Western Oregon University is a public university located in Monmouth, Oregon, United States. It was originally established in 1856 by Oregon pioneers as Monmouth University. Subsequent names include Oregon Normal School, Oregon College of Education, and Western Oregon State College. Western Oregon University incorporates both the College of Education and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Enrollment is approximately 6,000 students.HistoryEstablishmentFounded in 1856 WOU has undergone seven name changes. In 1865, it merged with another private institution, Bethel College, in Bethel and became Christian College. In 1882, the Oregon State Legislature approved the college's bid to become a state-supported teacher training (or "normal") school, Oregon State Normal School. Later the name was changed to Oregon Normal School.GrowthA period of growth was experienced in the 1920s during which the school's enrollment more than tripled from 316 in 1920 to peak at the 990 mark in 1927. With the coming of the Great Depression attendance tailed off slightly, with an average attendance in 1930 of 705 students, hitting a nadir in the 1933-34 academic year. Attendance rebounded later in the decade, topping the 1,000 mark for the first time during the 1938-39 academic year, with a total enrollment including summer session of 1,017.In 1939, the Oregon Legislature again changed the name to Oregon College of Education. The school entered an extended period of growth, except for a period during World War II when college enrollments dropped nationwide. New programs were added in the areas of liberal arts and sciences.