Ohio Northern University
|Ohio Northern University|
|Religious affiliation||United Methodist Church|
|President||Daniel DiBiasio (since August 1, 2011)|
|Location||Ada, Ohio, USA|
|Latin motto||"Ex Diversitate Vires"|
|Colors||Orange, Black, White
Ohio Northern University is a private, United Methodist Church-affiliated university located in the United States in Ada, Ohio, founded by Henry Solomon Lehr in 1871. ONU is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission and the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. ONU is a sister university with Dankook University, a private university in Seoul, South Korea. In 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2013 U.S. News & World Report listed Ohio Northern as regional universities midwest, #2, though there are Midwest universities that are ranked equivalently to or higher than Ohio Northern University in the complete United States University rankings.
- 1 History
- 2 Academic programs
- 3 Athletics
- 4 Notable alumni
- 5 References
- 6 External links
Henry Solomon Lehr, a former soldier in the American Civil War, became the schoolmaster for the Ada public school in 1866. Lehr began offering additional courses in the evenings to motivated students to cover topics beyond the standard curriculum. After five years, he approached the town about starting a college. In August 1871, the Northwestern Ohio Normal School started with nearly 150 students attending classes in downtown stores and local churches until the first classroom building was completed in October. Lehr built the college, and was involved in all activities, including teaching, construction of buildings, faculty selection and curriculum design. In the post-civil war period, the school’s focus was on training individuals to become public school teachers. By the mid-1880s, the school’s curriculum had expanded to include programs in pharmacy, engineering, law, and business. In 1885, the school trustees changed the name to Ohio Normal University to reflect the expanded aspirations and scope.
President Lehr’s educational philosophy emphasized low tuition, flexible schedule and curriculum, and allowed women as students and faculty. To secure the school’s future, Lehr tried to secure state support for the school, but when that failed, he arranged to transfer the school to the United Methodist Church. When the transfer was completed in 1899, he was succeeded by Dr. Leroy Belt in 1900, and then by Dr. Albert Edwin Smith in 1905.
Growth and struggle
Between 1900 and 1930, the school grew and was re-organized administratively. During this period, the name changed to Ohio Northern University. A medical school and agriculture school were started, but subsequently closed. As high schools became more common in Ohio, ONU closed its preparatory program, which had allowed students to prepare for college. Dr. Smith traveled extensively on behalf of the school, and secured donations of nearly $500,000 for the first endowment fund. Fraternities had continued presence on campus, and Smith fought to maintain the student code which forbids smoking and drinking.
During the Great Depression and World War II, the school struggled financially as student enrollment dropped. Dr. Robert Williams introduced economy measures by reducing the administrative staff and combining academic programs. During the war years, the university participated in government programs supporting the Army Air Corps and Navy. In the 1940s, both the yearbook and student newspaper ceased publication, a classroom building was closed, and intercollegiate sports were suspended. President McClure served his first year without pay and many of the faculty went unpaid or on reduced salaries.
Post-war education boom
In 1944, the G.I. Bill enabled veteran military servicemen to attend college across the country. ONU received an influx of students in fall of 1945, and which continued for several years, straining the local housing and forcing the university, under the leadership of Dr. Robert McClure, to add trailers and student dormitories. By 1949, Dr. F. Bringle McIntosh shifted the school’s focus from survival to enhancing academic programs and securing accreditation. During the following years, individual programs were accredited and in 1958 the North Central Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools accredited the undergraduate program.
Throughout the 1960s, a number of ONU students and faculty/staff participated in the American Civil Rights Movement. ONU hosted Dr. Martin Luther King on January 11, 1968, four days before his 39th birthday and just three months before his assassination. During his visit at ONU, Dr. King famously spoke regarding the myth that many immigrant and/or ethnic groups successfully pulled themselves up by their bootstraps, whereas African Americans were incapable of doing so.
Under Dr. Samuel Lewis Meyer and Dr. Ray B. Loeschner, the university continued to expand its campus and curriculum, enjoying financial stability from steadily increasing enrollment. In the 1970s, new buildings included the Heterick Memorial Library, the Tilton College of Law and Taggart Law Library, the Wesley Center, the Young Building for Philosophy and Religion, the Biggs Engineering Building, the King-Horn Convocation Center, ONU Sports Center, Park Hall, two McIntosh extensions, along with refurbishing the Taft Building, the Wilson Art Center, and the Meyer Hall of Science. Five national honorary societies established chapters on campus, student organizations grew, and intercollegiate athletic teams expanded.
