Athens, OH
Tuition (in-state)
$19,246 ($10,282)
Admission Difficulty
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5 College Junior

Facilities: the amount of activities you can get involved in to feel part of the campus family. it is an amazing experience.

5 College Junior

Facilities: the student center is wonderful with lots of open hours for help. the traditions on campus are extremely fun. and the activities for numerous.

4 College Freshman

Facilities: Everyone is so happy and accepting as a bobcat

5 College Sophomore

Facilities: There are many unique things about OU. My favorite thing is how everyone here is friendly and accepting of others. We always come together as one. Another unique thing about OU is the gorgeous campus. Everything on campus is beautiful. There are beautiful parks, trees and buildings.

4 College Freshman

Facilities: The gym, the library (aside from being hot all the time), the beauty of the campus itself are just great! Seriously. I do really wish that there were more place, on and off campus, where it'd be fun for kids to just hang out. But, that's a trend that's been declining with cities anyway, more kids staying home on their laptops and shit than actually hanging out.


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Rankings View more rankings . . .

  • 76th
    Best Student Centers
  • 96th
    Best Athletic Facilities
  • 98th
    Best Library
  • 116th
    Greenest Campuses
  • 374th
    Best Performance Venues

Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

Nash Bober
Berlin Heights, Ohio
Management information systems/Marketing
View all previous student authors

Students love the Charles J. Ping Center, and it is by far one of the most popular places to be on campus. Packed with nice equipment, fitness rooms, and several courts, it has everything you need to get a great workout (free fitness classes are also offered every day, and there’s a huge climbing wall). Aesthetically, the place looks awesome; it’s very clean, and it doesn’t have the unpleasant smell of perspirating bodies wafting through the building. But, like most other places on campus, there is next to no parking for patrons. So, unless you want a ticket, you have to wait until after 3 p.m. on weekdays or walk (which can be difficult if you want to squeeze in a workout between classes). The Baker Center has a coffeeshop called the Front Room to hang out and listen to comedians or live music, and there is always something going on.

Overall, the campus is beautiful, and the buildings and facilities are in excellent condition. Many of the buildings are new or renovated, and thanks to their updates and similar exteriors, the facilities are not only convenient and modern, but also aesthetically pleasing.

