University of Oregon

University of Oregon
Latin: Universitas Oregonensis
Motto Mens agitat molem (Latin)
Motto in English
Mind moves the mass
Type Public
Established 1876
Endowment $753 million (2016)[1]
President Michael H. Schill
Provost Scott Coltrane
Academic staff
2,031[2] (Fall 2013)
Students 23,634[3] (Fall 2016)
Undergraduates 20,067[3] (Fall 2016)
Postgraduates 3,567[3] (Fall 2016)
Location Eugene, Oregon, United States
Campus Urban
295 acres (1.19 km2)
Newspaper Daily Emerald

Green and Yellow [4]

Athletics NCAA Division IPac-12
Sports 19 varsity teams
Nickname Ducks
Mascot The Oregon Duck
Affiliations AAC&U

The University of Oregon (also referred to as UO or Oregon) is a public flagship[5][6][7][8][9][10][11][12][13] research university located in Eugene, Oregon. UO was founded in 1876.[14] The institution's campus is 295 acres in size and is situated along the Willamette River.[15] Since July 2014, UO has been governed by the Board of Trustees of the University of Oregon.[16] The university has a Carnegie Classification of "highest research activity"[17] and has 21 research centers and institutes.[18] UO was admitted to the Association of American Universities in 1969.[19]

UO offers 316 undergraduate and graduate degree programs in a wide range of disciplines.[20] The university is organized into eight colleges: the Robert D. Clark Honors College (the oldest honors college in the United States), the School of Architecture and Allied Arts, the College of Arts and Sciences, the Charles H. Lundquist College of Business, the College of Education, the School of Journalism and Communication, the School of Law, and the School of Music and Dance. Additionally, the Graduate School oversees the university's graduate and certificate programs.[21]

UO student-athletes compete as the Ducks and are part of the Pac-12 Conference in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). With eighteen varsity teams, the Oregon Ducks are best known for their football team and track and field program.[22] The strength of the track program, as well as its connection to Nike, has helped make Eugene become known as "Track Town, USA".[23]


Early years

Deady and Villard Halls, the first two buildings on campus

The Oregon State Legislature established the university on October 12, 1872, despite the new state's funding woes.[24] The residents of Eugene struggled to help finance the institution, holding numerous fundraising events such as strawberry festivals, church socials, and produce sales. In total they raised $27,500, enough to buy eighteen acres of land at a cost of $2,500.[25] The doors officially opened in 1876 with the name of Oregon State University and Deady Hall as its sole building.[26] The first year of enrollment contained 155 students taught by five faculty members. The first graduating class was in 1878, graduating five students.[24] In 1881, the university was nearly closed; it was $8,000 in debt before Henry Villard donated $7,000 to help pay for the debt.[24] In 1913, and again in 1932, there were proposals to merge the university with what is now Oregon State University. Both proposals were defeated.[20][27]

Maturity as a university

During Prince Lucien Campbell's tenure as president from 1902 to 1925, the university experienced tremendous growth compared to its early years. The budget, enrollment, facilities, and faculty members all grew several times its amount prior to his presidency.[20] Numerous schools were also established during his tenure, including the School of Music in 1902, the School of Education in 1910, the School of Architecture, the College of Business in 1914, the School of Law in 1915, the School of Journalism in 1916, and the School of Health and Physical Education in 1920.[20]

Historical total enrollment
1880 185
1900 330
1920 1,897
1940 3,948
1960 8,330
1980 17,379
1985 16,375
1990 18,141
1995 17,138
2000 17,843
2005 20,394
2010 23,389
2015 24,125
Note: Medical School enrollment transferred to OHSU circa 1980.
Enrollment numbers include both undergraduate and graduate students.
Source: IR

However, the University of Oregon lost its School of Engineering to Oregon Agricultural College, now known as Oregon State University.[20]

The Zorn-MacPherson Bill in 1932 proposed that the University of Oregon and Oregon State College (now "University"), to be merged into one university. The bill lost in a landslide vote of over 6 to 1.[28] The University of Oregon Medical School was originally founded in 1887 in Portland and later merged with Willamette University's program in 1913. However, in 1974 it officially became an independent institution known as Oregon Health Sciences University.[29] In 1969, the UO was admitted into the Association of American Universities.[19]

University of Oregon 1917 football team

With financial support from the state dwindling from 40% to 13% of the university budget,[30] in January 2001, University President Dave Frohnmayer began Campaign Oregon with the goal of raising $600 million by December 2008, the most ambitious philanthropic fundraising campaign in the history of the state of Oregon at the time.[31] With total contributions exceeding $100 million from benefactors such as Phil Knight and Lorry I. Lokey, the campaign goal was exceeded by over $253 million.[30][32]

