For well over a century, EIU has been hard at work building a rich tradition of providing its students a combination of quality academics and solid personal relationships.

EIU History

Eastern Illinois University was established as Eastern Illinois State Normal School in 1895 by the Illinois General Assembly. In response to growth and change, the institution became Eastern Illinois State Teachers College in 1921, Eastern Illinois State College in 1947 and Eastern Illinois University in 1957. The university grants bachelor’s, master’s and specialist’s degrees.

Mission Statement

Eastern Illinois University is a public comprehensive university that offers superior, accessible undergraduate and graduate education. Students learn the methods and results of free and rigorous inquiry in the arts, humanities, sciences and professions, guided by a faculty known for its excellence in teaching, research, creative activity and service. The university community is committed to diversity and inclusion and fosters opportunities for student-faculty scholarship and applied learning experiences within a student-centered campus culture. Throughout their education, students refine their abilities to reason and to communicate clearly so as to become responsible citizens and leaders.

About our Campus


Board of Trustees

EIU is independently governed by its Board of Trustees, which oversees all aspects of the institution. Seven of the board's eight members are appointed by the governor to six-year terms and one student representative is elected annually by the student body. While it has served as the primary authority over the university's operations since its inception in 1996, the Board of Trustees also embraces shared governance. Faculty, staff and students all provide advisory participation.

EIU History Facts

  • When established in 1895, EIU was known as Eastern Illinois State Normal School. Name changes to Eastern Illinois State Teachers College (1921) and Eastern Illinois State College (1947) followed before the Illinois General Assembly assigned its current designation in 1957.

  • At one time, the Livingston C. Lord Administration Building, better known as Old Main, was the lone building on campus and accommodated all educational and administrative needs. It contained offices, classrooms, laboratories, model school rooms, an auditorium, a library and a museum.

  • Eastern Illinois University's first homecoming celebration took place in 1915. Of the school's nearly 500 alumni at that point, more than half were able to return to Charleston for the festivities.

Academic Excellence

Among comparable universities in the Midwest, EIU has a reputation as one of the best. With our experienced, accomplished faculty, a wide variety of degree programs, typically excellent marks in job placement, high alumni satisfaction rates, and well above-average graduation and retention rates, this reputation is well-deserved.

Core Values


We uphold excellence in all we do, striving to create and uphold university standards in all aspects of education.


We value personal relationships, and we strive to strengthen the personal experience at Eastern for all whom we serve.


We believe in the accessibility of an Eastern education as well as the opportunities this education creates for our graduates.


We support service to each other along with service to our community, region, state, nation and world.


Faculty Research

Student Research


Academic Excellence by the Numbers

97% - Classes taught by faculty members.
92% - Classes containing fewer than 40 students.
96% - Alumni satisfaction rate after one year.
99% - Alumni satisfaction rate after nine years.

Student Research in Action

Local Ecology

Media Coverage in World Markets

Maximizing Classroom Achievement

EIU Academic Facts

  • In 2012, 94% of first-year teachers and 96% of fifth-year teachers who were EIU graduates were "very satisfied" or "satisfied" with the overall quality of their EIU teacher education program; 96% of principals rated their EIU first-year teachers as "extremely" or "mostly" prepared.

  • EIU's Communication Disorders and Sciences' students successfully pass national (98 percent) and state (100 percent) certification exams for professional practice, resulting in a 100 percent employment rate.

  • Athletic Training has been accredited longer than any other Athletic Training program in Illinois. Partnerships with Sarah Bush Lincoln Health Center and EIU’s Health Services ensure that students receive a medical/clinical experience that far exceeds those provided by other programs in the state.

  • 97 percent of our classes are taught by faculty.

  • EIU is ranked No. 7 in the 12 state Midwest Region of public master’s institutions in U.S. News and World Report college rankings

  • Eastern has more students accepted as presenters at the National Council on Undergraduate Research conference than any other Illinois public university.

  • EIU has a 100% job placement record for Special Education majors.

  • Based on the NSF Survey of Earned Doctorates, Eastern prepares more undergraduates who go on to earn a doctorate than any other public master’s comprehensive university in Illinois and Eastern ranks in the top 5% in the nation in students who go on to earn a doctorate."

Global Competition &
Changing Demographics

Higher education is a global endeavor, with the goal of advancing knowledge to the benefit of all humankind. EIU is a vital partner in that endeavor, with its programs involving faculty, staff and students from across the globe.

Study Abroad

The benefits of studying out of country can be extraordinary, which is why our Office of Study Abroad works diligently to facilitate these expeditions for students of all types and majors. Participants can spend anywhere from a few weeks to multiple semesters in countries all across the globe, each returning with unique experiences and a new perspective on the world around them.



Global Competition & Student Diversity

Eastern is home to an increasingly diverse community of students, faculty and staff who are globally aware and globally connected. This diverse community helps Eastern equip its graduates with the skills, knowledge and abilities they need to be productive and successful in an interdependent world.

