Oklahoma State University
On December 25, 1890, the Oklahoma Territorial Legislature finally gained approval for Oklahoma Territorial Agricultural and Mechanical (A&M) College, the land-grant university established under the Morrill Act of 1862. It specified that the college was to be within Payne County. Such an ambiguous description created rivalry between towns within the county, with Stillwater ultimately winning out. Upon statehood in 1907, "Territorial" was dropped from its title.
Oklahoma A&M seal The first students assembled for class on December 14, 1891. Classes were held for two and one-half years in local churches until the first academic building, later known as Old Central, was dedicated on June 15, 1894, on the southeast corner of campus, which at the time was flat plowed prairie. In 1896, Oklahoma A&M held its first commencement with six male graduates. The first Library was established in Old Central in one room shared with the English Department. The first campus building to have electricity, Williams Hall, was constructed in 1900. With its turreted architecture it was referred to as the "Castle of the Prairies"; It remained standing until 1969.
One of the earliest campus buildings was also a barn, used as part of an agricultural experiment station, which was served by a large reservoir pond created in 1895. The barn burned in 1922, but the pond, enlarged and remodeled in 1928 and 1943, is now known as Theta Pond, a popular campus scenic landmark. In 1906, Morrill Hall was completed and became the principal building on campus. A fire gutted the building in 1914, but the outside structure survived intact, and the interior was reconstructed. The first dormitory for women was completed in 1911. It contained a kitchen, dining hall, some classrooms, and a women's gymnasium. It is now the Bartlett Center for the Studio Arts and houses the Gardiner Art Gallery.
"It is the mission of the Department of Intercollegiate Athletics at Oklahoma State University to provide student-athletes with excellent opportunities to compete and win at the highest levels of college sports; to prepare student-athletes for lifelong contributions to society; to embrace equality, educational opportunity and diversity; to operate with fiscal integrity and compliance with NCAA, Big 12 Conference, and university guidelines; and to be a positive influence on the reputation and purposes of Oklahoma State University."
Today, there are more than 200,000 living OSU alumni worldwide. Prominent alumni include oil tycoon and billionaire philanthropist T. Boone Pickens, actor James Marsden, "The father of the personal computer" Ed Roberts, Director of microbiology for NASA Dr. Duane Pierson Ph.D, country singers Garth Brooks and Hoyt Axton, US Senator Tom Coburn, Governor of Oklahoma Mary Fallin, former Prime Minister of Jordan Adnan Badran, former acting Surgeon General of the United States Robert A. Whitney, Oklahoma Supreme Court Justice Steven W. Taylor, former Central Bank of Somalia Governor Yussur A.F. Abrar, and legal scholar Anita Hill. Coaching alumni include OSU wrestling head coach John Smith, OSU football head coach Mike Gundy, former OSU basketball coaches Eddie Sutton and Sean Sutton.
Small city, 1,489 acres (6.03 km2) on the Stillwater campus.