Push for independence and growth

The University occupies over 80 buildings.[33] There are currently several ongoing campus construction projects such as a $95 million expansion and renovation of the Erb Memorial Union scheduled to open in September 2016 as well as a $16.75 million successor to the Science Library complex.[34][35] These projects, among others, were commissioned in part to support current student enrollment as well as possible future increases.[36][37]

In reaction to a growing movement to establish an independent university board, the Oregon Legislature in 2013 passed SB 270, requiring local governing boards for the state's three largest institutions.[38][39] Effective July 1, 2014, the University of Oregon became an independent public body governed by the Board of Trustees of the University of Oregon. Proponents of local governing boards believe an independent board will give the university more autonomy, and free it from relying on inadequate state funding.[40]

On August 6, 2014, Michael Gottfredson resigned as president.[41] In the summer of 2014, former UO president Robert Berdahl told the president of the university's board of trustees that he believes that UO risks losing its membership in the Association of American Universities. To remedy this growing concern, UO began preparing several new initiatives which include a cluster-hire and a capital campaign.[42]

Michael H. Schill is the current president of the university.[43] In June 2015, UO's endowment surpassed the $700 million mark.[44]

Eugene is to host the 2021 World Championships in Athletics.[45] University facilities, such as Hayward Field, are expected to be used during the games.

In 2016, the university removed the name of Frederick S. Dunn, head of the Classics department in the 1920s and 30s, from a dormitory named after him, "Dunn Hall", because of his leading role in the Ku Klux Klan.[46]

In October 2016, it was announced that Phil Knight and his wife Penny will contribute $500 million to a planned science research campus. The donation will be dispersed over a ten year period. It is the largest donation to a public research university.[47]


University rankings
ARWU[48] 99–119
Forbes[49] 219
U.S. News & World Report[50] 103
Washington Monthly[51] 147
ARWU[52] 301–400
QS[53] 551–600
Times[54] 301-350
U.S. News & World Report[55] 261

USNWR graduate school rankings

Business [56] 79
Education[56] 12
Law[56] 82

USNWR departmental rankings[56]

Biological Sciences 55
Chemistry 60
Clinical Psychology 26
Computer Science 63
Earth Sciences 34
Economics 56
English 52
Fine Arts 62
History 56
Mathematics 56
Physics 54
Political Science 68
Psychology 30
Public Affairs 73
Sociology 59
Speech-Language Pathology 45

Colleges and schools

The University of Oregon is organized into eight schools and colleges—six professional schools and colleges, an Arts and Sciences College and an Honors College. As of Fall 2014, UO offers 272 degree programs.[20]

School of Architecture and Allied Arts

The School of Architecture and Allied Arts (called "triple-A" or "AAA") was founded by Ellis F. Lawrence in 1914.[57] The school offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in architecture, art, including digital arts, arts and administration, art history, interior architecture, landscape architecture, and planning, public policy and management, and product design, a graduate degree in historic preservation. The school also offers an architectural program, digital arts program, and product design program in Portland, Oregon.

The school offers the only accredited degree in architecture, landscape architecture, and interior architecture in Oregon. The National Architectural Accrediting Board accredits both the undergraduate bachelor of architecture five-year degree and the master of architecture. Other nationally accredited degrees include the planning and public administration, landscape architecture, and interior architecture programs. The undergraduate architecture program is consistently ranked among the highest in the country, and is currently ranked as the #1 public program for "Sustainable Design Practice and Principles" by DesignIntelligence magazine.

College of Arts and Sciences

The College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) covers a large array of departments in the arts and sciences. The creative writing graduate program is nationally recognized as being among the best in the nation—fewer than two percent are admitted out of 700+ applicants each year.[58][59]

Charles H. Lundquist College of Business

The Charles H. Lundquist College of Business was founded in 1884 and offers courses in fields such as accounting, decision sciences, entrepreneurship, finance, management, and marketing. It is also home to the University of Oregon Investment Group and the Warsaw Sports Marketing Center, one of the first programs to offer an M.B.A. in sports business[60] and is noted as having the best sports business and marketing programs in the nation.[61]

College of Education

The HEDCO Education Building

The College of Education was established in 1910 as the School of Education.

Robert D. Clark Honors College

The Clark Honors College is a small college intended to complement the existing majors already in place at the university by joining select students and faculty for a low student to teacher ratio (25:1 maximum).[62]

School of Journalism and Communication

The School of Journalism and Communication is one of the oldest journalism schools in the United States.[63] It began as a department in 1912, and became a professional school 1916. It has the accreditation of the Accrediting Council for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication.[64] It currently runs Flux magazine, a student-produced publication.[65] Eight of the nine Pulitzer Prize winners from the University of Oregon graduated from the School of Journalism and Communication.[66] It also awards the annual Payne Award for Ethics in Journalism. Allen Hall, the re-modeled home of the SOJC, was officially re-opened on March 3, 2013.

