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Class of 1959



Remember When?

  • In 1959, Wisconsin residents paid no tuition at the Wisconsin State College at Oshkosh; while non-residents paid $50 per year. Dormitories charged $6 per week for a student with one roommate.
  • In summer 1958, Mr. and Mrs. Ralph Buckstaff donated the Buckstaff Observatory with its two telescopes to Wisconsin State College at Oshkosh.
  • Webster Hall — named after Emily Webster, who taught two generations of students in her 40-plus career as an English, Latin and mathematics instructor — opened in 1959.
  • The 1958 fall semester brought a record enrollment of 1,815 students, making Oshkosh the largest institution in the Wisconsin State College System that year.
  • President Forrest Polk retired in May 1959, following 40 years of service to the institution.
  • Ernest Friebel graduated as a member of the Class of 1959 at the age of 69, making him the oldest graduate of the University at that time.
  • The 4.0 grading system went into effect in the 1958 fall semester. Juniors and seniors got an automatic 1.0 added to their GPA.
  • The Class of 1959 watched as Reeve Memorial Union was built on the site of the first, smaller union. Unfortunately, the building wasn’t completed in time for the seniors to enjoy.
  • In 1959, one out of every 10 students at the Wisconsin State College at Oshkosh was married.
  • In 1959, 13 international students from seven countries — Belgium, Egypt, Hungary, Iran, Korea, Kuwait and Pakistan — attended the Wisconsin State College at Oshkosh.


Read about the class of 1959 reunion.

Have Photos of Memorabilia to Share?

UW Oshkosh is seeking photos and other items from the 1930s-1960s' student life. If you have items to share, please contact University Archivist Joshua Ranger, (920) 424-0828 or email.

by reinecka — last modified May 10, 2012 01:39 PM