Oklahoma State University—Stillwater is the flagship campus of the Oklahoma State University System. The largest university in Oklahoma, serving over 23,000 of the entire system’s 35,000 students, the campus is informally known as OSU, O-State, and OKState.
OSU awards associate, bachelor’s, master’s, doctoral, and professional degrees. Home to several nationally renowned colleges and departments, the school has earned numerous awards and honors since its inception.
The Oklahoma Territorial Agricultural and Mechanical College (Oklahoma A&M) was established as a land-grant institution in 1862, but its first classes were not held until 1891. Students met in local churches until the first classroom building was completed on campus in 1894.
As campus expanded and a broader curriculum was offered at the school, Oklahoma A&M changed its name to Oklahoma State University of Agricultural and Applied Sciences in 1957. The name was shortened in 1980.
Oklahoma State’s Stillwater campus consists of the following divisions:
- College of Agriculture Sciences and Natural Resources
- College of Arts and Sciences
- College of Education
- College of Engineering, Architecture and Technology
- College of Human Sciences
- College of Osteopathic Medicine
- Graduate College
- Honors College
- Spears School of Business
- Center for Veterinary Health Sciences
Bachelor’s degrees are awarded in more than 180 different disciplines, including agriculture, economics, education, entomology, forestry, plant and soil sciences, engineering, art history, creative writing, French, human development and family science, mathematics, political science, theatre, and construction management technology.
Master’s degrees are awarded in a number of fields, including agriculture, forest resources, communications sciences and disorders, English, physics, sociology, accounting, community counseling, physical education, teaching, learning, and leadership, engineering, natural and applied sciences, international studies, and veterinary biomedical sciences.
Doctoral degrees are awarded in a variety of programs, including crop sciences, English and other arts and humanities, education, business, engineering, and veterinary biomedical science. The university also offers the doctor of osteopathic medicine degree (DO). Students in the veterinary school can earn a doctor of veterinary medicine (DVM) as part of a dual program with a master’s or doctoral degree.
Associate degrees and a few bachelor’s degrees are offered at the OSU campuses in Tulsa, Oklahoma City, and Okmulgee, where the emphasis on the smaller campuses is on career and technical education.
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The university’s Sun Grant Research Initiative program, established by Congress to research and develop sustainable “green” energy alternatives, is one of just five in the country.
The Fire Protection Publications and International Fire Service Training Association, both at OSU, produce more fire and emergency services guidebooks than any publisher on the continent.
Undergraduate applications are accepted through the month prior to the semester a student wishes to enroll, yet applying as early as possible is recommended. In addition to a completed application and required application fee, students must also submit official high school transcripts along with ACT or SAT scores.
All prospective students must be a high school graduate or posses a GED. Applicants who are currently in high school must have final transcripts sent to the school after graduation. Core high school course requirements include four units of English, three units of mathematics, three units of history and citizenship skills, two units of laboratory science, and three additional units from the previous categories and/or computer science and/or a foreign language.
The Alternative Admission program is for students who may fall just short of the stated admissions requirements. There is also a Summer Provisional Program for students who enroll immediately following high school graduation.
Prospective graduate students may apply by submitting the graduate school application and accompanying fee, official transcripts, and any materials required by the individual department or program to which they are applying. such as standardized test scores and letters of recommendation.
Financial aid is available for eligible OSU students. Common types of aid that are awarded include grants, scholarships, loans, and work-study programs.
Along with completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and possession of a diploma or GED, OSU requires all financial aid recipients be registered with the Selective Service and not be in default on any previous student loan programs. Students must also complete loan entrance and loan exit counseling when borrowing money to pay for college.
The university awards a variety of need- and merit-based institutional scholarships each year. These include awards for future freshmen and transfer students, future and current graduate students, and students pursuing degrees in veterinary medicine.
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Oklahoma State is home to more than 350 recognized student organizations and a massive Student Union. Every year, incoming freshman students join in “Camp Cowboy,” the University’s three-day orientation period that immerses students in OSU culture.
Students are encouraged to live in campus residence halls. In addition to the camaraderie and friendships that result, research has found that college students who live on campus tend to earn better grades and become more involved in non-academic activities than students who choose to commute.
Student Enrollment Demographics
Student Graduation Demographics
Oklahoma State is an NCAA Division I school and a member of the Big 12 Conference. Oklahoma State Cowboys — women’s teams are called the Cowgirls — athletic programs include baseball, basketball, cross country, football, golf, tennis, track & field, wrestling, equestrian, soccer, softball, and swimming.
One of the Cowboys’ biggest rivals are the University of Oklahoma Sooners. Spirit groups include a cheerleading squad, a pom squad, a marching band, and the mascot “Pistol Pete.” The caricature of Pistol Pete was based on a real cowboy, Frank Eaton, who was present at various Oklahoma State University events during his lifetime.
Oklahoma State University teams have won more than 50 NCAA national championships. The baseball team has been in the College World Series 19 times.
Sports facilities include an arena, track and field center, a soccer complex, an equine center, a golf course, softball and baseball stadiums, and a tennis complex.
The OSU fight song and alma mater are both sung with reverence at each football game. The university also makes a place for the Oklahoma state song, securing the institution’s connection to its home.
An age-old legend and tradition ingrained in the life of every OSU student is the legend of Frank “Pistol Pete” Eaton. The University’s mascot, Pistol Pete, is named after this famed gunslinger from the Old West and is a source of great pride for every OSU student and alum.
One of the newest and most exciting traditions is The Walk, which as initiated by football coach Les Miles and continues with current head coach Mike Grundy. The night before each home football game, the OSU team walks down Hester Street to the football stadium, led by the current coach and accompanied by the marching band and cheerleaders. Students and fans join their team in this game day trek, making it one of the most spirited traditions in school history.
Melissa Rhone earned her Bachelor of Music in Education from the University of Tampa. She resides in the Tampa Bay area and enjoys writing about college, pop culture, and epilepsy awareness.