Oregon Documentary Project

Within the University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication, The Oregon Documentary Project produces student films through the Electronic Media department. Since 1996, Associate professor Dr. Daniel Miller has overseen the production of more than 70 student documentaries, many of which have won Northwest Emmy Awards. The films come out of a ten-week Advanced Documentary Production class and tell stories of life, culture and history in the state of Oregon.[67]

School of Law

The School of Law was formed in 1884 in Portland and relocated to Eugene in early 1915.[68] It was admitted into the Association of American Law Schools in 1919 and received accreditation from the American Bar Association in 1923.[69]

School of Music and Dance

The School of Music and Dance was initially just the Department of Music in 1886, and developed into the School of Music in 1900. It was admitted to the National Association of Schools of Music in 1928. The school offers over 30 ensembles in vocal and instrumental music, giving approximately 300 public performances a year.[70] Renamed in 2006, the MarAbel B. Frohnmayer Music Building is the physical home of the school, named after former University of Oregon President Frohnmayer's mother, a 1932 alumna of the School.[71] Beall Concert Hall, the primary performance hall within the school, was designed by Ellis F. Lawrence.[72] UO is a member of the National Association of Schools of Music.

Oregon Bach Festival

The UO is the home of the Oregon Bach Festival, a donor-supported program of the University and the only major music festival affiliated with an American university. Founded in 1970 by German conductor Helmuth Rilling and UO professor (and past president of the American Choral Directors Association) Royce Saltzman, the festival has grown into an international program that draws hundreds of musicians and over 40,000 attendees annually. The festival's focus is choral and orchestral music, and it hosts a professional choir and orchestra each year to perform major works by Bach and other composers; it also sponsors a master class in conducting that draws participants from around the world.

The festival has presented such artists as Frederica von Stade, Bobby McFerrin, Garrison Keillor, and Thomas Quasthoff, who made his American debut in Eugene in 1995. The festival actively commissions and premieres new choral-orchestra works, including pieces by Arvo Pärt, Osvaldo Golijov, and Tan Dun. A Bach Festival recording of the world-premiere performance of Krzyztof Penderecki's Credo won the 2001 Grammy Award for best choral performance.[73]

Undergraduate program

University of Oregon tuition[74]
Tuition and fees
Resident undergraduate $10,288.50
Non-resident undergraduate $32,023.50
Estimated annual cost
Resident undergraduate $25,523.50
Non-resident undergraduate $47,258.50

As of Fall 2015, Pre-Business Administration was the most popular undergraduate major at UO (12.3% of all majors), followed by Psychology (6.4%), Human Physiology (5.3%), Economics (4.8%) and Business Administration (4.4%).[75]

The current UO student body is composed of students from all 50 of the United States, the District of Columbia, two U.S. territories, and 89 countries around the world.


Fall freshman statistics[76][77][78][79][80]
2014 2013 2012 2011 2010
Applicants 21,359 21,938 21,263 23,012 18,515
Admits 15,997 16,206 15,770 16,790 14,588
% Admitted 74.9 73.9 74.2 73.0 78.8
Enrolled 3,961 3,966 4,031 4,167 3,978
Avg GPA 3.58 3.60 3.57 3.59 3.52
SAT range* 990–1230 990–1240 991–1224 993–1223 991–1218
ACT range 22–27 22–28 NA NA NA
* SAT out of 1600

The University of Oregon's admissions process is "selective" according to U.S. News & World Report.[81] For students entering Fall 2014, 15,997 freshmen were accepted out of 21,359 applicants, a 74.9% acceptance rate, and 3,961 enrolled.[76]

Among freshman students who enrolled in fall 2014, SAT scores for the middle 50% ranged from 490–610 for critical reading, 500–620 for math, and 490–600 for writing.[76] ACT composite scores for the middle 50% ranged from 22–27.[76] The average high school GPA for incoming freshmen was 3.58.[76] Of the 40% of entering freshmen who submitted high school class rank, 23% were in the top tenth of their graduating class, 66% in the top quarter, and 93% in the top half.[76]

Graduate School

According to the 2010 NRC rankings, which is a reputational based survey, doctoral programs in Biology, Geography, Physics and Psychology all rank very highly when compared to fellow AAU institutions.[82] The highest ranked college is the College of Education. According to some measures, it ranks as high as 6th in the nation among public universities.[83]

Organization and administration


The University is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities,[84] which is recognized by the United States Department of Education.

