a week of events that highlighted the history of the publication. Cellar Roots is a five time winner of the National Pacemaker award for design, an award often equated with the Pulitzer Prize for the college level, as well numerous other awards. Cellar Roots
Recently (Dec. 2007), a group of former students also started a magazine called emYOU! The Magazine (). It caters to Eastern students as well as the Ypsilanti community. The magazine is a monthly publication.
The Eastern Michigan University Basketball Band is directed by two graduate assistants of the band. The basketball band travels with the basketball teams during the MAC tournament or the NCAA tournament.
Eastern, sacred alma mater,
To your name we shall be true.
Ever marching on to victory,
We'll stand by to see you through.
Softly floating on the breeze
Verdant green with white of snow.
This our banner we will carry
In our hearts, where e'er we go.
Eastern Eagles hats off to you
Fight, fight, fight for old E-M-U
Look to the sky,
The Eagles will fly,
The bravest we'll defy
Rah! Rah! Rah
Hold that line for old green and white
Sons and daughters show your might
So FIGHT! FIGHT! for old E-M-U and vic-tor-ry
Go Green, roll up the score
Go Green, let's get some more
Raise a cheer for old green and white
Let's show them we came here to fight
Go Green, vic'try we'll claim
Go Green, let's win this game
We'll always fight for old E-M-U
''Come on and let's go Green!
The Bruce T. Halle Library is a state-of-the-art four-story facility. It is the sole library on campus and is within a ten-minute walk of all of the school's residence halls. It includes computer labs, study spaces, the Holman Learning Center (which provides free tutoring), a distance-learning classroom, the Faculty Development Center, the ICT Help Desk, a multi-media area, a theater, an auditorium, the University archives, the carillon tower and the Paradox Cafe. It houses one of the largest collections of children's literature in the United States. The building has full wireless connectivity, as well as an automated retrieval system (the ARC) capable of housing 1 million items. While the most-used books are still on shelves, the majority of the school's books are stored within this system, which runs several stories underneath the library itself.
Bruce Halle was the head of the Discount Tire Company, and has been a major benefactor.
Eastern Michigan's administration claims their college has one of the lowest overall crime rates in the nation.
The picture to the right shows an art building that still stands on EMU's campus. Much of the building needed to be rebuilt. The telescope was also replaced, and students were able to view the Halle Comet's path in the late 1990s.
EMU originally went by the nicknames "Normalites" and "Men from Ypsi" and various other titles down through the years before "Hurons" was adopted in 1929.
The "Hurons" first came into being as the result of a contest sponsored by the Men's Union in 1929. On Oct. 31 of that year, a three-person committee, composed of Dr. Clyde Ford, Dr. Elmer Lyman and Professor Bert Peet, selected the name "Hurons" from the many entries in the contest.
The name was submitted by two students, Gretchen Borst and George Hanner. Hanner was working at the Huron Hotel at the time of the contest and was no doubt as much influenced by his place of employment as by the Huron Indian tribe. The runner-up name in that contest was Pioneers.
EMU began investigating the appropriateness of its Huron Indian logo after the Michigan Department of Civil Rights issued a report in October 1988 suggesting that all schools using such logos drop them. The report indicated that the use of Native American names, logos and mascots for athletic teams promoted racial stereotypes. At that time, four colleges, 62 high schools and 33 junior high/middle schools in Michigan used Native American logos or names, including Mid-American Conference rival Central Michigan University. CMU did not, however, change their nickname from the Chippewas.
The EMU Board of Regents voted to replace the Huron name with Eagles, taken from three recommendations from a committee charged with supplying a new nickname. The other two final names submitted were Green Hornets and Express.
The Eagles name was officially adopted on May 22, 1991, when the EMU Board of Regents voted to replace the existing Huron nickname and logo with the new one. During the 1991 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament , announcer Brent Musburger talked about the controversy and referred to the team on-air as the "No-Names."
The controversy over the nickname continues to this day, as many former students and faculty were angered that a unique name like Hurons was replaced by a common name like Eagles, especially for reasons of political correctness. Some alumni have even refused to donate money to the school until the name Hurons is restored. A group called Huron Restoration continues to try to bring back the name, and claims to have the support of Chief Leaford Bearskin of the Wyandotte Tribe of Oklahoma and former Grand Chief Max Gros-Louis of the Huron-Wendat Nation of Quebec.
