Education at USU rests on solid
By Sarah Reale
April 30, 2006 | It has thousands of students trek
across its path every day. Dating back to 1920 it has
seen World Wars, football games, and farm animals. It's
beautiful, it holds events, and is green and healthy;
it is the Utah State University
Autumn view of Old Main and students walking across
the Quad, 1960s, http://digital.lib.usu.edu
Founded in 1888, USU was established under the
Land-Grant Act of 1862 . This act, according to
usinfo.state.gov was an,
"Act donating Public Lands to the several States
and Territories which may provide Colleges for the Benefit
of Agriculture and the Mechanic Arts."
"The Land-Grant Act required USU to have a certain
amount of green space, that the university can't build
on," said Trent Hunsaker a USU Orientation staff member.
USU has more green space than any other college in
Utah, the most popular green spot is the Quad located
on the northwestern end of campus. The most historical
buildings on campus surround the Quad: Old Main, Family
Life, Ray B. West, Animal Science, and Geology. Just
like these buildings the Quad has had many faces.
Another requirement under the Land-Grant Act was that
Military Science had to be taught at USU. This led to
USU's nickname during World War 11, "West Point of the
West." The Quad became useful for these military men
and women by providing space for Military drills and
Entire ROTC lined up on the Quad, 1950, http://digital.lib.usu.edu
"I love learning about how USU is so strong in its
military roots, and I love being a member of the USU
ROTC," said Jen Fridel, a sophomore majoring in exercise
science and a member of the USU Air Force ROTC.
The Quad was also the spot for the USU football team.
The local newspaper at the time, The Journal, reported
after the first intercollegiate football game on the
Quad against the University of Utah saying, "The great
football game has been playedİ. Blood flowed, mud splashed,
and hearts flutteredİ. Finally the game ended and the
score was announced with many cheers for the victorious
students of the Agricultural College.
Just as the USU original names read: Agricultural
College of Utah (1888), Utah Agricultural College (1916),
and Utah State Agricultural College (1929), USU has
deep roots in the study of agriculture. This led the
Quad to be used for farming, and to be filled with crops
and plants. It wasn't uncommon for students to walk
past corn stocks, potato fields, and other plants on
their way to class.
A field planted with crops. Photo taken on campus
off northeast corner of Quad, http://digital.lib.usu.edu
Quad still stands strong. On a warm day it is covered
in students studying and enjoying the good weather.
In the fall during the Week of Welcome and in the spring
on A-Day, the Quad is covered in booths, stages with
bands, and students learning about all of the clubs
on campus. Intramural sports are played on the Quad
along with ice sculpture contests.
Students on the Quad eating lunch, August 2005,
photo by Sarah Reale
"I love the Quad, it makes my day to walk by it and
see all the beautiful green space when all I see is
the inside of the class room day after day," said Chelsea
Spath, a senior graduating in audiology.
For years to come the Quad will be the location of
memories at USU.
"The Quad makes USU unique. I have had so many great
times on that grass during my time at USU. When I come
back in 10 years, I know that is one thing that will
never change," said Spath.