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Boise State University has had many history-making moments since its humble beginnings as a junior college in 1932 to recent accomplishments as Idaho’s largest university. 

Notable Milestones


Boise Junior College Founded


BJC becomes a four-year institution, Boise College


Became Boise State University


Boise State has the largest enrollment in the state

The Heart of a Bronco

It’s easy to see how Boise State has grown over the decades since 1932. But as Broncos we’ve never lost our focus on grit, determination – and having a little fun!


An historical photo of students with a bronco mascot.

Students chose the Bronco as the mascot in 1932. There were many names for the mascots through the years, but Buster Bronco, the first costumed mascot, was the name that stuck. 

School Spirit

An historical photo of students with hats and pom poms.

School spirit took off as students associated with “being a bronco.” The bronco was chosen because it represented the wild horses that roamed the Owyhee Mountains.

Student Life

An historical photo of students disco dancine.

Boise State has a long history of providing opportunities for students to engage in campus activities and make their experiences memorable. There was even a time when disco dancing helped achieve that!

Living Proof

Be a Part of Boise State History

By attending Boise State you are following in the footsteps of those before you, and advancing the university for those yet to come. 

Explore the digital archives to see what student life was like during all the decades of our history – and to see how far we’ve come in everything from technology to academic spaces and more.

Visit the Photo Archive
Our Iconic Blue Turf

Making History

In 1986, Boise State changed its green field to Blue Turf. 

Since then, it has become an anchor for our university brand and one of the most popular sites to visit in Idaho. 

In 2023, it was even voted as one of the top college sports destinations nationwide. 

Come See Our Blue Turf

Come See for Yourself

Come tour our beautiful campus, visit in-person or virtually. At Boise State, you’ll find endless opportunities for growth, discovery – and a way to make your own history.

Visit Boise State