Facts & Statistics

Service & Maintenance Staff
Campus Size
1,700 acres
Student Centers
Baker Center
Campus Library?
Main Libraries
  • Alden Library
  • Some buildings have their own smaller, specialized libraries, like Lasher for journalism students in Scripp's Hall.
Popular Places to Chill
  • The College Green, in the heart of campus and across from Court Street, is a favorite among students, especially during the spring.
  • Donkey Café also draws crowds for its open-mic nights, where students can study or just sit back and listen to some amateur musicians.
Bar on Campus
None owned by the school, but there are over 20 bars uptown.
Bowling on Campus
Rollerbowl Lanes on Palmer Street are the closest lanes to campus.
Coffeehouse on Campus
Perks and Brennen's on Court Street, Donkey Café on Washington Street, and The Front Room in Baker Center.
Movie Theater on Campus
Athena Theatre
School Slang
  • A-News: Nickname for the Athens newspaper, the Athens News.
  • Front Four: The residence halls at the front of South Green: Brown, Crawford, McKinnon, and Pickering.
  • HDL Center: Located on West State, it's where you go to get your ID cards, Ethernet hubs and cards, cables, and to get your computer fixed.
  • Jeff Hill: The hills are so monstrous at OU that they're named. Jeff Hill, a brick-lined, hazardous hill from you-know-where is now blocked off to traffic. But students still have to trek up it, which is never a good time.
  • Mem Aud: Nickname for Templeton-Blackburn Memorial Auditorium.
  • The Post: Student-run newspaper.
  • RAC: Registration Access Code given to each student, which they will use to register, and change, classes.
  • Shuffle: Otherwise known as a bar crawl.
  • TCOM: Abbreviated name of The School of Telecommunications.
  • Tech Depot: Located in Baker Center, it's where you go to get your ID cards, Ethernet hubs and cards, cables, and to get your computer fixed.
  • Townie: A person who lives in Athens and is not a student.
  • Uptown: Court Street and the surrounding area, which includes bars, restaurants, shops, and many classroom buildings. It's definitely an ideal, but expensive, place to live!
  • The Virgin Vault: Jefferson Hall, once the only all female freshman dorm.
  • Walk of Shame: After a night of hooking up (be it random or with a friend), any student seen the next morning, dressed in clothes from the night before, making the long trek home.
  • Family Weekends: Moms, dads, and siblings all have their own weekends to come visit OU, which make for some of the best times on campus (there's nothing like watching a bunch of soccer moms getting tanked off their martinis while dancing and singing to "Pour Some Sugar on Me"). While the University offers some fun activities for each weekend (Casino Night, Mamapalooza, Glow Fishin'), most students opt to take mom and dad to the bars. Either way, it makes for a weekend to remember, not to mention being profitable for the bars. (Mom's weekend in May brings in more alcohol sales than Halloween weekend!)
  • Homecoming: A notorious party school, OU definitely knows how to celebrate Homecoming, even though the student body usually cares very little about the football team. On Homecoming Saturday, bars open up as early as 6:30 a.m., and half of the campus, still buzzed off of Junction Punches, fills the bars. Stick around for the parade that starts around 11 a.m. (it's best enjoyed from a friend's porch where you can continue drinking and catch the candy that the parade-goers hurl at you). Then grab some food, go home for a nap, and head back uptown to continue the celebration.
  • Palmerfest : A day full of drinking, Jell-O wrestling, beer pong playing, and avoiding cops on horses, Palmerfest is a huge block party that takes place every May on Palmer Street. Palmer residents, wearing T-shirts customized for the occasion, become everyone's best friend as they stand at their houses' entrances with a list of who is worthy to enter. Needless to say, most people have a friend of a friend who can get them into at least one house on Palmer, and once it gets dark and the makeshift fences have been trampled down, you can pretty much get in anywhere.
  • Shuffles : Students usually partake in this ritual their senior year. Wearing T-shirts bearing their shuffle's name ("We're Going to Be Teaching Your Kids Shuffle"; "If Found, Take Me Home Shuffle", and more), they try to make it to every bar on campus, which is easier said than done. A highlight of every shuffle is having bar patrons sign the T-shirts, which always makes for a few good laughs in the morning, as well as signing your shuffle's name on each bar's bathroom wall (just make sure you don't get caught-some bars will make you stay and clean the walls).
  • Time Change "Riots": Leave it to OU students to riot when the clocks are turned ahead each spring and (God forbid) they lose an hour at the bars. Well, that's supposedly how the notorious Time Change Riots began in 1997. Since then, students, whether returning from the bars or just out of curiosity, have been gathering at Court Street, leading to vandalism, fights, many arrests, and the use of tear gas and rubber bullets by police. While many students just go uptown to check out what the excitement is all about, many innocent bystanders actually end up getting injured, arrested, or both. But, no matter how many warnings the University sends out, there is still a huge crowd that hangs out on Court Street after the bars call it quits an hour early. Use your best judgment.
Urban Legends
  • If you step on the school seal in front of College Green, you will never graduate
  • In 1908, the University's board of trustees formed a committee to obtain squirrels for the campus green (apparently they were inspired after a Harvard visit, where the campus was populated with squirrels). This is supposedly why squirrels run rampant on campus.
  • Many places on campus are haunted, including Wilson Hall (where a girl supposedly committed suicide after writing on the walls with blood), Simms Cemetery and the Ridges (an old insane asylum, which has a haunted "stain").
  • People have been saying for years that Athens holds the record for most bars on one stretch of street.
  • Supposedly an English professor once told a student, "I am returning this otherwise good typing paper to you because someone has printed gibberish all over it and put your name at the top."
  • While a student at OU, Paul Newman supposedly was expelled after crashing a beer keg into the University president's car.
Favorite Things To Do
For a small town, Athens has plenty for students to do, whether it’s shopping for vintage T-shirts on Court Street, going canoeing at Stroud’s Run, or heading to a midnight movie at the Athena. The Ohio University Performing Arts Series gives students a chance to see Broadway shows such as Rent and Stomp, as well as orchestra and dance performances in the Templeton-Blackburn Memorial Auditorium. Students can also check out art exhibits and lectures at the Kennedy Museum of Art at the Ridges. While there aren't any big malls or multiplexes, students still manage to seek out their own fun one way or another. To browse organizations, events, and activities, visit the Groove at www.ohiou.edu/thegroove or www.ohiou.edu/about/fun to find out what's going on around campus. Students at OU enjoy a variety of activities, from going to the movies to playing pool at an uptown bar. Ping is always crowded, as is the bike path. Many students enjoy spending time outside, whether that means playing Frisbee or football or even just studying.
Student Organizations Web Site
Clubs and Organizations on Campus
Below is a listing of just some of the over 360 student organizations registered at OU. (This list excludes sororities and fraternities). Visit the OU Web site to view a full list, as well as learn how to start your own organization.
Student Activities Offered
  • Campus ministries
  • Choral groups
  • Concert band
  • Dance
  • Drama/theater
  • Jazz band
  • Literary magazine
  • Marching band
  • Model UN
  • Music ensembles
  • Opera
  • Pep band
  • Radio station
  • Student government
  • Student newspaper
  • Student-run film society
  • Symphony orchestra
  • Television station
  • Yearbook
Air Force ROTC: Yes
Navy ROTC: No
Army ROTC: Yes

