Arizona State University

 On Feb. 8, 1886 — almost 30 years before Arizona was granted statehood — the Territorial Normal School, Arizona’s first higher education institution, opened its doors to 33 students in a four-classroom building in Tempe.

From humble beginnings, and through a series of name changes that led to a 1958 vote of the people and a 2-to-1 margin of victory for the advancement of Arizona State College to Arizona State University, ASU’s century-plus trajectory has led to its being recognized as the “most innovative” university in the country by U.S. News & World Report — five years in a row.

The history of Arizona State University is rich, bold and vibrant. The timeline below reflects an honored tradition of excellence and inclusion while also celebrating the growth and development forged to meet – and make – the future.

Innovation powers the New American University in creating the next generation of leaders 


National Academies-honored


National student scholars

 77 elite 

Ranked in the top 25
in the U.S.

 200+ athletic 

National and conference titles

 Nearly $4 billion 

FY19 economic impact of nearly $4 billion on the state's gross product


leading, shaping
changing our world