University governance

The internal governance of the university is conducted in accordance with The Constitution of the University of Oregon. The UO Constitution provides a collaborative process that ensures a strong voice for the faculty, acting through the University Senate. The representation of students, civil servants, and administrative employees in the senate ensures that this predominantly faculty body operates in the best interests of the entire university community.[85]

UO Board of Trustees assumed control in 2014. The Trustees have the broad authority to supervise and manage the University and may exercise all the powers, rights, duties and privileges expressly granted by law or that are implied by law or are incident to the Board's powers, rights, duties and privileges.[86]

Former provost Scott Coltrane had served as interim president, from August 6, 2014, through June 30, 2015, following the resignation of Michael Gottfredson.[87] This resignation occurred with less than 24 hours notice amidst a number of controversies, including allegations of mishandling of sexual violence,[88] a decline of $100 million in university donations,[89] and the alienation of faculty members around unionization and academic freedom.[90] Including one interim president, Gottfredson was the university's fourth president in six years, a situation that led Chronicle of Higher Education to label the position a "revolving door."[91]

On April 14, 2015 Michael H. Schill was named president, with an official start date of July 1, 2015.[92]

PositionSalaryNon-salary compensation
President$660,000[93]$14,400 ("Car Allowance Stipend")
Senior VP and Provost$377,235[93]$9,300 ("Car Allowance Stipend")
Senior Administrator$217,069[82] (varies by office-holder)
Officers of Administration$68,105[82]N/A
Classified Staff$33,957[82]N/A

Campus security is enforced by the University of Oregon Police Department. The department was previously known as the Department of Public Safety. Formerly a campus security force, the department transitioned to its new role in 2012.[94]

Budget and research activity

UO's FY14 operating revenue total $905 million.[95] As of January 2013, the estimated economic impact of the University of Oregon is $2.6 billion annually.[96] Despite a large increase in undergraduate enrollment, state appropriations total less than what they were 10 years prior. The university also receives less state support than many of its peers. According to FY13-14 data from the AAU, UO ranks dead last in total state funding and receives approximately $47.8 million from the state.[97]

UO has comparatively small research spending totals for an AAU level university.[98] In FY 14, UO received "$110.3 million in grants, contracts and other competitive awards."[99]

Currently the Provost's Office is looking into ways of strengthening UO's AAU and national position. UO is looking into a new hiring initiative that will focus resources into 10 areas of study, ranging from materials sciences to neuroscience. The hope is that this new initiative will strengthen UO's leadership in these areas.[100] However, it is currently unknown whether or not this new initiative will meet all of its targets. The neuroscience cluster has been forced to regroup after the University of Chicago poached two of its leading researchers.[101]


Map of the campus
Lillis Complex (University of Oregon)

The campus is spread over 295 acres (119 ha) and holds eighty buildings. Additionally, the campus is an arboretum consisting of 500 species of trees.[102] In total there are over 3000 trees on campus.[15] It is adjacent to the West University neighborhood and Pioneer Cemetery. Eugene is located near many prominent geographic features such as the Willamette River, Cascade Mountains and the Pacific Ocean. Also within a two-hour drive is the Portland metropolitan area.

Currently, the campus is occupied by approximately 80 buildings. However, there are several ongoing construction projects, as well as plans to build new facilities in the near future and beyond.[103] The campus is the home of the Oregon Bach Festival.

Based on Ellis F. Lawrence's vision, many of the university's buildings are planned around several major quadrangles, many of which abut the 13th Avenue pedestrian mall.[104] The university is known for being the site of a pioneering participatory planning experiment known as the Oregon Experiment, which is also the subject of a book of the same name that evolved into the well known book A Pattern Language by Christopher Alexander. The two major principles of the project are that buildings should be designed, in part, by the people who will ultimately use them with the help of an "architect facilitator", and that construction should occur over many small projects as opposed to a few large ones.

Although academic buildings are spread throughout the campus, the majority are located along East 13th Avenue, with heavy pedestrian traffic at the intersection with Kincaid Street.[105] Student recreation and union centers are located toward the center of the campus, with residence halls on the east side of campus. Sports facilities are grouped in the southern-central part of campus with the Autzen Stadium and PK Park complexes across the Willamette River. The university also owns and operates several satellite facilities, including a large facility in the White Stag Block of downtown Portland.

