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Willamette University, Salem

#15 of 54 in Things to do in Salem
Educational Site · Hidden Gem · Tourist Spot
Willamette University is a private university in Salem, Oregon. Founded in 1842, it is the oldest university in the Western United States. Willamette is a member of the Annapolis Group of colleges, and is made up of an undergraduate College of Arts & Sciences and post-graduate schools of business and law. The university is a member of the NCAA's Division III Northwest Conference. Approximately 2,100 students are enrolled at Willamette between the graduate and undergraduate programs.
Originally named the Oregon Institute, the school was an unaffiliated outgrowth of the Methodist Mission. The name was changed to Wallamet University in 1852, followed by the current spelling in 1870. Willamette founded the first medical school and law school in the Pacific Northwest in the second half of the 19th century. In the 20th century, it began competing in intercollegiate athletics.

Willamette's undergraduate programs exist within the school's College of Arts & Sciences. The oldest of the graduate programs is the College of Law, founded in 1883 and currently located in the Truman Wesley Collins Legal Center. Established in 1974, Atkinson Graduate School of Management is housed in the Seeley G. Mudd Building. The School of Education, established in 1996, had an enrollment of 100 students, but closed in 2014.
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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
69 reviews
  • This university is one of the oldest west of the Mississippi. The buildings are mostly made of brick and are historic in nature. Wandering around the campus is peaceful. The Hallie Ford Museum of.....  more »
  • Willamette is a gem of a liberal arts university, with an exceptional law school. The grounds are immaculate; great place to take walks in center of town. Goudy Commons has exceptional food for...  more »
  • We just got back from doing a round of college tours. The staff at this university were very friendly and knowledgeable. With this tour we saw the whole campus including a dorm room. Definitely a small school with about 2,000 undergrad students. Beautiful campus
  • Attended Bearcat Days with my son. Campus is beautiful. Staff and students are very friendly. Panelists at Q n A had just excellent answers to every question asked. This would be an excellent choice of college.

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