University of Michigan

The University of Michigan
Motto Artes, Scientia, Veritas
(Latin for "arts, science, truth")
Established 1817
Type Public
Endowment $5.7 billion
President Mary Sue Coleman
Faculty 6,238
Students 40,025
Undergraduates 25,555
Postgraduates 14,470
Location Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA
Campus Suburban
3,176 acres (12.86 km²)
Total: 20,965 acres (84.84 km²), including arboretum
Sports Wolverines
Colors Maize and blue



The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor (UM or U of M) is a coeducational public research university in the U.S. state of Michigan. Founded in 1817 some 20 years before the territory of Michigan officially became a state, the university moved to Ann Arbor in 1837. Today, it is the state's oldest university and the flagship of Michigan's public university system.

In its 2007 edition, U.S. News & World Report ranked the undergraduate division 24th in the U.S. UM has one of the largest research expenditures of any American university as well as one of the largest number of living alumni at 420,000. The university is also recognized for its history of student activism and its athletic teams, notably in football and ice hockey. However, despite being a public institution, the University of Michigan is also known for its high student fees; tuition for out-of-state students is currently the most expensive in the country.[1]

UM was the first American university to use the seminar method of study.[2] It was also the location chosen by President John F. Kennedy to propose the concept of what became the Peace Corps, and the site of Lyndon B. Johnson's speech outlining his Great Society program. In 2003, the university successfully affirmed before the U.S. Supreme Court that consideration of race as a factor in admissions to universities was constitutional.[3] However, Michigan voters approved a ban on affirmative action in public universities and governmental hiring in November 2006, forcing UM to no longer use race and gender as admissions criteria.[4]




The University of Michigan was established in 1817 by the Michigan Territory legislature in Detroit, on 1,920 acres (7.76 km²) ceded through the Treaty of Fort Meigs by the Chippewa, Ottawa, and Potawatomi peoples. Ann Arbor had set aside 40 acres (16 ha) that it hoped would become the site for a new state capitol, but it offered this land to the university when Lansing was chosen as the state capital. The land in Detroit was sold, and the university moved to Ann Arbor in 1837. The original 40 acres in Ann Arbor became part of the current Central Campus.

The first classes in Ann Arbor were held in 1841, with six freshmen and a sophomore, taught by two professors. Eleven students graduated in the first commencement in 1845. By 1866, enrollment increased to 1,205 students, many of whom were Civil War veterans. Women were first admitted in 1870, making the University of Michigan the first major university to do so (and the third college overall, after Oberlin College in 1833 and Lawrence University in 1847), some 100 years before the Ivy League schools. James B. Angell, who served as the university's president from 1871 to 1909, aggressively expanded UM's curriculum to include professional studies in dentistry, architecture, engineering, government, and medicine.

The Central Campus Diag, viewed from the Graduate Library
The Central Campus Diag, viewed from the Graduate Library

From 1900 to 1920 many new facilities were constructed on campus, including facilities for the dental and pharmacy programs, a chemistry building, a building for the natural sciences, Hill Auditorium, large hospital and library complexes, and two residential halls. The university fortified its reputation for research in 1920 by reorganizing the College of Engineering and forming an advisory committee of 100 industrialists to guide academic research initiatives. During World War II, UM's research grew to include U.S. Navy projects such as proximity fuzes, PT boats, and radar jamming. By 1950, enrollment had reached 21,000, of whom 7,700 were veterans supported by the G.I. Bill. As the Cold War and the Space Race took hold, UM became a major recipient of government grants for strategic research and helped to develop peacetime uses for nuclear energy.

On March 24, 1964, a group of UM faculty members and 2,500 students held the nation's first ever faculty-led "teach-in" to protest against American policy in Southeast Asia. In response to a series of sit-ins in 1966 by Voice–the campus political party of Students for a Democratic Society–UM's administration banned sit-ins. This stimulated 1,500 students to conduct a further one-hour sit-in in the administration building.

