Texas Southern University – The heart and soul of Houston

Founded in 1927, Texas Southern University is a special-purpose, urban institution nestled in the heart of Houston’s historic Third Ward. Today, TSU is a comprehensive, metropolitan institution with 45 buildings that sit on 150 acres, providing academic and research programs that address critical urban issues, and prepares its increasingly diverse student population to become a force for positive change in a global society.

Janke is honored to be a part of the campus Master Plan design team by providing a brand focused Experiential Graphic Design program that will help improve the campus identification and wayfinding experience for years to come.

The following principles are a guide to helping visitors navigate a campus successfully:

  • Celebrate the arrival to the campus
  • Direct the visitor’s transition properly
  • Orient the visitor to the overall campus
  • Identify the destinations and their direction
  • Reconfirm their route through campus
  • Affirm their arrival to their destination

TSU History:

The story of TSU is one of resilience in the face of incredible odds. The Houston Public School Board agreed on September 14, 1927, to fund the development of two junior colleges: one for Caucasians and one for African-Americans. The Board, with a loan of $2,800, formed the Colored Junior College in the summer of 1927 under the supervision of the Houston School District. The Colored Junior College was established to provide an opportunity for African-Americans to receive college training. The Junior College progressed so fast that by 1931, it became a member of the Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools and was approved by the Southern Association of Colleges.

The Houston School Board changed the junior college to a four-year college and the name to Houston College for Negroes in the summer of 1934. The Houston Independent School District severed its relationship with Houston College for Negroes in the spring of 1945, and thereafter, all management of the college was vested in a Separate Board of Regents. The college, re-named Texas State University for Negroes, had grown to an enrollment of approximately 1,400 students by 1946 and needed room to grow. The college, with the help of Hugh Roy Cullen, a local philanthropist, obtained a 53-acre piece of property in the Third Ward area of Houston. Two major donors – Mrs. T.M. Fairchild, in memory of her late husband, and Mr. and Mrs. C.A. Dupree – with the African-American community, helped the college raise enough money to construct its first building on the new campus, the T.M. Fairchild Building, which is still in use and serves as an anchor on campus. 

Credit: TSU 2022 Plan