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Oakland University

Oakland University is a public university co-founded by Matilda Dodge Wilson and John A. Hannah whose 1,500-acre campus is located in central Oakland County, Michigan, United States in the cities of Auburn Hills and Rochester Hills.


2200 North Squirrel Road
Rochester Hills

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Additional Information

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Mission Statement
As a state-supported institution of higher education, Oakland University has a three-fold mission. It offers instructional programs of high quality that lead to degrees at the baccalaureate, master"s and doctoral levels as well as programs in continuing education; it advances knowledge and promotes the arts through research, scholarship and creative activity; and it renders significant public service. In all its activities, the university strives to exemplify educational leadership in a diverse and inclusive environment.
Black Gold
Horizon League

College History


Oakland University was created in 1957 when Matilda Dodge Wilson, widow of automobile magnate John Francis Dodge, and her second husband, Alfred Wilson, donated their 1,500-acre (6.1 km2) estate to Michigan State University, including Meadow Brook Hall, Sunset Terrace and all the estate's other buildings and collections, along with $2 million. Main campus buildings were completed on Squirrel Road in Pontiac Township (now the city of Auburn Hills). Originally known as Michigan State University�Oakland, the university enrolled its first students in 1959 and was renamed Oakland University in 1963. The university has been officially independent since 1970. Wilson asked U.S. Postmaster General Arthur Summerfield to let the university use a Rochester, Michigan mailing address (2200 N Squirrel Rd, Rochester, Michigan 48309), even though the main part of the campus was in Pontiac Township (now the city of Auburn Hills). After Wilson reminded him that she had contributed to his administration, Summerfield granted her request. Rochester is five miles (8 km) and two cities away from the main campus buildings. During the 2012 Republican presidential primaries, Oakland University hosted a debate between Republican presidential candidates on November 9, 2011. CNBC televised the debate nationally, and the Michigan Republican Party co-sponsored the debate with CNBC. Eight candidates participated: Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Jon Huntsman, Ron Paul, Rick Perry, Mitt Romney, and Rick Santorum.

College Specialty


The Oakland University Board of Trustees has made an unwavering commitment to equality of opportunity for all persons. In a society that relies on an informed, educated citizenry, no one should be denied the opportunity to attain his or her fullest potential. Therefore, the university has established a goal to build a community that welcomes and honors all persons and provides equal opportunity in education and employment consistent with all applicable laws.



Curtis Armstrong � film and TV actor Steve Blackwood � actor, Days of our Lives Mike Bruner � keyboardist for rock band Rare Earth Regina Carter � jazz violinist, winner of MacArthur Fellowship Robert Englund � film and TV actor (attended) David Hasselhoff � actor (attended) Jayne Houdyshell � Broadway actress, Tony Award nominee Christopher Howe � film and theater actor Hank Jones � jazz pianist and composer (honorary doctorate) Thomas Lynch � poet and author, National Book Award finalist Karen Newman � singer and actress Elizabeth Reaser � film and TV actress (attended) Doris Eaton Travis � dancer and actress (honorary doctorate) Kim Bell Jr � actor, writer and director (degree in Political Science c/o 2003) Jacquelyn Wagner -- soprano, opera singer Sports and media Keith Benson - NBA player Andrew Good - former MLB pitcher, Arizona Diamondbacks, Detroit Tigers Brian Gregory � men's head basketball coach, Georgia Tech Seb Harris � professional footballer for Northampton Town Mike Helms � professional basketball player Don Kirkwood � former MLB pitcher, Angels, White Sox, Toronto Blue Jays (attended) Rawle Marshall � former NBA player, Dallas Mavericks, Indiana Pacers Jasna Reed � four-time Olympian, degree in political science Tom Stanton � author and journalist Jennifer Valoppi � TV journalist Kelly Williams � professional basketball player Lauren Podell � TV journalist (WDIV- Detroit) Cortney Scott � Romania pro club professional basketball player (CS Otopeni) Government and politics Jane Abraham � Michigan politician Fran Amos � State Representative, Michigan House of Representatives Deborah Cherry � Senator, Michigan Senate APJ Abdul Kalam � India's 11th President (honorary doctorate) David J. Doyle � Michigan politician Renee Ellmers � Member of Congress from North Carolina Gordon R. England � former Secretary of the Navy (honorary doctorate) Ruth Johnson � Michigan politician Carl Levin � U.S. Senator (honorary doctorate) Justin McCarthy � Admiral, U.S. Deputy Chief of Naval Operations Michael W. Michalak � United States Ambassador to Vietnam G. Mennen Williams � former Governor of Michigan (honorary doctorate) Gary Yourofsky � animal rights activist Law Marcia Cooke � U.S. District Judge, Miami, Florida Damon Keith � Senior Judge, U.S. Court of Appeals (honorary doctorate) Deborah Servitto � Judge, Michigan Court of Appeals Business Howard Birndorf � founder and CEO, Nanogen, Inc. John G. Denison � CEO of ATA Airlines N.R. Narayana Murthy � founder, CEO, and Ex Chairman, Infosys Limited (honorary doctorate) Maximiliano Larroquette � designer of Chevrolet Volt James E. Schrager � Professor, Graduate School of Business, University of Chicago Education Kevin R. Grazier (BS, Oakland; PhD, UCLA) � Prof., NASA Jet Propulsion Lab, Caltech Janet L. Holmgren (BA, Oakland; PhD, Princeton) � President, Mills College James E. Schrager (BA, Oakland; PhD, Chicago) � Prof., Business, University of Chicago Richard T. Sullivan (BA, Oakland; PhD, Harvard) � Assoc. Prof., History, University of Notre Dame Thomas J. Volgy (BA, Oakland; PhD, Minnesota) � Prof., Political Science, University of Arizona