Eastern Michigan University

Eastern Michigan University
Former names
Michigan State Normal School
Michigan State Normal College
Eastern Michigan College
Motto Equity, Exemplar, Excellence
Type Public
Established 1849[1]
Endowment $67.2 Million (2015)[2]
President James M Smith[3]
Academic staff
700 Faculty + 700 Contingent Faculty[4]
Administrative staff
Students 23,419[5]
Undergraduates 18,621[5]
Postgraduates 4,798[5]
Location Ypsilanti, Michigan, U.S.
42°15′01″N 83°37′28″W / 42.250154°N 83.624454°W / 42.250154; -83.624454Coordinates: 42°15′01″N 83°37′28″W / 42.250154°N 83.624454°W / 42.250154; -83.624454
Campus 800 acres (3 km2)
Colors Green & White[6]
Athletics NCAA Division IMAC
Nickname Eagles
Mascot Swoop
Website www.emich.edu

Eastern Michigan University (EMU) is a comprehensive, co-educational public university located in Ypsilanti, Michigan. Ypsilanti is 35 miles (56 km) west of Detroit and eight miles (13 km) east of Ann Arbor. The university was founded in 1849 as Michigan State Normal School. Today, the university is governed by an eight-member Board of Regents whose members are appointed by the Governor of Michigan for eight-year terms. The school belongs to the Mid-American Conference and is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. Since 1991 EMU athletics has gone by the name "Eagles". Then in 1994, "Swoop" was officially adopted by the university as the school's mascot.[7] Currently, EMU comprises seven colleges and schools:[8] College of Arts and Sciences, College of Business, College of Education, College of Health and Human Services, College of Technology, an Honors College, and a Graduate School. The university's site is composed of an academic and athletic campus spread across 800 acres (3.2 km2), with over 120 buildings. EMU has a total enrollment of more than 23,000 students.


Adonijah Welch, the first principal of Michigan State Normal School

The university was founded in 1849 and opened its doors in 1853 as Michigan State Normal School. Michigan State Normal School was the first in Michigan and the first normal school created outside the original 13 colonies. One hundred and twenty-two students started classes March 29, 1853.[9] Adonijah Welch served as Michigan State Normal School's first principal. Michigan created a state educational system modeled on that of Germany. The normal schools were to train teachers for common schools, which were being established rapidly in new towns in the state. In 1899, the school became the Michigan State Normal College when it created the first four-year curriculum for a normal college in the nation. Normal began the 20th century as Michigan's premier teacher-preparatory school and had become the first teacher-training school in the United States to have a four-year degree program.[9] Just like many other universities during World War I, the Great Depression and World War II, the school survived and expanded further.[9] With the additions of departments and the large educational enrollment after WWII, the school became Eastern Michigan College in 1956.

University Enrollment

1853 122
1905 1,130
1930 2,250
1960 5,137
1970 21,410
1980 19,326
1990 26,000*
2000 23,181
2010 23,503
*Data from 1990 is based on university publication.[10][11][12]

In 1959 the school became a university gaining the title Eastern Michigan University after establishing the Graduate School (graduate classes were offered since 1939).[9] Between 1959 through 1980 the College of Education, College of Arts and Sciences, Graduate School, College of Business, College of Health and Human Services and College of Technology were established. In the early 1970s, international student exchange schemes were organised, including one with Coventry College of Education (later part of the University of Warwick) in Britain.[13][14] In 2005, the Honors Program became the Eastern Michigan University Honors College. More recently, extended programs were added such as Continuing Education (which includes EMU Online), the Centers for Corporate Training, the World College and numerous community-focused institutes. Today the university's 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. EMU former-President Susan W. Martin, Ph.D., took office as EMU's twenty-second president on July 7, 2008, just after the university was fined a then-record $350,000 for not reporting to students the sexual assault and murder of a student in her residence hall room.


