East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania

Brief Description:

East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania - Founding Celebrations

East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania (ESU) prides itself on placing students first and on its commitment to student success. With 55 bachelor’s, 22 master’s and one doctoral degree program, ESU offers exciting opportunities including additive manufacturing and 3D printing in its Stratasys Super lab, one of the first three in the world; creative problem solving in the C.R.E.A.T.E. Lab; and wildlife forensic work in the Northeast Wildlife DNA Lab.

ESU 125 Anniversary logoThose interested in business will benefit from the new Bloomberg Lab that provides students with the world’s most powerful real-time business software package. Students can become “game-changing” entrepreneurs with the support of ESU’s Business Accelerator Program and Warrior Launchpad, while those with a passion for exploration can reach for the stars and discover nature’s wonders in the Schisler Museum of Wildlife and Natural History and McMunn Planetarium.


Mission Statement:

ESU will provide:

  • Challenging and contemporary undergraduate and graduate curricula that engage and equip students to critically appraise and apply knowledge in their lives and chosen fields of study;
  • A scholarly community that promotes diversity and views teaching as the university's primary focus;
  • Varied opportunities for student and faculty research, creative endeavors and involvement in public service; and
  • Leadership and service in the educational, cultural and economic development of the region.


President's Quote:

"ESU has experienced a significant 125-year transformation from its humble beginnings in 1893 as a Normal School preparing teachers to an innovative and entrepreneurial 21st-century university preparing students for today’s ever-changing global opportunities. This evolution of ESU’s educational environment is attracting an incredibly diverse student body and has engaged faculty, staff, alumni and friends who support our institutional mission and vision and who continue to task us to be the best that we can be. The challenge for us going forward is our ability to adapt to the needs of future generations of students who choose ESU as a great place to live, learn, work and play."

Major Accomplishments:

