Oglethorpe University

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Oglethorpe University
Oglethorpe University logo.png
Motto Nescit Cedere
Type Private
Established 1835
Endowment $19.7 million[1]
President Lawrence Schall
Students 1,000+
Location Brookhaven, Georgia, United States
33°52′30″N 84°19′59″W / 33.875°N 84.333°W / 33.875; -84.333Coordinates: 33°52′30″N 84°19′59″W / 33.875°N 84.333°W / 33.875; -84.333
Campus Suburban, 100 acres (0.40 km2)
Colors Black and Gold[2]
Nickname Stormy Petrels
Mascot Stormy Petrel
Website www.oglethorpe.edu
Oglethorpe University Historic District
Oglethorpe University is located in Metro Atlanta
Oglethorpe University
Oglethorpe University is located in Georgia (U.S. state)
Oglethorpe University
Oglethorpe University is located in the US
Oglethorpe University
Location 4484 Peachtree Rd. NE. Brookhaven, Georgia United States
Built 1915, 1929, 1940
Architect Leavitt, Charles W. Jr., Morgan and Dillon
Architectural style Late Gothic Revival
NRHP reference # 94000779
Added to NRHP 1994

Oglethorpe University is a private, liberal arts college in Brookhaven, a northern suburb of Atlanta, Georgia. Originally chartered in 1835, it was named in honor of General James Edward Oglethorpe, founder of the Colony of Georgia.


The carillon bells atop Oglethorpe's Lupton Hall

Oglethorpe University was chartered in 1835 in Midway, just south of Milledgeville, then the state capital. The school was built and, at that time, governed by the Presbyterian Church, making it one of the South's earliest denominational institutions.[3] The American Civil War led to the school's closing in 1868.

The college followed the relocation of the capital to Atlanta. In 1870, it began holding classes at the present site of Atlanta City Hall. Plagued by financial difficulties, the school closed its doors for a second time in 1872.

Oglethorpe College was re-chartered as a non-denominational institution in 1913. In 1915 the cornerstone to the new campus was laid at its present location on Peachtree Road in Brookhaven. The person behind rebuilding Oglethorpe was Dr. Thornwell Jacobs, whose grandfather Ferdinand Jacobs had served on the faculty of Old Oglethorpe. Jacobs would serve as president for nearly 30 years.

In the early 40s Oglethorpe University had a medical school. Under the direction of Dr. John Bernard, the university was given several elephants for research, who had been poisoned by the Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Circus. After the students finished dissecting the animals they were buried under what is known today as the Philip Weltner Library.[4]

Oglethorpe University became Oglethorpe College in 1965, and reclaimed the designation "university" in 1972. Oglethorpe's campus buildings were built in a Gothic revival architecture style. This area of the 100-acre (0.40 km2) campus is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.[5]



In December 2009, The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) fully reaffirmed the University's accreditation.[6]

Coat of arms

Oglethorpe's collegiate coat-of-arms is emblazoned with three boars' heads and the Latin inscription Nescit Cedere, meaning "He does not know how to give up."

Points of interest

The Conant Performing Arts Center, completed in 1997, served as the seasonal home of Georgia Shakespeare until fall 2014.

Oglethorpe University Museum of Art

The Oglethorpe University Museum of Art opened in 1984 and is located on the top floor of the Philip Weltner Library. The two galleries, the South and Skylight, and gift shop cover 7,000 square feet. Bringing in thousands of visitors each year, the museum has become an important point of interest in Atlanta's art community.

In 1994, Lupton Hall, Phoebe Hearst Hall, Lowry Hall and Hermance Stadium were added to the National Register of Historic Places. In addition, a historic district including part or all of the 100-acre (0.40 km2) campus was listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Other academic buildings include Goslin Hall, primarily used for science courses, and J. Mack Robinson Hall, primarily used for Communication and Art classes.

Oglethorpe University is home to the Crypt of Civilization, the first and most complete time capsule ever created, according to the Guinness Book of World Records. Scheduled to be opened in 8113 AD, it is located in the basement of Phoebe Hearst Hall.

Oglethorpe University is home to the International Time Capsule Society, a repository of time capsule projects worldwide.

The Turner Lynch Campus Center opened in the fall of 2013.

From its opening in 1990 until 2003,[7] the Seigakuin Atlanta International School was located on the property of Oglethorpe University, in a former public school building.[8]

Study abroad

Oglethorpe University promotes the concept of international education and travel as an essential component of an academic education. Oglethorpe University Students Abroad sponsors trips for-credit, short-term, partnerships and agreements.[9] Oglethorpe University offers a selection of opportunities in four divisions: International Exchange Partnerships, Independent Study Abroad-Non Partnerships, Short Term Trips, and Associate Student Programs for Special Study Abroad.

For foreign students wishing to study in the United States, Education First, an International Study Abroad Organization, opened its Atlanta Language Center on the Oglethorpe University Campus in the fall 2012.[10]

Greek life

As of 2014, the U.S. News & World Report noted that 11% of men at Oglethorpe belong to fraternities, while 13% of women belong to sororities.[1]


Chi Phi
Sigma Alpha Epsilon
Delta Sigma Phi
Alpha Phi Alpha


Alpha Sigma Tau
Chi Omega
Sigma Sigma Sigma
Epsilon Iota Psi
Alpha Kappa Alpha

Events and traditions

Oglethorpe Day

Early February. Campus events celebrate the anniversary of James Oglethorpe's founding of the colony of Georgia. The annual "Petrels of Fire" race, an homage to Trinity College's Great Court Run portrayed in the movie Chariots of Fire, features students attempting to run the 270-yard (250 m) perimeter of the Academic Quad before the Lupton Hall belltower finishes its noon chimes.[11]

Boar's Head

Further information: Boar's Head Feast
First Friday of December. Modeled after the Boar's Head Gaudy of Queen's College, Oxford, Boar's Head is the traditional start to the Christmas season at Oglethorpe. Festivities include a concert featuring the University Singers, student organizations and performers from the community, as well as the lighting of the University's Christmas tree. Newly initiated members of Omicron Delta Kappa receive recognition and, as a rite of initiation, kiss the ceremonial boar's head.