Growth continued under Dr. DeBow Freed through the 1980s and 1990s with additions to the Taggart Law Library, Presser Hall, Dukes Memorial, Wilson Art Building, Biggs Engineering, Heterick Memorial Library, and Meyer Hall of Science, and the construction of the Freed Center for the Performing Arts and a new president’s on-campus home. Under Dr. Kendall Baker, campus additions include Dicke Hall, an expansion of the Robertson-Evans Pharmacy building, and the Dial-Roberson Stadium. Current construction projects include the Mathile Center for the Natural Sciences annex connecting Meyer Hall of Science with the Pharmacy building and a comprehensive renovation of all on-campus housing. In 2008, Ohio Northern University built and opened The Inn at Ohio Northern University, which contains over 70 deluxe guestrooms.
Starting in the early 1980s, the university provided computer services to a growing segment of the university’s population, expanding from a centralized mainframe to networked personal computers and a computer network. ONU joined OhioLINK and technology revolutionized academic administrative activities and supported classroom activities. With the addition of the Internet, the university began offering its first distance learning courses in the pharmacy program. Today, there are over 1,200 networked computers and Internet access on campus.
ONU in the 21st Century
Ohio Northern is ranked second among midwest regional colleges by the U.S. News & World Report. It is considered "more selective", with an acceptance rate of 81.0%. It has an 48% 4-year graduation rate.
More recently, the university has commenced a search for a new president with the announcement that Dr. Kendall L. Baker will retire effective August 2011. On February 4, 2010, ONU announced that its board of trustees approved the nomination of Daniel A. DiBiasio, president of Wilmington College to become the new president of Ohio Northern. DiBiasio assumed his duties on August 1, 2011.
- In the 2006–07 academic year, in an effort to reduce wasted resources the university instituted a printing policy, whereby each student was allocated $30 to use throughout the year. The cost of printing one page is four cents.
- As of 2009, approximately 30% of the campus uses geothermal heating and cooling.
- In 2010, three 220 feet tall wind turbines were constructed. Each turbine generates 400 kilowatts of power and the three turbines will meet five to ten percent of the University's electricity needs.
The university comprises five colleges:
- Getty College of Arts and Sciences - official site
- James F. Dicke College of Business Administration - official site
- T.J. Smull College of Engineering - official site
- Rudolph H. Raabe College of Pharmacy - official site
- Claude W. Pettit College of Law (established 1885) - official site
ONU students participate in intercollegiate, intramural, and sports clubs in a variety of sports. The ONU Polar Bears compete in the Division III Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC). The men's volleyball team participates in the Midwest Intercollegiate Volleyball Association in the Great Midwest Men's Volleyball Conference.
- The school mascot is a polar bear named Klondike.
- The ONU varsity football team defeated Mount Union College in 2005 to snap the Purple Raiders 110-game regular season winning streak.
- The ONU varsity men's swim team won their 7th straight OAC Conference Championship in 2011.
- The ONU women's volleyball team continues their NCAA All-Divisions record 33 consecutive winning seasons (1976–present)
NCAA runner-up finishes
- 1989 Women's Volleyball NCAA Division III Runners-up
- 2012 Men's Soccer NCAA Division III Runners-up 
NCAA Final Four appearances
- 2001 Men's Basketball NCAA Division III Final Four
- 2008 Women's Volleyball NCAA Division III Final Four
Club sport championship
- 2007 Men's Volleyball NIRSA Division II National Champions
- Anthony A. Alaimo, jurist
- Frank T. Bow, jurist and politician who was honored by naming the Frank T. Bow Federal Building in Canton, Ohio.
- James Cloyd Bowman, a children's book author who received a Newbery Honor in 1938 for Pecos Bill: The Greatest Cowboy of All Time.
- Benjamin Brafman, a prominent criminal defense attorney based in New York.
- William J. Brown, former Ohio Attorney General (1971–1983).
- J. Aaron Lecklider, 2013 WWA Wakeboard World Champion
- Drew Ater, Former Baseball Great
- George Crile, founder of the Cleveland Clinic and inventor of the system for blood transfusion.
- Robert R. Cupp, Ohio Supreme Court Justice.
- Mike DeWine, a politician who served as a U.S. Senator from Ohio between 1995 and 2007.
- Simeon Davison Fess, a Republican politician a former president of Antioch College.
- John W. Grabiel, Arkansas Republican gubernatorial nominee in 1922 and 1924; Ohio native, attorney in Fayetteville, Arkansas, until his death in 1928
- Stacey Hairston, former Cleveland Browns player.
- Robert Franklin Jones, graduated with a law degree. Served as Allen County (Ohio) prosecuting attorney, 1935 - 1939. Elected in 1938 to the Seventy-sixth U.S. Congress, and elected for three subsequent terms to Congress, serving from 1939 - 1947. Appointed Commissioner of the Federal Communications Commission, serving from 1947 - 1952.
- J.E. Keeny, studied music at Ohio Northern. Served as president of Louisiana Tech University, 1908-1926
- George E. Killian, a sports administrator and a president of the International University Sports Federation.
