Day of Community, Family, Fun, and Free Concert
University Park, IL (June 26, 2019) Governors State University (GSU) is celebrating 50 years of education and excellence on July 17 with a day of community and family fun on campus, followed by a free concert in Park Forest.
The Governors State community—including students and alumni, current and retired faculty and staff, and community members—will join in the fun for an aerial photo to commemorate the anniversary on the soccer fields (near Prairie Place), then stay for a free reunion-style picnic, games, and food.
Elected Officials will attend with proclamations to mark the day the university first opened 50 years ago.
At 6:30 p.m., the celebration will continue at Park Forest’s free Main Street Nights with food trucks, a kid’s zone, VIP tent, and special live performances from band Maggie Speaks and house music by DJ Xavier Joshua.
On July 17, 1969, GSU opened through a bold initiative—an upper division university without walls that would serve as a new model for transforming lives through education. It was the late ‘60s, and Apollo 11 had just landed, signaling unlimited possibilities. The university’s founders were inspired and envisioned the triad in the university’s logo to reflect the trajectory of the era, reminiscent of Neil Armstrong’s rocket.
GSU President Elaine P. Maimon said the July 17 birthday celebration will pay tribute to the historic past and welcome the promising future.
“As we celebrate the 50th anniversary of Governors State University, we honor the visionaries who imagined GSU as a university ahead of its time. Fifty years ago GSU was a university without walls. Today, GSU’s creative use of the internet removes walls and other barriers. GSU has always served what is now the new student majority: first generation, students of color, adult learners, and military veterans. Now, as a comprehensive university, we educate students diverse in ethnicity, socio-economic background, and rank—from freshmen to doctoral students. As we move forward into the next 50 years, GSU is committed to leadership in innovation and social justice.”