American Football Database
Pacific University
Pacific University logo.svg
MottoPro Christo et Regno Ejus
Motto in EnglishFor Christ and His Kingdom
Established1849 (1849)
Endowment$74 million[1]
PresidentLesley Hallick
ProvostJohn S. Miller
Academic staff350[2]
LocationForest Grove, Oregon, United States
Former namesDeKeyser Institute of Optometry
North Pacific College of Optometry
Oregon College of Ocular Sciences
Tualatin Academy
Academic TermSemester
ColorsBoxer Red & Boxer Black

Pacific University is a private, liberal arts university in Forest Grove, Oregon. Founded in 1849 as the Tualatin Academy, the university's original Forest Grove campus is 23 miles (37 km) west of Portland. The university maintains three other campuses in the cities of Eugene, Hillsboro, and Woodburn, and has an enrollment of more than 4,000 students.


File:Marsh Hall, Pacific University.jpg

Marsh Hall

Tabitha Brown, a pioneer emigrant from Massachusetts, immigrated to the Oregon Country over the new Applegate Trail in 1846.[3] After arriving in Oregon she helped to start an orphanage and school along with Rev. Harvey L. Clark in Forest Grove in 1847 to care for the orphans of Applegate Trail party.[3][4][5] In March 1848, Tualatin Academy was established from the orphanage with Clark donating 200 acres (80.9 ha) to the school.[5] George H. Atkinson had advocated the founding of the school and with support of the Presbyterians and Congregationalists helped to start the academy.[4] Eliza Hart Spalding, part of the Whitman Mission, was its first teacher.[citation needed] Although the university has long been independent of their founding affiliation with the United Church of Christ (UCC), it still maintains a close working relationship with the church as a member of the United Church of Christ Council for Higher Education.

The academy was officially chartered by the territorial legislature on September 29, 1849.[4][6] The reverend Clark served as the first president of the board of trustees and later donated an additional 150 acres (60.7 ha) to the institution.[6] In 1851, what is now Old College Hall was built and in 1853 Sidney H. Marsh became the school's first president.[4] The current campus was deeded in 1851.[7] In 1854, the institution became Pacific University.[5] The first commencement occurred in 1863 with Harvey W. Scott as the only graduate.[4] In 1872, three Japanese students started at the university as part of that country's modernization movement, with all three graduating in 1876.[4] These students were Hatstara Tamura, Kin Saito, and Yei Nosea.[4] President Marsh died in 1879 and was replaced by John R. Herrick.[6]

Marsh Hall was built in 1895 and named for Pacific's first president, serving as the central building on Pacific's campus. Carnegie Library (now Carnegie Hall) opened in 1912 after Andrew Carnegie's foundation helped finance the brick structure.[8] The library was designed by Portland architecture firm Whidden and Lewis.[9] In 1915, the preparatory department, Tualatin Academy, closed due to the proliferation of public high schools in the state.[6] By 1920, the school had grown to a total of five buildings on 30 acres (12.1 ha) and had an endowment of approximately $250,000.[6]

Marsh Hall was gutted by fire in 1975, but its shell was preserved, and the structure reopened in 1977. Dr. Phillip D. Creighton became Pacific's sixteenth president in August 2003 and retired in June 2009.[10] Tommy Thayer, lead guitarist of the band KISS, was elected to the university's board of trustees in 2005.[11] Pacific's seventeenth president, Dr. Lesley M. Hallick, was named on May 19, 2009.[12]


In the late 1890s, a bronze Chinese statue was gifted to the university in 1896 by alumnus Rev. J.E. Walker, a missionary to China, and his mother.[13] Qilin (pronounced chee-lin or ki-rin) is a mythical Chinese creature with a lion-like stance, a unicorn-like horn, and deer or ox hooves from the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). During this period, qilin were often represented with a dragon head, fish scales, ox hooves and a lion's tail. Said to be a good omen of wisdom and prosperity, the Pacific qilin was nicknamed Boxer by its Chinese and Japanese students as an embodiment of the community's cultural diversity.[13]

