The University of Arizona (also referred to as UA, U of A, or Arizona) is a land-grant and space-grant public institution of higher education and research located in Tucson, Arizona, United States. The University of Arizona was the first university in the state of Arizona, founded in 1885 (twenty-seven years before the Arizona Territory achieved statehood), and is considered a Public Ivy. UA includes the only medical school in Arizona that grants M.D. degrees. In 2006, total enrollment was 36,805 students. UA is governed by the Arizona Board of Regents.
The University of Arizona was approved by the Arizona Territory's Thieving Thirteenth Legislature in 1885. The city of Tucson had hoped to receive the appropriation for the territory's mental hospital, which carried a $100,000 allocation instead of the $25,000 allotted to the territory's only university (Arizona State University was also chartered in 1885, but at the time it was created as Arizona's normal school, and not a university). Tucson's contingent of legislators was delayed in reaching Prescott due to flooding on the Salt River and by the time they arrived back-room deals allocating the most desirable territorial institutions had already been made. Tucson was largely disappointed at receiving what was viewed as an inferior prize. With no parties willing to step forth and provide land for the new institution, the citizens of Tucson prepared to return the money to the Territorial Legislature until two gamblers and a saloon keeper decided to donate the land necessary to build the school. Classes met for the first time in 1891 with 32 students in Old Main, the first building constructed on campus, and still in use to this day.
Because there were no high schools in Arizona Territory, the University maintained separate preparatory classes for the first 23 years of operation.
The main campus sits on 380 acres (1.5 km2) in central Tucson, about one mile (1.6 km) northeast of downtown. There are 179 buildings on the main campus. Many of the early buildings, including the Arizona State Museum buildings (one of them the 1927 main library) and Centennial Hall, were designed by Roy Place, a prominent Tucson architect. It was Place's use of red brick that set the tone for the red brick facades that are a basic and ubiquitous part of nearly all UA buildings, even those built in recent decades. Indeed, almost every UA building has red brick as a major component of the design, or at the very least, a stylistic accent to harmonize it with the other buildings on campus. 
The campus is roughly divided into quadrants. The north and south sides of campus are delineated by a grassy expanse called the Mall, which stretches from Old Main eastward to the campus' eastern border at Campbell Avenue (a major north-south arterial street). The west and east sides of campus are separated roughly by Highland Avenue and the Student Union Memorial Center (see below).
The science and mathematics buildings tend to be clustered in the southwest quadrant; the intercollegiate athletics facilities to the southeast; the arts and humanities buildings to the northwest (with the dance department being a major exception as its main facilities are far to the east end of campus), with the engineering buildings in the north central area. The optical and space sciences buildings are clustered on the east side of campus near the sports stadiums and the (1976) main library.
Speedway Boulevard, one of Tucson's primary east-west arterial streets, traditionally defined the northern boundary of campus but since the 1980s, several university buildings have been constructed north of this street, expanding into a neighborhood traditionally filled with apartment complexes and single-family homes. The University has purchased a handful of these apartment complexes for student housing in recent years. Sixth Street typically defines the southern boundary, with single-family homes (many of which are rented out to students) south of this street.
Park Avenue has traditionally defined the western boundary of campus, and there is a stone wall which runs along a large portion of the east side of the street, leading to the old Main Gate, and into the driveway leading to Old Main.
Along or adjacent to all of these major streets are a wide variety of retail facilities serving the student, faculty and staff population: shops, bookstores, bars, banks, credit unions, coffeehouses and major chain fast-food restaurants such as Burger King and Chick-fil-A. The area near University Boulevard and Park Avenue, near the Main Gate, has long been a major center of such retail activity; many of the shops have been renovated since the late 1990s and a nine-story Marriott hotel was built in this immediate district in 1996.
The oldest campus buildings are located west of Old Main. Most of the buildings east of Old Main date from the 1940s to the 1980s, with a few recent buildings constructed in the years since 1990.