The campus has been smoke and tobacco free since 2012.[15]

Old campus and memorial quad

Outside the front of the Knight Library

The oldest section of campus is located in the northwest area of the current campus. The university's first building, Deady Hall, opened on October 16, 1876, when the University had an enrollment of 177 students. It was originally known as "the building" before being named after Judge Matthew Deady in 1893. The second building on campus is known as Villard Hall and is home to the Theater Arts and Comparative Literature Departments. Completed in 1886, the hall was named after railroad magnate Henry Villard, who provided financial aid to the university in 1881. Before its naming, it was known as "the new building." Both Deady and Villard Halls were designated National Historic Landmarks in 1977.[106]

Just south of Old Campus is the Memorial Quad, which runs north and south along Kincaid Street, capped at both ends by the main campus library, Knight Library, on the south side, and the Lillis Business Complex on the north. It is flanked on the west by the tallest building on campus, Prince Lucien Campbell Hall, also known as "PLC,", Condon Hall on the west, housing the Geography department, and the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art on the east, which was remodeled and reopened on January 23, 2005. Also adjacent to Memorial Quad is Chapman Hall, which houses the Robert D. Clark Honors College.

Central campus

Johnson Hall

The center of campus houses a mixture of academic buildings, an administration building, and student recreation buildings. Just to the east of Memorial Quad, facing 13th Avenue is Johnson Hall where offices for higher administration and trustee offices are found, including the offices of the University President. Directly across 13th Avenue, facing Johnson Hall is "The Pioneer" a statue of a bearded, buckskin-clad pioneer cast in bronze by sculptor Alexander Phimister Proctor in 1919.[107] In 1932, Proctor's "Pioneer Mother" statue was dedicated in the Women's Memorial Quadrangle on the other side of Johnson Hall; the two statues are aligned so that they can "see" one another through the large windows of the hall's main floor.

Lawrence Hall is located at the end of hardscape walkway, directly north of the intersection of 13th Avenue and University Street. It houses the School of Architecture and Allied Arts and is named after its first Dean, Ellis F. Lawrence in 1957.[108] Allen Hall, opened in 1954, is located adjacent to Lawrence Hall and houses the School of Journalism and Communication.[109]

Additionally, Erb Memorial Union and the recreation center are situated in this part of campus.

Lorry I. Lokey Science Complex and east campus

Willamette Hall, the centerpiece of the Physics department

The Lorry I. Lokey Science Complex comprises multiple science buildings to the east of Lawrence Hall, on the north side of 13th Avenue. Willamette Hall's Paul Olum Atrium is the center of the university's hard sciences complex. The construction of the $45.6 million additions of Willamette Hall, home of the physics department; Cascade Hall, home of the geology department; Deschutes Hall, home of the computer science department; and Streisinger Hall to the complex were completed in 1989.[110]

Within the Lokey Science Complex are two facilities focused on integrative science.[111] One is the Lokey Laboratories, which is a shared-use facility with state-of-the-art characterization instrumentation. Lokey Laboratories is associated with the Oregon Nanoscience and Microtechnologies Institute (ONAMI) and was dedicated to Lorry I. Lokey on February 19, 2008 for his $25 million donation toward the project.[112] It is located underground, beneath the quad between Heustis and Deschutes Halls, to minimize vibrations. The newest building, the Lewis Integrative Science Building, sits at the north end of this quad and opened in the fall of 2012. Immediately to the east of the Lokey Science Complex is Oregon Hall, which houses administrative offices including the Office of the Registrar and Office of Admissions.

The Science Library is also situated within the Lokey Science Complex. In 2015 it will undergo a significant renovation and expansion. The new building set to reopen in 2016 will be named the Allan Price Science Commons and Research Library.[113]

Knight Law Center (University of Oregon)

The northeast corner of campus is home to the Ford Alumni Center and Matthew Knight Arena. The majority of the rest of the eastern part of campus is dedicated to residence halls. Carson Hall, located near the Erb Memorial Union, provides dining services along with dormitories. Just south is the Living-Learning Center, opened in 2006. It is a collection of functions including dormitories, classrooms, study areas, dining rooms, and recreational rooms to provide a single location for many student activities.[114] The newest residence hall, the Global Scholars Hall, opened in the fall of 2012. It primarily houses returning students and students enrolled in the Robert D. Clark Honors College, College Scholars, and the global scholars language programs.[115]

South campus

The center of south campus is where much of the on-campus athletic facilities reside. Hayward Field, home to the Ducks track and field program, sits in the eastern area of the athletic facilities. It has hosted a number of prominent track and field events such as the US Track and Field Olympic Trials, the NCAA Track and Field Championships, and USATF Championships.[116]

To the west of the athletic facilities lies Pioneer Cemetery and further west is where the current facilities for the College of Education exists, in the southwest corner of campus. The HEDCO Education building and the Frohnmayer Music Center are in the vicinity. The Knight Law Center is located just opposite of Hayward Field in the southeast corner of campus. The Many Nations Longhouse and the Museum of Natural and Cultural History are East of Knight Law.

