University of Arizona

Universities are defined by their people, and you could say the people here were born to challenge “business as usual.” The University of Arizona existed before Arizona was a state. Our first graduating class in 1895 consisted of two women and one male.

Since then, we’ve learned that we’re better together. We do more when we work across backgrounds, skills and perspectives. That’s how we’ve become long-time partners with NASA, leaders in both the arts and sciences, and able to prepare students to succeed in a world where most of the jobs today’s kindergartners will have don’t even exist yet. We know how to converge.

OUR STORIES (just a few)

We only see opportunity. Our position in the planetary sciences today has much to do with the vision and drive of planetary astronomer Gerard P. Kuiper. Kuiper is known as the father of planetary science, but during his time was a little bit of an outcast in his field.

Kuiper proposed there was a belt of small planets or comets orbiting beyond Neptune, even though none except Pluto had been found. Astronomers now refer to this region as the Kuiper belt.

Today, the university has been part of every planetary mission with NASA and when others proved just how hard it is to sample an asteroid, we came up with a better way to do it. The current UA-led OSIRIS-REx mission will bring home the biggest piece of space since the Apollo era.

Beyond curious. Each year, cardiac arrest kills about 326,000 people in the United States, yet traditional CPR only offers a 7.8 percent survival rate.

In the early 1990s, UA cardiologist Dr. Gordon Ewy listened to a 911 recording of a woman giving her husband CPR. When he heard the woman ask the dispatcher why her husband opened his eyes when she pressed his chest but went to sleep when she did mouth-to-mouth, he developed chest-compression-only CPR, nearly doubling survival rates.

In a world that’s changing rapidly, we have a lot of questions. Like whether humans and robots could ever be friends? Or how we’ll cure ALS or Alzheimer’s? We’re confident we’ll deliver because discovery starts with a dream.

Driven by our history. When President Kennedy said the U.S. will put a man on the moon, NASA called us because we were the only ones who understood the lunar surface.

Today, our country is looking to shape the future of medicine. Certain medicines work for some people but not for others. Why? And since genes, the environment and lifestyle can predict the diseases we’re susceptible to, we must create individualized and preventative medicine.

In 2015, then-President Barack Obama launched the Precision Medicine Initiative to change treatments designed for the average patient into individualized treatments. The University of Arizona is one of four academic health centers chosen to participate because of our expertise in genetics, our partnership with Banner Health and our ability to reach underserved populations who have been historically omitted from data collection and research.

In touch with our values. When we say people are our strength, we mean it. In fact, in 2018 we earned the designation of Hispanic-Serving Institution from the U.S. Department of Education for our success in the enrollment of Hispanic students and in providing educational opportunities to them.

And we honor our commitments to the state of Arizona by serving the entire state. When farmers don’t know what is hurting their crops, or city planners are dealing with the future of water, they rely on the University of Arizona’s statewide network of knowledgeable staff to help solve their problems.

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