A Brief History of George Fox University

George Fox University was founded in 1891 as Pacific College by Quakers who had settled in Newberg in the 1870s. In 1885 they had established Friends Pacific Academy, a boarding school that included Herbert Hoover among its students. The founding of the college six years later was the result of the growth of the Academy and recognition of the importance of higher education in the church community. The college was moved to the site of its current campus just a year after its founding, in 1892.

Notable developments over the ensuing years have included phasing out the Academy in 1934; changing the name of the college in 1949 to George Fox College, which honors the 17th-century founder of the Society of Friends; and joining the Christian College Consortium in 1974. In 1990 the first graduate program was offered at George Fox when the Doctor of Psychology degree came to the College. In 1996 George Fox College merged with Western Evangelical Seminary, prompting the name change to George Fox University. A number of additional graduate programs were established in the 1990s.

Throughout its history, George Fox has maintained a close relationship with Northwest Yearly Meeting of Friends. The university is operated by a Board of Trustees appointed by the Yearly Meeting. This relationship to the church and the Friends (Quaker) heritage remains a central part of the operation and ethos of George Fox. The university honors this relationship in its commitment to Christ-centered education and in the day-to-day life of the community of faith and learning.

A more complete history of the university may be found in the university catalog.