The Student Union Memorial Center, located on the north side of the Mall east of Old Main, was completely reconstructed between 2000 and 2003, replacing a 270,000-square-foot (25,000 m2) structure originally opened in 1951 (with additions in the 1960s). The new $60 million student union has 405,000 square feet (37,600 m2) of space on four levels, including 14 restaurants (including a food court with such national chains as Burger King, Panda Express, Papa John's Pizza and Chick-fil-A), a new two-level bookstore (that includes a counter for Clinique merchandise as well as an office supplies section sponsored by Staples with many of the same Staples-branded items found in their regular stores), 23 meeting rooms, eight lounge areas (including one dedicated to the USS Arizona), a computer lab, a U.S. Post Office, a copy center named Fast Copy, and a video arcade.
For current museum hours, fees, and directions see "campus visitor's guide" in the external links.
Much of the main campus has been designated an arboretum. Plants from
around the world are labeled along a self-guided plant walk. The
Krutch Cactus Garden includes the tallest Boojum tree in the state of
Arizona. (The university also manages Boyce Thompson Arboretum
State Park, located c. 85 miles (137 km) north of the main campus.)
Two herbaria are located on the University campus and both are referred to as "ARIZ" in the Index Herbariorum
The University of Arizona Herbarium - contains roughly 400,000 specimens of plants.
The Robert L. Gilbertson Mycological Herbarium - contains more than 40,000 specimens of fungi.
The Arizona State Museum is the oldest anthropology museum in the American Southwest.
The Center for Creative Photography features rotating exhibits. The permanent collection includes over 70,000 photos, including many Ansel Adams originals.
University of Arizona Museum of Art.
The Arizona Historical Society is located one block west of campus.
Flandrau Science Center has exhibits, a planetarium, and a public-access telescope.
The University of Arizona Mineral Museum is located inside Flandrau Science Center. The collection dates back to 1892 and contains over 20,000 minerals from around the world, including many examples from Arizona and Mexico.
The University of Arizona Poetry Center
The Stevie Eller Dance Theatre, opened in 2003 (across the Mall from McKale Center) as a 28,600-square-foot (2,660 m2) dedicated performance venue for the UA's dance program, one of the most highly regarded university dance departments in the United States. Designed by Gould Evans, a Phoenix-based architectural firm, the theatre was awarded the 2003 Citation Award from the American Institute of Architects, Arizona Chapter. 
The football stadium has the Navajo-Pinal-Sierra dormitory in it. The dorm rooms are underneath the seats along the South and East sides of the stadium.
 Academic subdivisions
The University of Arizona offers 334 fields of study at four levels: bachelor's, masters, doctoral, and first professional.
Academic departments and programs are organized into colleges and schools. Typically, schools are largely independent or separately important from their parent college. In addition, not all schools are a part of a college. The university maintains a current list of colleges and schools at www.arizona.edu/index/colleges.php. 
The UA is considered a "selective" university by U.S. News and World Report. In the fall semester of 2007, the UA matriculated 6,569 freshmen, out of 16,853 freshmen admitted, from an application pool of 21,199 applicants. The average person admitted to the university as a freshman in fall 2007 had a weighted GPA of 3.31 and an average score of 1102 out of 1600 on the SAT admissions test. Sixty-nine of these freshman students were National Merit Scholars.
UA students hail from all states in the U.S. While nearly 72% of students are from Arizona, nearly 10% are from California, followed by a significant student presence from Illinois, Texas, Washington, and New York (2007). The UA has over 2,200 international students representing 122 countries. International students comprise approximately 6% of the total enrollment at UA.
 Academic and research reputation
Among the strongest programs at UA are optical sciences, astronomy, astrophysics, planetary sciences, hydrology, Earth Sciences, hydrogeology, linguistics, philosophy, sociology, architecture and landscape architecture, engineering, and anthropology.
Arizona is classified as a Carnegie Foundation "RU/VH: Research Universities (very high research activity)" university (formerly "Research 1" university).
