Few People Know Stockton Was Home To The First University In California
Northern California is home to many firsts, both in the county and the state. The first university in the whole state is located in Northern California. University of the Pacific in Stockton was chartered as California’s first institution of higher learning in 1851.
Today, the private university hosts undergraduate and graduate students, in addition to professionals looking to expand their education.
Located in Northern California’s central valley in the city of Stockton, this university was first named Wesleyan College, then College of the Pacific, to its current name, University of the Pacific.
The university was briefly located in San Jose before finding its current home in Stockton.
The private school is a liberal arts college and graduate school with schools of business, dentistry, engineering, law, music, and health sciences.
Over the decades and centuries, the university has seen many changes and milestones.
In 1871, the university opened its doors to women, making it the first independent campus in California open to men and women. In 1878, the Conservatory of Music opened at the university -- the first of its kind west of the Mississippi River.
With its red brick buildings and lovely rose garden, the campus looks like Ivy League colleges of the East Coast.
The University of the Pacific has been used in numerous Hollywood movies– High Time, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, Dead Man on Campus, Flubber, and other films.
The university’s library is a beautiful place to explore and spend some time.
Inside the library you’ll find an exhibit dedicated to journalist and naturalist John Muir. The John Muir Center is home to the John Muir papers, a collection of Muir’s notes, journals, and correspondence that are available for use.
University of the Pacific has two other campuses, one in Sacramento and another in San Francisco.
Visitors are welcome to book a guided tour or tour the campus on their own time. Maps of the Stockton campus are available on the
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University of the Pacific, 3601 Pacific Ave, Stockton, CA 95211, USA