During the 1970s, severe budget constraints challenged the university's physical development. However, the 1980s saw a surge in funds devoted to research in the social and physical sciences. Meanwhile, the university's involvement in the anti-missile Strategic Defense Initiative and investments in South Africa caused controversy on campus. During the 1980s and 1990s, the university devoted substantial resources to renovating its massive hospital complex and improving the academic facilities on the North Campus. The university also emphasized the development of computer and information technology throughout the campus.

In 2003, two lawsuits involving UM's affirmative action admissions policy reached the U.S. Supreme Court (Grutter v. Bollinger and Gratz v. Bollinger). President George W. Bush took the unusual step of publicly opposing the policy before the court issued a ruling. The court found that race may be considered as a factor in university admissions in all public universities and private universities that accept federal funding. However, a race-based point system was ruled as being unconstitutional. In the first case, the court upheld the Law School admissions policy, while in the second it ruled against the university's undergraduate admissions policy. The debate still continues, however, because in November of 2006, Michigan voters narrowly passed proposal 2, banning most affirmative action in University admissions. Under that law, race, gender, and national origin can no longer be consided in admissions. UM and other civil rights organizations were granted a stay from implementation of the passed proposal soon after that election and this has allowed time for proponents of affirmative action to decide legal and constitutional options in response to the election results. In the early 2000s, UM also faced declining state funding due to state budget shortfalls. At the same time, the university attempted to maintain its high academic standing while keeping tuition costs affordable. There were also disputes between UM's administration and labor unions, notably with the Lecturers' Employees Organization (LEO) and the Graduate Employees Organization (GEO), the union representing graduate student employees. These conflicts led to a series of one-day walkouts by the unions and their supporters.

The August 1, 2006, publication of The Advocate College Guide for LGBT Students highlighted the University of Michigan as one of the 20 best campuses for LGBT students.[5] The guide acknowledged colleges and universities across the United States for making strides toward the advancement and integration of the LGBT community via a wide variety of student support groups, resources, events, policies, and other efforts to create an overall exceptional educational climate for these individuals.

In November 2006, Michigan voters approved a ban on affirmative action in public universities and governmental hiring, forcing UM to no longer use race and gender as admissions criteria.[4] The university has stated it plans to continue to challenge the ruling; in the meantime, the admissions office will attempt to achieve a diverse student body looking at other factors such as whether the student attended a disadvantaged school and the level of education of the student's parents.[4]


Academic profile

Central Campus: Angell Hall, one of the major buildings of the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts.
Central Campus: Angell Hall, one of the major buildings of the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts.

The university has 25,555 undergraduate and 14,470 graduate students in 600 academic programs, and each year about 5,400 new students are enrolled. Students come from all 50 U.S. states and more than 100 countries. According to the 2007 edition of the US News and World Report, nearly 90% of incoming students graduated in the top 10% of their high school class. 28% of the university's incoming class of 2006 earned a high school GPA of 4.0, while 52% earned a GPA of 3.9 or higher.[6][7] The middle 50% of applicants report an SAT score of about 1900-2160, and an ACT score of 27-32. AP credit was granted to over 3000 freshmen.[8] About 22% of newly-enrolled undergraduates and 25% of all undergraduates are members of ethnic minority groups.[9]

About 65% of undergraduate students are enrolled in the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts (LS&A), while the College of Engineering has about 20%. Fewer than 3% of undergraduate students are enrolled in the Ross School of Business. The rest of the undergraduate students are enrolled in the smaller schools, including the School of Nursing, the School of Natural Resources and Environment, and the School of Art and Design.[10] Most graduate students are enrolled in the Rackham Graduate School, the College of Engineering, the Law School, the Ross School of Business, and the Medical School. The Medical School is partnered with the University of Michigan Health System. Other academic units include the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy, Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning and the Schools of Dentistry, Education, Information, Music, Theatre & Dance, Public Health, and Social Work, which has been ranked first by the U.S. News and World Report every year since 1994.[11]

There are over 6,200 faculty members, 73 of whom are members of the National Academy, and 400 of whom hold an endowed chair in their discipline.[12] The university consistently leads the nation in the number of Fulbright Scholars and has matriculated 25 Rhodes Scholars.