Other areas and satellites

The controversial[117] Riverfront Research Park is a small facility maintained by the university, located across Franklin Boulevard from the main campus, next to the Willamette River. The park is used for creating new technologies, such as research about artificial intelligence at the Computational Intelligence Research Lab, and it is the home of the Zebrafish Information Network (ZFIN), the zebrafish model organism database. Local controversy has existed since before the development and approval of the site master plan by the City of Eugene in 1989. Controversy stems from the lack of citizen involvement in the planning process for the use of public lands, and the potential for multi-story office buildings and parking lots to replace open space, civic space, and wildlife habitat along the Willamette River. The University and Student Senates have each passed resolutions [118][119] against construction on the banks of the Willamette River under the current development plan, yet plans for development persist. In March 2010, the issue of a conditional use permit extension for the Research Park was appealed to the Land Use Board of Appeals by a group of citizens, students, and faculty.[120]

The complex for the Ducks football and baseball team is located north across the Willamette River. It includes the football stadium (Autzen Stadium),the baseball park (PK Park), an indoor practice football field (Moshofsky Center), a soccer field (Pape Field), an outdoor practice field (Kilkenny Field), and the Casanova Center which includes offices, the athletics Hall of Fame, locker rooms, weight rooms, a film review theater, and a treatment center.

The university also leases space in Old Town Portland in the White Stag Block. UO-Portland provides an urban study environment for the School of Architecture and Allied Arts, the School of Journalism and Communication, the School of Law, and the Lundquist College of Business. Additionally, the Division of Continuing Education, the Labor Education Resource Center, and the Department of Athletics have active offices there. The Duck Store has an outlet in the building.[121]


The University of Oregon received a grade of "B+" from the Sustainable Endowments Institute on its College Sustainability Report Card 2011.[122]

The undergraduate architecture program is consistently ranked among the highest in the country, and is currently ranked as the #1 public program for "Sustainable Design Practice and Principles" by DesignIntelligence magazine.

There has also been a push for sustainable buildings on campus with a development plan that requires any new building or renovation to incorporate sustainable design.[123] The Lillis Business Complex was the catalyst for the policy. The building, completed in 2003[124] has earned a LEED Silver rating, the highest rating of any college business building in the United States.

The Green Product Design Network (GPDN) was created by a group of leaders from the UO with expertise in green chemistry, product design, business, communications, and journalism.[125]

Libraries and museums

The multi-branch University of Oregon Libraries serves the campus with library collections, instruction and reference, and a wide variety of educational technology and media services. The UO is Oregon's only member of the Association of Research Libraries. The main branch, the Knight Library, houses humanities and social sciences, Learning Commons, Music Services, Government Publications, Maps and Aerial Photos, Special Collections & University Archives, Media Services, the Center for Educational Technologies, and a Cinema Studies lab to be available in Winter 2010.[126] Other branch locations are:

The UO Libraries hosts Scholars' Bank, an open access (OA) digital repository created to capture, distribute and preserve the intellectual output of the University of Oregon. Scholars' Bank uses open-source DSpace software developed by Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Hewlett-Packard.

The Libraries' Educational Video Group maintains the UO Channel, which uses streaming media to provide access to campus lectures, interviews, performances, symposia, and documentary productions.

The UO is the founding member and host of the Orbis-Cascade Alliance, a consortium of academic and research libraries in Oregon, Washington and Idaho. The combined collections of the Alliance exceed 20 million volumes and can be searched via the Summit union catalog. The Orbis Cascade Alliance serves faculty and the equivalent of more than 258,000 full-time students. In addition to its members, the Alliance extends selected services to more than 280 libraries, museums, archives, and historical societies in seven western states.

The Special Collections & University Archives house a collection of Gardner Fox's literary manuscripts, comic books, and other materials, including over 200 letters from fans.[128]

The University of Oregon is home to the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art and the Museum of Natural and Cultural History.

There are multiple galleries around the main campus, including (but not limited to):

Student life and culture


There are more than 250 student groups at the University of Oregon, most of which are headquartered in the Erb Memorial Union.[129]

In addition to its athletic teams, the university also has a competitive intercollegiate Speech and Debate team. The University of Oregon Forensics program was founded in 1876, at the same time as the university. Initially the program consisted of two student-formed forensic societies, which developed into "doughnut league" inter-dorm competitions in the 1890s. In 1891, the UO began intercollegiate competition. Forensics continued to grow as a staple of the university's community and by 1911, the team was so successful that it began charging admission to debates. Money raised during these events was often donated to the fledgling University of Oregon football program.