In the first half of the twentieth century, the original mascot was the center of informal "Boxer Toss" events, where different clubs and groups would scrimmage for the statue as a tradition of passing its care from one group to another.[14] In 1968, Boxer became the official mascot of the university to replace Benny Badger.[13] The following year, the statue disappeared entirely, and only small pieces of have returned over the years. In the 1980s, the statue was recast as Boxer II; after supposedly enjoying an epic road trip across America, it too disappeared in the mid-2000s.[15]

In 2006, the university commissioned a 12-foot tall sculpture to replace the missing Boxers, which now stands in a central park welcoming students to the residence halls.[13] Shortly thereafter, parts of the original Boxer statue were returned to the university by an alumnus in 2012.[13] In 2018, alumni funded the design and casting of Boxer III by artist Pat Costello, unveiled during Homecoming weekend. Kept in trust as part of the university's art collection, the statue and exhibits on its cultural and community history are on display in the Tran Library.[15]


File:Taylor-Meade Performing Arts Center.jpg

Performing Arts Center

Pacific is home to 5 colleges offering undergraduate, graduate, and professional programs.

College of Arts & Sciences

Organized into 3 schools—Arts & Humanities, Natural Sciences, Social Sciences—the college offers over sixty undergraduate degree options, including unique options in Asia-Pacific Studies, Communication Sciences & Disorders, Creative Writing, Editing and Publishing, Music Therapy, Outdoor Leadership, Nonprofit Leadership, Social Work, and a suite of sustainability-centered art and science programs. The low-residency Masters of Fine Arts in Writing program, one of the earliest in the nation having begun in 2004, has been ranked by Poets & Writers magazine as one of the top five low-residency MFA programs in the United States every year in which rankings were established.[16] Pacific also opened a Master of Social Work program, based in Eugene, in 2014.[17]

College of Business

One of the newsiest colleges, founded in 2013, it offers Accounting, Business Administration, Finance, International Business, and Marketing, as well as an MBA.[18]

College of Education

In 1994, the School of Education, now the College of Education, was established through reorganization of the professional teacher education programs that had been part of the College of Arts and Sciences.[19] In 2004, the College of Health Professions was formed, now including 4 undergraduate programs in Education & Learning, Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, Teaching & English Language Learning (BEd), and Communication Sciences & Disorders; and 7 graduate programs comprising Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT), Master of Arts in Education (MAEd), Master of Education (MEd), Visual Function in Learning (MEd), Education & Leadership (PhD), Communication Sciences & Disorders (Post-Bacc), and Speech-Language Pathology (MS).

College of Health Professions

Founded in 2006 (though several of its programs date back further), the College includes 13 different degree programs—Applied Psychological Science (MA), Athletic Training (MSAT), Audiology (AuD), Clinical Psychology (PhD/PsyD), Dental Hygiene (BS), Education & Leadership (PhD), Health Science (BHS), Healthcare Administration (MHA), Occupational Therapy (OTD), Pharmacy (PharmD), Physical Therapy (DPT), Physician Assistant Studies (MS)—as well as a certification in Gerontology. Most courses and clinics are located on the Hillsboro campus, where the curricula focuses on interprofessional cooperation, and students gain practice in caring for underserved populations.[20]

College of Optometry

One of the oldest colleges, programs include Optometry (OD), Vision Science (BS/MS/PhD), Applied Vision Science (BAVS), and Visual Function in Learning (MEd). The College is one of 21 schools in the United States and Canada offering a doctorate in optometry.[21] Pacific's program dates back to 1945, when Pacific merged with the North Pacific College of Optometry. Pacific's College of Optometry also offers a master of vision science degree and operates eye clinic and eyeglass dispensaries in communities throughout the Portland area.[22]


File:Carnegie Hall Pacific University.JPG

Carnegie Hall

Pacific University is located on four campuses across the state of Oregon in the cities of Forest Grove, Hillsboro, Eugene, and Woodburn.[23] It also maintains satellite locations in downtown Portland and Honolulu, Hawai'i. Pacific's Eugene Campus is a single building which houses a portion of the College of Education; in 2013, Pacific opened a campus in Woodburn to provide further undergraduate and graduate programs in Education.