Academically, the university is ranked among the world’s top universities.[13] In one recent rankings summary, more than 70% of UM's 200 major programs, departments, and schools were ranked in the top 10 nationally, and more than 90% of programs and departments were ranked in the top 20 nationally.[14] UM was rated among the top 20 colleges in the U.S. in the annual rankings by the Washington Monthly in 2006.[15] and ranked 24th overall in the 2007 edition of U.S. News & World Report. Newsweek International's Worldwide TOP 100 2007 rankings rated UM eleventh among worldwide global universities.[16] Similarly, the 2007 edition of the Fiske Rankings rated UM with "5 Stars" - reserved for only those universities of the highest academic quality. The university is also one of sixty elected members of the Association of American Universities. The Newsweek/Kaplan 2007 Educational College Guide proclaimed UM one of the 25 "New Ivies," an emerging elite group of 25 schools that provide an education equal to the best of the Ivy League. Furthermore, UM's academic reputation has led to its inclusion on Richard Moll's list of Public Ivies.[17]

One concern about academics at the UM is the high level of educational expenses for a public institution, especially for out-of-state undergraduate students, who pay about $30,000 annually for tuition alone. Currently, out-of-state tuition at UM is the most expensive in the United States for a public college or university.[18] Conversely, in-state undergraduate students pay about $10,000 annually.[19]

Notwithstanding the quoted tuition levels, the university is attempting to lower the cost of attendance. To that end, the university is building a $400 million endowment in order to replace loans with out-right grants to students.[20] In consequence, the university is ranked 16th by Kiplingers on the national list of the “100 best values in public higher education” among colleges and universities.[21]


Research and endowment

University of Michigan Hospital
University of Michigan Hospital

The university has one of the largest annual research expenditures of any university in the United States, totaling about $775 million from 2004 to 2005.[22] The Medical School spent the most at nearly $300 million, while the College of Engineering was second at more than $135 million.[23] UM also has a technology transfer office, which is the university conduit between laboratory research and corporate commercialization interests.

UM helped develop one of the first university computer networks and has made major contributions to the mathematics of information theory. Other major contributions included the precursor to the National Science Foundation computer networking backbone, the virtual memory model, and computer databases. The university is also a major contributor to the medical field with the EKG, gastroscope, the announcement of Jonas Salk's polio vaccine, and the extracorporal membrane oxygenation system. The university's 13,000-acre (53 km²) biological station in the Northern Lower Peninsula of Michigan is one of only 47 Biosphere Reserves in the United States.

UM is home to the National Election Studies and the University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index. Political scientists and policy analysts use UM's Correlates of War project as a gauge of nations' relative global power and a barometer for the outbreak of war. The university is also home to major research centers in optics, reconfigurable manufacturing systems, wireless integrated microsystems, and social sciences. The University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute is located at the university, and support was recently given to the life sciences with the establishment of the Life Sciences Institute and the construction of associated facilities. Undergraduate students are able to participate in various research projects through the Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program (UROP) as well as the UROP/Creative-Programs.[24]

UM's financial endowment (the "University Endowment Fund") was valued at $5.7 billion in 2006.[25] It is the ninth largest endowment in the U.S. and the fourth-largest among U.S. public universities.[26] The endowment is primarily used according to the donors' wishes, which include the support of teaching and research. In mid-2000, UM embarked on a massive fund-raising campaign called "The Michigan Difference," which aims to raise $2.5 billion, with $800 million dollars designated for the permanent endowment.[27]


Libraries and museums

Law School Library Reading Room: York and Sawyer, architects of the Law Quadrangle
Law School Library Reading Room: York and Sawyer, architects of the Law Quadrangle

The UM library system comprises 19 individual libraries with 24 separate collections—roughly 7.96 million volumes, growing at the rate of 150,000 volumes a year.[28] UM was the original home of the JSTOR database, which contains about 750,000 digitized pages from the entire pre-1990 backfile of ten journals of history and economics. The University recently initiated an innovative book digitization program in collaboration with Google. As of August 31, 2006, UM has rolled out the first phase of the Google archive retrieval.[29]

Two prominent libraries, the Harlan Hatcher Graduate Library and the Shapiro Undergraduate Library (also called the UGLi, which is officially an acronym but was used by students as a reference to the building's uninspired appearance prior to its recent renovation), are on Central Campus and are connected by a skywalk. The Duderstadt Center on North Campus houses books on art, architecture, and engineering. The Duderstadt Center also contains multiple computer labs, video editing studios, and a 3D virtual reality room. North Campus is also home to the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library.

