Founders Day 2019 is Friday, October 25!


Founders Day is celebrated each year on October 25, the day the university was chartered by the State of Michigan in 1960.

One thing that makes Grand Valley special is our origin story. There isn’t another university with a story like ours. It involved high hopes, hard work, and a group of dedicated community members who saw the need for a public university in West Michigan.

We celebrate this day by remembering and supporting the university in honor of the nearly 300 individuals in the West Michigan community who rallied support and met the state’s $1 million challenge to establish Grand Valley.

We made it happen, and the rest is history.

A statue of L. William Seidman

A statue of L. William (Bill) Seidman, one of the founders, is on display at the Mary Idema Pew Library in Allendale, Michigan.

This year’s celebration includes:

  • Students remember: flags representing each founder on the Allendale and downtown campuses, Swag Cab trivia, and more.
  • Alumni remember: Rick Gillett, son of founder Dick Gillett, will participate in a panel discussion at 1pm on Saturday, October 26 in the GVSU Through the Years luncheon. The event is open to all alumni. RSVP for this event and join us!
  • Donors remember: This year Founders Day will be remembered with a campus-wide giving day, raising funds for first generation students. Show your support and give today!