The nationally reported scandal resulted in the firing of President John A. Fallon by the Board of Regents. He was notified of the unanimous vote of the Board to fire him by a letter sent to his home on July 15, 2007. Although no formal reason for the termination was given, his dismissal was considered by many to be a direct result of his role in the cover-up of the on-campus homicide. Eastern Michigan's Faculty Association President supported the Board's decision.
At a special meeting called by the Board of Regents on Monday, July 16, 2007, the separation of President John Fallon was officially announced along with the separation of Jim Vick, Vice President for Student Affairs and Cindy Hall, Director of Public Safety and Chief of Police. A letter of discipline was placed in University Counsel Kenneth McKanders' file. It was also announced that Donald Loppnow, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, would be appointed Executive Vice President and in this role serve as Acting President until an Interim President is selected.
As of July 3, 2007 the Department of Education report relating to the Clery Act violations has been released to the public. It states, "Several findings of noncompliance were discovered during the review which the Department [of Education] considers to be serious violations of the Clery Act." The result of this report has yet to be seen. EMU released the executive summary of its response to the DOE report on July 27, 2007. In June 2008, the university announced that it had agreed to pay a fine of $350,000 for the violations of the Clery Act.
On April 7, 2008, a jury convicted Orange Taylor III of first-degree murder, assault with intent to commit sexual penetration, home invasion, and theft charges. He was sentenced to life imprisonment on May 7, 2008.
Eastern Michigan athletic teams have been successful on a national level, winning three NCAA Division II national championships and 13 NAIA Division I national championships in five different sports (baseball, men's cross country, men's swimming and diving, men's indoor track and field, and men's outdoor track and field).
EMU has also been NCAA Division I national runner-up twice: in 1940, the men's cross country team finished second to Indiana University at the national meet hosted by Michigan State University; then, on June 19, 1976, after finishing in sixth place the year before, the baseball team was defeated by the University of Arizona in the final game of the College World Series at Johnny Rosenblatt Stadium in Omaha, Nebraska. Eastern Michigan remains the last northern school to make to the NCAA Division I baseball championship game.
Eastern's men's basketball team has appeared in four NCAA Division I tournaments, and have a 3-4 record, tied for third best among Michigan colleges. In the 1996 Men's Basketball Tournament, Eastern Michigan defeated the Duke Blue Devils in the opening round; it would be the Blue Devils' last first- or second-round defeat until 2007, when they were upended by VCU in the opening round.
The Eagles have the most MAC championships in a single sport, 26, in men's swimming and diving (1978, 1980-1996, 1998, 2000-2005, and 2007).
The 2006-2007 season was a successful one for Eastern Michigan, as they won an EMU and Mid-American Conference record eight conference titles: Men's Cross Country, Men's Swimming And Diving, Women's Swimming And Diving, Softball, Men's Indoor Track, Women's Gymnastics, Men's Golf and Men's Outdoor Track. This beat the school's previous record of five titles as well as the previous MAC record of six.
Traditionally, Eastern's football teams has struggled, and the program has had problems attracting fans, partially due to their proximity to the powerful University of Michigan just seven miles (11 km) away. After reaching a low point with a 27-game losing streak that was finally snapped in 1982, though, EMU started to become competitive. In 1987, EMU won its first Mid-American Conference title then defeated 17 1/2-point favorite San Jose State in the California Bowl. The 1988 and 1989 teams each finished in second place in the conference and ended the most successful stretch of football in school history with its fourth straight winning season.
Unfortunately, the newly-renamed Eagles (cynics have suggested the new nickname has put a "hex" on the team) have returned to mediocrity since the 80s, with just one winning season (1995) since. Despite the expansion of Rynearson Stadium to 30,000 seats, drawing fans continues to be a problem: NCAA rules state that in order to stay in Division I-A for football, each team must attract an average of 15,000 fans per game. During a 1-11 season in 2006, Eastern's EMU Foundation purchased 5,000 tickets for local high school students to curb this threat to their status. EMU has also played one home game a year at Ford Field in downtown Detroit annually since 2004 in the "Collegiate Clash", where they have hosted Central Michigan University (2004), Western Michigan University (2005), the United States Naval Academy (2006), and Northwestern University on October 19, 2007. This appearance in Detroit is beneficial to their average attendance, as it usually gets around 25,000 fans. EMU often plays home games at night, so they won't interfere with U of M home games on the same day. Also, in recent years they have scheduled games on Thursday and Friday nights, which boosts student attendance (EMU is a majority commuter school, and even those who stay in the dorms often go home over weekends).
EMU was a member of the Illinois Intercollegiate Athletic Conference from 1950-1961.