NC State has been known by many names through its 125 years. It was first known as the North Carolina College of Agriculture & Mechanic Arts, a name that stuck until 1917. It then became known as the North Carolina State College of Agriculture & Engineering, or more commonly, “State College.”
But then came a name that few liked and many hated — North Carolina State of the University of North Carolina at Raleigh. The name was changed in 1963 as part of an effort to reinforce the notion that NC State was part of the expanding UNC system.
The anger over the possible name change spilled out on this day in 1962, following a basketball game against Wake Forest at Reynolds Coliseum. Gov. Terry Sanford, who was in attendance, was booed by Wolfpack fans after the game, according to an account in Historical State, an online archive maintained by NCSU Libraries.
The 1963 Agromeck noted that student government “took a very strong stand” against the name change, but that the “issue was lost.” “Nevertheless, the leaders in student government did their best to fulfill the wishes of the student body,” read the yearbook.
After the outcry from alumni and students continued unabated, the name was finally changed in 1965 to North Carolina State University.