Our History: Timeline

Indiana State University was established by the Indiana General Assembly on December 20, 1865, as the Indiana State Normal School in Terre Haute. As the State Normal School, its core mission was to educate elementary and high school teachers. State funds amounting to $50,000 were appropriated to establish the school in an Indiana city that could match or exceed the State funding. The Board of the Normal School was authorized to advertise throughout the state of Indiana for donations of land, money and buildings as a site for the new school. Terre Haute was the only community in the state to make such an offer of money and land.

The original building was erected at a cost of $189,000, in the area on campus now known as the Quadrangle or Quad. The architects were Vrydagh & Son, of Terre Haute. Myles and Hedden were the contractors. The cornerstone was laid August 13, 1867. On January 6, 1870, the partially constructed and poorly equipped ISNS building was opened to students. On this day, President William Jones greeted 23 students and a faculty comprised of three assistants. Later in the year that student body increased to 40 and three additional faculty members were hired.

Indiana State Normal School

The original Indiana State Normal School building, 1870 - 1888 (University Archive)

On April 8, 1888, the 18-year-old ISNS building was completely destroyed by fire. The event was described as “the most unfortunate single catastrophe that could happen to Terre Haute.”

ISNS after the fire of April 8, 1888

ISNS after the fire of April 8, 1888

Even while the building was still burning, President William Parsons gathered several faculty members and dispersed them to the train station to catch students and basically make them stay. Class went on the very next day. At chapel that morning, Parsons told students and faculty, “Our building is in ashes, our library, laboratory and apparatus are gone, but the school and all essential to it are here this morning. This is a splendid opportunity to teach the world the school is not in its library and buildings. The Normal School is in existence this morning and we are ready to go to work.”  - ISU has a Record of Resilience Throughout its History

Terre Haute gave another $50,000 for the immediate rebuilding of the school which was built on the foundaions of the old. This building, called “Old Main,” was designed by Jenny & Otis, of Chicago, Illinois. W. A. Atkins of Terre Haute, and Collins and Ohm were the contractors. Instruction resumed in the new Normal School building in the fall of 1888. The students only missed one day of classes. 

Old Main

Old Main (University Archive)

The school awarded its first baccalaureate degrees in 1908 and the first master's degrees in 1928. In 1929, the Indiana State Normal School was renamed the Indiana State Teachers College, and in 1961, was renamed Indiana State College due to an expanding mission. In 1965, the Indiana General Assembly renamed the college as Indiana State University in recognition of continued growth. "Old Main" was demolished in 1951.


1918 - Commerce Department formed by Indiana State Normal School. The department was located in Old Main and chaired by Shepherd Young who had joined the faculty that year as Professor of Commercial Subjects. Prior to joining the ISNS faculty, Mr. Young was a teacher and administrator in Kentucky, West Virginia, and Indiana schools. Mr. Young died, still with ISNS, in 1940.

1920 - The entry for the commercial department in the 1920 edition of the Normal Advance yearbook (page 31) reads, "The courses are so organized that the whole curriculum of the course can be completed in one year. Courses in advanced bookkeeping, advanced and beginning shorthand and advanced typewriting are offered, the Gregg system of shorthand being used. The department occupies the entire fourth floor of the building and is equipped in the most modern way. The aim of the course is to produce efficient teachers of the commercial department in the high schools of the State. Incidentally, the department furnishes the students with a very practical course which will assist them towards well advanced business positions. The department is gaining so rapidly in popularity that another expansion of the quarters will soon be necessary."

Degrees with majors in commerce were awarded. The two graduates were Frank Grove and Robertine Wilson. Grove became assistant professor of commerce at ISNS in 1922. 

The Commerce Club was also formed in the Fall of 1920. Its purpose was to "to further knowledge about general business problems." The club offered "an opportunity for its members to meet and discuss the interesting problems of the day, thus gaining inspiration for their own work and a general knowledge of the whole field of business." Officers and members were: President, Rebecca Barack; vice president, Hoyt Spencer; secretary, Virginia Fuerst; treasurer, W. C. Letsinger. The other members are as follows: Erma Mewhinney, Leland Rees, Laura Phillips, Anna Kirkham, Mary Laatz, Helen Schiff, Alice Hopkins, Herman L. Boyle, Vaughn Russel, Dora Warinner, Flossie Davis, Clarice Brewer, Mona Woodward, Wayne Newton, Irene Kunz, Lois Hern, Anna Ryan, Bernadette McMullen, Rose Mary Dodt, Geraldine Dodt and Professor Shepherd Young. (1921 Normal Advance yearbook, page 147)

1923 - First undergraduate degrees in commerce awarded to Herman Boyle, who eventually retired as an executive of Standard Oil Company. The other recipients were Thelma Keller and Marie Rucker. Rucker became an assistant professor of commerce at ISNS in 1926.

