- Milton Stover Eisenhower named eleventh President; resigned, 1956.
- Ogontz and Scranton undergraduate centers opened.
- School of Business Administration established.
- Distinguished Alumnus Awards created by trustees. First five awards presented.
- Alumni Institute of faculty lectures became annual feature of June alumni reunions.
- Penn State Foundation established.
- The Pennsylvania State University became official name.
- Associate degree (two-year) program in engineering started.
- Penn State Alumni Fund for annual giving begun. Was made part of Penn State Foundation in 1954.
- Schools renamed Colleges: Agriculture, Business Administration, Chemistry and Physics, Education, Engineering, Home Economics, the Liberal Arts, Mineral Industries, and Physical Education and Athletics.
- Alumni Memorial Scholarships for freshmen established.
- Centennial celebrated at a birthday dinner, February 22.
- Student union building opened; named Hetzel Union Building (HUB) in honor of President Hetzel.
- University park postal substation opened in HUB.
- Nuclear Research Reactor facility dedicated.
- Ground broken for all-faith chapel named for Helen Eakin Eisenhower, late wife of Dr. Eisenhower.
- U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower was commencement speaker in June, at Beaver Field.
- Closed-circuit instructional television begun.
- Ice-skating pavilion opened; roof added in 1960.
- Dr. Eric A. Walker named twelfth President; inaugurated in 1957.
- Dr. Erwin W. Mueller perfected field ion microscope.
- Division of Counseling established; Dr. Robert G. Bernreuter, first director.
- University Press established with Louis H. Bell, first director; first book published in 1958 -- Toward Gettysburg by E. J. Nichols.
- Pre-registration counseling became mandatory for freshmen; first of its kind.
- General Education program initiated.
- Distinguished Visiting Professor program started.
- Administration reorganized into Council of Academic Deans and administrative committees on procedures, continuing education, research, and student affairs.
- Penn State Medal established; awarded for outstanding contributions to higher education.
- Five vice presidencies created by Board of Trustees: research (Dr. M. A. Farrell); academic affairs (Dr. L. E. Dinnis); finance (S. K. Hostetter); business administration (O. R. MacKenzie); development (C. S. Wyand).
- Center for Continuing Liberal Education established.
- Long-range development plan adopted by Board of Trustees.
- University elected to Association of American Universities.
- Electronic computer facilities installed.
- Liberal Arts research scholarships established.
- McKay Donkin succeeded S. K. Hostetter as vice president for finance.
- Penn State Woman of the Year Award created by trustees; first recipient, Julia Gregg Brill.
- Superior Teaching Award established as Sigma Tau Award; Dr. Kinsley Smith, first recipient; renamed President's Award for Superior Teaching in 1959 and Lindback Award in 1963.
- New Kensington and Wyomissing undergraduate centers established.
- Library's rare book collection given full-time curator, Charles W. Mann.
- Undergraduate centers designated Commonwealth Campuses; separated from Extension.
- "Open Class" policy approved by University Senate.
- University elected charter member of University Corporation for Atmospheric Research.
- Stone Valley Recreation Area established.
- Tuition made uniform for all campuses of the University.