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Drake University is a private, co-educational university located in the city of Des Moines, Iowamarker, USAmarker. The institution offers a number of undergraduate and graduate programs, as well as professional programs in law and pharmacy. Today, Drake is one of the twenty-five oldest law schools in the country. Distinguished alumni include Dwight D. Opperman, former CEO of West Publishing Company, after whom Drake's law library was named; Neal Smith, who served in the United States House of Representatives from 1959 until 1995; and Terry Edward Branstad, a former four-term Republican Governor of Iowa, who served from 1983 until 1999. The University approved a new Master building plan on June 25, 2005, calling for extensive renovations of existing facilities and the construction of several large buildings, including a new first year student residence hall, science building, fine arts building, and multi-purpose learning center.


Francis Marion Drake
Old Main
The institution was founded in 1881, when most of the staff of Oskaloosa College left that college to establish what would become Drake University, founded by Francis Marion Drake, a resident of Centervillemarker, Iowamarker and Governor of Iowa (18961898). From its founding in 1881, Drake University maintained affiliation with the Christian Church although no religious affiliation is officially recognized today.

The university's law school, the oldest law school in the country west of the Mississippi River, was established in 1865 by Chester C. Cole[66734], who served on the Iowa Supreme Courtmarker from 1864 to 1876. In 1969 Drake's basketball team went to the Final Four under coach Maurice John, but were defeated by the UCLAmarker Bruins by three points. Drake did defeat the North Carolina Tar Heels by 20 points in the third place game.

On September 17, 1969 the Drake student newspaper, The Times-Delphic[66735], published what appears to be the first documented account of the famous Paul is dead hoax, written by Tim Harper. No articles published prior to this piece about the supposed death of Paul McCartney are known, although fellow Times-Delphic reporter and musician Dartanyan Brown, one of the sources for the article, recalled hearing about the hoax from other musicians and reading about it in some underground newspapers.

"Institutions of learning must come under this rule: By their fruits ye shall know them. A practical education is that which gives the mind the most power and adaptability. The credentials that your young and hopeful alma mater will soon confer upon each of you can only give you an introduction to the world of letters and of actual life. They can serve you no further. In whatever of the varied vocations of life you may engage, as well as in general society, you must work out your own destiny."- Drake Founder George Carpenter at Drake University's third commencement in 1884


The University is made up of the following colleges:

College of Arts & Sciences

Majors offered: Astronomy, Biology, Biochemistry, Cellular and Molecular Biology , Chemistry, Computer Science, Culture & Society, Economics, English, Environmental Policy, Environmental Science, Ethics, Fine Art, Graphic Design, History, International Relations, Law, Politics, and Society (LPS), Mathematics, Mathematics Education (Secondary), Music, Music Education, Neuroscience, Physics,Politics, Psychology, Sociology, Anthropology, Philosophy, Rhetoric, Theater (B.A. and B.F.A. programs), Writing and Religion.

College of Business & Public Administration (CBPA)

Majors offered: Accounting, Actuarial Science, Economics, Entrepreneurial Management, Finance, General Business, Information Systems, International Business, Marketing, Management, Quantitative Economics

Graduate programs: Master of Accounting, Master of Business Administration, Master of Public Administration, Master of Financial Management
Distinguished Faculty:
*Stuart Klugman, Former VP of the Society of Actuaries & Principal Financial Group Professor of Actuarial Science
*Terri Vaughan, Former Insurance Commissioner of Iowamarker

School of Education

Majors offered: Special education, Secondary education, Elementary education

School of Journalism & Mass Communication (SJMC)

Majors offered: Advertising, Electronic Media, Magazines, News-Internet, Public Relations, JMC/Law 3+3, Broadcast News


473 undergraduate majors in spring 2006

23 Open journalism in spring 2006

90 entering freshmen fall 2006


14 full-time faculty/3 part-time faculty


Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communication. Drake is among 109 accredited programs nationwide. To win accreditation, schools meet 12 standards, which address such issues as class size to diversity within the faculty and curriculum. Accreditation reviews occur every six years. Drake's program has been continuously accredited, most recently in 2004.

Almost 95 percent (94.9) of 2006 Drake journalism graduates reported being employed in the field or in graduate school, according to a recent survey by the university. Of these, 89.5percent reported having had an internship while in school.

The SJMC's magazine program has achieved national prominence. The Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (ACEJMC) team that visited in 1999 called the SJMC a “real standout” and termed Drake's Magazines program the strongest undergraduate sequence in the country. Drake student magazines THiNK and 515 won 2007 Pacemaker awards in Washington, D.C.

The School of Journalism and Mass Communication is also home to 94.1 The Dog, which operates under the call letters KDRA-LP FM. The station launched in August 2006 after having existed as an internet station, KDCS Bulldog Radio. 94.1 The Dog is broadcast at 80 watts from a tower atop Meredith Hall, the home of Drake's SJMC. An agreement with the FCC allows Drake to utilize the frequency from 4 p.m. to 4 a.m. weekdays and all day Saturday, while Grand View Universitymarker controls the frequency the rest of the week under the call letters KGVC-LP. Drake students schedule 24 hours of programming under "The Dog," broadcasting online and on channel 12 on closed-circuit television on campus even when not broadcasting on the frequency.