1934 - Establish Chi Chapter of Pi Omega Pi, which promotes scholarship in business education.

1935 - The federal building on Cherry Street opened to the public in 1935. This building was to become the home of the Scott College of Business in August, 2012. See our Artworks pages for more details.

1940 - Commerce Department moved to second floor of Fine Arts and Commerce Building.

1948 - Graduate programs added.

1952 - Programs in business administration added.

1956 - Accounting Club formed​. The club was open to any student majoring in accounting and business administration who had completed one year of tweleve quarter hours in accounting and was an associate memeber of the American Accounting Association. The object of the club was to stimulate and promote further interest in the field of accounting. Technical sessions were held each month and social meetings once a quarter.

1958 - The Commerce Department is now referred to as the Business Department (at least in the Yearbooks)

1959 - Beta Iota Sigma chapter formed. This organization was formed to meet the needs of students majoring in business on a non-teaching curriculum. ​In May of that year they created a petition and became the Delta Tau chapter of Delta Sigma Pi on October 10, 1959.

1962 - Department moved to renovated Science Building on north side of the quadrangle (formerly Classroom Building)

1962-1964 - Commerce Department name changed to Department of Business Education and again to the Division of Business

1964 - School of Business created with Dr. Paul Muse as dean. Dr. Muse was the Chairman of the Department of Commerce from 1947 to 1964. When the School of Business was created in 1964 he became dean and remained so until his retirement in 1971.

1968 - Statesman Towers Erected. Designed by Ewing Miller and Associates and built by the F.A. Wilhelm Construction Company in 1968, Statesman Towers were dedicated on April 17, 1969. Named after former Vice Presidents of the United States they were originally student dormitories designated as Colfax, Fairbanks, Hendricks and Marshall Halls. The west building was converted to classrooms and faculty offices for the then School of Education in 1977 and the east in 1981 to house the School of Business. The Bayh College of Education moved into University Hall in 2009. The Scott College of Business moved into Federal Hall in 2012.

1968 - The Indiana State University Marketing Club was organized in the spring of 1968 and in 1969 became an official chapter of the American Marketing Association. One of the main objectives of the club was to give students interested in careers in marketing, retailing, marketing management, advertising management and related fields information about what various positions in these fields are actually like. The club accomplished this by utilizing guest speakers, tours, films and attending A.M.A. Conferences.

1969 - First MBA degrees awarded; facilities expanded by adding fourth floor to business building. Among the first to gain their MBA in 1970 were Paul Lo and Ronald Vaughn. Both also earned the Distinguished Alumni Award. Paul Lo and Ronald Vaughn who both earned their MBA in 1970. Both also went on earn the Distinuished Alumni Award. Paul Lo (’70 MBA) is an internationally recognized banker and financier, who, in 2008, retired as CEO, CFO and president of SinoPac Holdings and chairman of Bank SinoPac. Ron Vaughn (’68 BS, ’70 MBA) serves as president of the University of Tampa and has been at the helm there since 1984. Prior to 1969 scholars could earn a Master's Degree in Business.

1969 - The Business Administration Department in the School of Business was reorganized. It now consists of the Department of Accounting with Dr. James Lane as chairman; Department of Management and Finance with Dr. Robert Steinbaugh as chairman; Department of Marketing with Dr. Clarence E. Vincent as chairman; and the Department of Distributive Education under the chairmanship of Dr. Ralph E. Mason. The latter department works closely with the School of Education to find employment for prospective teachers.

1970 - Accounting, Business, Distributive Education and Office Administration, Management-Finance, and Marketing made up the four departments of the School of Business. In conjunction with the annual Business Day, a new Honors Day Program which constituted personal recognition of honors awards within the school was held. The School of Business moved into its expanded quarters on the new fifth floor. The added facilities contain 25 faculty offices, 2 department offices, 15 graduate assistant’s offices and study units, and 3 seminar rooms separated by folding doors which open to provide a large assembly room.

1972 - Dr. Clinton A. Baker was dean of the School of Business from 1972 to 1973

October 1974 - Two-year secretarial associate degree offered. 

1974 - Dr. Edward L. Goebel became dean of the School of Business in 1974 and remained so until 1989.

