Orange-stemmed champagne glasses with Buffalo State logo

Campus Celebration to Herald Buffalo State’s University Designation


SUNY Buffalo State University will celebrate its official university designation on Tuesday, January 31, at 12:30 p.m. in the Campbell Student Union Social Hall. The celebration is open to the community.

The institution formally changed its name from Buffalo State College to Buffalo State University on January 15, 2023, following new guidelines from New York State.

The celebration will include remarks by Buffalo State President Katherine Conway-Turner and Dominique Parke, United Students Government associate vice president for campus programming.

Students in attendance will take part in trivia games and receive free T-shirts emblazoned with Buffalo State’s new name. Hundreds of orange, black, and white balloons will drop to culminate the festivities.

The university designation, endorsed by the Buffalo State Council, follows new guidelines from the New York State Board of Regents for what constitutes a university. The guidelines require institutions of higher education to “offer a range of registered undergraduate and graduate curricula in the liberal arts and sciences, including graduate programs registered in at least three of the following discipline areas: agriculture, biological sciences, business, education, engineering, fine arts, health professions, humanities, physical sciences, and social sciences.”

“Just last year we celebrated our 150th anniversary and the many facets of Buffalo State’s rich history,” Conway-Turner said. “As we look to the future, embracing the university designation is one of the many ways in which Buffalo State is aligning with the changing landscape of higher education.”

Buffalo State was founded in 1871 as the Buffalo Normal School, a learning laboratory where children on both the primary and secondary levels were taught, and where their teachers and the instructors of those teachers learned together in the same building.

In the ensuing years, the school assumed many names: the State Normal and Training School (1888–1927); the State Teachers College at Buffalo (1928–1946); the New York State College for Teachers at Buffalo (1946–1950); SUNY, New York State College for Teachers (1950–1951); the State University College for Teachers at Buffalo (1951–1959); the State University College of Education at Buffalo (1960–1962); and finally, the State University College at Buffalo (SUNY Buffalo State College) in 1962.

This latest iteration to university bolsters the school’s focus not only on academic rigor and research but also on access, diversity, and inclusion.

“Each year, we attract a diverse body of students from a wide range of backgrounds and cultures who become engaged not only with the classroom and the campus but also with the community as a whole,” Conway-Turner said. “The university designation reflects this.”

Media Contact:
Laurie Kaiser, Interim Media Relations Director
SUNY Buffalo State University
Office: (716) 878-3520
Mobile: (716) 809-0583