This past summer, we asked Redbirds to share some of their favorite memories and what they remember of their time at Illinois State. Now, we want to share them with you! Whether you graduated five years ago or 50 years ago, ISU was, at one point, your home away from home. The ISU community would not be the same without the Redbirds who have come through and made their mark at the University.

With over 200,000 alumni, Illinois State has Redbirds from around the globe, but what made those Redbirds want to attend ISU? The days of applying to universities may seem like a lifetime ago, but behind every Redbird is a story. Was it a because a family member attended? Maybe it was close to home? Was it an event?

Here’s what some Redbirds had to say:

“I saw myself going to the University of Illinois until my visit to ISU. My dad and I walked the sidewalks around the Quad and ended up by the Old Main bell. There were some students sitting there and my dad told me to talk to them about ISU. I was not wanting to walk up to strangers, but I’m so glad I did. These students made me feel like I already belonged on campus. ISU became my school.”—Jan Look (Janulis) ’73

Woman in hard hat and highlight vest

Leslie Murphy Carter ’85, ’90 working as a project manager for Interrail Engineering

“I knew I wanted to be a Redbird after my parents took me with them to orientation day for my brother.”—Leslie Murphy-Carter ’85, ’90

Redbirds were also drawn to the programs offered at ISU. With over 160 degree programs, there was something here that stuck out.

“ISU was one of the first schools offering college credit to diploma nursing program graduates.”—Suzanne Daniluk, ‘84

“I wanted to be a Redbird because of its amazing education program. I knew I wanted to be a teacher and ISU was the place to go.”—David Hurlbert ‘05

David Hulbert ’05 teaching and sharing his Redbird pride

“High school speech camp made me want to attend Illinois State. I found WZND while I was at ISU for a week as a high school student and I knew right there.”—Steve Suess ‘10

If there’s someone if your life who is looking to become a Redbird, don’t forget to tell them why you attended ISU. Whether it was the campus, the atmosphere, or classes, tell them why you are proud to be a Redbird because we are extremely Redbird proud to call you a Redbird alum!