Battle of Bloody Marsh

The "battle" is a tug-of-war between a student team and a faculty–staff team, organized by the student government's programming board, that takes place in the fall on the Academic Quad. The name refers to the 1742 battle in which the forces of General Oglethorpe defeated the Spanish troops in South Georgia.

Eggs AM Breakfast

Occurs both fall and spring semesters on "Dead Day," the day before finals begin. Faculty and staff cook a breakfast of eggs, pancakes, bacon and hash-browns for the students. The students enjoy their faculty and staff-cooked meal and take a little break between study sessions.

Carillon Ceremony

In the week before graduation, seniors are invited to climb the Lupton Hall belltower to ring a carillon bell in celebration of their academic achievements in an event sponsored by the alumni office.


Women's basketball at Oglethorpe

Oglethorpe University teams compete as a member of the Southern Athletic Association at the NCAA Division III level. The Stormy Petrels were a member of the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference (SCAC). Men's sports include baseball, basketball, cross country, golf, lacrosse, soccer, tennis and track & field; while women's sports include basketball, cross country, golf, lacrosse, soccer, tennis, track & field, and volleyball.

The school's most successful athletic program is its men's golf team. Oglethorpe won the NCAA Division III Men's Golf Championships in 2009 and again in 2012.

Former Major League Soccer players Jon Akin and Alan Woods are the head men's and women's soccer coaches at Oglethorpe University, respectively. In 2014, men's assistant coach Ryan Roushandel signed with the Atlanta Silverbacks to play soccer professionally while maintaining his duties with the program at Oglethorpe.

In 2011, the men's soccer program won its first conference championship in school history with a 1–0 victory over Centre College. This win sent them to the NCAA National Tournament, also a first in school history for the program. Later on in the spring of 2013, Mark Lavery, an alum and All-American member of the 2011 team signed with the Atlanta Silverbacks, a professional soccer team in the North American Soccer League (NASL). Lavery became the first Oglethorpe graduate to play soccer professionally.

In the fall of 2013, the men's soccer team won its second conference championship in school history with a 3–1 victory over Millsaps College. They compiled an 11–3–3 record over the season. The team did not receive a bid into the NCAA National Tournament because the Southern Athletic Association was in its second phase of a new-conference transition stage.


Thornwell Jacobs chose an unusual mascot to represent Oglethorpe's athletic teams: the Stormy Petrel, a seabird said to have been admired by James Oglethorpe for its hardiness and courage. In March 2002, ESPN's David Lloyd named the Stormy Petrel as one of the most memorable college mascot names of all time, second only to the Banana Slugs of UC Santa Cruz.[12]

Student media

  • The Carillon, alumni magazine
  • The Stormy Petrel, student newspaper.
  • The Yamacraw, yearbook. Its name comes from Yamacraw Bluff, the landing site of James Oglethorpe's 1733 colonial expedition. Now defunct.
  • The Tower, literary magazine
  • The Nightcap, evening degree student newsletter

Notable alumni

References in popular culture

See also


  1. ^ a b http://colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-colleges/oglethorpe-university-1586
  2. ^ Oglethorpe University Brand Standards (PDF). 2015-05-01. Retrieved 2016-09-05.
  3. ^ Hudson, Paul Stephen (24 August 2004). "Oglethorpe University". New Georgia Encyclopedia. Retrieved 30 July 2015.
  4. ^ Hudson, Paul Stephen (21 May 2010). "The Elephant at Oglethorpe - The Source". Oglethorpe University. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  5. ^ "History". Oglethorpe University.
  6. ^ http://www.oglethorpe.edu/newsroom/archivednewsreleases/2009-10/documents/12-08-09.pdf
  7. ^ "History Archived November 4, 2005, at the Wayback Machine.." Seigakuin Atlanta International School. Retrieved on January 11, 2012.
  8. ^ "SCHOOL MATTERS Former U.N. diplomat heads Japanese school here." Atlanta Journal-Constitution. July 26, 1994. C2. Retrieved on January 11, 2012.
  9. ^ "Oglethorpe University Students Abroad". Oglethorpe University. Retrieved 25 December 2012.
  10. ^ "Education First and Oglethorpe University to Host Gyeonggi Provincial Office of Education" (PDF). Oglethorpe University. 26 October 2012. Retrieved 25 December 2012.
  11. ^ "A Cherished Tradition". Oglethorpe University. Retrieved 23 October 2016.
  12. ^ "ESPN.com - Page2 - Eagles, Tigers and Gorloks, oh my!". espn.go.com.
  13. ^ Thomas, Robert McG., Jr. "Luke Appling, Ex-White Sox Star In the Hall of Fame, Is Dead at 83 ", The New York Times, January 4, 1991. Accessed December 29, 2008.
  14. ^ "Watch: Lowry Hall makes cameo in Love, Simon - The Source". source.oglethorpe.edu. Retrieved 2018-10-09.

Further reading

  • Krakow, Kenneth (1975). Georgia Place-Names. Winship Press. ISBN 0-915430-00-2.
  • Tankersley, Allen P. (1951). College life at old Oglethorpe. Athens: University of Georgia Press. ISBN 9780820334530. Retrieved 20 February 2018.

External links

  • Official website
  • Oglethorpe Athletics website
  • Photographs of Buildings and Grounds at Oglethorpe University
  • Oglethorpe University historical marker
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