The university was founded in 1937 by George Pepperdine as a Christian liberal arts college. The original campus was located in South Central Los Angeles, but in the 1960s the area became increasingly crime-ridden. The situation got so bad that in 1969, some activists threatened to burn down the campus, but President M. Norvel Young sweet-talked them down. So it came time for a “multi-campus expansion” (i.e. relocation for the safety of the kiddos) and in 1972 the school settled into its current beachside lot in Malibu.
The gorgeous Pepperdine campus overlooks the Pacific Ocean and the Pacific Coast Highway. The campus' stucco buildings with red tile roofs are styled after classic Mediterranean architecture. Seaver College, the main undergraduate area, includes the chapel, fine arts center, library, and campus center. Housing is located just north of Seaver College, and the compact campus makes for fairly quick (and beautiful) walks to class.
Pepperdine is located in Malibu, California, along the Pacific coast. The community is upscale and home to many celebs, so it isn’t your typical college town overflowing with pizza joints and dive bars. Instead, most of the restaurants are pricey and the stores can be hoity-toity, but students stick together and make the most of it. The upside to Malibu’s lack of college-centered activities is that students can focus on their studies without getting too distracted...that is, as long as it isn’t a perfect day for surfing or basking on the beach. The sand is a short walk from campus and Los Angeles is nearby for anyone looking for the bustle of the big city.
Each night of finals week, students relieve their stress at midnight by yelling at the top of their lungs during Midnight Scream.
“The Rock” is a large rock in the middle of main campus that student organizations can paint to advertise an event or show pride for their group.
Songfest is a musical competition in which campus groups put on short productions for family and peers.
Chace Crawford (attended) plays the hot Upper East Sider in Gossip Girl.
Montell Jordan (attended) is a musical artist best known for the rockin’ 90s hit (and classic Jock Jams fave), “This is How We Do It.”
Tara Lawrence (2004) founded Hats off for Cancer.
Robert S. Moore (1984) is the vice chairman of Paramount Pictures.
Tia, Tamera, and Tahj Mowry (attended) are the famous siblings from ABC’s "Sister, Sister" and the WB's "Smart Guy."
The Pepperdine Waves are a member of the religiously affiliated West Coast Conference. The NCAA Division I school lacks a football team, but has a championship men’s volleyball squad, as well as programs for baseball, basketball, cross country, golf, tennis, and water polo. Students can also partake in club sports and intramurals.
Pepperdine is a filming locale for “Zoey 101” on Nickelodeon.
In 2007 wildfires threatened campus and forced students to take shelter in the cafeteria.
Pepperdine is famous for its fabulous digs. Housing is set up so that students and faculty live in the same area, which fosters a tight-knit community that often even includes professors' families. Many students live on campus their first two years, then venture to off-campus apartments and houses as upperclassmen.
Suite Residence Halls: Each suite has four double bedrooms, a double bathroom, and a living room.
Rockwell Towers Residence Hall: Two double rooms are adjoined by a bathroom.
Lovernich Residential Complex: Apartment-style suites have two bedrooms, one bathroom, a kitchen, and living room.
Drescher Campus Apartments: Apartment-style suites that have four bedrooms, one bathroom, a kitchen, and living room. Drescher is home to graduate students as well as undergrads in the Honors program.