University unveils permanent 50-year timeline

Bobby Shipman

In 1965, 412 students enrolled in courses in seven academic programs at Indiana State University-Evansville.

Classes were held at the Centennial School, a former elementary school on Evansville’s west side.

Three years later, a group of business and community leaders, who were determined to see the public university succeed, raised $1 million to acquire 1,400 acres of land and USI’s campus was born.

The university unveiled a large, permanent, wall-mounted timeline Monday, which showcases major events in the university’s 50-year history.

USI President Linda Bennett and Vice President Emeritus of Business Affairs Byron Wright, the building’s namesake, unveiled the timeline, which is located in the Wright Administration Building across from the McCutchan Exhibition Space, by pulling down four gray curtains revealing a vibrant display that features an array of historic photographs.

“We hope this photographic display will engage our students and visitors in learning about our rich history of diversity and perseverance,” Bennett said to those who showed up and watched. “All of this has been possible only because of the amazing support of many people in this community.”

The timeline was designed and installed by Signarama, a graphics company located in Evansville.

Prior to its unveiling, Bennett thanked Vice President of Government and University Relations Cynthia Brinker and the history committee for piecing together the timeline’s content.

An interactive timeline and a full schedule of events commemorating USI’s 50th anniversary can be found online at

“Traditions and Icons: 50 Years of USI Culture,” an exhibit of USI memorabilia from the past 50 years, is on display in the McCutchan Exhibition Space in the Wright Administration Building throughout the spring 2015 semester.