Special Collections Department
Iowa State University Presidential Installations
With the celebratory installation of Dr. Steven Leath on September 14, Iowa State University welcomes him as the university's 15th president. Welcoming a new president with a celebration has been a tradition of universities and colleges in this country since the 17th century. The levels of formality and ceremony have varied greatly over time and from university to university. Installations have ranged from small gatherings of the faculty and students to elaborate affairs that also included dignitaries, alumni, and the public. Iowa State University's first presidential installation also coincided with the inauguration of the university in 1869. Since then, the tradition of installing a new president at Iowa State University has evolved with the coming of each new president. However, regardless of format the installation provides the new president with the opportunity to be introduced to the university community and to share his vision and hopes for his tenure as president. It also allows the university to formally welcome the new president and to celebrate the dawn of a new era and rejoice in its past successes.
For information regarding each of Iowa State University's presidents and their installations, please visit the exhibit in the lobby of the Parks Library and near the entrance of the Special Collections Department, 403 Parks Library. You can also find this information on the presidential installation website at:
From the Archives
Video of past presidential installations can be seen on our YouTube page:
You can also read the speeches given by ISU presidents during their installations on our Scribd site: