The University of Alaska Anchorage (commonly referred to as UAA) is a public research university and currently has the highest enrollment within the University of Alaska System. With over 17,000 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students, it is also the largest institution of higher learning in Alaska. UAA's main campus is located in Anchorage, approximately four miles southeast of its downtown area in the University-Medical District, adjacent to the Alaska Native Medical Center, Alaska Pacific University and Providence Alaska Medical Center. Nestled among an extensive green belt, close to scenic Goose Lake Park, UAA has been recognized each of the past three years as a Tree Campus USA by the Arbor Day Foundation. The campus is connected by a network of paved, outdoor trails, as well as an elevated, indoor "spine" that extends east to west from Rasmuson Hall, continuing through the student union, and terminating inside the Consortium Library.
UAA is divided into six teaching units at the Anchorage campus: the colleges of Education, Health and Social Welfare, Arts and Sciences, Business and Public Policy, the Community and Technical College, and the School of Engineering. Included with UAA for administrative purposes are four satellite campuses: Matanuska-Susitna College, Kenai Peninsula College, Kodiak College, and Prince William Sound Community College. UAA offers Master's Degrees and Graduate Certificates in select programs, and the ability to complete certain PhD programs through cooperating universities through its Graduate Division. As of May 2012, the university is accredited to confer doctoral degrees. UAA is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.
The University of Alaska Anchorage traces its origins back to 1954, five years before Alaska became the 49th U.S. state. That year, Anchorage Community College (ACC) was founded and began offering evening classes to 414 students at Elmendorf Air Force Base. This was the first time that college-level courses were offered in the Anchorage area. In 1962, ACC, along with other community colleges around the state, was incorporated into the University of Alaska statewide system. Five years later, ACC began offering both day and evening classes at the current campus location. ACC provided academic study for associate degrees, the first two years of work toward baccalaureate degrees, and a wide variety of adult learning, career and continuing education programs.
In the late 1960s, strong interest in establishing a four-year university in Anchorage brought about the birth of the University of Alaska, Anchorage Senior College (ASC). While ACC administered the lower division college, ASC administered upper division and graduate programs leading to baccalaureate and master’s degrees, as well as continuing education for professional programs. In 1971, the first commencement was held at Anchorage’s West High School, where 265 master’s, baccalaureate and associate degrees were awarded. ASC moved to the Consortium Library Building in 1973. The following year, when the first classroom and office facility was completed, daytime courses were offered for the first time. In 1977, ASC became a four- year university and was renamed the University of Alaska, Anchorage (UA,A). Ten years later, ACC and UA,A merged to become what is now known as the University of Alaska Anchorage (UAA).
Since 1987, the university has continued to grow and expand; it's increasingly a university of first choice. More than 200 programs, ranging from certificate programs to associate, baccalaureate, master's, and doctoral degrees are offered at campuses in Anchorage and community campuses and extension centers throughout Southcentral Alaska. The university's mission is to discover and disseminate knowledge through teaching, research, engagement and creative expression.
Today, UAA remains committed to serving the higher education needs of the state, its communities and its diverse peoples. The University of Alaska Anchorage is an open-access university with over 17,000 students and actively seeks to maintain a rich, diverse and inclusive environment. In addition to thousands of students from across the state and the world, the university retains a large commuter population from in and around Anchorage, many of whom are non-traditional or returning students. UAA also has the largest population of student veterans in the state.
UAA offers Associate of Applied Science and Bachelor of Science degrees in:
An associate of applied science degree is also offered in:
UAA Aviation Technology division is part of Center of Excellence for General Aviation (CGAR) which is a collaborative research effort between the following member universities:
U.S. News and World Report has ranked UAA in the top 20 public regional universities in the West and 58th overall. Forbes has ranked UAA 428th among all colleges and universities and 85th in the West.
Accolades is the University of Alaska Anchorage Magazine for Alumni and Friends.
The Alaska Quarterly Review is a literary magazine published by UAA.
The student newspaper is The Northern Light.
Understory is a magazine run by Creative Writing and Literary Arts graduate students, open for submissions from any UAA undergraduate student.
True North is a yearly magazine produced by students in the Department of Journalism and Public Communications.
