The History of USAO

USAO History

Celebrating a century of service as Oklahoma's only public liberal arts college, the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma – nationally ranked for quality and value – is a recognized leader and innovator in interdisciplinary studies.

Like the best private liberal arts colleges, USAO offers small classes, award-winning faculty committed to teaching (91 percent have the terminal degree), and a campus culture that fosters close faculty-student interaction and undergraduate research opportunities. USAO dedicates itself to educating the whole student, encourages personal development through public service, and offers nationally ranked teams in five sports.

The college was founded in 1908 as a women's institution, Oklahoma College for Women (OCW), the first college created by Oklahoma's first legislature. USAO is one of only seven state institutions with similar missions ever created in the United States. Other than the University of Oklahoma, USAO has the oldest original mission of any state college or university in Oklahoma. Located in Chickasha, USAO is the only Oklahoma college to be named a National Historic District on the National Register of Historic Places.

For a more detailed look into USAO history, click on the links below.

Early Years (1908-1911)

OCW Growth (1912-1964)

Change to OCLA (1965-1974)

Becoming USAO (1975-2000)

USAO Proud (2000-present)