The Web Project: Early Days of

z_1995BUWebDevelopmentTeam2Today’s BU students take access to the Internet for granted, but they would hardly recognize the university’s first website, which is believed to be among the first 1,200 registered websites worldwide and the first five in Pennsylvania.

The Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education linked to the Internet in fall 1993. By 1994, developers nationwide were creating pages for the World Wide Web with text, graphics and sound that could be accessed through an Internet browser. Seeing the potential for the information that could be marketed through the Internet despite the common belief that the Web would be a passing fad, Bloomsburg’s University Advancement Office (known today as Marketing and Communications) formed an Information Highway Committee in summer 1994.

The committee’s proposal for creating a Web presence was formally issued in September of that year with the justification that “the Internet has great potential for serving as an important public information/communication tool for the university.” The overall project was called a Campus Wide Information System (CWIS) and referred to as The Web Project.

z_1996main_menu_imageTimothy L. Phillips of the Department of Instructional Technology and Institute for Interactive Technologies (IIT), Geoff Mehl and Joan Lentzner from University Advancement, Bob Abbott from Academic Computing and Glenn Bieber from Computer Services were primarily responsible for coordinating the development of the website. Samples were shown at the Council of Trustees meeting on Dec. 14, 1994, and seven IIT graduate students got to work when final approval was given, under Phillips’ supervision.

Site development progressed throughout spring 1995 and members of the campus community were encouraged to open their Web browser and go to to see the current status of the website with its simple text-based resources and a few graphics. The domain name,, was chosen as bloomsburg was too long for an acceptable address.

The work was groundbreaking. At CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research in Switzerland where the Web was born in March 1989, one committee member recalls seeing a map with just three registered websites in Pennsylvania – Carnegie Mellon University, University of Pennsylvania and Bloomsburg. Major universities nationwide sought BU’s advice on managing information on the Web and the university home page captured national attention when Yahoo featured it as a new and interesting site.

From its beginnings as a prototype that provided basic information, the website has grown to become an essential source of university information for current and prospective students, parents, alumni and other visitors. Today, is home to nearly 9,500 pages accessible from computers and mobile devices. •

Similar posts
  • The Success of Apollo 13: An example ... “Houston, we have a problem” Bernard R. Suchocki ’65 was in the mission operations control room at the Johnson Space Center on April 13, 1970, when commander Jim Lovell uttered those unforgettable words. As an Apollo astronaut instructor stationed at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, Suchocki was assigned to the Apollo XIII mission operations team. One of two [...]
  • Lamar Blass: Hall of Fame Athlete and... Lamar Blass: Hall of Fame Athlete and Soldier The Bloomsburg University Archives is home to items documenting the history of the school and the achievements of alumni. A recent acquisition is a battered dog tag that belonged to one of the most celebrated early athletes, Lamar Blass, who was killed in action during World War II. [...]
  • Dancing for a Good Cause Dancing for a Good Cause by ROBERT DUNKELBERGER, UNIVERSITY ARCHIVIST From 27 couples at its start, two dancers remained on the floor after 86 hours and one minute to win Bloomsburg’s first dance marathon, originally organized as a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society. Breaking the world record of 84.5 hours established by the Guinness [...]
  • The Normal School Goes to Washington For 12 years during the late 1800s and early 1900s, students and faculty at the Bloomsburg State Normal School took inexpensive, guided excursions to our nation’s capital each December. On Dec. 14, 1896, the first train with 155 passengers departed Bloomsburg for Washington, D.C., on a four-day excursion. Three reserved cars carried the vacationers, who [...]
  • Danny Litwhiler: A Baseball Legend Athletic facilities on the Upper Campus carry the names of Bloomsburg University sports legends. Four were coaches, Danny Hale, Jan Hutchinson, E.H. Nelson and Robert Redman, but only one was an athlete, Danny Litwhiler, Class of 1938. Born on Aug. 31, 1916, in Ringtown, Schuylkill County, Litwhiler enrolled at the Bloomsburg State Teachers College (BSTC) [...]

President’s Blog

Dr. David Soltz shares his thoughts.

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.