Parliamentary debate was integrated into UO Forensics in 1998–99 and the team has been competitive since. In 2001, the UO's Alan Tauber and Heidi Ford claimed a national title, winning the first ever National Parliamentary Tournament of Excellence (NPTE). In 2011, the team of Matt Gander and Hank Fields claimed both national titles, winning the NPTE and the National Parliamentary Debate Association Championship, coached by Thomas Schally, Benjamin Dodds, Sarah Hamid, and Will Chamberlain.

Under new Director of Forensics Trond Jacobsen hired in 2013, UO Forensics has continued its record of success with the team of Liz Fetherston and Kehl van Winkle the top seed at the 2014 NPTE going into elimination rounds. Fetherston was the top speaker and van Winkle the 4th speaker. In 2015 Oregon had the 3rd place team at the NPTE.


The University of Oregon has a diverse array of student-run and student-created media, including the Daily Emerald, the Oregon Commentator, and Ethos Magazine among others[130]

The University is also home of two radio stations: KWAX (classical music) and KWVA (campus radio). For a more exhaustive list of campus media organizations, please see the above linked article.



ASUO office

The Associated Students of the University of Oregon (ASUO) is the student government at the University of Oregon. It is a non-profit organization funded by the University of Oregon. Its purpose is to provide for the social, cultural, educational and physical development of its members, and for the advancement of their individual and collective interests both within and without the University. Membership consists of all students at the University of Oregon, who have paid the current term or semester student incidental fee.[131]

Student participation in governance of the university extends to membership in the University Senate, which has five student members with full voting rights plus the ASUO President as a nonvoting member. Students are also represented on the university's Board of Trustees by a voting member appointed by the Governor of Oregon.

The total FY2014-15 ASUO budget was $15.24 million.[132]

Graduate Teaching Fellows Federation

The University of Oregon Graduate Teaching Fellows Federation (GTFF) was established in 1976 to represent graduate student workers and it is one of the oldest graduate student unions in the U.S. The UO administration objected to the establishment of the union, citing that graduate workers were "students, not employees." The Oregon Employment Relations Board (ERB) ruled in favor of the graduate students and supported their right to organize. The GTFF began organizing its first contract in April 1977 and reached a negotiation with the university administration after two strike votes. In 1993, the GTFF successfully bargained for employer-paid health insurance.[133]

In 2014, the GTFF went on strike for the first time.[134][135] In October, GTFF members voted to authorize a strike over two issues not yet included in the GTF contract: a pay raise to the minimum GTF salary and a form of paid sick leave.[136] The strike lasted a week and overlapped with the University's administration of final examinations.[137] Although the union members accused the university administration of strike breaking activities,[138] intimidation of international students,[139] and unlawful demands,[138] a compromise was reach on December 10 and the strike ended.[140]

Facilities and housing

The Global Scholars Hall housing complex at the University of Oregon, opened in 2012

The Erb Memorial Union (EMU) is the student union, which functions as a center for student life. It sits on the southeast corner of 13th and University St. The EMU is currently undergoing a $95 million renovation and expansion project. The 1970s was demolished in 2014 to make way for a new wing. Set to re-open in the fall of 2016, the new facility will include improved dining options, and increase the amount office, meeting and student life space. Additionally, the new facility will feature a campus pub, bike-sharing program, multi-purpose auditorium/cinema, and craft center.[141]

South of the Erb Memorial Union across a small quad is the Student Recreational Center (SRC) which is an exercise and recreation facility. It includes fitness equipment, rock climbing walls, a swimming pool, racquetball courts, an indoor elevated running track and basketball courts. Covered tennis courts and several turf fields, and outdoor tennis courts within a running track are located near the recreation center. The facility reopened in early 2015 after a significant renovation and expansion.[142]

The current Residence Halls are: Barnhart, Bean, Carson, Earl, the Global Scholars Hall, Hamilton, the Living-Learning Center, Riley, and Walton.[143] The Global Scholars Hall was opened in the Fall of 2012.[144] There are plans to build a new east campus residence hall sometime in the near future, close to the site of the existing Global Scholars Hall.[145] Additionally, multiple residence halls are expected to undergo significant renovations in the near future.


Main article: Oregon Ducks

The University of Oregon is a member of the Pac-12 Conference and the Division I Football Bowl Subdivision of the NCAA. The athletic programs have garnered 28 NCAA team championships,[146] as well as 60 NCAA individual champions in various track and field events.[147] The two primary rivals of the Oregon Ducks football team are the Washington Huskies and the Oregon State Beavers. The football rivalry with Oregon State University, known as the "Civil War", is one of the nation's oldest. Every year, the two teams face off in the last game of the regular season. The two teams have faced each other nearly every year since 1894 except for five years. Games were not held in 1900, 1901, 1911, 1943, and 1944.[148]

The university competes in 14 sports: football, men’s and women’s basketball, cross country, track and field, baseball, softball, men’s and women’s tennis, men’s and women’s golf, women’s soccer, women’s lacrosse, women’s volleyball, and acrobatics & tumbling. This does not include club sports which competes at the Division I level in Rugby, Soccer, Rowing, and Waterpolo. As well as women's Division I club athletics in Rowing, Rugby, and Waterpolo.