The UM Museum of Art  on Central Campus.
The UM Museum of Art on Central Campus.

The University of Michigan is home to a number of museums, whose focuses include archeology, anthropology, paleontology, zoology, dentistry, and art. The natural history public collections are housed at the University of Michigan Exhibit Museum of Natural History, which displays items from the collections of the paleontology, zoology, and anthropology museums. The Exhibit Museum also holds the largest display of dinosaur specimens in Michigan, as well a specimen of the state fossil, the mastodon (the only such display in the world containing adult male and female specimens: the Buesching and Owosso mastodons). One of the better-known museums is the University of Michigan Museum of Art, with a permanent collection of European, American, Middle Eastern, Asian, and African items, and temporary exhibits on a wide variety of subjects.

See also: University of Michigan Library and Museums at the University of Michigan


Locations of the U-M three main campuses in Ann Arbor
Locations of the U-M three main campuses in Ann Arbor

The Ann Arbor campus is divided into three main areas: the North, Central and South Campuses. The physical infrastructure includes more than 300 major buildings, with a combined area of more than 29 million square feet (2.69 km²). The campus also consists of buildings scattered throughout the city, many occupied by organizations affiliated with the University of Michigan Health System. The university also has an office building called Wolverine Tower in southern Ann Arbor near Briarwood Mall. Another major facility is the Matthaei Botanical Gardens, which is located on the eastern outskirts of Ann Arbor.

All three campus areas are connected by free bus services, the majority of which connect the North and Central Campuses. There is a shuttle service connecting the University Hospital, which lies between North and Central Campuses, with other medical facilities throughout northeastern Ann Arbor. The Central and South Campus areas are contiguous, while the North Campus area is separated from them, primarily by the Huron River.


Central Campus

Hill Auditorium, Burton Tower, and the Rackham Building
Hill Auditorium, Burton Tower, and the Rackham Building

Central Campus was the original location of UM when it moved to Ann Arbor in 1841. It originally had a school and dormitory building (where Mason Hall now stands) and several houses for professors on land bounded by North University Avenue, South University Avenue, East University Avenue, and State Street. Because Ann Arbor and Central Campus developed simultaneously, there is no distinct boundary between the city and university, and some areas contain a mixture of private and university buildings. Central Campus is the location of the College of Literature, Science and the Arts and the medical campus. Most of the graduate and professional schools, including the Ross School of Business and the Law School, are on Central Campus. Ten of the buildings on Central Campus were designed by Detroit-based architect Albert Kahn between 1904 and 1936. The most notable of the Kahn-designed buildings are the Burton Memorial Tower and nearby Hill Auditorium.


North Campus

Much of North Campus has a modern architectural style.
Much of North Campus has a modern architectural style.

North Campus is the most contiguous campus, built independently from the city on a large plot of land the university bought in 1952. It is newer than Central Campus, and thus has more modern architecture, whereas most Central Campus buildings are classical or gothic in style. The architect Eero Saarinen, based in Birmingham, Michigan, created one of the early master plans for North Campus and designed several of its buildings in the 1950s, including the Earl V. Moore School of Music Building.[30] North and Central Campuses each have unique bell towers that reflect the predominant architectural styles of their surroundings. North Campus houses the College of Engineering, the Schools of Music, Theater & Dance, and Art and Design, the Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning, and an annex of the School of Information.


South Campus

South Campus is the site for the athletic programs, including major sports facilities, such as Michigan Stadium, Crisler Arena, and Yost Ice Arena. South Campus is also the site of the Buhr library storage facility (the collections of which are undergoing digitization by Google), the Institute for Continuing Legal Education, and the Student Theatre Arts Complex, which provides shop and rehearsal space for student theatre groups. The university's departments of public safety and transportation services offices are located on South Campus.