Michigan State Normal School Logo
"Other institutions of higher education established by law having authority to grant baccalaureate degrees shall each be governed by a board of control which shall be a body corporate. The board shall have general supervision of the institution and the control and direction of all expenditures from the institution's funds. It shall, as often as necessary, elect a president of the institution under its supervision. He shall be the principal executive officer of the institution and be ex-officio a member of the board without the right to vote. The board may elect one of its members or may designate the president to preside at board meetings. Each board of control shall consist of eight members who shall hold office for terms of eight years, not more than two of which shall expire in the same year, and who shall be appointed by the governor by and with the advice and consent of the Senate. Vacancies shall be filled in like manner."[15]

Under Michigan's 1964 state constitution, Eastern Michigan University is governed by an eight-member Board of Regents. The Regents are appointed by the governor, "with the advice and consent of the Senate", and serve eight-year terms. The Regents, in turn, elect the president of the university[15]


University rankings
Forbes[16] 623
Starkweather Hall is the oldest building on campus.
College/School founding

College of Arts and Sciences 1959[9]
College of Education 1959[9]
Graduate School 1959[4]
College of Business 1964[4]
College of Health and Human Services 1975[4]
College of Technology 1980[4]
Honors College 2005[17]

Eastern Michigan University offers degrees and programs at the bachelor's, master's, specialist's and doctoral levels. There are more than 200 majors and minors at the undergraduate level, and more than 170 graduate programs. EMU has six Academic Divisions and eight University Sites which include satellite campuses. Just like many other large universities EMU does offer online courses and degrees.

Academic divisions

The University has seven Colleges and Schools.[8] Areas of study are divided by College of Arts and Sciences, College of Business, College of Education, College of Health and Human Services and College of Technology. Beyond this there are two other colleges: an Honors College, which oversees honors courses, and the Graduate School. The Honors College and Graduate school handles courses that are honors and graduate program within the various colleges. Eastern has offered graduate courses since 1939.[18] The graduate school has close to 5,000 students enrolled in masters and doctoral programs and is house in Boone Hall.

Porter Hall

The two oldest colleges at the university are the College of Arts and Sciences and the College of Education. The largest college is the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) with 125 programs of study.[19] Beyond this CAS oversees the most facilities such as Ford Gallery, Sherzer Hall, Kresge Environmental Education Center, the Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecology Research Facility, and Pease Auditorium. Eastern Michigan has had a long history of developing educators since its founding. EMU prides itself as the largest producer of educational personnel in the country since 1991.[20] Eastern Michigan University's Department of Special Education is among the oldest special education program in the United States, started In 1923.[21]

Marshall Hall
The College of Business

The College of Business (COB) was established in 1964.[22] The COB is the only college not located on the main campus, it is housed in the Gary M. Owen building in downtown Ypsilanti.[22] The COB is known for having the First Ethos Week and Ethos Honor Society in the country.[23][24]

Eastern Michigan University established the College of Human Services in 1975. Eventually the university changed the name to the College of Health and Human Services on April 21, 1982.[25]

The two most recent established colleges are the College of Technology (COT) in 2008 and the Honors College in 2005.[26][27] The EMU Honors Program started in 1984.[26]


University Park, in the background is the Rec/IM, Student Center and Lakehouse.

EMU is located in Ypsilanti, a city 35 miles (56 km) 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, attracted by the school's atmosphere and location, come not only from the Metro Detroit area but from the entire state of Michigan; EMU is well known both nationally and internationally. The university's site is composed of an academic and athletic campus spread across 800 acres (3.2 km2), with 122 buildings. The EMU campus includes several buildings with sculpture by Corrado Parducci. Just like many larger campuses Eastern Michigan University has its own department of public safety.

University sites

EMU Livonia
University Sites

EMU Ypsilanti, MI
EMU–Brighton Brighton, MI
EMU–Detroit Detroit, MI
EMU–Jackson Jackson, MI
EMU–Livonia Livonia, MI
EMU–Monroe Monroe, MI
EMU–Northern Michigan Traverse City, MI
Kresge Environmental Center Lapeer, MI

The University has a main campus and eight University Sites including satellite campuses.[28] The earliest off-site campus is EMU-Jackson. Courses have been offered in Jackson Michigan since the 1970s.[29] Course catalog records show that courses have been offered at the Kresge Environmental Center dating back to at least 1976.[30] EMU has held courses in Flint and Traverse City since 1987.[31] EMU-Livonia began offering courses in 2000.[32][33] In 2001, EMU-Detroit opened (moved to a new location in Detroit in 2013).[34] EMU opened its Monroe location in 2002.[35] The last off-campus site, EMU-Brighton, opened in 2003.[36] EMU and Grand Valley State University offers a joint doctoral program in Educational Leadership at the Eberhard Center located in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The Eberhard Center facility is part of the GVSU downtown campus.[37] This location is sometimes referred to as EMU-Grand Rapids but is not officially listed as a university site.