Forest Grove

The Forest Grove Campus features several historic buildings. Old College Hall is the oldest educational building west of the Mississippi and today serves as Pacific University's museum.[24] Carnegie Hall, the university's first dedicated library building, was constructed in 1912 and today is home to the undergraduate Psychology Department.[25] Marsh Hall, at the center of campus, houses several classrooms and faculty offices, in addition to administrative offices and a small auditorium. The Forest Grove Campus opened a new residence hall, Cascade Hall, in 2014.[26]

The Forest Grove Campus is home to a number os sustainability initiatives in its infrastructure, earning a Silver Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System (STARS) rating in 2019.[27] There are several buildings with Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification, including the Tim and Cathy Tran library, built in 2005 and remodeled with more study rooms and makers space in 2019. The LEED-certified Berglund Hall,[28] houses the College of Education and a community preschool, and the additional LEED Gold-certified residence halls, Burlingham and Gilbert.[29]

The Bill & Cathy Stoller Center is home to all of the university's intercollegiate athletic teams, athletic offices and the Department of Exercise Science. It features more than 95,000 square feet of floor space, including team rooms, locker rooms, classrooms, a wood-floor gymnasium, a weight and fitness center and the Fieldhouse, the first indoor practice area in the Northwest Conference and the only one with FieldTurf.[30] Outside the Stoller Center is the entrance to Hanson Stadium, which includes a FieldTurf soccer, lacrosse and football surface, a nine-lane track and grandstands.[31] A new roof was built to cover the stadium grandstands in 2014.[32] The stadium is part of the Lincoln Park Athletic Complex, built in 2008, which also houses the baseball complex, Chuck Bafaro Stadium at Bond Field, the softball complex, Sherman/Larkins Stadium, and natural grass fields for soccer and track throwing events, and is part of the City of Forest Grove's Lincoln Park, also home to a fitness trail, playground equipment, a BMX course, a skateboard park and picnic areas.[33]


The Hillsboro Campus opened in 2006 with its first building, a five-story LEED Gold-certified building in Hillsboro in 2006,[34] which was dedicated as Creighton Hall.[35] A second building, known as HPC2 and also LEED-certified, opened in 2010.[36] The campus is part of the Hillsboro Health & Education District and is adjacent to the MAX light rail line. Currently home primarily to Pacific University's College of Health Professions, the campus houses several masters- and doctorate-level programs in Health Professions, as well as clinics, open to the public, for audiology, dental hygiene, physical therapy and professional psychology, as well as an interdisciplinary diabetes clinic and an eye clinic run by the Pacific University College of Optometry. The Virginia Garcia Memorial Health Center also has a clinic and pharmacy on site.[20]


The Eugene Campus opened in 1992 offering undergraduate and graduate programs in the College of Education. In 2014, the College of Arts & Sciences added a master of social work (MSW) program to the site.


Located in one of the most diverse and fast-growing communities in Oregon, the Campus opened in 2012 to offer professional pathways in education with a focus on STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) and teaching diverse students. The 5,000 square foot, 14-room Victorian home of Woodburn founder, nurseryman Jesse Settlemier's, is the heart of two degree programs in Education.


The MFA in Writing program maintains an office in Portland's Pearl District in the period between residencies—during winter held at Seaside, Oregon and in the summer in Forest Grove, Oregon. In addition, 6 locations of the Optometry college-affiliated Pacific Eye Clinic and a mobile unit are dispersed across the Portland-metro area.[37]

File:Pacific University.jpg

180° panorama of the campus in Forest Grove

Student life


In part due to its proximity to the arts scene in Portland, the campus has a thriving writing and performance community.


