Beneficence: Proud Past. Bright Future.
Ball State Employees 100

About the Centennial

For 100 years, we’ve had an unwavering belief in an education rooted in creativity, values, and intellectual curiosity.

The Ball family believed in the transformative power of education for students, the community, and beyond. In 1918, the five Ball brothers purchased the land and buildings of a defunct teacher training college and donated them to the State of Indiana. Ball State was born.

We were founded on the beneficence and tenacity of the Ball brothers who gave back to the community that gave them so much. Those values—excellence, integrity, social responsibility, respect, and gratitude—guide us today and will endure as we enter a bright future.

Ball State Centennial Roadshow

We Took the Centennial Celebration on the Road

Our festivities spanned the state over the past year. Our Centennial Celebration Roadshows went to Gas City, South Bend, Valparaiso, Kokomo, Evansville, Muncie, and Fort Wayne, as well as Riley Hospital for Children in downtown Indianapolis, where we joined our alumni, friends, and members of those communities. At each stop, we conducted a community service project in partnership with the United Way to provide early literacy support to families in those areas. The Roadshow team logged more than 1,500 miles to celebrate Ball State with an estimated 3,000 people throughout the year.

Centennial Highlights

Dedication ceremony of Beneficence in 1937

From the early days as a teacher-training school to its status as a comprehensive University, three Ball State colleagues have captured the institution’s history in a new book.

Ball Family Reunion during the Centennial

A century after their ancestors helped create what today is Ball State University, members of the Ball family from across the nation came to campus to celebrate the past 100 years.

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President Mearns speaks to Centennial Scholars recipients

Ball State University President Geoffrey S. Mearns addresses 18 high-achieving college students before they received full scholarships during a luncheon hosted by Indiana’s first lady, Janet Holcomb.

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Our History

We’re proud—proud of our past and the prospects of our future. The Ball family had a clear vision of a teachers college growing into something so much more. Today, we are a world-class University with highly respected programs in education, architecture, business, communications, fine arts, sciences and humanities, and the health professions. With faculty, staff, and students as partners, we learn, grow, and take flight.

Graduates of Distinction

For 100 years, Ball State graduates have made lasting contributions here in Indiana and around the world. We graduate scholars who are leaders in their professions and community. Thank you, everyone.