History and Traditions

Utah State University Eastern was established through the support and perseverance of such men as D.C. Woodward, W.W. Christensen, and G.J. Reeves, (Carbon County School Superintendents); Orson H. Guymon (Chairman of the Carbon County School Board); George Miller, G.G. Linstrom, D.A. Lon Tidwell, and Frank Bonacci (Utah State Legislators). Although Utah State University - College of Eastern Utah has gone through many changes, including a couple of name changes, USU Eastern has always been committed to providing outstanding service to Eastern Utah.

1937 On February 20, 1937 Carbon College was established with the signing of Senate Bill 6 by Governor Henry Blood. The local newspaper described the event as "one of the most important educational advancements in the history of Eastern Utah."

1938 During the first week of October about 100 students enrolled in the first classes offered at Carbon College. The first president of the college was Eldon B. Sessions.

1943 WWII affects enrollments. There were only 27 full-time students due to young men volunteering or being drafted into the the various military services.

1953 The college faced its greatest challenge. At a special session of the legislature, Governor J. Bracken Lee proposed that Carbon College be closed and its lands and buildings sold. With great community support the college was saved In November of 1954 - 78% of voters rejected the legislature's decision to close the school.

1959 Carbon College was placed under the administration of the Board of Regents of the University of Utah and separated from Carbon High School

1962 The building of the Geary Theatre is completed. Due to an aggressive building campaign the Music Building, Science Center, Library, Administrative Wing, and Physical Plant were built within the next four years 

1964 The college's name was officially changed to College of Eastern Utah. This name better reflected the regional mission proposed by then College President Claude J. Burtenshaw.

1969 The passage of the Higher Education Act of 1969 created the State Board of Regents and organized the 9 public colleges and universities into the Utah System of Higher Education. This ended the branch relationship of CEU to the University of Utah and created the independent College of Eastern Utah.

1970s Vocational-technical programs were significantly strengthened during the tenure of President Dean M. McDonald. A new Career Center was built to replace the original vocational building and it continues to house most of the vocational programs. In the 1970s CEU also established a one-year Licensed Practical Nursing program and is now offering a two-year Registered Nursing degree.

1977 After struggling for several years and trying to coordinate with Utah State University and Brigham Young University what started out as a grant-funded training program became the College of Eastern Utah - San Juan Center. It began with about 40 students, 2 staff members and borrowed facilities.

1980 The CEU-San Juan Campus has its first graduating class. There were 12 graduates, all female.

1985 The Bunnell-Dmitrich Athletic Center (BDAC) was completed to house the growing athletics and community fitness programs.

1986 CEU-San Juan's first official building on campus is opened for classes. Constructed with over 27,000 adobe bricks made from native soil, the completion of the Science Building was a joint effort of students, staff, faculty, and community members.

1995 The CEU-San Juan Instructional Technology Building is dedicated. Following the official ribbon cutting, Buck Navajo, a 71-year old medicine man offered a traditional prayer and blessing upon the facility.

1998 The Jennifer Leavitt Student Center (JLSC) is constructed. This building provides a main gathering for the college students and houses student services such as advising, registration, student government and dining services.

2003 The G.J. Reeves building is completed. This building was created to house the Science and Technology programs offered at the college. Shortly thereafter the old Science building is torn down.

2010 College of Eastern Utah merged with Utah State University creating Utah State University - College of Eastern Utah (USU Eastern).

2013 Governor Gary Herbert signs Senate Bill 258, changing the official name of the College to Utah State University Eastern.

History Collage