Study in Oak
Long before there was a Pacific University, long before there was a city called Forest Grove - long before even there was an Oregon - there were oak trees growing in the fertile valley between Portland and the Coast Range.
In Celtic mythology, the oak tree is the "tree of doors," a gateway or portal between worlds. Appropriately, the University's Oregon White Oaks or Garry oaks [Quercus garryana] a few of which are over 200 years old, are a link to a time long ago. A time when native peoples gathered the acorns for food and burned the brush and grasslands between the oak stands to encourage food and medicinal plants.
The oaks and the other campus trees are also living links to the history of the University, from the first buildings and students in 1849 to today's evolving and expanding campus.