  • In April 2018, ESU’s Academic Advisory Committee (formerly the Academic Planning Committee) identified two major strategies for implementation–academic pathways and “adult learner” initiatives.
  • In fall 2018, ESU will institute the Warrior Promise, a promise of a guaranteed, fixed, four-year tuition rate; incoming undergraduate students will pay the same tuition rate, without an increase for the next four years. ESU is the first and only public institution of higher education in Pennsylvania to offer this program.
  • ESU is among eight colleges in the Greater Lehigh Valley named to Money magazine’s list of “best colleges for your money” in 2017.
  • For the third consecutive year, ESU was among the top 65 colleges and universities nationwide being recognized by Phi Theta Kappa as a member of the 2017 Transfer Honor Roll, which identifies the top four-year colleges and universities for creating dynamic pathways to support community college transfer.
  • In 2017, College Values Online named ESU one of the top schools in the nation to study marine science.
  • ESU ranked in the top 15 percent (number 171) of nearly 1,200 accredited four-year colleges, according to Educate to Career (ETC) in 2017.
  • For the fourth consecutive year, ESU has earned the 2017 Military Friendly school designation. The distinction, awarded by Victory Media, goes to the top 15 percent of universities, colleges and trade schools.
  • ESU opened a Center for Scholarship, Innovation, Teaching and Entrepreneurship (SITE) with ESU’s first faculty fellow in summer 2017.
  • In December 2017, ESU’s Council of Trustees approved ESU’s updated strategic plan, "Students First: Empowering Innovation through Collaboration (2017-2020)," following a series of monthly meetings and town halls (hosted by President Welsh) with the Strategic Planning, Innovation, Review and Integration Team (SPIRIT), consisting of many faculty, staff and students working with the Office of the Provost. SPIRIT identified such major initiatives as full implementation of SITE, expanding FYI and GE pathways, augmenting academic aspiration advisement, diversity initiatives, and fiscal sustainability initiatives.
  • Aligned with ESU’s strategic plan, students have consistently placed within the top three finalists in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education’s Business Plan Competition with two finalists earning top spots, two finalists finishing second and one placing third within the event’s seven-year history.
  • Pennsylvania State Representative Rosemary Brown recognized ESU’s Northeast Wildlife DNA Laboratory as a leader in tick testing and the prevention of Lyme disease and tick-borne illness on the state House floor. Additionally, ESU and EPA Enterprises announced the launch of CutterTM Lyme Disease Tick Test–the first nationally-recognized brand-name product developed at ESU.
  • In spring, 2017, ESU eliminated the mandatory submission of SAT and ACT scores, a long-standing requirement of the admissions process. ESU was the first university within the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education to introduce test-optional admissions for all applicants, which launches ESU into an elite group of more than 850 educational institutions nationwide, including many colleges and universities, that are now test optional.
  • In March 2016, The Education Trust released a second report (the first report in December 2015) titled "Rising Tide II: Do Black Students Benefit as Grad Rates Increase?" In this report, ESU ranked third nationally and first in Pennsylvania among 232 institutions that have improved overall graduation rates during the past decade. For more information about the methodology used, visit https://edtrust.org/resource/risingtideii/.
  • In September 2017, ESU formed a Student Success Network to find ways to improve persistence through graduation. The Network approved a definition for student success and metrics as to how to measure it. Further, the group issued recommendations for improving student success, including the adoption of Starfish–a comprehensive student advising software to be used across departments and divisions, effective spring 2019.
  • In fall 2016, ESU’s G3 Design Lab faculty and students celebrated the department’s first semester as a designated Stratasys Super Lab, one of the first three in the world. This technology provides ESU students with state-of-the-art experiences in the exciting field of additive manufacturing.
  • In October 2016, ESU received its largest single grant ever from the National Science Foundation (NSF) for $4 million to help transfer students complete their education at ESU in the fields of science, technology and math. The five-year grant for the project provides scholarships for about 120 students who start their education at community colleges and transfer to ESU for bachelor’s degrees in such fields as biochemistry, physics, computer science and mathematics.
  • Three ESU teams won Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) championships in 2017-18 for the fourth time in school history, and the first since 1994-95. The Warriors captured titles in women’s soccer (conference record-setting fourth straight, and the sixth in program history), men’s soccer (conference record-tying 20th overall, and first since 2007) and men’s basketball (third in last seven years).
  • Five ESU teams advanced to NCAA Division II Tournament competition in 2017-18, the most in school history–women’s soccer, men’s soccer, field hockey, men’s basketball and women’s lacrosse.
  • Three ESU teams advanced to the NCAA’s “championship site”: field hockey, which made its second Final Four (Louisville, Ky.) in three years after winning the 2015 national championship; men’s basketball, which advanced to its first-ever Elite Eight (Sioux Falls, S.D.) and played in the NCAA Tournament for the fifth time in the last nine years; and women’s lacrosse, which made its first-ever Final Four (Tampa, Fla.) after making its first NCAA Tournament appearance the previous season.
  • Senior Sydney McCarthy was named the NCAA Division II field hockey selection for the Honda Collegiate Woman of the Year Award for the 2017 season. She is ESU’s second straight representative, following Emily Howell in 2016, and third overall, along with Ashley Kocis in 2006.
  • Fifth-year senior football offensive lineman Devon Ackerman was named to the Academic All-America first team for the third straight year, becoming the first three-time, first-team Academic All-American selection in school history.


Fun Facts:

  • In spring 2018, ESU graduated more than 1,000 students, a sharp contrast to ESU’s first graduating class in 1894, which consisted of 73 students.
  • Ninety-one percent of ESU’s faculty hold a doctorate or other terminal degree.
  • Shirley Chisholm, the first African American woman elected to the U.S. Congress in 1968 and the first black candidate to run for a major party’s nomination for the U.S. presidency, received the first honorary doctorate conferred from East Stroudsburg University in 1991.
  • To commemorate ESU’s servicemen and women, in 1919, the school’s alumni raised $2,600 for a statue made of Vermont granite depicting a Roman matron representing the alma mater. Known to many as “Julia,” she holds in her right hand a wreath to crown the sons and daughters of East Stroudsburg State Normal School who served in WWI.
  • In 1904, Gertrude Mary Smith Boddie was the first student of color to graduate from what is today ESU; she was also the first African American to graduate from a Pennsylvania State Normal School. To compare, today students of color constitute about 30% of our campus population.
  • ESU’s Professor of Chemistry, Dr. Jon Gold, was the first person to ever melt a diamond. In contrast, Dr. Gold is also an accomplished composer and pianist who is associated with some of Brazil’s jazz greats including Antonio Carlos Jobim.
  • ESU launched a new institutional and athletic brand in January 2017. The new athletic logo, depicting the university’s new warrior image, was featured among the world’s best logos in the 10th edition of the book LogoLounge, which was released in 2017. ESU’s athletic logo was among 40,000 logos that were submitted for consideration and only 2,500 made the cut.


