Celebrating 125 Years of SDSU: The Fowler College of Business Through the Years | NewsCenter

As San Diego State University celebrates its 125th anniversary, the Fowler College of Business marks its 67th anniversary as an established college within the university. The roots of the college extend back to 1921 with the creation of the Department of Commerce and the hiring of its first faculty member shortly thereafter.

Since then, the Fowler College of Business has expanded to five academic departments, while enjoying many successes and milestones along the way. With an enrollment of over 6,800 undergraduate and graduate students, Fowler has grown into one of the largest business schools in the US

1897 – San Diego Normal School was founded. It was initially located on the upper floors of the Hill Block Building at 535 F Street in downtown San Diego.

1921 – Department of Commerce, precursor to the College of Business, was established in the Division of Social Sciences. The same year, San Diego Normal School became San Diego State Teachers College. William Wright served as the first full-time professor in the new department.

1931 – San Diego State Teachers College relocates to its present position on Montezuma Mesa. The first classes in the new location commenced in February of that year.

1935 – San Diego State Teachers College becomes San Diego State College.

1950 – The Division of Business Administration was established with 10 full-time and 9 part-time faculty members. It was originally located in Hepner Hall.

1955 – Application is made to the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) to pave the way for the Division of Business Administration to become a college. Charles W. Lamden serves as the college’s first dean.

1958 – The real estate program is founded making SDSC the first college in the California State College system and the second in the state of California to establish an academic real estate program.

1959 – SDSC becomes accredited by the AACSB.

1964 – The Business Administration and Math building is completed. The building houses the college offices and most of its classes.

1972 – San Diego State College becomes California State University, San Diego.

1973 – The college’s student success center is established by then-graduate student Penny Wright. Wright later joined the faculty as a management professor.

1974 – California State University, San Diego becomes San Diego State University.

1978 – The School of Accountancy is founded.

1982 – The School of Accountancy is the first in the state of California to gain AACSB accreditation and one of the first in the nation to do so.

1986 – The Entrepreneurial Management Center is established and funded. It is believed to be one of the first university-based centers of its type in the world.

1989 – The Center for International Business Education and Research (CIBER) was established by a grant from the US Department of Education. The center was re-named the Center for Advancing Global Business in 2019.

1991 – The college moves its administrative offices to the newly completed Student Services East building.

2005 – The Sports Business Management MBA Program, one of the first of its type in the country, holds its inaugural class.

2008 – The School of Accountancy receives a $ 10 million gift from the Lamden family and the school is named “The Charles W. Lamden School of Accountancy” after the College’s first dean. This marks the first department naming in the history of SDSU.

2010 – The Corky McMillian Center for Real Estate is established within SDSU’s College of Business Administration

2012 – The Entrepreneurial Management Center is re-named the Lavin Entrepreneurship Center in honor of Leonard Lavinformer chair of Alberto-Culver Company and long-time supporter of the center.

2014 – The Graduate Career Management Center (now the Career Management Center) was formed to provide support to business students seeking post-career assistance.

2016 – SDSU’s College of Business Administration is named in honor of Ron and Alexis Fowler as the Fowler College of Business. It is the first such naming of a college at SDSU. The Fowlers also pledged a $ 25 million endowment to the college, making it the largest gift in the history of the university.

2021 – The Education and Business Administration building which housed the college until the early 1990’s was re-named Lamden Hall, in honor of Charles W. Lamden, the founding dean of the Fowler College of Business.

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