1980 - Relocation to Statesman Towers on Sycamore between 8th and 9th streets.

1980 - Granted undergraduate business accreditation by the American Assembly of Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).

1981 - Established Beta Gamma Sigma (the highest national recognition business student can receive).

1983 - Full accreditation received for master's program by AACSB.

1988Insurance and Risk Management Program initiated -- offering major and minor

1989 - College of Business celebrates 25th anniversary; full re-accreditation granted. Dr. Herbert L. Ross was dean of the School of Business from 1989 to 1995.

February 20, 1990 - The Alpha Epsilon Chapter of Gamma Iota Sigma is chartered at ISU.

1995 - Dr. Donald L. Bates was dean of the School of Business from 1995 until 1998.

February 1996 - First Groundhog Day Economic Forecast Breakfast. The Groundhog Day Economic Forecast Breakfasts are sponsored by Terre Haute Chamber of Commerce, the Scott College of Business and Terre Haute Savings Bank and Financial Services. The breakfasts feature comments on national, state and local issues from an array of panelists. Presenters provide various perspectives on national issues, comment on state issues, provide local business forecasting and conclude with a question and answer session.

1998 - Dr. Leona Gallion was dean of the School of Business from 1998 to 2001.

1998 - The Insurance and Risk Management program held it's 1st Annual IRM Octoberfest Golf Scramble

1999Gongaware Center was established by a $5 million gift from Don and Pat Gongaware, to support executive development, student development and industry research in insurance and risk management.

2001 - Dr. David R. Hopkins was interim dean from 2001 to 2002.

2001 - Formed by Dr. Tarek Zaher the club regularly competes in the annual Oak Associates Investment Contest. It was placed first in 2001 and received an award of $20,000. This success was followed by fifth- and sixth-place rankings in 2002 and 2003, respectively, and an additional award of $5,000. In 2005, the club won again with a 32 percent return on their investment with their portfolio growing to nearly $90,000. The Club also now organizes the annual Student Managed Investment Fund Consortium Conferences. Investment Club web site.

2002 - Dr. Ronald F. Green became dean of the School of Business in 2002 and by 2007 when he retired, had seen the transformation to the College of Business

2003Networks Financial Institute established with a $20 million Lilly Endowment grant.

2004 - School of Business name changed to College of Business.

2006Motorsports minor introduced.

2006 - MBA program listed as one of the best in the Princeton Review. It's been listed in every issue since.

April 10/11 2007Mark Henderson, executive vice president and chief operating officer of Lockton Companies, LLC, was the first Leader in Action Series presenter for the Insurance and Risk Management Program and Gongaware Center. This speaker series grew out of financial services earning Program of National Distinction honors at ISU. Lockton is the world's largest privately held insurance broker and has hired many ISU student interns and graduates for full-time employment.

June 4, 2007 - Nancy J. Merritt named Dean of College of Business. She stayed at the post until 2012.

2007 - ISU recognizes Financial Services as one of two Programs of National Distinction.

2007Networks Financial Institute receives $3 million grant from the Lilly Endowment.

2007Financial Trading Room opens; Minas Center for Investment and Financial Education established. See news story

2009MBA Program featured in Entrepreneur magazine, top 15 in Princeton Review.

2009Sales and Negotiations Center created. The center, under the directorship of Jon Hawes, encourages high potential individuals to consider the merits of careers in professional selling, to provide sales and negotiations training to members of the business community that will enable them to grow professionally enabling economic development, to enhance the professionalism of the sales force, and to provide service to the sales profession. Sales and Negotiations Center web pages

2009Randall and Nancy Minas donate $1.3 million for Minas Center and trading room.

2009 - ISU trustees approve renaming the college to the Scott College of Business. ISU trustees approve renaming college to the Scott College of Business. Don Scott was owner of Terre Haute's Sycamore Agency and then president of Old National Insurance for a total of more than 40 years, He also served on the Indiana State University Foundation board for 25 years. Their generous gift helped make possible the renovation of the Federal Hall for the college.

2010 - State Budget Committee approves Scott College building project

2010Student-run cafe launched - Executive Express

2010 - Lilly Endowment awards Networks Financial Institute $6 million.