Notable Alumni:

  • Charlie Brenneman M’08 – MMA fighter known as ‘The Spaniard’ in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) league. He and his older brother Ben won the Pros vs. Joes competition in 2005 on Spike TV.
  • Michael James “Jimmy” Terwilliger ’07 - 2005 Harlon Hill Trophy winner as the most outstanding player in Division II football, and participated in rookie minicamp with the NFL’s Minnesota Vikings in 2006.
  • Barry Krammes ‘04 – Reached finals of U.S. Olympic Trials in javelin in 2008 and 2012, and competed in 10 straight U.S. championships from 2006 through 2015.
  • Joel Bennett ’99 – Former Major League Baseball (MLB) pitcher for the Baltimore Orioles and Philadelphia Phillies, selected in 1991 MLB Draft by Boston Red Sox and led all of minor league baseball in strikeouts in the 1990s.
  • James Franklin ’95 – Head football coach at Penn State University since 2014, following three seasons as head coach at Vanderbilt University.
  • Dan Dizio ’95 – Co-founder of the Philly Pretzel Factory.
  • Len Lehman ’94 – Co-founder of Philly Pretzel Factory.
  • William Staples ’93 M’10 - Co-founder of BEST, Inc. (Building Education Support Teams) to aid students in need of financial assistance to fulfill their dreams of obtaining a college education. Also an accomplished educator, author, motivational speaker and former actor.
  • Salima Sane Kane ’90 M’92 – Currently assigned to the U.N. Regional Bureau Africa Desk. Has served with the World Bank Group International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the International Finance Corporation (IFC).
  • Scott Strausbaugh ’86 – Gold medalist in whitewater slalom tandem canoeing in the 1992 summer Olympics in Barcelona, Spain.
  • Mike Reichenbach ‘84 – Former NFL linebacker who was starting middle linebacker for Philadelphia Eagles from 1985 through 1989, part of an eight-year NFL career that also included time with Miami Dolphins.
  • Charles Taylor ’84 M’86 – Co-founder and executive vice president of PROTEUS Technologies.
  • Harry Hiestand ’83 – Offensive line coach for the NFL’s Chicago Bears, and formerly collegiate coach for eight Division I programs, most recently Tennessee and Notre Dame.
  • R. Sam Niedbala ’82 – Founder of OraSure in 1989 and currently CEO of CryoConcepts, LP.
  • Ray Yakavonis ’81 – First NFL Draft pick in school history: selected by Minnesota Vikings in 1980, he had a six-year NFL career with five in Minnesota and one season with the Kansas City Chiefs.
  • Ronald Hosko ’80 – Assistant director of the Criminal Investigative Division (CID) at FBI Headquarters in Washington, D.C.
  • Pat Flaherty ’78 – Offensive line coach for the NFL’s Jacksonville Jaguars, who won two Super Bowl trophies with the New York Giants, and has coaching experience with five NFL and five Division I programs.
  • Noah Samara ’78 – Co-founder of XM Radio.
  • Bob Rigby ‘74 – First American soccer player on the cover of Sports Illustrated in September 1973, goalkeeper was No. 1 draft pick in North American Soccer League collegiate draft prior to 1973 season.
  • Jan Hutchinson ‘71 – Winningest collegiate coach in any division with combined 1,806 career victories as field hockey and softball coach at Bloomsburg; won 16 national championships and 17 PSAC championships in field hockey and one national championship and 15 PSAC championships in softball.
  • Charles “Tony” McMunn ’69 – CEO of Tricam Industries and co-owner (with wife Patricia Lythgoe McMunn ’68) of McMunn’s of Ballybunion Ireland. The McMunn Planetarium on ESU’s campus is named in their honor.
  • Merrily Dean Baker ’64 – Former Director of Athletics at Michigan State. She was the first woman athletic director in the Big 10 Conference and the only woman on the Title IX Committee.
  • Billy Lewis ’63 – Former collegiate and professional football coach who was AFCA Coach of the Year in 1991 at East Carolina, also head coach at Georgia Tech and Wyoming.
  • Mervin Heller, Jr. ’69 – Former president, chairman and chief executive of the U.S. Tennis Association. Heller was also an attorney for more than 30 years in the Berks County area and founded the Varsity “S” club on campus.
  • Janet Dicks ‘55 – Member of 1952 US Olympic Track & Field team that competed in Helsinki, Finland; she was U.S. discus champion twice and shot put champion once.
  • Audrey Kohl Doberstein ’53 – President emeritus of Wilmington University (1979-2006) and the first woman to head a four year institution in the state of Delaware.
  • Warren E. Hoeffner ’55 – Former president and CEO of Rex-Hide, Inc. The Warren E. ’55 and Sandra Hoeffner Science and Technology Center is named in his honor.
  • Marie Kruckel ’46, Ruthe Kramer Hartman ’48, and Jane Moffet ’52 – Former players in the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League, commemorated in the movie “A League Of Their Own.”
  • John Eiler ‘34 – 1994 inductee to National Soccer Coaches Association Hall of Fame, who led men’s soccer team to 1962 NAIA championship, 1964 and 1965 NCAA Division I quarterfinals and was ESU’s Athletic Director for 18 years. Namesake of half of Eiler-Martin Stadium.
  • Howard DeNike ’26 – Founding member and former vice president of the National Soccer Coaches Association, ESU men’s soccer coach for 22 years and inducted to NSCAA Hall of Fame in 1998. The DeNike Building is named in his honor.