Student life

for a list of EMU Student life buildings, see Student Life Buildings

Just like many large universities EMU has many student oriented facilities outside the classroom. The university has plays, musicals, student organizations, and various social activities for students. On-campus hangouts include the Student Center, The Rec/IM, Halle Library, and dining facilities like the Eastern Eateries and the Commons (DC1). EMU's office of Campus Life provides many co-curricular opportunities for both resident students and commuter students which include Friday night movies, Laugh Lounge and Sky Lounge. In addition to activities on campus, EMU's campus life office also organizes occasional "Eastern Excursions" to cities such as Detroit, Cleveland, and Chicago. Off-campus hangouts include Depot Town, Frog Island, Riverside Park, downtown Ann Arbor and The Ugly Mug coffee shop.[38]

Student organizations

Student Organizations at Eastern are housed under Campus Life. Most academic departments on campus have at least one student organization for students who are interested in that subject area. Students work with volunteer organizations such as Habitat for Humanity both during the school year and on breaks. Other clubs include the Muslim Student Association and the LGBTA (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender/Transsexual Association). Eastern Michigan University has over 340 student clubs and organizations.[39]

Greek life

Fraternities[40] Sororities[40]

Beyond student organizations EMU offers a variety of Greek organizations on campus. The Greek system provides fraternities and sororities that students can join, many of which have houses within walking distance of campus.[41] Just like most universities EMU has a National Pan-Hellenic Council, College Panhellenic Council and Interfraternity Council[42] Interfraternity Council comprises eight fraternities, and the Panhellenic Council is made up of nine sororities. National Pan-Hellenic Council consists of 9 historically African-American fraternities and sororities, five fraternities and four sororities.[43]

Alpha Sigma Tau, a national Panhellenic sorority was founded at EMU on November 4, 1899. Sigma Nu Phi, a local sorority, was founded on Eastern's campus September 30, 1897. It is the oldest Greek organization on campus as well as the oldest continually-functioning local sorority in the nation. Greek Life at EMU hosts a yearly event called Greek Week. Greek Week is a week of events that center on Greek unity and spirit. The week often occurs in the beginning of April.[44] Other traditions include Greek Awards. The yearly awards are based on the University's Greek Standards and Assessment Program (GSAP).[45]

Campus media and publications

The Eastern Echo started as the Normal News in 1881

The Eastern Echo, EMU's independent student newspaper, is published three times a week during the fall and winter semesters and once a week during the spring semester, as well as publishing content online. The paper won eight awards in the 2005 Division 1 Michigan Collegiate Press Association contest, including second place in the general excellence category. The newspaper, which is funded through advertising revenue, is not under the editorial control of the university.

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.[46]

EMU hosts two radio stations WQBR and WEMU 89.1 FM. WEMU is a National Public Radio member station. The radio station, which features jazz music, has many student employees and broadcasts many EMU athletic games. WQBR stands for Quirk Building Radio, where the station was once hosted in Quirk. Today WQBR is named Eagle Radio and is no longer hosted in Quirk. Eagle Radio broadcasts from Halle library and is an Internet only radio station at www.eagleradio.org.

The LINGUIST List is a major online resource for the academic field of linguistics. It was founded by Anthony Aristar in early 1990 at the University of Western Australia,[47] and is used as a reference by the National Science Foundation in the United States.[48] Its main and oldest feature is the premoderated electronic mailing list, now with thousands of subscribers all over the world, where queries and their summarized results, discussions, journal table of contents, dissertation abstracts, calls for papers, book and conference announcements, software notices and other useful pieces of linguistic information are posted.


Pray-Harrold Kiosk.

Eastern Michigan has several campus-wide traditions throughout the school year. Longstanding traditions include Homecoming, Martin Luther King, Jr. Week and the use of the Pray-Harrold Kiosk by students.

The Pray-Harrold Kiosk is a large cement pillar located outside Snow Health Center and the Rec/IM. The Pillar is painted by various organizations for campus awareness, advertisements and organization unity.[49][50]

During Eastern's fall semester, traditions include Fajita Fest, Community Plunge, and Homecoming. Fajita Fest occurs during the school's orientation and welcoming weekend in September.[51] The event brings more than 300 campus offices, and student organizations together in University Park & Bowen Field House to showcase campus organizations and services. Community Plunge also occurs during orientation and offers the opportunity for students, staff and faculty to participate in service in the Ypsilanti community.[52][53]