The Pacific Rim Conference on Literature and Rhetoric is a yearly conference showcasing Literary Scholars and Rhetoricians from around the nation, as well as a venue for graduates from UAA and other universities to share their work. See UAA English Web site to learn more about the Pacific Rim Conference.
UAA’s highly visible athletic teams, known as the Seawolves, compete in 11 NCAA sports: men’s ice hockey, men’s and women’s basketball, men’s and women’s skiing, men’s and women’s cross country, women’s gymnastics, men’s and women’s indoor and outdoor track and field, and women’s volleyball. The university is a NCAA Division I school for gymnastics and hockey, and a member of the Western Collegiate Hockey Association. UAA is a Division II member of the Great Northwest Athletic Conference in men's and women's basketball, volleyball, men's and women's cross country, men's and women's indoor track & field, and men's and women's outdoor track and field. Other conference affiliations are the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (gymnastics) and the Rocky Mountain Intercollegiate Ski Association.
Over the years, the Seawolves have produced multiple national champions in skiing and gymnastics as well as several NCAA Tournament bids in other sports. UAA sports receive national television exposure thanks to the annual Carrs/Safeway Great Alaska Shootout basketball tournament, held at the Sullivan Arena. The Kendall Hockey Classic is one of the top preseason college hockey tournaments in the country, and the Seawolf volleyball team hosts some of the top Division II programs every September in the UAA Invitational.
The Seawolves train and compete in some of Alaska’s top facilities, including the Sullivan Arena for hockey and the Shootout, and the Wells Fargo Sports Complex for volleyball, gymnastics and regular-season basketball. UAA’s alpine skiers take advantage of nearby Mount Alyeska, a world-class slope, while the nordic skiers and cross-country runners use Anchorage’s intricate trail system to train in a recreational getaway. The University of Alaska Anchorage will open the 5,600 seat Alaska Airlines Center later in 2014. Serving as Alaska's premier, multi-purpose arena, it will replace the Wells Fargo Sports Center as the home of UAA's athletic department and programs, including UAA Seawolves basketball and volleyball teams.
Boosted by NCAA Championships finishes in four sports since the beginning of 2013, the University of Alaska Anchorage is currently ranked fifth and is among the top 2 percent of NCAA Division II athletic programs, according to the Learfield Sports Director’s Cup standings. 
UAA's student housing comprises nearly 1,000 students:
The Union of Students of the University of Alaska Anchorage or USUAA is the student governing body for University of Alaska Anchorage. Each student pays $1 per credit hour for students registered in 3 or more credits. Maximum charge $12 and maximum credit hour is 12.
The President, Vice President and 23 Senators are elected at-large to serve on the Assembly. Four representatives (Residence Hall Association, Club Council, Greek Council and Graduate Student Association) complete the rest of the board. The President and Vice President are elected in the spring for one year terms.
The union has co-sponsored political debates in Anchorage, including a 2004 debate held at the university between Senatorial candidates Tony Knowles and Lisa Murkowski.
UAA has two primary sources of student-run media. The Northern Light is an award winning student newspaper printed every Tuesday with a wide coverage from school news sports to community events and entertainment reviews.
KRUA 88.1FM is the on-campus, non-commercial radio station run by a collective of student staff and a host of volunteers from both the school and greater Anchorage community.
The University Honors College Office of Undergraduate Research and Scholarship (OURS) is the center for undergraduate research and experiential learning at UAA. The Honors College supports and funds research and scholarship for students across all UAA disciplines, schools, colleges, and within a global community of scholars. Fostering inspired teaching and active student learning, OURS advances the involvement of UAA students in research and creative activities—whether they be independent or with UAA faculty. OURS supports a wide variety of opportunities, including 14 campus-wide award programs.
Every April, the Undergraduate Research and Discovery Symposium celebrates and connects undergraduate research taking place across UAA and fosters scholarly discussion between students, faculty and the community. Participation in the symposium provides undergraduates with opportunities to gain valuable experience in both oral and visual presentation of their research. Attending the symposium is also a great way for students who want to become involved in undergraduate research to learn about the opportunities to do so at UAA. The symposium and UAA’s annual Student Showcase emulate professional meetings wherein student research and creative expressions are reviewed by faculty and culminate in university publications.