The History of a University

As Sonoma State University moves beyond its 50th anniversary, The History of the University project celebrates a rich past. Photographs, documents, media clips, and other objects of historical significance to the campus and wider community, dating back to the mid-1950’s, are represented. The current exhibit samples a range of historical moments, including some from the visual and performing arts. Future exhibitions will center on campus life, athletics, and notables.

Exhibit Sections


View images that reflect SSU's development from the 1950s to present day. Local and state level participation, student activism and the campus culture of the tumultuous 1960s and 1970s helped form the institution we know today.


Through the years, SSU has nurtured the elemental desire to create beautiful and provocative works of art by offering a wide range of programs and opportunities to students, faculty and the community.  The University’s archives hold intriguing images of the performing and visual arts in its many forms. 




The athletic and recreational programs at SSU have been vital to student fitness and fun for over 50 years.   A variety of sports options have been offered, furthering an appreciation of the balance between educational and competitive experiences. As a participant or spectator, student athletics are a continuing source of pride and accomplishment to the campus and community.

Science & Technology

Special Events

Commencement tops the list of special events each year but SSU, along with auxiliary organizations, student clubs, and community organization hold informative and celebratory events all year long.

More Info

Materials from this exhibit were selected from the University Archives. Special thanks to University Affairs for use of the University Photo Archive, without which this project would not have been possible. Visit these two websites for more information on the history of SSU: University Archives and Celebrating 50 Years.