Oklahoma Panhandle State University

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Oklahoma Panhandle State University
OPSUniversity seal.png
Motto Progress Through Knowledge
Type Public
Established 1909
Affiliation Oklahoma Agricultural & Mechanical Colleges
President Tim Faltyn
Students 1,720 +
Location Goodwell, Oklahoma, U.S.
36°35′35″N 101°38′14″W / 36.59306°N 101.63722°W / 36.59306; -101.63722Coordinates: 36°35′35″N 101°38′14″W / 36.59306°N 101.63722°W / 36.59306; -101.63722
Colors Crimson and Blue
Nickname Aggies
Website www.opsu.edu

Oklahoma Panhandle State University (OPSU) is a university in Goodwell, Oklahoma. OPSU is a baccalaureate degree-granting institution. General governance of the institution is provided by the Board of Regents of the Oklahoma Agricultural and Mechanical Colleges. Academic programs and financial support are authorized and coordinated through the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education.


In 1908, the Oklahoma Legislature passed legislation stating that, "...each of the Supreme Court judicial districts [shall have] a district agricultural school of secondary grade for instruction in agriculture and mechanics and allied branches, and domestic science, and economics, with courses of instruction leading to the Agricultural and Mechanical College, and the state normal schools".[1]

Oklahoma Panhandle State University was created in response to this act and opened in 1909 as Pan-Handle Agricultural Institute, (PAI) offering secondary agricultural education for the Panhandle area. PAI began offering courses to prepare public school teachers in 1915.[1] In 1921, the legislature authorized the school to offer a two-year college curriculum, and the name was changed to Panhandle Agricultural and Mechanical College (PAMC). The college began offering four-year degree programs in 1925. In 1967, the school was designated as Oklahoma Panhandle State College of Agriculture and Applied Science. In 1974, the university assumed its present name.[2]

Franklin Hall, the school's oldest building, is listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.


The university is organized into six schools that offer associate degrees and bachelor's degrees in such areas as history, education, business, and nursing. OPSU's agriculture-related degree programs produce valued and competent graduates who are qualified to work in the region's many bovine, equine, swine, and farming-related industries.

OPSU is regionally accredited by the Commission on Institutions of Higher Education of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools to grant associate and bachelor's degrees. It is also approved by the Oklahoma State Board of Education for the preparation of elementary and secondary teachers, The National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), and by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing Inc.(ACEN).

Primary quad and clock tower at OPSU

The constituent schools are:

  • School of Agriculture
  • School of Business and Technology
  • School of Education
  • School of Liberal Arts
  • School of Science, Mathematics, and Nursing
  • University College

Nationally competitive teams in: Computer Programming (OPSU AITP), Business (OPSU PBL), Crops Judging, and Livestock Judging.


Carl Wooten Field and Water Tower

OPSU competes as a member of the Sooner Athletic Conference as the "Aggies" (except rodeo and football). The university sponsors football, volleyball (women), softball (women), baseball (men), men's and women's golf, men's and women's cross-country, and men's and women's basketball.

  • The football team plays at Carl Wooten Field and competes in the NAIA Central States Football League. In the early nineties, OPSU Aggies football was known as a football powerhouse in NAIA. The program has recently had some success thanks to the late Mike Wyatt (2007-2010). The current coach, Russell Gaskamp, has set new records in player involvement in community service activities.
  • A point of pride for OPSU is its men's and women's rodeo teams. The school is a member of the Central Plains Region of the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association (NIRA) and has won several regional and national team championships as well as numerous individual championships in the sport. The OPSU Men's Rodeo Team won national titles in 1997, 1998, 2000, 2004. 2013 and 2017.[1] As part of their scholarship package, rodeo team members may receive lodging in special housing and stalls for their animals.

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Richter, Sara and Tom Lewis. Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture. "Oklahoma Panhandle State University." Retrieved May 9, 2014.
  2. ^ [1] Oklahoma Panhandle State University Retrieved February 16, 2014.

Further reading[edit]

  • Sexton, Kathryn A. (1979). The Heritage of the Panhandle - The History of Panhandle State University: 1909-1979. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. pp. 548 pp. 

External links[edit]