Copeland Hall

Copeland Hall is on the west side of the Van Vleet Oval, midway between the Centennial Arches and the Bizzell Library. Dr. Copeland made great contributions to the University through his work in the field of Journalism. This is one of many historical markers placed on campus to inform visitors of those who helped shape the university and the buildings and fountains named in their honor.

On Journalism Day, March 16, 1961, Dr. George Lynn Cross announced that the Journalism Building, first occupied in 1958, would be named Copeland Hall in honor of Dr. Fayette Copeland. As director of the School of Journalism, Copeland dedicated forty years of his life to the University.

Born in Wise County, Texas, Copeland was a descendant of a Northern schoolmaster who migrated to Fort Bend County, Texas in 1835, and as tradition has it, established one of the first schools along the Brazos River. Following his example, Copeland became one of four students who transformed the semi-weekly University Oklahoma into the Oklahoma Daily in 1916. He served as editor of the Daily in 1917 and edited the 1919 Sooner yearbook. These publications went on to gain national recognition, with the Daily receiving five top national awards from 1989 to 2010. The Sooner yearbook has been honored with national awards numerous times from 1984 to 2010.

Copeland received his BA in Journalism from the University of Oklahoma in 1919 and returned to the University in 1921 as Publicity Director for the extension division. In 1924, Copeland became Assistant Professor of Journalism and Publicity Director of the University. In 1936, he was granted a leave of absence to complete his MA in Journalism and English at Louisiana State University. During World War II, 1941-1945, Copeland served as University counselor of men and became a Full Professor in 1945.

In 1947, Copeland was appointed director of the School of Journalism. He spearheaded the drive for the building that now bears his name and was considered father of the scholarship program for journalism students. Dr. Cross summed up Copeland's efforts when he explained, "This home of the School of Journalism is a monument to the initiative, industry, and enthusiasm of Fayette Copeland, a fine administrator and a great teacher."



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