The university receives more than $500 million USD annually in research funding, generating around two thirds of the research dollars in the Arizona university system. 26th highest in the U.S. (including public and private institutions). The university has an endowment of $466.7 million USD as of 2006(2006 NACUBO Endowment Study).
UA is awarded more NASA grants for space exploration than any other university nationally. The UA was recently awarded over $325 million USD for its Lunar and Planetary Laboratory (LPL) to lead NASA's 2007-08 mission to Mars to explore the Martian Arctic. The LPL's work in the Cassini spacecraft orbit around Saturn is larger than that of any other university globally. The UA laboratory designed and operated the atmospheric radiation investigations and imaging on the probe. The UA operates the HiRISE camera, a part of the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.
The Eller College of Management McGuire Entrepreneurship program is
currently the number 1 ranked undergraduate program in the country.
This ranking was made by The Princeton Review and Entrepreneur
The Council for Aid to Education ranked the UA 12th among public universities and 24th overall in financial support and gifts. Campaign Arizona, an effort to raise over $1 billion USD for the school, exceeded that goal by $200 million a year earlier than projected.
The National Science Foundation ranks UA 16th among public universities, and 26th among all universities nationwide in research funding.
UA receives more NASA grants annually than the next nine top NASA-Jet Propulsion Laboratory-funded universities combined.
UA students have been selected as Flinn, Truman, Rhodes, Goldwater, Fulbright, and National Merit scholars.
According to The Chronicle of Higher Education, UA is among the top 25 producers of Fulbright awards in the U.S.
 World rankings
Academic Ranking of World Universities (Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China): 77th (2008).
Webometrics Ranking of World Universities (Cybermetrics Lab, National Research Council of Spain): 18th (2008).
The G-Factor International University Ranking (Peter Hirst): 15th (2006).
Professional Ranking of World Universities (École nationale supérieure des mines de Paris, France): 35th (2008).
Performance Ranking of Scientific Papers for World Universities (Higher Education Evaluation and Accreditation Council of Taiwan): 37th (2008).
Global University Ranking by Wuhan University (Wuhan University, China): 43rd (2007).
 Notable associations
UA is a member of the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, a consortium of institutions pursuing research in astronomy. The association operates observatories and telescopes, notably Kitt Peak National Observatory located just outside of Tucson.
UA is a member of the Association of American Universities, and the sole representative from Arizona to this group.
 Notable rankings
The Eller College of Management's programs in Accounting, Entrepreneurship, Management Information Systems, and Marketing are ranked in the nation's top 25 by U.S. News & World Report. The Masters in MIS program has been ranked in the top 5 by U.S. News & World Report since the inception of the rankings. It is one of three programs to have this distinction.
The Eller MBA program has ranked among the top 50 programs for 11 straight years by U.S. News & World Report. In 2005 the MBA program was ranked 40th by U.S. News & World Report. Forbes Magazine ranked the Eller MBA program 33rd overall for having the best Return on Investment (ROI), in its fourth biennial rankings of business schools 2005. The MBA program was ranked 24th by The Wall Street Journal's 2005 Interactive Regional Ranking.
Out of 30 accredited graduate programs in landscape architecture in the country, DesignIntelligence ranked the College’s School of Landscape Architecture as the No. 1 graduate program in the western region. For 2009 the Undergraduate Program in Architecture was ranked 12th in the nation for all universities, public and private.
The James E. Rogers College of Law was ranked 38th nationally by U.S. News & World Report in 2008.
According to the National Academy of Sciences, the Graduate Program in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology is one of the top-rated research departments in ecology and evolutionary biology in the U.S.
The Systems and Industrial Engineering (SIE) Department is ranked 18th in the 'America's Best Graduate Schools 2006' by US News and World Report.
The analytical chemistry program at UA is ranked 4th nationally by U.S. News & World Report (2006).
The Geosciences program is ranked 7th nationally by U.S. News & World Report in 2006.
The Doctor of Pharmacy program is ranked 4th nationally by U.S. News & World Report in 2005.
The Photography program is ranked 9th nationally, also by U.S. News & World Report in 2008.