  • Boxer Radio: The Sound of Pacific


In addition to Pacific University Press and its two imprints founded in 2015, Tualatin Books and 1849 Editions, campus-based print publications include

  • Heart of Oak, an annual yearbook (1894–)
  • IJURCA: International Journal of Undergraduate Research & Creative Activities, a peer-reviewed, open-access research journal (2010–)
  • The Pacific Index, the student newspaper (1893–)
  • PLUM: Pacific's Literature by Undergraduate's Magazine and writing prizes (2007–)
  • PU Stinker, a humor magazine (1948–1954)
  • Silk Road Review: A Literary Crossroads, an internationally-distributed literary magazine (2006–)

Greek life

File:Proof of AC Gilbert.jpg

A. C. Gilbert as a young fraternity man at Pacific University in 1902

All of the Greek societies at Pacific University are "local", meaning that they are unique to the campus.[38]

Academic Societies

  • ΨΧ - Psi Chi
  • ΣΤΔ - Sigma Tau Delta


  • ГΣ - Gamma Sigma
  • ΑΖ - Alpha Zeta
  • ΠΚΡ - Pi Kappa Rho


  • ΑΚΔ - Alpha Kappa Delta
  • ΘΝΑ - Theta Nu Alpha
  • ΦΛΟ - Phi Lambda Omicron
  • ΔΧΔ - Delta Chi Delta


Pacific was one of the founding members of the Northwest Conference in 1926. Today, men compete in baseball, basketball, cross country, football, golf, soccer, swimming, tennis, track and field, and wrestling. Women's programs include basketball, cross country, golf, lacrosse, rowing, softball, soccer, swimming, tennis, track and field, and wrestling.

Pacific's women's wrestling program is one of just five varsity programs sponsored by a college in the United States.[39] The team competed as part of the women's division of the National Collegiate Wrestling Association, which began competition in 2007.

One of the most decorated sports at Pacific is handball, begun in 1977 under English Professor Michael Steele. Since 1981, the Boxers have appeared in 39 consecutive collegiate national tournaments and captured numerous individual and team national championships. In 2019, the team added 5 more national titles to its record at the United States Handball Association National Collegiate Championships.[40]

In addition to the amenities of the Stoller Center and Lincoln Park Athletic Complex, Pacific also has indoor and outdoor tennis courts [41] on campus and shares a competition-size pool with the City of Forest Grove.[42]



Pacific University is consistently named among the top regional colleges and universities in the west by U.S. News & World Report, Forbes, and The Princeton Review.[43]

In 2019, Pacific was ranked the top private research university in the Pacific Northwestby the National Science Foundation ahead of all other private colleges and universities based in Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Alaska.[44] It also put Pacific in the top-ten in the Far West, alongside research stalwarts Stanford University and the University of Southern California.

University rankings
Liberal arts colleges
U.S. News & World Report[45] 48
U.S. News & World Report[46] 21
Master's University class
Washington Monthly[47] 219

Notable people


Pacific's undergraduate faculty includes Jules Boykoff, a political scientist, poet, and activist focusing on the politics of the Olympic games. The MFA faculty has including award-winning writers such as Kwame Dawes, Tyehimba Jess, Dorianne Laux, Marvin Bell, Ellen Bass, and Garth Greenwell, among others.


  • Shirley Abbott '52, OD '53 – American ambassador, optometrist, and dairyman
  • Les AuCoin '69 – U.S. Representative for Oregon's First Congressional District (1975–1992)
  • William A. Barton '69 – personal injury attorney and author
  • Loren Cordain '74 – research scientist specializing in nutrition and exercise physiology
  • Rick Dancerjournalist and politician[48]
  • Dick Daniels – former NFL player
  • Daniel Gault (Tualatin Academy) – state legislator, educator, and journalist[49]
  • Alfred Carlton Gilbert 1902 (Tualatin Academy) – Olympian and inventor of the Erector Set
  • Tim Hauck – former NFL player
  • David G. Hebert '94 – musicologist, musician, and professor
  • Lynn Hellersteinoptometrist, speaker, and author, best known for her work in the field of vision therapy
  • William A. Hilliard '52 – journalist and editor of The Oregonian
  • Augustus C. Kinney – longtime physician in Astoria, Oregon, and noted expert on tuberculosis at the turn of the 20th century[50][51]
  • Mike Kreidler '66, OD '69 – Washington state U.S. Representative and State Insurance Commissioner
  • Gregg Lambert '83 – philosopher and literary theorist
  • Olaus Murie 1912 – conservationist and mammalogist
  • Tela O'Donnell '05 – Olympic wrestler
  • Robert T. Oliver '32 – author, professor, and scholar, with over 50 books on Asian rhetorical traditions in the field of Intercultural Communication
  • Carol Pott '86 – author, editor, and vocalist
  • Harvey W. Scott 1863 – first graduate of Pacific, editor of The Oregonian
  • Thomas H. Tongue 1868 – U.S. Representative for Oregon's First Congressional District
  • Calvin Leroy Van Pelt '49 – World War II veteran
  • Nancy Wilson (non-degree, '76) – lead guitarist and vocalist in the classic rock group Heart

