Julian Ashby Burruss - President, 1908-1919

Julian Ashby Burruss was named president of the State Normal and Industrial School for Women at Harrisonburg in 1908, shortly after the institution was founded by the Virginia General Assembly. The school opened its doors to its first student body in 1909 with an enrollment of 209 students and 15 faculty members. The first 20 graduates received diplomas in 1911. President Burruss' administration changed the name of the school to the State Normal School for Women at Harrisonburg in 1914 and the school received authorization to award bachelor's degrees in 1916. During this initial development of James Madison University, President Burruss established the campus plan and oversaw the construction of six buildings. He left the Normal School in 1919 to become President of Virginia Tech.

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