UM's golf course is located south of Michigan Stadium and Crisler Arena. It was designed in the late 1920s by Alister MacKenzie, the designer of Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Georgia (home of The Masters Tournament).[31] The course opened to the public in the spring of 1931.

The University of Michigan Golf Course was included in a listing of top holes designed by what Sports Illustrated calls “golf’s greatest course architect.” The UM Golf Course’s signature No. 6 hole — a 310-yard par 4, which plays from an elevated tee to a two-tiered, kidney-shaped green protected by four bunkers — is the second hole on the Alister MacKenzie Dream 18 as selected by a five-person panel that includes three-time Masters champion Nick Faldo and golf course architect Tom Doak. The listing of “the best holes ever designed by Augusta National architect Alister MacKenzie” is featured in SI’s Golf Plus special edition previewing the Masters in April 4, 2006.



The University of Michigan's sports teams are called the Wolverines. They participate in the NCAA's Division I-A and in the Big Ten Conference in all sports except men's ice hockey, which competes in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association. In seven of the past ten years, UM has finished in the top five of the NACDA Director's Cup, a ranking compiled by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics to tabulate the success of universities in competitive sports. UM has finished in the top eleven of the Directors' Cup standings in each of the award's twelve seasons and has placed in the top six in each of the last eight seasons.[32] The University of Michigan remains the only school in NCAA history to win at least one national championship in all four of these sports: baseball, basketball (men's), football, and ice hockey (men's). The Wolverines have also won NCAA Division I national championships in women's field hockey, men's golf, men's gymnastics, women's softball, men's swimming and diving, men's tennis, and men's outdoor track and field.

A football game at Michigan Stadium
A football game at Michigan Stadium

The UM football program ranks first in NCAA history in both total wins (860) and winning percentage (.747). The team won the first Rose Bowl game in 1902, and has the longest current streak of consecutive bowl game appearances. The last year in which UM did not appear in a bowl was 1974, which was also the last season in which Big Ten teams other than the champion were not eligible for bowls; UM's last losing season was in 1967. The Wolverines have won a record 42 Big Ten championships, including five in the past decade. The program has eleven national championships, most recently in 1997,[33] and has produced three Heisman Trophy winners: Tom Harmon, Desmond Howard and Charles Woodson.[34]

Michigan Stadium is the largest college football-only stadium in the world, with an official capacity of more than 107,501 (the extra seat is permanently reserved for Fritz Crisler) though attendance—frequently over 111,000 spectators—often exceeds the official capacity.[35] The NCAA's record-breaking attendance has become commonplace at Michigan Stadium, especially since the arrival of head coach Bo Schembechler (1969-1989). UM has fierce rivalries with many teams, including Michigan State and Notre Dame; however, its football rivalry with Ohio State is strongly considered to be the fiercest in all of college athletics, and has been referred to by ESPN as the greatest rivalry in American sports.[36] Michigan has an all time winning record against Ohio State University (57-40-6), University of Notre Dame (19-14-1), and Michigan State University.

The men's ice hockey team, which plays at Yost Ice Arena, has won an NCAA-record nine national championships.

The men's basketball team, which plays at Crisler Arena, has appeared in six Final Fours, and won a national championship in 1989. However, the program became involved in a scandal involving payments from a booster during the 1990s. This led to the program's being placed on probation for a four-year period. The program also voluntarily vacated victories from seasons in which the payments took place.

Through the 2004 Summer Olympic Games, 178 UM students and coaches had participated in the Olympics, winning medals in every Summer Olympics except 1896, and winning gold medals in all but four Olympiads. UM students have won a total of 116 Olympic medals including 54 gold, 27 silver, and 35 bronze.


Student life


Residential life

Mosher-Jordan Residence Hall
Mosher-Jordan Residence Hall

The University of Michigan has the sixth-largest campus housing system in the U.S. and the third-largest family housing operation, accommodating up to 12,562 people.[37] The residence halls are organized into three distinct groups: Central Campus, Hill Area (between Central Campus and the University of Michigan Medical Center) and North Campus. Family housing is located on North Campus and mainly serves graduate students. The largest residence hall has a capacity of 1,277 students, while the smallest accommodates 31 residents. A majority of upper-class and graduate students live in off-campus apartments, houses, and cooperatives, with the largest concentrations in the Central and South Campus areas. The higher cost of living in Ann Arbor has prompted some students to live in nearby communities such as Ypsilanti or Plymouth.