The Master of Fine Arts (MFA) program in Creative Writing at the University of Arizona has ranked in the top ten consistently according to U.S. News & World Report.
In the Philosophical Gourmet rankings of philosophy departments, the graduate program in Philosophy is ranked 13th nationally. The political philosophy program at the University of Arizona is top ranked first in the English speaking world, according to the same report.
Many programs in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences have ranked in the top ten in the U.S. according to Faculty Scholarly Productivity Index: Agricultural Sciences -- No. 1, Agronomy and Crop Sciences -- No. 1, Entomology -- No. 2, Botany and Plant Biology -- No. 4, Nutrition -- No. 10.
In 2005, the Association of Research Libraries, in its "Ranked Lists for Institutions for 2005" (the most recent year available), ranked the UA libraries as the 33rd overall university library in North America (out of 113) based on various statistical measures of quality; this is one rank below the library of Duke University, one rank ahead of that of Northwestern University (both these schools are members, along with the UA, of the Association of American Universities).
As of 2006, the UA's library system contains nearly five million volumes.
The Main Library, opened in 1976, serves as the library system's reference, periodical, and administrative center; most of the main collections and special collections are housed here as well. The Main Library is located on the southeast quadrant of campus near McKale Center and Arizona Stadium.
In 2002, a $20 million, 100,000-square-foot (10,000 m2) addition, the Integrated Learning Center (ILC), was completed; it is a home base for first-year students (especially those undecided on a major) which features classrooms, auditoriums, a courtyard with an alcove for vending machines, and a greatly expanded computer lab (the Information Commons) with several dozen Gateway and Apple Macintosh G5 workstations (these computers are available for use by the general public (with some restrictions) as well as by UA students, faculty and staff). Much of the ILC was constructed underground, underneath the east end of the Mall; the ILC connects to the basement floor of the Main Library through the Information Commons. As part of the project, additional new office space for the Library was constructed on the existing fifth floor.
The Science and Engineering Library is in a nearby building from the 1960s that houses volumes and periodicals from those fields. The Music Building (on the northwest quadrant of campus where many of the fine arts disciplines are clustered) houses the Fine Arts Library, including reference collections for architecture, music (including sheet music, recordings and listening stations), and photography. There is a small library at the Center for Creative Photography, also in the fine arts complex, devoted to the art and science of photography. The Law Library is in the law building.
The libraries at University of Arizona are expecting a 15 percent budget cut for the 2009 fiscal year. They will begin to explore the possibilities of cutting staff, cutting online modules, and closing some libraries. The biggest threat is the possible closure of 11 libraries. The staff is projected to decline from 180 employees to 155 employees. They also intend to cut face-face instructional program that teaches students in English 101 and 102 how to navigate the library. This will now be taught online.
Main article: Arizona Wildcats
Like many large public universities in the U.S., sports are a major activity on campus, and receive a large operating budget. Arizona's athletic teams are nicknamed the Wildcats, a name derived from a 1914 football game with then California champions Occidental College, where the L.A. Times asserted that, "the Arizona men showed the fight of wildcats." The University of Arizona participates in the NCAA's Division I-A in the Pacific-10 Conference, which it joined in 1978.
 Men's basketball
Main article: Arizona Wildcats men's basketball
The men's basketball team has been one of the nation's most successful programs since Lute Olson was hired as head coach in 1983, and is still known as a national powerhouse in Division I men's basketball. As of 2009, the team has reached the NCAA Tournament 25 consecutive years, which is the longest active and second-longest streak in NCAA history (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill had the longest streak with 27). The Wildcats have reached the Final Four of the NCAA tournament in 1988, 1994, 1997, and 2001. In 1997, Arizona defeated the University of Kentucky, the defending national champions, to win the NCAA National Championship (NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Championship) by a score of 84–79 in overtime; Arizona's first national championship victory. The 1997 championship team became the first and only in NCAA history to defeat three number-one seeds en route to a national title (Kansas, North Carolina and Kentucky -- the North Carolina game being the final game for longtime UNC head coach Dean Smith). Point guard Miles Simon was chosen as 1997 Final Four MVP (Simon was also an assistant coach under Olson from 2005–08). The Cats also boast the third highest winning percentage over the last twenty years. Arizona has won a total of 21 conference championships in its' programs history.