UO Athletics Logo

With 20 NCAA championships between them, cross country and track and field are the two programs at the university that have enjoyed the most success. The programs have produced many world-class athletes including Steve Prefontaine and Alberto Salazar. Nike had been formed by the former track and field head coach Bill Bowerman and former University of Oregon track runner Phil Knight. The successes of the programs have given the name of Track Town, USA to Eugene.[23]

Created in 1893, the football team played its first game in 1894 and won its first Rose Bowl in 1917 against the University of Pennsylvania. The 1938–39 men's basketball team, nicknamed the "Tall Firs," won the first-ever NCAA basketball tournament by defeating Ohio State in the March 28, 1939 championship game.[149]

Originally recognized as an official sport at the university in 1908, baseball was disbanded in 1981 due to concerns with Title IX. In 2007, the athletic director Patrick Kilkenny announced plans to reinstate baseball and to drop wrestling while adding women's acrobatics & tumbling.[150]

Relationship with Nike

The Athletic Department (AD) and university as a whole (UO) have a long and complex relationship with Nike Inc. The corporation has significant historical ties to UO. It was founded by two UO alumni. Nike co-founder Phil Knight is also one of the largest benefactors in the history of UO. In recent years he has invested heavily in developing and maintaining the athletic apparatus.[151]


Main article: The Oregon Duck

The mascot of the University of Oregon is the fighting duck. The popular Disney character Donald Duck has been the mascot for decades, thanks to a handshake agreement made between then-Athletic Director Leo Harris and Walt Disney in 1947.[152] The mascot has been challenged more than a few times in its lifetime. The first came in 1966 when Walt Disney died and the company realized there was no formal contract written for the use of Donald's image. A formal contract was written up in 1973.[152] Potential heirs "Mallard Drake" and "Mandrake" challenged Donald's position in 1978 and 2003 respectively,[152][153] but both were unpopular and discontinued.


Main article: Mighty Oregon

The fight song is "Mighty Oregon", written by professor Albert Perfect and student John DeWitt Gilbert in 1916. It has undergone several changes since its original performance.[154]

In fiction and popular culture


The film National Lampoon's Animal House (1978) was filmed on the university campus and the surrounding area. The building used as the exterior of the Delta House (which belonged to the University of Oregon Pi Kappa Alpha chapter) was demolished in 1986, but the interior scenes were shot in the Sigma Nu house, which still stands today. The Omega house belongs to the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity and still stands today. The sorority house where Bluto climbs the ladder to peek in on the coeds was actually the exterior of the Sigma Nu fraternity.[155] Other buildings that were used during filming include Johnson Hall, Gerlinger Hall, Fenton Hall, Carson Hall, and the Erb Memorial Union (EMU). The EMU dining facility known as "The Fishbowl" was the site of the famous food-fight scene. The Knight Library and the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art can also be seen in the movie.[156]

Other films shot at the university include

The University of Oregon also appeared in the documentary "The Hunting Ground" after allowing three basketball players accused of sexual assault to play in an NCAA Tournament. The documentary focuses on campus rape in higher education institutions in the United States.[157]


University of Oregon faculty, researchers, and alumni include two Nobel Prize laureates, 13 Pulitzer Prize winners, 19 Rhodes scholars, four Marshall scholars, 58 Guggenheim Fellows, and 129 Fulbright scholars.[158][159]


There are more than 195,000 University of Oregon alumni around the world. The Ford Alumni Center, situated adjacent to Matthew Knight Arena, is a gathering place for alumni and houses an interactive exhibit.[160] The UO Alumni Association is also based out of this facility.[161]

Prominent alumni include: former-NBC journalist and host Ann Curry, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest author Ken Kesey, Nike founder Phil Knight, Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Mariota, Fight Club author Chuck Palahniuk, cognitive scientist Douglas Hofstadter, and U.S. Senator Ron Wyden.

Faculty and staff

Notable current and former faculty and staff include: track coach and Nike co-founder Bill Bowerman, professor and former Patagonia CEO Michael Crooke, renowned Canadian architect Arthur Erikson, neuroscientist emeritus Michael Posner, the first person to clone a vertebrate George Streisinger, and Mark Thoma economist and author of the popular blog Economist's View.

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