University of Central Oklahoma
|University of Central Oklahoma|
|Provost||William J. Radke|
|Location||Edmond, Oklahoma, United States ())|
|Campus||Urban, 210 acres (0.85 km2)|
|Colors||Bronze and Blue|
|Affiliations||NCAA Division II, Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association|
The University of Central Oklahoma, often referred to as UCO, is a coeducational public university located in Edmond, Oklahoma. The university is the third largest in Oklahoma, with almost 18,000 students and approximately 434 full-time and 400 adjunct faculty. Founded in 1890, the University of Central Oklahoma was one of the first institutions of higher learning to be established in what would become the state of Oklahoma, making it one of the oldest universities in the southwest region of the United States of America. It is home to the American branch of the British Academy of Contemporary Music in Downtown Oklahoma City, directed by noted indie music agent and manager Scott Booker. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recognized the University of Central Oklahoma as the 2009-2010 Individual Conference Champion for using more green power than any other school in the Lone Star Conference.
The University of Central Oklahoma was founded on December 24, 1890, when the Territorial Legislature voted to establish the Territorial Normal School, making UCO the oldest public institution of higher education in Oklahoma. Classes were first held in November 1891. By comparison, Oklahoma A&M College (now Oklahoma State University) held its first classes in December 1891 and the University of Oklahoma began in fall 1892.
The Territorial Legislature located the new school in Edmond, provided certain conditions were met. First, Oklahoma County had to donate $5,000 in bonds, and Edmond had to donate 40 acres (160,000 m2) of land within one mile (1.6 km) of the town; the land was eventually donated by Anton Classen. Ten of those acres had to be set aside for the new school. The remaining land had to be divided into lots which would be sold to raise money for the new school. On Oct. 1, 1891 Richard Thatcher was elected the 1st President of Territorial Normal School of Oklahoma.
|Territorial Normal School of Oklahoma 1890-1903|
|Central State Normal School 1904-1918|
|Central State Teachers College 1919-1938|
|Central State College 1939-1970|
|Central State University 1971-1991|
|University of Central Oklahoma 1991–present|
The conditions all were met, with the city of Edmond donating an additional $2,000 in bonds. The first class, a group of 23 students, met for the first time Nov. 1, 1891, in the Epworth League Room, located in the unfurnished First Methodist Church. A marker of Oklahoma granite was placed in 1915 near the original site by the Central Oklahoma Normal School Historical Society. It can be seen at Boulevard and Second Street.
Old North Tower was the first building constructed in the summer of 1892 on the campus of what was then Territorial Normal School. Occupancy began Jan. 3, 1893. The school first operated as a normal school with two years of college work and a complete preparatory school. In 1897, the first graduating class—two men and three women—received their Normal School diplomas.
In 1904, Territorial Normal became Central State Normal School. Statehood was still three years away. On Dec. 29, 1919, the State Board of Education passed a resolution making Central a four-year teachers’ college conferring bachelor's degrees. From 1901 until 1961, UCO housed a laboratory school in which local elementary schoolchildren were schooled by UCO faculty and soon-to-be teaching graduates.
Two years later, the Class of 1921 had nine members, the first graduates to receive the four-year degrees. Two decades later, Central State Teacher's College became Central State College. In 1939, the Oklahoma Legislature authorized the institution to grant both Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees.
On March 11, 1941, Central State became part of a coordinated state system of post-secondary education overseen by the Oklahoma Regents for Higher Education, and joined institutions with similar missions as a regional institution.
In 1954, the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education gave Central permission to offer the Master of Teaching Degree, which became the Master of Education in 1969. In 1971, the college was authorized to grant the Master of Arts in English and the Master of Business Administration degrees.
On April 13, 1971, the state legislature officially changed the institution's name to Central State University. Old North Tower was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1971. On May 18, 1990, during the university's Centennial Year, legislation was passed changing the name to the University of Central Oklahoma, though many of the students still refer to the University as "Central" or "Central State."
Academic profile 
The University of Central Oklahoma in 2009 was ranked in the top 10% on the Forbes Magazine list of America's Best Colleges out of over 4,000 colleges and universities in the United States. UCO has the state's largest undergraduate Computing Science program, which is accredited by ABET. The Department of Physics is ranked among the top 20 in the United States and the only university in Oklahoma to receive this ranking by the American Institute of Physics. The University of Central Oklahoma School of Music Jazz Division is the largest in the state and one of the largest in the region. The Nursing program is the second largest in Oklahoma and the UCO Debaters are consistently rated one of the top in the nation. The College of Education is the largest in the state of Oklahoma and has graduated more than 50,000 teachers in its history. UCO has consistently been recognized as having one of the best education programs in the Southwest.