During this year, the university has been continuing to research into the needs of community college transfer students and increase the number of dual enrollment, degree completion options and other programs that reduce the barriers to transfer.

In addition, the university has been developing new markets for recruiting international students and is working to expand financial support for students who study abroad. Each year, we are nearly doubling the number of international students at Eastern, and we have significantly expanded the opportunities for study abroad and are actively encouraging our students to consider some kind of study abroad opportunity.

Student Diversity

Emerging Technologies

From classroom technology to scientific advances, EIU’s commitment to the cutting-edge is unquestionable and evident through the work being done here on a daily basis.

Renewable Energy Center

As worldwide fossil fuel supplies dwindle, our nation strives to identify solutions for securing our energy future. Sustainable bioenergy is one way to expand our nation’s energy portfolio, reduce carbon emissions and, if done properly, maintain or promote biodiversity. Eastern Illinois University is at the forefront of energy sustainability with its new, state-of-the-art Renewable Energy Center, which burns biomass -- like virgin woodchips -- to supply the campus with steam and some electricity.




Keeping Our Curriculum Current

M.S. in Geographic Information Sciences

This interdisciplinary Professional Science Master’s program is designed to facilitate students’ pursuit of an advanced degree with training in GIS while simultaneously developing business skills highly valued by potential employers.

M.S. in Sustainable Energy

Energy is an indispensable part of modern society, which is why this new multi-disciplinary degree exists. This program focuses on preparing leaders and managers for the entire energy industry.

Expand your horizons and change your perspective. benefit from experiences beyond your imagination.

Campus & Community Life

Academics are our priority, but we afford our students opportunities to get much more out of their time at EIU. We facilitate extensive community service options, offer a variety of cultural arts experiences and offer a full range of NCAA Division I athletics.


Eastern Illinois University has a growing reputation for community service, and it has been recognized once again by the Corporation for National and Community Service and the U.S. Department of Education for its commitment.

Service in Action


Eastern Illinois athletics enjoyed another banner year in 2012-13, both in terms of athletic success and academic success. Athletically, the Panthers won their third Ohio Valley Conference Commissioner's Cup in the last four years; the annual award acknowledges one member institution's overall success in OVC-sponsored sports competition. EIU claimed six OVC team championships over the course of the year, earning first-place finishes in football, women’s basketball, men’s indoor track, men’s outdoor track, women’s outdoor track and softball.


Records are made to be broken

League Domination

Building a dynasty


The Doudna Fine Arts Center is one of Eastern’s most unique architectural landmarks, boasting several arts venues and corridor art galleries. The Doudna (as it's known on campus) houses EIU’s departments of art, music and theatre arts.

What's more, the university is also home to the Tarble Arts Center, a major cultural arts resource serving east-Central Illinois. Its founding purpose is "to take the arts to the people." The Tarble presents a year-round schedule of visual arts, lectures and demonstrations by artists and speakers as well as performing arts presented in a gallery atmosphere.

Students have an opportunity to have their lives changed at EIU. As faculty and staff members, we believe that opportunity is what makes it exciting to be here.

Financial Sustainability

State funding is playing an increasingly less significant role in funding at EIU, but we’ve taken a proactive approach to ensure the university’s fiscal health without sacrificing the academic excellence for which it is known.

Expect Greatness Campaign

"When universities launch campaigns, the focus is usually on the financial goals. But I believe that is short-sighted," Perry said. "This campaign established a foundation for much more than the financial future of EIU. We had three goals in the campaign: Develop more of the enduring relationships that are an EIU tradition, but must grow; develop more volunteers in support of EIU’s programs; and, yes, achieve a significant monetary goal in support of students, faculty, programs and facilities." According to Vice President for University Advancement Bob Martin, the nearly $64 million total was the result of gifts from 21,050 total donors to the campaign. More than 10,725 of those were first-time donors to EIU.

Campaign By the Numbers

Original Financial Goal
Actual Money Raised
Years Completed Early
Increase in Employee Giving
Total Donors for Campaign
First-Time Donors
New Scholarships Created
Alumni Contacts Made

Program Analysis

At Eastern Illinois University, we know that we must continue to plan and wisely manage our resources if we are going to continue to serve the public interest. Last year, we completed our strategic plan, which contains six themes. The second of these themes is financial sustainability, and our program analysis is a key part of that effort.

Step 1

The first step in this process was the appointment of the Steering Committee for Program Analysis, a university-level committee charged with developing an analysis to assist the university in making budget decisions.

Step 2

The academic year was used to conduct a study and analysis. The steering committee began its work October 2012. In the next year, the committee consulted with campus governance and leadership groups.

Step 3

The steering committee provided a report to the president of the university in May 2013. Representatives from Eastern's shared governance groups made up the membership of this steering committee.

Step 4

The steering committee’s final report provided guidance for future fiscal decisions, consistent with our strategic plan imperatives of academic excellence, financial sustainability and global competition.

Funding Distribution

FY '02
FY '12
FY '13
FY '14


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