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University of Puget Sound

The University of Puget Sound is located in the North End of Tacoma, Washington.

It is an independent, liberal arts college offering bachelor of arts, bachelor of science, bachelor of music, master of arts in teaching, master of education, master of occupational therapy, and doctor of physical therapy degrees. It has a student enrollment of 2,729.


The University of Puget Sound was founded by the United Methodist Church in 1888 in downtown Tacoma, WA. The character of the school changed dramatically during the presidency of Edward H. Todd (1913-1942), who brought financial and academic stability. Also during his tenure, the campus moved in 1923 to its current location in the residential North End of Tacoma, with 5 buildings, setting a stylistic tone for the institution. President Franklin S. Thompson (1942-1973) led a massive physical and institutional expansion: during this era all of the university's buildings save three were constructed. Phillip H. Phibbs presided from 1973 to 1992 and endeavored to change the tone of Puget Sound. In 1980, the university divested its attachment with the Methodist Church, and an independent board of trustees assumed full fiscal responsibility. Also during this time, the university began to focus on undergraduate educational excellence, phasing out all off-campus programs save the law school, and most graduate programs. During this time the library collections were broadened, and the faculty greatly expanded. With the advent of President Susan R. Pierce (1992-2003), the Law school was promptly sold to Seattle University, in a move that was calculated to focus the University's resources on its undergraduate campus, but that angered many alumni. Also during her tenure, the Collins Memorial Library was renovated, and Wyatt hall was constructed to house the growing class and office space needs of the Humanities. Trimble residence Hall was also constructed, bringing on-campus student residency to 65%. Puget Sound's newest President is Ronald R. Thomas, a scholar of Victorian Literature, and the former vice-President of Trinity College

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