Pacific University
Pacific University

About Us

Pacific University is the oldest chartered university in the West. The Oregon Territorial Legislature granted its original charter as the Tualatin Academy on Sept. 26, 1849. The charter predates statehood by 10 years, and was the first formal act of the territorial government. Pacific founders were also instrumental in the 1843 vote at Champoeg, which resulted in the formation of the Oregon Provisional Government, the first American government on the Pacific Coast. The school traces its roots to a log cabin meeting house in Forest Grove where the Rev. Harvey Clark, a Congregationalist minister, and Tabitha Brown, a former teacher from Massachusetts, cared for and educated orphans of the Oregon Trail. The University issued the first baccalaureate degree in the region in 1863 to Harvey W. Scott, later the editor of The Oregonian. Pacific's Old College Hall, built in 1850, housed the original academy and is the oldest educational building in the West. Today, Pacific is a comprehensive liberal arts, optometry, education, healthcare and business university with 3,300 graduate and undergraduate students attending classes at the historical campus in Forest Grove, and campuses in Eugene and Hillsboro. Founded in Oregon in 1849, we are one of the oldest schools in the west, but a modern university brimming with intellectual curiosity and energy characteristic of the Pacific Northwest. Pacific is a community of highly motivated, intellectual students, faculty and staff committed to an intimate, personalized education. We are located about halfway between the Oregon Coast and Portland, and you really feel the difference the minute you set foot on our historic campus. You will feel it too when you come to study here, because defining your worldview and opening yourself to new ideas is what we’re all about. At Pacific there are many traditions, but foremost among them is teaching. Here, professors know more than just your name, they know your dreams and they work to help you fulfill them. At Pacific life truly unfolds day by day in often surprising ways. One thing is certain: no one here is bored or unchallenged!