Emporia State University (ESU) is a university in the city of Emporia in Lyon County, Kansas, just east of the Flint Hills.
The university was founded in March 1863 when the Kansas Legislature passed the enabling act to establish the Kansas State Normal School. The school's first graduating class consisted of two women in 1867, the year the first permanent building was completed.
In 1876, the Kansas Legislature passed the "Miscellaneous appropriations bill of 1876". The end result was that Leavenworth Normal and Concordia Normal were closed so the state funding for normal schools could be directed to Emporia.
In February 1923, the name of the school was changed to the Kansas State Teachers College. In July 1974, the name was changed to Emporia Kansas State College. On April 21, 1977, the college became Emporia State University. The Kansas Board of Regents is the governing body for ESU. Since 1863 more than 150,000 students have studied at ESU.
On January 25, 2006, then ESU president Kay Schallenkamp, Ph.D, resigned to serve as president of Black Hills State University starting July 1, 2006. On September 22, 2006 the Kansas Board of Regents announced the hiring of Michael R. Lane (BS in finance, University of Massachusetts Lowell, 1975; MS in financial accounting, Northeastern University, 1976; Ph.D in financial accounting, Texas A&M University, 1980) as University President effective November 1, 2006. Lane was previously provost at University of Arkansas - Fort Smith. Edward Flentje succeeded Lane until 2012 January 3 when Michael Shonrock became president.
The Center for Great Plains Studies, headed by Jim Hoy, an inductee of the Kansas Cowboy Hall of Fame, is located at Emporia State University.
Emporia State University comprises four colleges: the school of business, college of liberal arts and sciences, school of library and information management, and the Teachers College. The latter is the university's college of education. In September 2006, the Teacher's College was cited by The Education Schools Project as one of the top four model teacher preparation programs in the United States along with Stanford University, Alverno College, and the University of Virginia. In 2011, The Teachers College was featured in a video produced by the U.S. Department of Education highlighting the use of professional development schools.
The Department of Instructional Design and Technology (IDT) offers the only instructional design and technology Master of Science degree in Kansas. IDT's Master of Science degree is offered entirely online. The Master's of Science degree in Business Education is also offered entirely online for the nation's business teachers. The University is the home of the William Allen White library and the National Teachers Hall of Fame. The university's newspaper, The Bulletin, has existed since 1901.
The Registrar's office is the official custodian of the transcripts for the former College of Emporia which closed in 1973.
A department of The Teachers College, JIEE provides educational leadership and service, strives to improve the quality of instruction and teaching, conducts policy studies on emerging issues, promotes excellence in all areas of learning, and contributes to the educational dialogue on national trends and issues. Its programs include:
The school competes in Division II of the NCAA and became a member of the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association (MIAA) in 1991. ESU Athletics currently fields teams in 15 sports, including: baseball, men's and women's basketball, men's and women's cross country, football, women's soccer, softball, men's and women's tennis, men's and women's track & field, and women's volleyball.
ESU Athletics has had four top four finishes in four sports over last four years (Women's Basketball, 1st in 2010; Baseball, 2nd in 2009; Softball, 2nd in 2008; Men's Track and Field, 4th in 2011). In March 2010, the Lady Hornets basketball team won the NCAA Division II National Championship, defeating the Fort Lewis College (Colorado) Skyhawks. The softball team played for the national championship in 2008. The baseball team played in the national championship game in 2009 and they were MIAA conference champions in 2011. They've played in 9 straight regional tournaments. The hornets have been pre-season ranked top 10 since 2009.