College of the Ozarks

Christened “Hard Work U.” by the Wall Street Journal, College of the Ozarks offers deserving students the advantages of a high caliber, liberal arts education emphasizing Christian values. All students work on campus to defray the cost of education. C of O actively recruits youth found worthy of a higher education but without sufficient financial means.

All students who are admitted must demonstrate financial need, academic ability, sound character and a willingness to work. This creates a student body that is highly motivated and serious about education.

A distinctive campus Work Program provides learning opportunities and helps students set career goals and life objectives. There are more than 80 student job options that range from working in the campus computer center or the College museum to milking dairy cows or serving in the College’s hotel or restaurant.

Upon completion of the Work Program, College of the Ozarks guarantees to meet the entire cost of education. Debt is discouraged and no federal or state loans are made.


Fast Facts

  • College of the Ozarks began as a work school for deserving Ozarks youth in 1906.
  • The Work Program has always been an integral part of the institution. All students work an average of 15 hours each week at one of 80 campus workstations to defray cost of tuition. When they graduate, they leave the “Gates of Opportunity” debt-free.
  • In 1973 The Wall Street Journal dubbed College of the Ozarks “Hard Work U.” The moniker stuck and is widely known today.
  • College of the Ozarks is the eleventh most selective institution in the nation, ranking just below Yale and Princeton and more selective than MIT.
  • Prospective students must demonstrate financial need, academic ability and sound character with a willingness to work.
  • The campus includes 1,000 acres and current student enrollment nears 1,400.
  • No. 1 Best Bang for the Buck Midwest Colleges (Washington Monthly, 2017)
  • No. 2 Top 100 Baccalaureate Colleges (Washington Monthly, 2017)

College of the Ozarks Resources & Links

Play Video › Visit Website › Visit Facebook ›