Film Location

Due to the year-round warm weather and idyllic Pacific Northwest greenery made famous in Twin Peaks, Stand By Me, The Goonies, and the Twilight films, Pacific is regularly used as a shooting location for television serials. Described as a ″a picture perfect little town,″[52] works have included

  • C.O.G. (2012)[53]
  • The Cops are Robbers (1990)[54]
  • In The Vault television series based on the Lovecraft short story (2018)[55]
  • The Librarians (2015-2017)[56]
  • Nowhere Man (1995–1996)[54]
  • Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionists (2019– )[57]
  • Zero Effect (1998)[54]


  1. Lang, Joe (2018-11-13). "Pacific University Enrollment Edges Closer to Year 2020 Goal". Pacific University (Forest Grove, OR).
  2. "University Faculty". Pacific University.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Hastings, Terry (1980). Joe Montalbano. ed. Hillsboro: My Home Town. Hillsboro Elementary School District 7.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 Horner, John B. Oregon: Her History, Her Great Men, Her Literature. Corvallis, OR: Gazette-Times, 1919; pp. 159-160.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Carey, Charles Henry. (1922). History of Oregon. Pioneer Historical Publishing Co. p. 340, 350, 507, 724.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 Bates, Henry L. (March 1920). "Pacific University". The Quarterly of the Oregon Historical Society 21 (1): 1–12.
  7. Deed, April 3, 1851, Washington Country, Oregon
  8. "Carnegie Hall". The Council of Independent Colleges. November 2006. Retrieved November 4, 2008.
  9. Template:Oregon Encyclopedia
  10. Christensen, Nick. “Search on for new Pacific University president : Creighton led university's growth, within Forest Grove and east to Hillsboro”, The Hillsboro Argus, September 22, 2008.
  11. Tommy Thayer Goes To College - Board Approved. Lua error in package.lua at line 80: module 'Module:Webarchive/data' not found. Retrieved on September 15, 2007.
  12. OHSU provost says she's eager to take helm at Pacific University. News-Times. Retrieved on August 10, 2009.
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 13.3 13.4 Guggemos, Eva. "Pacific University Mascot, Boxer". Pacific University. Retrieved 23 June 2019.
  14. Guggemos, Eva; Stig, Ashley. "Digital Exhibit: Boxer, Pacific's Mascot". Pacific University Archives. Retrieved 23 June 2019.
  15. 15.0 15.1 Francis, Mike (29 October 2018). "Boxer III Comes Home". Pacific University. Retrieved 23 June 2019.
  16. Staff (2011-09-01). "2012 MFA Rankings: The Low-Residency Top Ten". Poets & Writers.
  17. "New Master of Social Work program at Pacific University will focus on Latino community". OregonLive. 2014-09-17.
  18. "Pacific University adds College of Business". Portland Business Journal. 2013-01-07.
  19. "History of Pacific University". Pacific University.
  20. 20.0 20.1 "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2008-11-16. Retrieved 2008-11-05.
  21. "Member Schools and Colleges".
  22. "Pacific University College of Optometry". The Oregon Encyclopedia. Oregon Historical Society. 2018-03-17.
  23. "University News".
  24. "History of Pacific University". May 30, 2014.
  25. "University News".
  26. "Pacific University's new Cascade Hall welcomes students in style with lounge areas, waterfall mural (photos)".