The residential system has a number of "living-learning communities" where academic activities and residential life are combined. These communities focus on areas such as research through the Michigan Research Community, medical sciences, community service and the German language. The Michigan Research Community, usually housed in Mosher-Jordan Hall, is currently located in East Quadrangle (East Quad) due to renovations in its former building. The Residential College (RC), a living-learning community that is a division of the College of Literature, Science and the Arts, also has its principal instructional space in East Quad.


Groups and activities

There are more than 900 student clubs and organizations at the university.[38] With a history of student activism, some of the most visible groups include those dedicated to causes such as civil rights and labor rights. Though the student body generally leans toward left-wing politics, there are also sizable conservative groups, such as YAF and religious groups like "Jews for Jesus". Fraternities and sororities, many of which are located east of Central Campus, play a major role in the university's social life. Intramural sports are popular, and there are recreation facilities for each of the three campuses. There are also several engineering projects teams, including the University of Michigan Solar Car Team, which placed first in the American Solar Challenge four times and third in the World Solar Challenge three times. The university also showcases a number of community service organizations and charitable projects, including Circle K, The Detroit Project, Alternative Medicine Club and Ann Arbor Reaching Out.

Michigan Union on Central Campus
Michigan Union on Central Campus

The Michigan Union and Michigan League are student activity centers located on Central Campus; Pierpont Commons is on North Campus. The Michigan Union houses a majority of student groups, including the student government. The William Monroe Trotter House, located east of Central Campus, is a multicultural student center operated by the university's Office of Multi-Ethnic Student Affairs.

The University Activities Center (UAC) is a student-run programming organization at UM. The organization is composed of 15 committees, such as the Michigan Pops Orchestra, Amazin' Blue Acapella, and the Impact Dance group. Each group involves students in the planning and execution of a variety of events both on and off campus.

The Michigan Marching Band is the university's marching band. It is composed of over 350 students from almost all of the university's schools. They perform at every home game and travel to at least one away game a year. Being over 100 years old, the band is featured in almost every university recruitment pamphlet.

Even older, however, is the University of Michigan Men's Glee Club, founded in 1859, managing to surpass even the football team in age. The Men's Glee Club is a men's chorus comprised of over 100 members, and is regarded as one of the premier male choruses in the nation. It is the second oldest collegiate male chorus in the nation (second to the Harvard Glee Club). Its 8 member subset a capella group, The University of Michigan Friars, is the oldest currently running a capella group on campus, founded in 1955.

The student-run and led University of Michigan Pops Orchestra is another popular musical ensemble that attracts students from all academic backgrounds. It performs regularly in the Michigan Theater.

The Michigan Daily is the student-run daily newspaper, founded in 1890. Other student publications include the conservative The Michigan Review, the progressive Michigan Independent, the Michigan Journal of Political Science, The Michigan Israel Observer, and the humorous publications The Michigan Every Three Weekly and the Gargoyle. WCBN (88.3 FM) is a freeform radio station; WOLV-TV is a student-run television station that is primarily shown on the university's cable television system.


Student government

Housed in the Michigan Union, the Michigan Student Assembly (MSA) is the central student government of the University. With representatives from each of the University's colleges and schools, the MSA represents students and manages student funds on the campus. The Michigan Student Assembly is a member of the statewide Association of Michigan Universities. In recent years MSA has organized airBus, a transportation service between campus and the Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport, and has brought musical acts such as Guster and Ludacris to campus.

