The Diamond Anniversary

2020 marks the 75th year of Pacific Oaks.

Together, we’re celebrating 75 years of learning, joy, and community. Core to Pacific Oaks has always been our values of respect, diversity, inclusion, and social justice. In honor of our diamond anniversary and legacy, we share stories that are emblematic of the Pacific Oaks’ experience from key points in our own history.

Read our stories
celebrating Pacific Oaks’ values: 



Social Justice & Diversity


five gray diamonds




teacher looks over child's work

A group of Quaker families start the new Pacific Oaks Friends School. The school opens with 10 teachers, 65 children ages 2 to 4, and the active participation of their parents.



teacher reads to children

The Board of Trustees establishes a two-year program for the preparation of nursery school teachers, taking the first step to establish the College.


headshot of Evangeline Burgess

Pacific Oaks receives accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC), which recognizes its child development B.S. degree.

Evangeline Burgess becomes the first president.



Pacific Oaks sign

The name is changed to Pacific Oaks College & Children’s School (Founded by Friends).



Evangeline Burgess with six other people

The federal government invites Pacific Oaks to conduct training for Project Head Start. The College is also awarded a grant to establish a Head Start site on campus.



Following Burgess’ death in 1965, Marianne Wolman establishes the annual Evangeline Burgess Memorial Lecture Series, which remains an annual event to this day.



Pacific Oaks is celebrating 75 years

New B.A. and M.A. degree programs in human development replace the child development degree.



teacher sitting with children

Pacific Oaks Teacher Education Program is approved to offer California teaching credentials for elementary grades. Since then, the College has added credentials in special education, bilingual education, and others.



Pacific Oaks is celebrating 75 years

Marriage, family, and child counseling classes begin and become a specialization in the Human Development master’s program.



Pacific Oaks students walking through campus

The College establishes a Marriage, Family, and Child Counseling master’s program.



computer with e learning on the screen

The College develops an online distance learning program with three classes.


Latinx Family Studies graduation

The M.A. in Marriage and Family Therapy: The Latinx Family Studies Specialization launches. It is one of the first mental health specializations in the country to focus on Latinx mental health.


three women working at Pacific Oaks

The American Association of Colleges and Universities recognizes Pacific Oaks College with a Special Commendation for Distinguished Achievement in Undergraduate Education for its unique pedagogy.


African American Family Studies specialization celebration

The M.A. in Marriage and Family Therapy: African American Family Studies specialization launches. To this day, it is the only MFT degree in the country to focus on African American mental health.


TCS Education System logo

Pacific Oaks College & Children’s School partners with TCS Education System.



Pacific Oaks is celebrating 75 years

Pacific Oaks College establishes the School of Human Development and the School of Cultural and Family Psychology.



Dr. Marcia Bankirer
Dr. Marcia Bankirer

Pacific Oaks College opens a branch campus in San Jose with Marcia Bankirer, Ph.D., as dean.



Pacific Oaks faculty and staff

Pacific Oaks College purchases four buildings outright, comp-rising the expanded Pasadena Campus at 45 W. Eureka St. and cementing its long-term commitment to the community.

Pacific Oaks Children’s School becomes a demonstration site for the Outdoor Classroom Project.



Children in STEAM

Pacific Oaks Children’s School introduces a Spanish Immersion program and a STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics) one in 2019.


Learn more about Pacific Oaks College

If you would like to learn more about the academic programs available at Pacific Oaks, fill out the form below to request more information, or you can apply today through our application portal.

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