- Cassius Jackson Keyser, a mathematician.
- Clayton Mathile, former owner of Iams pet food.
- Bruce Mays, Director of Operations for the Dallas Cowboys.
- Bill Peterson, former head football coach at Florida State, Rice University, and with the Houston Oilers.
- Bob Peterson, story artist, animator and voice actor.
- Joseph Banks Rhine, founder of the parapsychology lab at Duke University
- Jamal Robertson, NFL football player.
- Ralph L. Ropp (Class of 1923), president of Louisiana Tech University from 1949 to 1962
- Brian Smith, Chief Operating Officer of St. Rita's Health Partners and CEO of Catholic Health Partners' North Division
- Michael B. Smith, President of The Washington Center.
- Baldemar Velasquez, is president of the Farm Labor Organizing Committee, AFL-CIO.
- Laurence Neal Woodworth, Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Tax Policy in 1977
- Jim Wilson (Los Angeles), city council member, studied pharmacy
- Jason Trusnik, NFL football player. Currently plays for the Miami Dolphins.
- D. Michael Crites, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio in the administrations of Presidents Reagan and Bush
- As of June 30, 2009. "U.S. and Canadian Institutions Listed by Fiscal Year 2009 Endowment Market Value and Percentage Change in Endowment Market Value from FY 2008 to FY 2009" (PDF). 2009 NACUBO-Commonfund Study of Endowments. National Association of College and University Business Officers. Archived from the original on 2010-02-23. Retrieved March 8, 2010.
- "America’s Best Colleges 2007:Comprehensive Colleges-Bachelor's (Midwest): Top Schools". Retrieved January 1, 2007.
- "ONU ranked No. 2 by U.S. News and World Report". Retrieved September 23, 2012.
- Digital Repository of Dr. King's visit to ONU, including original audio file, press releases, and transcript of his speech.[dead link]
- - Excerpts of Dr. King's ONU Speech regarding the Bootstrapping Myth
- http://mlk-kpp01.stanford.edu/index.php/home/pages?page=http://mlk-kpp01.stanford.edu/kingweb/publications/inventory/inv_11.htm Stanford University, Martin Luther King, Jr. Research and Education Institute - Inventory of Dr. King's Speeches in 1968
- "The Inn at Ohio Northern University". Retrieved July 6, 2010.
- "Ohio Northern University | Best College | US News". Colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com. Retrieved 2013-11-18.
- "Ohio Northern University | Academic Life | Best College | US News". Colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com. Retrieved 2013-11-18.
- President of Ohio Northern University Announces Retirement.
- "New ONU leader deals with funding, future issues". Toledo Blade. 9 November 2011. Retrieved 22 October 2012.
- "Ohio Northern University at universities.com". Retrieved 21 August 2006.
- "History of the ONU Pettit College of Law". Archived from the original on 2 September 2006. Retrieved 21 August 2006.
- "Ohio Northern University Student Senate: " A New Bear in Town"".
- "USA Today.com: Mount Union's 110-game regular season winning streak snapped". 2005-10-24. Retrieved 2010-05-20.
- "Ohio Northern". Onu.edu. Retrieved 2013-11-18.
- Volleyball | Ohio Northern University
- D3hoops.com: 1993 Men's NCAA Tournament Results[dead link]
- Athletics | Ohio Northern University
- "Season Review: Men's Soccer caps off record breaking season with run to NCAA III Tournament Championship". Onusports.com. 2013-01-16. Retrieved 2013-11-18.
- The 2001 Division III men's tournament[dead link]
- No. 2 Emory snaps No. 8 Volleyball's 27-match winning streak in five-set marathon to advance to NCAA Championship Finals | Ohio Northern University
- http://www.onu.edu/org/mensvb/[dead link]
- Little Big Man
- Benjamin Brafman[dead link]
- "Ohio Attorney General - William J. Brown". Archived from the original on 19 May 2008. Retrieved 27 August 2008.
- Mike DeWine - Congresspedia
- "John W. Grabiel". ebooksread.com. Retrieved August 23, 2012.
- "Keeny, John Ephraim". Louisiana Historical Association, A Dictionary of Louisiana Biography (lahistory.org). Retrieved December 27, 2010.
- "TAXES: Taking Aim at a 'Disgrace'". Time. 1977-07-04. Retrieved 2010-05-20.
|Wikisource has the text of the 1921 Collier's Encyclopedia article Ohio Northern University.|
- Official website
- Official athletics website
- Polar Bears in the Pros
- Ohio Athletic Conference.
- President Lehr memoirs
- Ohio Northern - Official YouTube Channel
- Ohio Northern University - TWITTER feed
- Facebook - Ohio Northern University