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University of Great Falls

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Title: University of Great Falls  
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Subject: Great Falls College Montana State University, List of colleges and universities in Montana, Rocky Mountain College, Great Falls High School, Montana Tech of the University of Montana
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University of Great Falls

University of Great Falls
Motto In lumine tuo, videmus lumen
In Thy Light We See Light
Established 1932
Type Private
Affiliation Roman Catholic
President Lucille Dean, SP
Undergraduates 800
Colors Sky Blue & Harvest Gold          
Athletics NAIA
Nickname Argonauts
Affiliations Frontier Conference

The University of Great Falls (UGF), a private Roman Catholic university located in Great Falls, Montana within the Diocese of Great Falls–Billings. The university is accredited by the Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges. The mission of the University of Great Falls "is to provide students with the opportunity to obtain a liberal education for living and for making a living."


The University of Great Falls was founded in 1932 as Great Falls Junior College for Women by Edwin Vincent O'Hara, the Catholic Bishop of Great Falls, in collaboration with the Sisters of Charity of Providence and the Ursuline Sisters. It became coeducational in 1937.

A year later, Sister Lucia Sullivan established the Great Falls Normal School to educate teachers. At the time there were two schools, each operating under a different Catholic religious community. The union of the two schools was one of convenience and legality. In 1942, the institution was a single entity under the direction of the Sisters of Providence, and was renamed the Great Falls College of Education. By the early 1950s it became simply the College of Great Falls, and in 1995 was renamed University of Great Falls.

Over the years UGF has been involved in outreach education efforts. For many years, UGF has had a resident center on the Fort Belknap Reservation, and in Lewistown, as well as a continuing education program at Malmstrom Air Force Base. In addition to its campus offerings, UGF serves 31 sites in Montana, Southern Alberta and Wyoming through its Telecom Distance Learning Program, and is able to serves students around the world. The University of Great Falls offers undergraduate degrees in over 20 programs and several Master’s Degree programs, including an on-line Masters of Art in Teaching in partnership with Bellevue University of Nebraska.

The student body consists of approximately 1,100 undergraduate students and 200 graduate students. UGF has produced several distinguished alumni.


The UGF undergraduate program consists of two colleges:

  • The College of Arts and Sciences, which contains:
    • The School of Arts and Humanities
    • The School of History, Language and Literature
    • The School of Mathematics and Sciences
  • The College of Professional Studies, which contains:
    • The School of Business
    • The School of Education
    • The School of Human Services.

In addition to offering teaching certificates, some of the more popular programs are criminal justice, human services, elementary education, counselling psychology, and paralegal studies. The College of Graduate Studies offers eight master's degree programs. UGF's calendar consists of four-month semesters in the fall and spring, and a 12-week summer term.


Great Falls (UGF) teams, nicknamed athletically as the Argonauts, are part of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), primarily competing in the Frontier Conference. Men's sports include basketball, cross country, golf, lacrosse, rodeo, soccer, track & field and wrestling; while women's sports include basketball, cross country, golf, rodeo, soccer, softball, track & field and volleyball.


The University of Great Falls has a rolling admission policy. Applications will be considered without regard to race, gender, age, religion, marital status, sexual orientation, financial status, physical or mental disabilities, and national origin. Applicants may apply for admission any time; however, applicants are strongly urged to apply at least one month prior to the first day of classes for the term they intend to begin. Required documents must be submitted before a student can be admitted and allowed to register for classes. It is particularly important that the UGF Placement Test be taken prior to registration. Prospective students must complete an admission application, pay a non-refundable, one-time $25 application fee, and provide official high school transcript or official certificate of high school equivalency with scores from the General Education Development Test (GED). Results of ACT or SAT are recommended for academic advising and consideration for merit/no-need scholarships, but not required. To register, proof of two immunizations for measles and one immunization for rubella must be supplied.


  • Judith Cole, Advisor of International Development/Public International Law, United Nations Legal Division/United States Department of State, Switzerland
  • Mary Ann Epley, Executive Officer, U.S. Agency for International Development, Arlington, VA.
  • Agnes K. Fok, Ph.D., Faculty Emeriti, University of Hawaii at Manoa, former Director Biology Program. Research field membrane biology, protein cloning and sequencing.
  • Paul G. Hatfield, United States Senator, and Chief Justice of the Montana Supreme Court.
  • Karl Jorda, David Rines Professor of Intellectual Property Law and Industrial Innovation, Director Kenneth J. Germeshausen Center for the Law of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Franklin Pierce Law Center, New Hampshire
  • Dennis R. Lassila, Ph.D. CPA, Shelton Tax Professor, Mays Business School @ Texas A&M University. Dr. Lassila has been published in over 70 articles in leading academic and professional journals, and is the co-author of more than 25 professional and educational books and chapters of tax and banking law services.
  • Maj. Gen. Arthur B. Morrill III,
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