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ASU Marks Its 150th Birthday

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Author: Timothy C. Ervin

Release Date: Jul 17, 2017

Alabama State University celebrated the 150th anniversary of the University's founding with a special birthday party and Day of Giving for O' Mother Dear on July 17.

Hornet fans gathered at the Alabama State University Football Stadium’s Club Lounge today to celebrate the University’s 150th birthday. University administrators were joined by students, faculty, staff, alumni, community leaders and more than 100 children from ASU’s SKYCAP summer camp, who honored ASU by singing “Happy Birthday.”
“Today, we join together in the spirit of celebration as we earnestly look forward to a better and brighter ASU,” said Nicholas Ivey, ASU’s Student Government Association President, 2017-18. “There is no stopping us now, because we are on the move.”

The University celebrated July 17, 1867, as the date of ASU’s founding by nine freedmen in Marion, Ala. The nine former slaves, known as the Marion Nine, pooled together $500 to establish the Lincoln Normal School, to help educate the newly freed black residents of Alabama, which today is known as Alabama State University.

“Those nine freed slaves came together this very day and started the genesis of this incredible University that has touched the lives and lifted up so many students and communities through its education, intellectualism and service to others,” said Dr. Carl Pettis, ASU’s interim provost.

'Day of Giving'

As the University celebrates its sesquicentennial, ASU family members and supporters also had the opportunity to show their love for the University by making a donation in support of the University’s mission and students.

Donors were asked to give $150 or more to have their names listed in the Sesquicentennial Honor Roll, or to give any amount in support of the University.

“When you think about the Marion Nine; when you think about two years after slavery ended and their ability to bring together $500 to help build this lasting legacy, we should then challenge ourselves to step up to the plate,” said Zillah M. Fluker, ASU’s vice president for Institutional Advancement. “I ask that you please be a part of this mission because ASU has always been focused on one thing and that is changing the world one student at a time.”

ASU alumna and Board member, Brenda Brown-Hunter, also issued a challenge to support ASU.

“As an alumna of this great university and a member of the Board of Trustees, I would like to challenge all of our alumni, all of our vendors/partners, all over the state of Alabama, all over the U.S….I’d like to challenge you to help Alabama State. To give this day and celebrate our birthday,” Brown-Hunter said.

To view photos of the birthday party, click here:

Donations to ASU can be made by giving online at or by mailing a check payable to the ASU Foundation to P.O. Box 271 Montgomery, AL 36101-0271.

For more information, contact Jennifer Anderson, director of Development and executive director of the ASU Foundation, at 334-229-4950.

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