There are student governance bodies in each college and school. The two largest colleges at the University of Michigan are the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts (LS&A) and the College of Engineering. Students in the LS&A are represented by the LS&A Student Government (LSA SG). The University of Michigan Engineering Council (UMEC) manages student government affairs for the College of Engineering. In addition, the students that live in the residence halls are represented by the University of Michigan Residence Halls Association

A longstanding goal of some members of the student government is to get a seat on the Board of Regents, the university's governing body. The effort is meant to achieve parity with other Big Ten schools that have student regents. In 2000, students Nick Waun and Scott Trudeau ran for the board on the state-wide ballot as third-party nominees. Waun ran for a second time in 2002, along with Matt Petering and Susan Fawcett. Although none of these campaigns has so far been successful, a recent poll shows that most students consider student activity fees to be taxation without representation on the board. Another poll conducted by the State of Michigan in 1998 concluded that a majority of Michigan voters would approve of such a position if the measure were put before them. A change to the board's makeup would require amending the Michigan Constitution.


Fight song

The University of Michigan's fight song, The Victors, was written by student Louis Elbel in 1898 following the last-minute football victory over the University of Chicago that clinched a league championship. The song was declared by John Philip Sousa as "the greatest college fight song ever written."[39] The song refers to the university as being the "Champions of the West". At the time, UM was part of the "Western Conference", which would later become the Big Ten Conference. Although mainly used at sporting events, the fight song can be heard at other competitive events that UM wins. The fight song is also sung during graduation commencement ceremonies. During his presidency of the United States, UM alumnus Gerald Ford was known to sometimes have "The Victors" played at various state and presidential functions in place of the traditional "Hail to the Chief." The university's alma mater song is The Yellow and Blue. A common rally cry is "Let's Go Blue!", written by former students Joseph Carl, a tuba player, and Albert Ahronheim, a drum major.


Notable people and alumni

UM has more than 425,000 living alumni. Several astronauts are alumni, including the all-UM crews of Gemini 4 and Apollo 15. UM's contribution to aeronautics also include aircraft designer Clarence "Kelly" Johnson of Skunk Works fame. In addition to former U.S. president Gerald Ford, the university has produced twenty-five Rhodes scholars and 116 Olympic medalists, seven Nobel Prize winners and Fields medal winner Stephen Smale. UM alumni founded or co-founded Federal Express, Sun Microsystems, Borders Books, Walgreen's, H&R Block, Domino's Pizza, Merrill Lynch, Avis Rent a Car, and Google. Notable writers who attended UM include playwright Arthur Miller, screenwriter Judith Guest, Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Theodore Roethke, authors Charles Major and Sandra Steingraber, Japanese literature translator Juliet Winters Carpenter and composer/author/puppeteer Forman Brown. In Hollywood, famous alumni include actor James Earl Jones; actresses Lucy Liu, Selma Blair, and Ruth Hussey; and filmmaker Lawrence Kasdan. Other UM graduates include TV journalist Mike Wallace, Dana Jacobson of ESPN, Rich Eisen of the NFL Network, entrepreneur Eric Sadek, former House Minority Leader Dick Gephardt, Super Bowl MVPs Tom Brady and Desmond Howard, 1997 Heisman Trophy winner Charles Woodson, conservative pundit Ann Coulter, assisted suicide advocate Jack Kevorkian, Weather Underground radical activist Bill Ayers,[40] activist Tom Hayden, architect Charles Moore, famous avant-garde painter Aethelred Eldridge, Mannheim Steamroller founder Chip Davis, the Swedish Holocaust hero Raoul Wallenberg, and Benjamin D. Pritchard, the Civil War general who captured Jefferson Davis.[41] Pop singer Madonna, professional baseball player Derek Jeter, and rock legend Iggy Pop attended but did not graduate.

The university claims the only alumni association with a chapter on the moon, established in 1971 when the all-UM crew of Apollo 15 placed a charter plaque for a new UM Alumni Association on the lunar surface.[42] According to the Apollo 15 astronauts, several small UM flags were brought on the mission. However, no flag made it to the surface, much less was left there. The presence of a UM flag on the moon is a long-held campus myth.[43]