UCO is also the only institution in the state of Oklahoma that offers Undergraduate Degrees in Forensic Science, Humanities, Funeral Services, Photo Journalism, Biomedical Engineering, Golf Management, Business Legal Studies and Insurances. UCO is also the only University in the state of Oklahoma to offer a Master of Science in Athletic Training, a Master of Science in Forensic Science and a Master of Music in Jazz Studies
Schools and colleges 
UCO is composed of seven schools and colleges:
UCO offers over 135 degree options.
- Associate's Degree (ACM@UCO)
- Associate of Applied Science
- Bachelor's Degree
- Master's Degree
- Funeral Service
- Non-Degree Pre-Professional Programs:
UCO Jazz Lab 
The UCO Jazz Lab is home for the celebrated Jazz Studies Division of the University of Central Oklahoma School of Music. The Jazz Program was started in 1974 by Dr. Kent Kidwell. Since 1974, the Jazz program grew to what it is today. Current Jazz faculty include Lee Rucker, who is the director of the Jazz Lab and also serves as director of 3rd Jazz Ensemble. Mr. Rucker also teaches applied Jazz Improvisation. Brian Gorrell is the Head of the Jazz Studies Division, Recording studio and is the director of the 1st Jazz Ensemble. Mr. Gorrell also teaches Applied Saxophone, Applied Jazz Piano and is the Jazz Graduate Advisor. Jeff Kidwell is the director of the 2nd Jazz Ensemble and teaches applied trombone. Other faculty include Clint Rohr, Mitch Bell, Danny Vaughan, Dr. David Hardman and Dr. James Klages.
The UCO Jazz Lab is located on the corner of 5th and Littler St. in Edmond, Oklahoma. The Jazz Lab was built in 2001. It was built with a stage, classrooms, Hideaway Pizza and the Jazz Lab Recording Studio. Students utilize the Jazz Lab on a daily basis. The UCO Jazz Studies Division offers numerous performance ensembles which include:
- Jazz Ensembles I, II & III
- Undergraduate and Graduate Combos
- Latin Jazz Ensemble
- The Jazz Guitar Ensemble I & II
The School of Music currently offers an undergraduate Minor in Jazz Studies and a Master of Music in Jazz Studies with Majors either in Performance or Commercial Music Production. The UCO Jazz Lab also Hosts the Annual Recording Technology Workshop and The Annual Guitar Techniques Workshop During the summer. The UCO Jazz Ensembles have received many awards. In 2008, The UCO Jazz Ensemble I revived the "Outstanding University Jazz Ensemble" award at the 2006 and 2008 UNT Jazz Festival. In 1983 UCO's Dixieland band was ranked No.1 in the nation and in 1975, UCO Jazz Ensemble I received top honors at the Wichita Jazz Festival and since then, all UCO Jazz Bands have participated in the event.
Since it opened, The Jazz Lab has won "Best Place for Live Music" multiple times in the Edmond Life & Leisure's Reader's Choice annual poll, and has been repeatedly won the award for The Best Live Music Venue in the Oklahoma Gazette’s Best of OKC readers’ poll. The Jazz Lab has featured many famous performers including:
In addition to featuring some of the biggest names in jazz, The UCO Jazz Lab features the Best local and regional musicians from various genres every Thursday, Friday and Saturday Nights.
UCentral Student Media 
UCO is well known for its broadcasting program. UCentral is the student media network of the University of Central Oklahoma.The University currently operates two radio stations and a TV station. The school operates an FM radio station, 90.1 KCSC, which plays classical music, opera, and features news from the BBC.
The school's Mass Communication Department also operates a second radio station, KCSC-HD2 which is student run and known as ed 90.1. It can be heard on the UCO campus and all across the Oklahoma City area on 90.1 HD-2 and online. This station plays mainly adult hits from the '90s and today.
The school also operates a television station which is also student run. The TV station, known as UCentral, airs alternative rock music videos throughout most of the day and features a newscast along with other student produced shows. It can be seen on Cox Cable Digital Channel 125 in the Edmond area.
The Vista is UCO's student produced newspaper. Founded in 1903, it is distributed free of charge on the UCO campus and designated off-campus locations.
Academic buildings 
- The Art and Design Building
- Max Chambers Library
- Communications Building
- Center For Transformative Learning
- Education Building
- Evans Hall
- Health and Physical Education Building
- Math and Computer Science Building
- Coyner Health Sciences Building
- Human Environmental Science Building
- Howell Hall
- Laboratory Annex
- UCO Jazz Lab
- Liberal Arts Building
- Mitchell Hall Theatre
- Business Building
- Music Building
- Thatcher Hall
- Wantland Hall
- Forensic Science Institute
- Center For Transformative Learning
Other campus buildings 
- Wantland Stadium
- Lillard Administration Building
- Old North
- Buddy's(Central Cafeteria)
- Stephenson Park Theatre
- Nigh University Center
- Housing Office
- Ropes Course
- University Commons Clubhouse
- Edmond Chamber of Commerce
- Department of Public Safety
- Alumni House
- Hamilton Field House
- Central Plant
- Wellness Center
- Physical Plant
- Y Chapel of Song
Residential buildings 
UCO has five residence halls on campus.