The Wildcats play their home games at the McKale Center in Tucson. A number of former Wildcats have gone on to pursue successful professional NBA careers (especially during the Lute Olson era), including Gilbert Arenas, Richard Jefferson, Mike Bibby, Jason Terry, Sean Elliott, Damon Stoudamire, Luke Walton, Hassan Adams, Salim Stoudamire, Andre Iguodala, Channing Frye, Brian Williams (later known as Bison Dele), Sean Rooks, Jud Buechler, Michael Dickerson and Steve Kerr. Kenny Lofton, now best known as a former Major League Baseball star, was a four year letter winner as a Wildcat basketball player (and was on the 1988 Final Four team), before one year on the Arizona baseball team. Another notable former Wildcat basketball player is Eugene Edgerson, who played on the 1997 and 2001 Final Four squads, and is currently one of the primary stars of the Harlem Globetrotters as "Wildkat" Edgerson.
Before Lute Olson's hire in 1983, Arizona was the first major Division I school to hire an African American head coach in Fred Snowden, in 1972. After a 25-year tenure as Arizona head coach, Olson announced his retirement from the Arizona basketball program in October 2008. After two seasons of using interim coaches, Arizona named Sean Miller, head coach at Xavier University, as its new head basketball coach in April 2009.
The football team began at The University of Arizona in 1899 under the nickname "Varsity" (a name kept until the 1914 season when the team was deemed the "Wildcats").
The football team was notably successful in the 1990s, under head coach Dick Tomey; his "Desert Swarm" defense was characterized by tough, hard-nosed tactics. In 1993, the team had its first 10-win season and beat the University of Miami Hurricanes in the Fiesta Bowl by a score of 29–0. It was the bowl game's only shutout in its then 23-year history. In 1998, the team posted a school-record 12–1 season and made the Holiday Bowl in which it defeated the Nebraska Cornhuskers. Arizona ended that season ranked 4th nationally in the coaches and API poll. The 1998 Holiday Bowl was televised on ESPN and set the now-surpassed record of being the most watched of any bowl game in that network's history (the current record belongs to the 2005 Alamo Bowl between Michigan and Nebraska). The program is led by Mike Stoops, brother of Bob Stoops, the head football coach at the University of Oklahoma.
Main article: Arizona Wildcats baseball
The baseball team had its first season in 1904. The baseball team has captured three national championship titles in 1976, 1980, and 1986, all coached by Jerry Kindall. Arizona baseball teams have appeared in the NCAA National Championship title series a total of six times, including 1956, 1959, 1963, 1976, 1980, and 1986 (College World Series). The team is currently coached by Andy Lopez; aided by Assistant Coach Mark Wasikowski, Assistant Coach Jeff Casper and Volunteer Assistant Coach Keith Francis. Arizona baseball also has a student section named The Hot Corner. Famous UA baseball alums include current Boston Red Sox manager Terry Francona, Cleveland Indian Kenny Lofton, Yankee Shelley Duncan, Brewers closer Trevor Hoffman, Diamondbacks third-base coach Chip Hale, former 12-year MLB pitcher and current minor league coach Craig Lefferts, longtime MLB standout J. T. Snow, star MLB pitchers Don Lee, Carl Thomas, Mike Paul, Dan Schneider, Rich Hinton and Ed Vosberg, NY Giants slugger Hank Leiber, Yankee catcher Ron Hassey, and Red Sox coach Brad Mills. Former Angels and Cardinals (among others) pitcher Joe Magrane is also a UA alum.