  • "The always-patient ESU staff extended countless second chances, and they never failed to work their magic to ensure you successfully reached the next step of your journey." - Courtney Cabrera ‘16 Secondary Education-English
  • "ESU and the PDS program was exemplary in the way that it had prepared me to be an effective teacher. The hands-on programs and the involvement we had within different classrooms gave me experiences and knowledge that most teachers don't get to experience until their first year of teaching. I have been complimented on the amount of experience and knowledge that I portray being that I have only been teaching since January of 2017. I have the ESU staff and the PDS program to thank for my success." - Martina Green ‘16 Early Childhood/Special Education
  • "The faculty and staff at ESU have displayed great support, compassion and excitement as I embark on my journey of founding Fader Plugs, LLC. I consider myself both lucky and blessed to be a student at East Stroudsburg University. The faculty members and the staff tied to the university’s business accelerator and entrepreneurial leadership center truly care about the success of their students and they want to see them succeed; they are willing to go the extra mile. Words just can’t express how thankful I am for their continued support and belief in me as a student, an entrepreneur and CEO of Fader Plugs LLC." - Blaise DelFino ’14 M’15 Speech-Language Pathology/Communication Sciences and Disorders
  • "ESU was a place to meet your forever family. Whether or not you see them all the time, or get together once in a while, when you see each other it’s like no time has passed.” - Vanessa Linder’14 Psychology
  • "I was a part of the living-learning community my freshman year in Linden Hall, and through this program I got involved in intramurals and Campus Activities Board and met my best friends and my wife. I became a mentor to share my experiences, and it led to my current career in higher education." - Stephen Kuchera ’06, M’08 Sport Management
  • "Many of my best memories are connected to the time I spent at ESU. I still look forward to my yearly campus visit and rehashing old memories with Coach Joe Koch. His acceptance of me as a transfer from the University of Pittsburgh and allowing me to become a member of the Track and Cross Country teams changed my life. I formed lifelong friendships and learned many life lessons, including the value of setting goals, hard work and second chances. To me, ESU means second chances and the opportunity to be your truest self." - Rick Grab ’97 Physical Education
  • "What made ESU great for me was matching me with a great mentor teacher, Mr. Lutz, who helped me every step of the way. He allowed me to make mistakes and then learn from them. He showed me what it means to be a great teacher." - Katie Morris ‘86 Hospitality and Recreation Management
  • "My favorite memory is when Prof. John McGarry sat across from me and said, ‘Well, Phil, do you think that you are now able to study some?’ ESTC meant the world to me because it opened up a teaching job for me. I finished my teaching career there in 1992." - Philip Stewart ’57 General Science


  • Kellee Edmonds
    Vice President of Communications and Public Relations
    (202) 478-4662