Ranked 34th in US News and World Report under the category of top public schools is the public liberal arts institution known as Western Oregon University (WOU). A rather small liberal arts university with an estimated 6,000 undergraduates and about 400 graduate students, Western Oregon University boasts a population where women outnumber the men. With a female student population of 57 percent, Western Oregon has an abundance of student activities that will surely appeal to both sexes. Because it’s a rather small college, class sizes are relatively small as well and there is a student to teacher ratio close to 17:1 which means a chance for personal connection between student and teacher, a rarity in many university settings.
WOU is located in Oregon’s Willamette Valley, not very far from the state’s capital, Salem. Willamette Valley is known as the agricultural and wine country of Oregon. While attending WOU, you will have a daily jaw-dropping view of this valley’s awe-inspiring landscape. Not to mention if one likes to hike, ski, whale-watch, bike or fish there are excellent recreation areas miles from the university itself. So imagine this: after studying hard for a midterm exam, you treat yourself to a view of the breathtaking waterfalls in Silver Falls State Park 10. Or if adrenaline is what you need to relax after an all-night study session, relax by climbing Mary’s Peak, the highest point in the coast range.
Founded in 1896, WOU is the oldest university in the Oregon University system. Two-thirds of the students that attend are liberal arts majors and the final third are in the School of Education. WOU is an ideal spot if the realm of education is your career path, being nationally recognized for its excellent teaching programs which are accredited by several renowned organizations, such as the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU), American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE), Council on Rehabilitation Education (CORE), and the Oregon State Teacher Standards and Practices Commission (TSPC).