The Arizona softball team is among the top programs in the country and a perennial powerhouse. The softball team has won eight NCAA Women's College World Series titles, in 1991, 1993, 1994, 1996, 1997, 2001, 2006 and 2007 under head coach Mike Candrea (NCAA Softball Championship). Arizona defeated the University of Tennessee in the 2007 National Championship series in Oklahoma City. The team has appeared in the NCAA National Championship in 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 2001, 2002, 2006, and 2007 (a feat second only to UCLA), and has reached the College World Series 19 of the past 20 years. Coach Candrea, along with former Arizona pitcher Jennie Finch, led the 2004 U.S. Olympic softball team to a gold medal in Athens, Greece. The Wildcat softball team plays at Rita Hillenbrand Memorial Stadium.
 Men's and women's golf
The university's golf teams have also been notably successful. The men's team won a national championship in 1992 (NCAA Division I Men's Golf Championships), while the women's team won national championships in 1996 and 2000 (NCAA Women's Golf Championship).
A strong athletic rivalry exists between the University of Arizona and Arizona State University located in Tempe. The UA leads the all-time record against ASU in men's basketball (138-73), football (44–35–1), and baseball (224–189–1) as of January 2006. The football rivalry game between the schools is known as "The Duel in the Desert." The trophy awarded after each game, the Territorial Cup, is the nation's oldest rivalry trophy, distinguished by the NCAA. Rivalries have also been created with other Pac-10 teams, especially University of California, Los Angeles which has provided a worthy softball rival and was Arizona's main basketball rival in the early and mid-1990s.
The University mascot is an anthropomorphized wildcat named Wilbur. The identity of Wilbur is kept secret through the year as the mascot appears only in costume. In 1986, Wilbur married his longtime wildcat girlfriend, Wilma. Together, Wilbur and Wilma appear along with the cheerleading squad at most Wildcat sporting events. Wilbur was originally created by Bob White as a cartoon character in the University's humor magazine, Kitty Kat. From 1915 through the 1950s the school mascot was a live bobcat, a species known locally as a wildcat. This succession of live mascots were known by the common name of Rufus Arizona, originally named after Rufus von Kleinsmid, president of the university from 1914 to 1921. 1959 marked the creation of the first incarnated Wilbur, when University student John Paquette and his roommate, Dick Heller, came up with idea of creating a costume for a student to wear. Ed Stuckenhoff was chosen to wear the costume at the homecoming game in 1959 against Texas Tech and since then it has become a long-standing tradition. Wilbur will celebrate his 50th birthday in November 2009.
Officially implemented in 2003, Zona Zoo is the official student section and student ticketing program for the University of Arizona Athletics. The Zona Zoo program is co-owned by the Associated Students of the University of Arizona (ASUA) and Arizona Athletics, the program is run by a team of spirited individuals called the Zona Zoo Crew. Zona Zoo is one of the largest and most spirited student sections in NCAA Division I Athletics.
McKale Center, opened in 1973, is currently used by men's and women's basketball, women's gymnastics, and women's volleyball. The official capacity has changed often. The largest crowd to see a game in McKale was 15,176 in 1976 for a game against the University of New Mexico, a main rival during that period. In 2000, the floor in McKale was dubbed Lute Olson Court, for the basketball program's winningest coach. During a memorial service in 2001 for Lute's wife, Bobbi, who died after a battle with ovarian cancer, the floor was renamed Lute and Bobbi Olson Court. In addition to the playing surface, McKale Center is host to the offices of the UA athletic department. McKale Center is named after J.F. Pop McKale, who was athletic director and coach from 1914 through 1957. Joe Cavaleri ("The Ooh-Aah Man") made his dramatic and inspiring appearances there.
Arizona Stadium, built in 1928 and last expanded in 1976, seats over 56,000 patrons. It hosts American football games and has also been used for university graduations. The turf is bermuda grass, taken from the local Tucson National Golf Club. Arizona football's home record is 258-139-12. The largest crowd ever in Arizona Stadium was 59,920 in 1996 for a game against Arizona State University.
Jerry Kindall Field at Frank Sancet Stadium hosts baseball games.
Rita Hillenbrand Memorial Stadium hosts softball games.