An Enduring Legacy
Life began for Southern Connecticut State University on September 11, 1893, when three teachers and 84 students met at the old Skinner School in New Haven to create a two-year teacher training program, New Haven State Normal School.
By 1937, Southern had grown into a four-year college with the power to grant bachelor's degrees. It became a fully fledged university in 1983, fueling Connecticut’s economy with graduates from its schools of Arts and Sciences, Business, Education, Health and Human Services and Graduate Studies.
Join us this fall as we celebrate the past and look forward with anticipation to the continued evolution of this vibrant institution of more than 10,200 students and 85,000 alumni.
Presidents of Past & Present
Arthur Boothby Morrill
James Laurence Meader
Lester Kelley Ade
Finis Ewing Engleman
E. Ward Ireland
Samuel M. Brownell
Hilton C. Buley
Manson Van Buren Jennings
E. Frank Harrison
Michael J. Adanti
J. Philip Smith
Cheryl J. Norton
Stanley F. Battle
Mary A. Papazian
"Otus" the Owl Through the Years
In 1948 students at New Haven State Teachers College, as Southern Connecticut State University was then known, proudly cheered for the basketball and football teams, which were commonly referred to as “The Educators” and, to a lesser degree, “The Teachers.” But by the early 1950s, fans were lauding the athletics exploits of “The Owls.”
A small news item, which appeared on the back page of the March 1951 edition of the Alumni News Bulletin, heralded the change: “TC [Teachers College] has a brand-new official mascot, a wide-eyed owl, complete with TC sweater, and the traditional volume tucked under one wing.
Previous Owls (1962 - 2018)
New Owl (2018)
Circa 1952: Take one set of wings and a painted hat-box. Voila! Meet the New Haven State Teachers College owl.
1964: The owl strikes a relaxed pose during the early Beatles era.
1978: Spreading his fabric wings at a basketball game.
1988: The owl lost his feathers, but gained a fine suit of faux fur.
1991: Big beak equaled big attitude as the owl adopted a more aggressive look.
1999: Soft and cuddly again ruled the day.
2008: The friendly raptor was a big hit on Bring Your Child to Work Day.
2009: A contemporary Otus mixes and mingles.
2011: Still cuddly
2018: The new Otus combines the contemporary mascot mix of cuddliness and aggression