- Murdaugh Hall - traditional-style men's residence hall; houses up to 290 students.
- West Hall - traditional-style women's residence hall; can house up to 452 students.
- The University Suites - co-ed suite-style residence hall; houses up to 302 students and contains a computer lab and dining facility.
- University Commons apartments - consists of multiple apartment buildings, which include two-bedroom and four-bedroom apartments. The Commons Clubhouse is a 3,000 sq ft (280 m2) community building with a TV lounge, computer lab, and recreation room.
- Central Plaza - high-rise residence hall opened in 2005, located southeast of the main campus; contains a dining facility.
Off-Campus buildings 
- Outdoor Activities and Recreation Center (Lake Arcadia)
- Small Business Development Center (Downtown OKC)
- The Academy of Contemporary Music (Bricktown)
- Selman Living Laboratory (Freedom, OK)
UCO participates in intercollegiate athletics at the NCAA at the Division II level and is a member of the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA). The university joined the MIAA in 2012; prior to joining the conference, UCO was a member of the Lone Star Conference and was the largest school in the conference. In 2010, it applied to join the MIAA. On July 30, 2010, the conference approved its application to join the conference beginning in the 2012-2013 academic year. Both men's and women's teams are nicknamed the Bronchos. UCO currently competes in baseball, men's and women's basketball, women's cross-country and track and field, football, men's and women's golf, women's soccer, softball, women's tennis, volleyball, and wrestling, and women's rowing.
Police Department 
The UCO Police Department is a full-service, 24-hour police department. There are 17 sworn commissioned police officers, 6 full-time civilian employees and several part-time student employees. The officers attend the Oklahoma State Police Academy (CLEET) in Ada and then a 10-week Field Training Program before working on their own. All officers are cross commissioned with the City of Edmond Police Department and thus enforce Edmond City Ordinances and utilize the city jail and city court system.
Presidents of UCO 
- Joshua B. Gibson 1873-1891
- Richard Thatcher 1891-1893
- George W. Winans 1893-1894
- E.R. Williams 1894-1895
- E.D. Murdaugh 1895-1901
- F.H. Umholtz 1901-1906
- T.W. Butcher 1906-1908
- James A. McLaughlin 1908-1911
- Charles Evans 1911-1916
- Grant B. Grumbine 1916-1917
- J.W. Graves 1917-1919
- John G. Michell 1919-1931
- M.A. Beeson 1931-1935
- John O. Mosley 1935-1939
- Roscoe R. Robinson 1939-1948
- George P. Huckaby 1948
- W. Max Chambers 1948-1960
- Garland Godfrey 1960-1975
- Bill J. Lillard 1975-1992
- George Nigh 1992-1997
- W. Roger Webb 1997–June 30, 2011
- Don Betz August 1, 2011 – Present
Greek life 
UCO is home to 22 Greek organizations.
- Wei R. Chen, Professor of biomedical engineering and recipient of 2008 U.S. Professor of the Year award from CASE
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- "UCO wins award from EPA » University Life". The Edmond Sun. Retrieved 2010-08-02.
- "Chronicles of Oklahoma". Digital.library.okstate.edu. 1930-03-01. Retrieved 2010-08-02.
- "University Of Central Oklahoma". Digital.library.okstate.edu. Retrieved 2010-08-02.
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- "#419 University of Central Oklahoma". Forbes.com. Retrieved 2010-08-02.
- "UCO Jazz Lab Recording Studio". University of Central Oklahoma Jazz Lab. Retrieved 2008-05-11.
- "UCO Jazz Lab Education". University of Central Oklahoma Jazz Lab. Retrieved 2008-04-19.
- "UCO Jazz Lab". University of Central Oklahoma Jazz Lab. Retrieved 2008-04-16.
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- Corbitt, Ken (August 23, 2012). "Newcomers add strength to rugged MIAA". The Topeka Capital-Journal. Retrieved September 7, 2012.
- Toppmeyer, Blake (2010-07-06). "Commentary: What a 16-member MIAA would mean - Maryville, MO". Maryville Daily Forum. Retrieved 2010-08-02.
- Toppmeyer, Blake. "MIAA adds 2, more on horizon - Maryville, MO". Maryville Daily Forum. Retrieved 2010-08-02.
- "UCO Archives - Presidents". University of Central Oklahoma. Retrieved 2008-05-11.[dead link]
- "UCO Archives - UCO President Roger Webb announces retirement".
- Schmidt, Peter (November 28, 2008). "4 Faculty Members Win U.S. Professor of the Year Awards". The Chronicle of Higher Education. p. A10.