2010University dedicates naming of the Scott College of Business

2010Professional MBA launched in Hendricks County

2011 - Scott College adopts new Strategic Plan

2011 - College recognized in top tier for "best business programs" by US News & World Report

2011Scott College of Business maintains prestigious accreditation by AACSB International

2011Research @ Scott publication launched

2011Scott College of Business reorganizes into three departments. The college has seen several reorganizations. In 1972, the departments were Business Administration; Business & Distributive Education; and Business Research. In 1990, the college comprised of the departments of Accounting; Administrative Systems & Business Education; Management Finance; Marketing; and Systems and Decision Sciences. Today, the departments are Accounting, Finance, Insurance & Risk Management; Management, Information Systems & Business Education; and Marketing and Operations.

2011First Whitman European Business Student Experience travels to Paris. Steve Whitman is a retired executive vice president of Exstream Software, LLC. Exstream was purchased by Hewlett-Packard in 2008. Whitman graduated from the Scott College of business in 1977 with a bachelor's degree in business administration. He launched The Whitman European Business Student Experience at ISU. The fund that he and his wife, Becky, started covers up to 90% of costs for 10 students and a faculty member per trip. The trips allow students to meet business contacts in a variety of European cities.

June 13, 2012Dr. Brien Smith named Dean of the Scott College of Business

August 2012 - Students and faculty move into new home in downtown Terre Haute - Federal Hall.

September 7, 2012University dedicates Federal Hall as the new home for the Scott College of Business.

September 9, 2012 - Scott College's Buttonwood Sculpture installed.

2012 - Lilly Endowment awards Networks Financial Institute $3 million grant.

May 2013 - Brazil FGV Collaboration. Indiana State finance professor Eurico Ferreira collaborated with Brazilian organizations Fundação Getulio Vargas (FGV) and Empreza to bring MBA students to ISU for week long intensive courses. The Brazilian executives learn about corporate finance and business principles at an American university. FGV Web Site and ISU News Story.

October 27, 2013 - NFI Scholar, Jessica Weesner, becomes Miss ISU.

March 21, 2014 - SCB Students Continue to Win. Indiana State University students toppled teams from Indiana and Ball State universities to capture their win in the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties University Challenge. The nine-member team of undergraduates from Ed Gallatin's real estate finance class received a winner's shovel and trophy that will be placed at Scott College of Business. The team also won $5,000, which Gallatin said will be seed money to start a new scholarship for students interested in real estate. See News Story

April 12, 2014 - The Insurance and Risk Management (IRM) program celebrates 25 years.

2015 - Scott College of Business celebrates 50th anniversary

April 13, 2015 - Demolition of Statesman Towers, home of the College of Business for 31 years, from 1981 to 2012, begins. See Smugmug for photographs and YouTube for videos.

June 2016 - MBA in Education Leadership Program introduced. a unique program designed in partnership with Indiana State’s Scott College of Business and the Bayh College of Education’s Department of Educational Leadership along with support and leadership from the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation. Blending clinical practice in schools with innovative business school coursework, the MBA in Education Leadership is designed to ensures graduates have the knowledge and skills not only to guide schools and districts in a changing education environment, but also close achievement gaps between America’s lowest- and highest-performing schools and between the country’s top-performing schools and those around the world.

April 2017Alumnus Todd Osburn and Caroline Howe made one of the largest individual gifts in Indiana State University history. Their $7.5 million planned gift, $5 million of which is for the Scott College of Business, is uniquely structured to both help the most financially strapped students and to ensure their professional readiness upon graduation.

March 13, 2019 - "Our first university-wide giving day was a huge success, and we are so grateful for the nearly 1,700 donors who participated," said Indiana State President Deborah Curtis. "This is a wonderful kickoff to a new era for private fundraising at Indiana State. Everyone who donated has been a crucial part of this accomplishment, and it's only the beginning of more great things to come!"

Nearly 1,700 donors -- from Terre Haute to Australia -- contributed more than $430,000, making it the largest single-day fundraiser in university history. The Scott College of Business raised $37,670 from 108 donors.

Among other Give to Blue Day achievements:

  • More than 970 alumni donated
  • Faculty, staff and emeriti made up 30 percent of the donors, contributing $60,000
  • The Honors College topped the donor leaderboard with 153 donors, followed by Bayh College of Education, Scott College of Business and College of Arts and Sciences
  • 541 gifts of $100-plus were made
  • Average gift size was $207

June 1, 2019 - Dean Brien Smith departed the Scott College of Business after being offered the position of Provost Vice President for Academic Affairs at Youngstown State University in Ohio. Brien has bee ndean since 2012. Brien has led the Scott College of Business since 2012. During that time, he has created a new center to administer student success programs and oversee student career-readiness initiatives, expanded online programs, increased the number of women leaders in the college by 30 percent, and helped raise millions of dollars in gifts and earn more than $9 million in external grants for student programming and scholarships.
Jack Maynard became Interim Dean. Jack is currently the director of the MBA in Education Leadership program. Jack is no stranger to senior roles at Indiana State having served as dean of the college of education and provost and vice president for Academic Affairs (2003-2013).