  27. Score Card: Pacific University 2018 (Report). Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education. 2018-12-20. Retrieved 2019-05-27.
  28. Berglund Hall Receives LEED Gold Rating. Pacific University. Retrieved on November 4, 2008.
  29. "Buildings & Grounds".
  30. "Pacific's Stoller Center Fieldhouse goes 'all-weather'".
  31. "Pacific University Athletics".
  32. "Pacific University Athletics".
  33. "Forest Grove's Lincoln Park grows by 3 acres after city land purchase".
  34. DJC Staff. "SRG designs second LEED Gold building", Daily Journal of Commerce, January 15, 2008,
  35. Hungerford, Kelley (July 29, 2009). "‘Dr. Phil’ leaves legacy from Forest Grove to Hillsboro". News-Times. Retrieved November 17, 2012.
  36. Dan Carter. "Pacific University expanding Hillsboro campus". Daily Journal of Commerce.
  37. "Pacific EyeClinics". Pacific University.
  38. Greek Life FAQ Lua error in package.lua at line 80: module 'Module:Webarchive/data' not found..
  39. "Make It 5 Women's Wrestling Teams", Lua error in package.lua at line 80: module 'Module:Webarchive/data' not found. Chicago Sun-Times, Retrieved on November 26, 2008.
  40. Lang, Joe (2019-02-27). "Boxer Handball Adds to Legacy at USHA National Collegiate Championships". Pacific University (Forest Grove, OR).
  41. "Pacific University Athletics".
  42. "Pacific University Athletics".
  43. "Pacific University".
  44. Gibbons, Michael T. (2018-11-01). Higher Education Research and Development Survey (HERD) (Report). National Science Foundation. Retrieved 2019-05-27.
  45. "Liberal Arts Colleges Rankings". America's Best Colleges 2012. U.S. News & World Report. September 13, 2011. Retrieved September 25, 2011.
  46. "Regional Universities Rankings". America's Best Colleges 2012. U.S. News & World Report. September 13, 2011. Retrieved September 25, 2011.
  47. "The Washington Monthly Master's University Rankings". The Washington Monthly. 2011. Retrieved October 6, 2011.
  48. E. Harger III, Stover (July 2, 2008). "Politician, Pacific alum to march in Hillsboro’s holiday parade Friday". The Forest Grove News-Times. Retrieved November 17, 2012.
  49. Republican Party (U.S. : 1854- ), and Republican League of Oregon (1896). Republican League Register, a Record of the Republican Party in the State of Oregon. Register Pub. Co.. p. 1874.
  50. "Obituary". Medical Sentinel 16: 196. 1908.
  51. Corning, Howard M. (1989) (in English). Dictionary of Oregon History. Binfords & Mort. pp. 135.
  52. Turnquist, Kristi (2019-02-06). "Oregon ideal location for 'twisty mystery' of 'Pretty Little Liars' spinoff, producer says". The Oregonian / OregonLive.
  53. House, Kelly (2012-11-05). "Camera crews spotted in Forest Grove are filming David Sedaris movie adaptation, not 'Grimm'". The Oregonian / OregonLive.
  54. 54.0 54.1 54.2 Centers, Ken (2014-08-15). "Hollywood in the Grove: 4 films and TV shows filmed in Forest Grove".
  55. "TV Show Films on Forest Grove Campus in August". Pacific University (Forest Grove, OR). 2018-07-31.
  56. Swindler, Samantha (2015-12-14). "Free screening of 'The Librarians' episode filmed in Forest Grove at Forest Theater". The Oregonian / OregonLive.
  57. Singer, Olivia (2019-04-03). "TV episode filmed at Pacific University airs on Freeform". Hillsboro Tribune (Hillsboro, OR).

Further reading

External links

Template:United Church of Christ Colleges