See also



  1. Sahadi, Jeanne (October 28, 2005). The 10 most expensive colleges. CNN/Money. Accessed February 21, 2005.
  2. Brubacher, John Seiler (July 1, 1997). Higher Education in Transition. Transaction Publishers, 187. ISBN 1-56000-917-9.
  3. University of Michigan Affirmative Action Lawsuit. University of Michigan. Accessed December 29, 2006.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 University of Michigan Drops Affirmative Action for Now (11 January 2007). Associated Press. Accessed January 12, 2007.
  5. College Made Easy The Advocate (8-29-2006).
  6. Admissions-Related Policies and Statistics: Freshman Class Profile (2006). University of Michigan Office of Budget & Planning. Accessed January 11, 2006.
  7. University of Michigan - Common Data Set 2006, p. 11. University of Michigan Office of Budget & Planning. Accessed April 01, 2006.
  8. Kuh, George D., et. al. (10-31-2003). Final Report - University of Michigan. NSSE Institute for Effective Educational Practice. p. 7. Found at
  9. University of Michigan Common Data Set - 2004-2005 (August 16, 2005). University of Michigan Office of Budget & Planning. Accessed January 15, 2006.
  10. Enrollment by Degree Type and School/College (2004). UM News Service. Accessed October 2, 2005.
  11. America's Best Graduate Schools 2006 - Health: Social Work (Master's). US News and World Report.
  12. The Top American Research Universities (December 2004). TheCenter. Accessed October 2, 2005.
  13. Top 500 World Universities (2005). Institute of Higher Education, Shanghai Jiao Tong University. Accessed October 1, 2005.
  14. University of Michigan Rankings (7-13-2005).
  15. The Washington Monthly College Guide (September 2006). The Washington Monthly.
  16. Newsweek Ranking (August 13, 2006).
  17. Moll, Richard. (1985). The Public Ivys: America's Flagship Undergraduate Colleges. New York: Vikiing Adult. ISBN 0-670-58205-0.
  18. Sahadi, Jeanne (October 28, 2005). The 10 most expensive colleges. CNN/Money. Accessed February 21, 2005.
  19. Academic Year Tuition and Fees for Full-Time Students for the last 10 years. University of Michigan Office of Budget & Planning. Accessed October 7, 2006.
  20. Campaign Goals of UM School, Colleges, and Units (2006). Giving to the University of Michigan - Campaign for Michigan. The University of Michigan Office of Development at
  21. Serwach, Joe (August 14, 2006). M-PACT expansion replaces some loans with grants. The University Record Online at
  22. Ulaby, Fawwaz T. Annual Report on Research, Scholarship and Creative Activity at the University of Michigan FY2004. (February 17, 2005). UM Research.
  23. University of Michigan - Research (3-21-2005). U of M Office of Budget and Planning - Electronic Fact Pages. Accessed September 15, 2005.
  24. UROP is First (2005). LSAMagazine.
  25. University endowment grows to $5.7
  26. Yale Posts Highest Endowment Returns, Topping Stanford, Harvard (November 22, 2005).
  27. Campaign Goals - The Michigan Difference (2005). The University of Michigan Office of Development. Accessed December 30, 2005.
  28. University of Michigan Libraries (1-11-2005). U of M News Service. Accessed September 19, 2005.
  29. Frequently Asked Questions about MBooks at the University of Michigan (August 10, 2006). University of Michigan - University Library.
  30. Carter, Brian (2000). Eero Saarinen-Operational Thoroughness A Way of Working. Dimensions Volume Fourteen.
  31. UM Golf Course (2006).
  32. Sports Academy Directors' Cup (2005). National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics.
  33. University of Michigan Football - National Championships. University of Michigan Athletics History (2002).
  34. Michigan in the Heisman Trophy Voting. (2005).
  35. Once Again the Biggest House, 1998. The Michigan Stadium Story found at the Bentley Historical Library at
  36. The 10 greatest rivalries (1-3-2005).
  37. Housing Fact Sheet. UM Housing (2005).
  38. University of Michigan System Profile. July 2001.
  39. Michael Hondorp, Fabrikant Alexis (January 1, 2005). University of Michigan College Prowler Off the Record. College Prowler, Inc, 118. ISBN 1-59658-163-8.
  40. Bill Ayers, Fugitive Days: A Memoir, (New York: Penguin Books, 2003)
  41. James J. Green, The Life and Times of General B. D. Pritchard (Allegan: Allegan County Historical Society, 1979), p. 2.
  42. About the Association - Famous U-M Alumni (2005).
  43. Debunking the Moon Myth (2006).



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