February 21, 2020 -  A $1 million gift from the charitable trust of H. Peter Hudson will create an endowed professorship in the Insurance and Risk Management program at Indiana State University’s Scott College of Business. It is the largest cash gift to ISU during this fiscal year. ISU’s Board of Trustees voted Friday to acknowledge the gift by establishing the Dr. Larry Coleman/H. Peter Hudson Endowed Professorship of Insurance. Hudson entered the insurance business in 1959 and was concerned about the lack of opportunities for students to learn about the business in college. In 1988, Coleman asked him to join ISU’s effort to develop a degree major in insurance and risk management. Within a few years, ISU’s Insurance and Risk Management Program was recognized as one of the top programs in the country. 

July 1, 2020 - We welcome our new dean, Terry Daugherty joins us from the University of Akron’s College of Business Administration where he served as Interim Associate Dean and Director of Graduate Programs. The college has five departments - Accounting, Economics, Finance, Management. and Marketing and 87 faculty and administrative staff serving more than 2,000 students. Terry earned his B.A. at Western Kentucky University, his M.A. at the University of Alabama, and his Ph.D. at Michigan State University.

October 27, 2020 - Indiana-based Gibson advanced its commitment to diversifying the insurance industry workforce through two endowed scholarships. The company’s scholarships, the Gibson ISU Alumni Scholarship and Leman Family Scholarship, were established to support ISU students pursuing degrees in the University’s Insurance and Risk Management Program. The scholarships will prioritize supporting minority and female students in the insurance and risk management program.

February 17, 2021 - Gift from Mike and Amy Alley Grows Student Leadership, Professional DevelopmentA $250,000 gift to Indiana State University from alumni Mike and Amy Alley will create the Linda Eldred Student Leadership Center and the Michael and Amy Alley Student Professional Development Fellows Program. The Leadership Center, housed in the Hulman Memorial Student Union within the Office of Campus Life, will support programs for students on leadership development, inclusion, personal and professional growth, and community service. The Leadership Center celebrates Linda Eldred for her leadership and dedication to campus activities and programs during 40 years at ISU. Eldred was advisor to ISU’s Union Board and introduced the Alleys when they were students. The Professional Development Fellows Program creates an endowment for professional development opportunities for students in the Scott College of Business. 

April 12, 2021 - Scott College of Business Accreditation Reaffirmed. The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International) has reaffirmed its accreditation of ISU’s Scott College of Business. In order to earn and sustain business accreditation, an institution must align with AACSB’s business accreditation standards that focus on mission, strategic management, and innovation; support for learners, faculty, and staff; and thought leadership and societal impact. The college has been continuously accredited since 1980.

May 6, 2021 - Million-dollar Gift Will Create Endowed Professorship at Scott College of Business. Dr. Robert Steinbaugh influenced the lives and careers of countless students, was valued by his peers in the academic community, and was deeply committed to the future of Indiana State University. Dr. Steinbaugh’s legacy will live on through a $1 million charitable gift from his wife, Carolyn Steinbaugh, to the Scott College of Business and the naming of the Dr. Robert and Carolyn Steinbaugh Endowed Professor of Business. Robert Steinbaugh taught management and finance at ISU and served as a department chair from 1957 to 1984. He retired in 1991 and passed away in 2014.

September 24, 2021 - The Magna Carta Room, Courtroom or even plain FD223 in Federal Hall was officially renamed as the Kenneth L. Smith and Theresa Kathryn Klein Smith Magna Carta Courtroom. In June 2021, Indiana State alumnus, Dr. Kenneth L. Smith, gave $1 million to the university to honor his late wife and support scholarships in accounting, economics, finance, and history. Smith, who taught economics and finance for 42 years at the university level, met his wife at the University of North Texas. The couple was married for 32 years prior to Theresa’s passing in 2019. In recognition of the gift, the Board of Trustees approved the naming of the Kenneth L. Smith and Theresa Kathryn (Klein) Smith Magna Carta Courtroom on the second floor of the Federal Building, home of the Scott College of Business. The space, once a federal courtroom, features a mural depicting the 1215 signing of the Magna Carta. It was painted in 1935. Smith said an elementary school field trip to what was then the Terre Haute Post Office and Federal Building left a lasting impression.