School of Law

Opperman Hall - Home to the Law School
Drake's law school is one of the twenty-five oldest law schools in the nation, tracing its history to 1865. It is a charter member of the American Association of Law Schools, has been accredited since 1923 when accreditation first began, and is one of only seventy-five ABA-approved law schools to have a Chapter of Order of the Coif. Drake University Law School is home to the American Judicature Society, the archives of the National Bar Association, the nation's oldest and largest national association of predominately African-American lawyers and judges, and the Drake Constitutional Law Center, which is one of only four constitutional law programs established by the U.S. Congress and funded by the federal government. The Center's mission is to foster in-depth study of the United States Constitution. A significant aspect of the Center's activities is the Dwight D. Opperman Lecture series, an annual event of national importance in constitutional law.Several Supreme Court Justicesmarker have visited campus to deliver lectures on American jurisprudence. Numerous current and former United States Supreme Court Justices have delivered the Opperman Lecture, including Justice Clarence Thomas, Justice Antonin Scalia, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Justice Stephen Breyer, Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, Chief Justice John G. Roberts, and late Justices Harry A. Blackmun, Lewis F. Powell and William H. Rehnquist.The 2007 graduate schools edition of U.S. News ranks the law school as Tier 3.

College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences

The 2008 edition of U.S. News best graduate programs ranks Drake's College of Pharmacy the #51 of all fully accredited pharmacy schools meeting the in the United States (tying for 5th among private institutions) [66736]. Alumni donations run deep at this Midwestern private institution. In 2005, Former Walgreen's Chairman and CEO Dan Jorndt, donated $10 million to his alma mater.

Majors offered: Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD.), Bachelor of Science in Pharmaceutical sciences (BSPS), and Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences (BSHS)


The University provides the following on-campus living accommodations for undergraduate students:
  • Stalnaker Hall (Freshmen only)
  • Carpenter Hall (Freshmen only)
  • Herriott Hall (Freshmen only)
  • Crawford Hall (Freshmen only)
  • Morehouse (freshmen/sophomore)
  • Jewett Hall (sophomore only)
  • Goodwin-Kirk Hall (sophomore only)

It should be noted that Drake West Village is not a residence hall and is not owned by Drake University. This also applies to the Old Main apartments.

Drake University and Hubbell Realty leaders announced plans on July 20, 2006 for a $34-million housing and retail development at 30th Street and Carpenter Avenue.

The development will create 7,000 feet of retail space for street-level neighborhood businesses and upper floors for state-of-the-art student suites. The buildings will house up to 500 students.

Current design calls for a mix of one-, two- and four-bedroom units, where each student has a private bedroom and shares a common living and kitchen space. The housing will be targeted primarily at junior and senior undergraduate students and graduate students in the pharmacy program or the Drake Law School.

Community amenities include:
  • Card controlled access
  • Fitness centers
  • Game room
  • Group study rooms
  • On-site laundry rooms
  • Courtyard with barbecue grills
  • On-site management
  • Retail center

West Village [66737] opened for the Fall 2008 semester.

Student organizations

Drake features over 160 student organizations in which to participate, which include:




Greek life

Social fraternities/sororities

Honorary/professional/service fraternities


Drake Bulldogs Logo

NCAA sports

Drake student-athletes compete in NCAA Division I in the Missouri Valley Conference in all sports except football. In football, Drake competes in the FCS NCAA Division I Pioneer Football League.

The Knapp Center

The Knapp Center
The Knapp Centermarker is a 7,002 seat multi-purpose arena at Drake. Its main purpose is to host Drake athletic events, but is also used for, among other things, concerts, Bucksbaum Lectures, and commencement. It was built in 1992, and is the home of the Drake Bulldogs. Prior to the Knapp Center, Drake's basketball teams played their games at Veterans Memorial Auditorium in downtown Des Moines. Other sports previously used the fieldhouse which is about a block west of the Knapp Center. The first Drake basketball game in the Knapp Center was played on December 5, 1992.

Drake Relays

Drake University also hosts the Drake Relays during April. This track and field event has been held since 1910, and is the second-largest collegiate track and field event in the United States. Participants come from all over the world to compete in this three-day event, which also helps to draw large crowds of spectators to Des Moines. Many Olympic athletes can be found participating in these events, which commonly break national and world records. Des Moines police units are in heavy presence for the event, though most students claim many of the city's laws and ordinances, especially those regarding underage alcohol cosumption, are suspended for the event.

Students kick-off the Relays in the annual tradition of Street Painting, in which student organizations colorfully decorate areas of Carpenter Avenue near the center of campus under a common theme. The theme in 2007 was "The Legacy Lives On"—referencing the $15 million renovation of Drake Stadium. Streaking the street painting was an annual occurrence for a period in the mid-1990s and has occasionally occurred in a few years following.

Fight Song

The fight song for Drake University is The "D" Song. The lyrics are:

Here's to the one who wears the "D",

Makes a good fight for varsity,

Here's to those who've fought and won,

Made a good fight as a true Drake alum,

Here's to the one who's brave and bold,

Ready to battle like days of old,

Fights like a Bulldog for victory,

Oh, here's to the one who wears the "D".


Drake University advanced to seventh in the "Great Schools, Great Prices" rankings and gained sole possession of fourth place in the overall rankings of 142 Midwest Universities - Master's category published by U.S. News and World Report magazine in the 2007 edition of "America's Best Colleges."

Last year Drake ranked eighth in the "Great Schools, Great Prices" category. The rankings are based on a formula that relates a school's academic quality, as indicated by its U.S. News ranking, to the net cost of attendance for a student who receives the average level of need-based financial aid. "The higher the quality of the program and the lower the cost, the better the deal," according to the magazine.

Drake continues to be ranked No. 2 in reputation for academic quality (peer assessment). It has the highest ranking in its category of any Iowa college or university. Drake improved in several areas this year, including student/faculty ratio, average freshmen retention rate and freshmen in the top 25 percent of their high school class.

Notable alumni


External links

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