Student Polls

Rate the campus facilities in the following areas    Based on 85 responses

Very poor
  • Athletics/recreation
  • Classrooms
  • Computer labs
  • Dining
  • General aesthetics/architecture of campus
  • "Green" buildings/initiatives
  • Housing
  • Lawns/green space
  • Library
  • Modernity of facilities
  • Performing arts
  • Science/research labs
  • Student center
  • Study spots
  • Visual arts (work spaces, galleries)

What are your favorite campus events or traditions?    Based on 12 responses

  • 28% Homecoming
  • 24% Family Weekends
  • 17% Palmerfest
  • 10% HallOUween
  • 7% Shuffles
  • 7% Basketball Games
  • 3% Fashion Show
  • 3% Athens Beautification Day
  • 0% Time Change "Riots"

What are the best on-campus student jobs?    Based on 8 responses

  • 21% Bobcat essentials
  • 21% Bird arena
  • 21% I heard the library offers excellent hours.
  • 11% Tech depot
  • 11% Aquatic center
  • 5% Lattitude 39
  • 5% Golf and Tennis Center
  • 5% None of the jobs listed are any good.

Where are your favorite places to just hang out?    Based on 10 responses

  • 38% South Beach
  • 31% Front Room Coffee House
  • 15% Brennan's Coffee
  • 8% I was a commuter student so I didn't hang out
  • 8% Ameriti Park

How would you describe the student center/union?    Based on 99 responses

  • 1% The student center is in need of a major renovation.
  • 13% The student center serves its purpose but is not a popular hangout.
  • 51% The student center is great but isn't central to student life.
  • 35% The student center is state-of-the-art and the hub of student life.

What is your overall opinion of your school and the campus community?    Based on 97 responses

  • 1% I hate my school and have no school spirit.
  • 2% The school community is okay-we're all just here for an education, nothing more.
  • 41% I like mostly everything about my school, but there are some things I wish were different.
  • 56% I love everything about my school and have a lot of campus pride.

What are your favorite things to do around campus?    Based on 11 responses

  • 44% Exploring Uptown
  • 28% Hiking
  • 17% Hanging with friends.
  • 11% Take Pictures

What are the worst on-campus student jobs?    Based on 10 responses

  • 75% Any dining hall
  • 17% Nelson court
  • 8% West 82

What is the most interesting urban legend about campus?    Based on 13 responses

  • 100% The campus is haunted by the dead ridges paitents


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