The Oklahoma State University Alumni Association is a self-governed association incorporated under the laws of the State of Oklahoma and recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as a 501 (c) 3 not-for-profit organization.
The Alumni Association was formally organized on June 8, 1897, when the graduates of the Class of 1896, OSU’s first graduating class, returned to the campus and inducted members of the Class of 1897 into the Oklahoma Agricultural and Mechanical College Alumni Association. The Association was first incorporated in 1920 as the Alumni Corporation and again in 1929 as the Former Students Association. Finally, in 1955 it was incorporated with a new constitution and bylaws as the Oklahoma Agricultural and Mechanical College Alumni Association. The name was changed in 1957 to the Oklahoma State University Alumni Association, reflecting the University’s new name.
The Alumni Association represents more than 200,000 alumni living throughout the world and 100 alumni chapters, watch clubs and societies.
The Alumni Association was formally organized by Oklahoma A&M’s
first graduating class on June 8, 1897, a year after their graduation.
In 1920, it became a self-governed association incorporated under the
laws of the state of Oklahoma as the Alumni Corporation after formally
adopting a constitution and bylaws on May 22. That same year, the
Association initiated Homecoming, the A&M Boomer magazine, county
and city alumni clubs, support for Old Central and life memberships. An
annual membership in 1920 cost only $3.
1929 saw the Association’s first name change to the Former Students
Association and the first publication of the magazine. The Association
moved into Old Central in 1930 where it would be housed until the
Student Union opened in 1950.
One year later, several other new programs were implemented, including
class reunions, fundraising for the football stadium, and a push to
create a Board of Regents. Membership also reached 2,000 in 1931.
The Board of Regents for the Oklahoma Agricultural and Mechanical
Colleges Board was finally created in 1944 followed by the Alumni Hall
of Fame in 1955. That same year, the Association was incorporated with a
new constitution and bylaws as the Oklahoma Agricultural and Mechanical
College Alumni Association.
On July 1, 1957, OAMC officially became Oklahoma State University and
the Alumni Association’s name was changed to reflect that of the
school’s, becoming what we know today as the Oklahoma State University
Outstanding seniors were first recognized by the Association in 1960 and
the Distinguished Alumni Award was created in 1977. These two awards,
coupled with Hall of Fame, have continued to showcase new graduates and
outstanding alums alike for more than four decades.
The Student Alumni Board was created in 1988 as a means to tie current
OSU students in with the Alumni Association and foster connections
between the alumni and the students. In 1996, the Association reached
out to the Oklahoma Legislature with the creation of Cowboys for Higher
Education, a program designed to promote the interests of OSU at the
Membership in 2000 increased to more than 32,000 and the Official OSU
Class Ring was implemented to connect old and new generations of Cowboys
to their alma mater. The first Association website was developed in
2001 and was redesigned in 2006 and again in 2008 to provide increased
services and connections online for alumni around the world.
In 2003, the OSU Legacy Program was established for the children and
grandchildren of current members. Today, the program is highlighted by
the annual Grandparent University held in June, which places Association
members and their legacies in one of several majors for a two-day
learning experience on campus.
2005 brought about another move for the Association with the opening of
the ConocoPhillips OSU Alumni Center. Located on the historic quadrangle
just west of Old Central, the building provides 52,000 square feet of
space devoted to alumni, their events and other Association and
In 2006, the Association was re-aligned with the University to further
the interest of both entities and provide maximum benefits to current
students and alumni.
For more than 110 years, the OSU Alumni Association has been creating
and maintaining Connections for Life between loyal and true alums and
Oklahoma State University.
1897: Organization of the Early Alumni Association by first graduate class
1920: Renamed the Alumni Corporation, Charted as a non-profit corporate
entity. Programs initiated by the Alumni Corporation: Homecoming,
A&M Boomer magazine, County and City Alumni Clubs, Support for Old
Central, $3 annual membership fee, Life memberships
1929: Name changed to Former Student Association, First publication of magazine
1930: Former Student Association offices held in Old Central
1931: More Programs implemented: Class reunions, An effort for the Board
of Regents, Fundraising for the football stadium, Membership reached
1944: Board of Regents created
1955: OSU Alumni Hall of Fame established
1957: Name changed to OSU Alumni Association
1960: Started a recognition program for Outstanding Seniors
1970: Renovation of Old Central complete and the Oklahoma Museum of Higher Education was housed in it
1977: Distinguished Alumni Award established
1988: Student Alumni Board created
1996: Cowboys for Higher Education organized
1998: Student membership program launched as Students Today, Alumni Tomorrow (now the Student Alumni Association)
2000: Membership increased to more than 32,000, Senior Ring Ceremony implemented
2001: OSU Alumni Association website developed
2003: OSU Legacy Program began, online store established
2005: ConocoPhillips OSU Alumni Center opens
2006: Alumni Association re-aligns with the University
2008: New orangeconnection.org website launched
2015: Tradition Keepers Program launched