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Timeline of Macalester's history in the Campus Center

Macalester at 150 Years

This year at Macalester College, we are celebrating the 150th anniversary of our founding. Throughout the year, we’re reflecting on our history, who we are today, and where we’re headed as we implement our new strategic plan.

Sesquicentennial Events

As we mark 150 years since the college’s founding in 1874, we’re delighted to announce plans for a year of reflection, celebration, and joy—and you’re invited.

Throughout 2024, we’ll honor defining moments in the college’s history, and the many people over generations who have nurtured Macalester.

Regional Events

Imagine: How is Macalester advancing opportunity?

San Francisco
October 16

Learn about how we have strived to provide access to diverse students throughout the years, how this has influenced lives, and how we are addressing the recent Supreme Court Decision.

Imagine: What is the role of activism in changemaking?

St. Paul
October 24

Learn about some of the inequity issues that Macalester students are working on now, along with stories of how the Macalester experience spurred lives of community activism that have changed the world.

Campus Events


June 6-9

Plan to come back to Macalester and connect with Mac friends old and new, learn from world-class faculty and staff, reignite your passion to transform the world, and have a ton of fun. In celebration of our 150th, we’ll be introducing a special beer and seltzer in collaboration with Dual Citizen. We’ll also have a special performance by the Sounds of Blackness.

Scottish Fair and Highland Games

July 13

Back for one year on Macalester’s campus, the Scottish Fair and Highland Games will be held on July 13. Information, including how to purchase tickets, will be available soon.

Mac Fest

September 27-29

Join us for a celebration of all things Macalester. Sporting events, music performances, a research fair, and chance to reconnect with others are all part of this weekend event. We’ll welcome our 2024 inductees to the Athletics Hall of Fame, and a new member will also be joining our community: Macalester’s new mascot.

Heritage Trip

Scotland Heritage Trip and World Pipeband Championships

August 6-18

Join us on this exclusive, custom-designed, luxurious tour in Scotland, celebrating Macalester’s 150th anniversary!  Learn more about the trip.

The World Pipeband Championships will be held August 16-17 in Glasgow. Learn more about the competition.

Thank you for joining us

Imagine: Global Engagement

Washington, DC
February 8

Join in a discussion about how Macalester’s global focus helped shape worldviews, and explore what it looks like to prepare students to be global leaders.

Founding Day: A Sesquicentennial Celebration

February 29-March 1

Join us for a celebration of Macalester College’s rich history and vibrant community during Founding Day 2024, a highlight of our Sesquicentennial Celebration. This day promises a unique blend of tradition, talent, and community, offering a variety of events to commemorate our past and showcase the remarkable talents of our students.

Macalester Day at the Loons

Allianz Field, St. Paul
April 27

Imagine: What does it mean to be a leader in sustainability?

New York
May 15

Learn about the many ways that students, faculty, staff, and alumni are integrated in sustainability work and how that impacts the world around us.

Black and white photo from 1885-1886 of Old Main
Mac at 150

Macalester’s Founding

1874: Founded in 1874 on Dakota Land, Macalester opened in 1885 with five professors, six first-year students and fifty-two prep students. The college hoped to provide a rigorous education for people in the area. That area has expanded to represent students from over 100 countries.

Alumni Travel

Celebrate Mac’s 150th in Scotland!

Join us at the World Pipe Band Championships on August 16-17, where we will cheer on our Scots with President Suzanne M. Rivera. Alumni and friends are invited to a special event in Glasgow the night before Macalester’s Pipe Band competes.

Support the Macalester Fund

Make a gift to the Macalester Fund to celebrate the college’s legacy and future.