During Eastern's winter semester campus traditions include Martin Luther King, Jr. Week, Ethos Week, The Gold Medallion Awards, and Relay For Life. Martin Luther King, Jr. Week occurs around Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. The university holds various speakers, learning opportunities, creative expression, community building, events, and awards in celebration of Martin Luther King, Jr. and his dream.[54][55] Ethos Week is a week-long annual event occurring in March and is led by the COB. The event promotes business ethics and ethics education.[23][24] The Gold Medallions Awards are split into two ceremonies. The Gold Medallion Awards started in 1982 and is organized by Eastern's Student Affairs Division to recognize faculty, students and staff.[56] In 1996, the Student Gold Medallion Awards were established. The award ceremony recognizes student leaders, student organizations, divisional programs, activities or service.[57] Eastern's Relay For Life event is a 24-hour, yearly event that is held in University Park that started in 1985.[58] The event is centered on supporting the American Cancer Society. The event brings in campus organizations from the entire campus.[59][60] The event has been held at various times during the year but in recent times the event is held in early April before the school-year ends.

Residence halls & apartments

for a list of EMU Residence Halls and Apartments, see EMU Residence Halls & Apartments.
The Village Complex.

Eastern Michigan University has 14 residence halls. As of Fall 2014 first-year only residence halls will include Putnam and Phelps. Upperclassmen student living options include: the Village, Buell, and the three apartment complexes. Sellers, Walton, Downing, Wise, Hill, Hoyt, Pittman and Best house all students, regardless of class ranking. Honors students are housed in Downing and Best Halls. Past locations included Wise Hall, Jones, and Goddard Halls.[26][61][62] Eastern also offers faculty, staff and family housing options in Cornell Courts, and Westview apartments.

According to the university, approximately 5,000[63][64] students live on campus. In the fall of 2010, EMU began housing some full-time students in the Village Complex from Washtenaw Community College, which is less than half a mile away, however the program ended in 2011 when housing enrollment went up.[65]

In 2011, Eastern Michigan became the first university in Michigan and the eighth nationwide to offer a targeted program to house single parents with their children on campus. Called "Keys to Degrees", the program will house single-parent families near each other in one of Eastern Michigan's on-campus apartment complexes, and will offer extra academic and personal support to enrollees.[66][67]


CrossRoads Marketplace
for a list of dining facilities, see EMU Dining.

Eastern Michigan University Dining Services an independent department following an organizational shift wherein it was separated from the department of Housing and Residence Life.. EMU has numerous dining and satellite operations. The larger dining facilities on campus include the Commons (DC1), the Eateries, Crossroads Marketplace, and the Student Center. Satellite operations and several Convenience Stores across campus.


EMU Convocation Center
for information about EMU Athletic Bands, see EMU Athletic Bands.
for information about EMU Athletic Facilities, see EMU Athletic Facilities.

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).

Swoop, EMU's Mascot since 1994[7]

EMU has also been NCAA Division I national runner-up twice in 1940 and 1976. In 1940, the men's cross country team finished second to Indiana University. In 1976, the baseball team was defeated by the University of Arizona in the final game of the College World Series. The Eagles have the most MAC championships in a single sport, 29, in men's swimming and diving. For men's and women's Track and field (indoor and outdoor), collectively holds the record for most MAC titles out of all the EMU athletics teams.

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.

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 have struggled to attract fans, partially due to the team's proximity to the University of Michigan. In 1987, EMU won its first Mid-American Conference title then defeated 17½-point favorite San Jose State in the California Bowl.

There have been small successes though, such as a 6-4 record against rivals Western Michigan and Central Michigan in the 5 years under coach Jeff Genyk from 2004 to 2008, setting a school record for a 5-year span against Western and Central.[68]


For information about the teams' nicknames, see EMU team name history.

Since the 1991 season, Eastern Michigan University athletic teams have gone by the nickname "Eagles." Prior to the 1991 season EMU used the name "Hurons". EMU used the Hurons name and Indian logo from 1929 until 1991. Despite much controversy, support of the Huron tribes in Oklahoma and Quebec, and anger among its alumni, EMU changed the logo after the Michigan Department of Civil Rights issued a report suggesting that all schools drop such logos. During the Michigan State Normal College years the school went by the nicknames such as "Normalites" and "Men from Ypsi" and various other titles.

Notable alumni

Eastern Michigan University has more than 145,000 living alumni, more than 100,000 of whom still reside in Michigan.[69] Some notable Eastern Michigan University alumni include Joseph Sobran, Dann Florek, Tara Wall, Andrew Miles Davis, Akkineni Nagarjuna, Greg Mathis, Rodney E. Slater, Marilyn Jean Kelly, Jack Roush, John Harvey Kellogg, and Bruce T. Halle. NFL Player Charlie Batch and NBA players Earl Boykins and George Gervin also attended Eastern Michigan.


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