The Thunderbird School of Global Management Archives is the official home for historical documents, photographs, papers, reports, publications, oral histories, memorabilia, and other objects related to the School’s 75-year history as a leading institution for international business. The archival collections and staff support information needs for the entire ASU community and are open to the public, including scholarly researchers, historians, and genealogists.

We also maintain collections related to Thunderbird Field No. 1, operated by Southwest Airways (no relation to Southwest Airlines). The historic World War II airfield was the home for the School from 1946-2018.

Many of Thunderbirds historic materials have been digitized and are available online, see the collections below. In addition, there are historic promotional videos on YouTube and photographs on Flickr.

Collections of note

 Cover of the 1953 Thunderbird yearbook for the American Institute for Foreign Trade, the original name of the school.

Thunderbird Yearbooks

Each yearbook is a snapshot of life at Thunderbird with photos of students, administration, faculty, and staff as well as campus scenery. The Yearbook Collection represents graduating classes from 1947-1998.

Cover of the Spring 1979 issue of The Thunderbird alumni magazine.

Thunderbird Alumni Magazine Collection (1950-2018)

The alumni magazine archive is a collection of the school's main publication. Each highlights the school's activities, targeting alumni but also featuring articles and photos of Thunderbird students, staff, faculty, and friends.

Student standing next to the original welcome sign for the American Institute for Foreign Trade, which reads “established 1946, visitors welcome”.

Thunderbird Historical Photographs

This is a collection of historical photographs of Thunderbird’s history, starting as an airfield used to train pilots during World War II up to its current status as the world’s leading international school of management.

A student is seated at a table reading Thunderbird’s student newspaper, called Das Tor.

Thunderbird Student Newspapers

Das Tor is the student newspaper of the Thunderbird School of Global Management. Publication began in 1970 and continued in paper format until 2011, after which it has been published online at dastornews.com.

Image of a hot air balloon rising above campus buildings as part of the Thunderbird Classic balloon race.

Thunderbird Classic Balloon Race

A collection of photographs, ephemera, and memorabilia chronicling the history of the Thunderbird Classic Balloon Race. The race started in 1975 and was held on campus at the American Graduate School of International Management (AGSIM), now Thunderbird School of Global Management.

Pilot cadets in flight gear stand next to bi-planes in preparation for flight training at Thunderbird Field No. 1.

Southwest Airways and Thunderbird Field No. 1

Thunderbird Field No. 1 in Glendale, Arizona began operations in the Spring of 1941 as a site to train aviation cadets for the Army Air Forces during World War II. The airfield trained more than 15,000 cadets from the US, China, and Great Britain.


Shannon Walker

Shannon Walker
Assistant Archivist

Phone: 602-496-7096

Access the archives

To view materials in this collection, please make an appointment at least five business days prior to your visit by contacting Ask an Archivist or calling (480) 965-4932.

Appointments in the Wurzburger Reading Room at Hayden Library (rm. 138) on the Tempe campus are available Monday through Friday. Check the ASU Library Hours page for current availability.