History of the University of Gothenburg
“Gothenburg University College” was established in 1891 with the help of private donations. The first classes were held by seven professors teaching seven subjects to twenty-one students, four of whom were women.
In 1907, it became an independent university college with the same status as the two national universities of Uppsala and Lund. The University of Gothenburg was formally founded in 1954 through the amalgamation of this university college with the medical college, which had been established in 1949.
Students at Uppsala and Lund will find that their Gothenburg counterparts disappear into the streetscape. Our friends from Stockholm will, in vain, seek for princess by blood. All we have to offer is a window that is always open to the rest of the world. This window lets in a draft that seems to benefit the bacteria of freedom and rebellion.
Hjalmar Frisk, Vice Chancellor of Gothenburg University 1951–1966, in a speech connection with the student parliament in Gothenburg 1958.
During the 1950s and 60s, the University expanded rapidly, growing from 500 students in the late 1940s to approximately 21,000 in the late 1960s. Today, the University of Gothenburg has about 38,000 students, and 6,000 employees. There are 39 departments in all, many of which rent facilities in old stone buildings and other properties in the centre of town. Several new university buildings have increased our "centralisation", and most of the departments are now located in the city centre. This has made the University of Gothenburg a truly urban university.
The main building, "Vasaparken" from 1907, with its square granite pillars and a monumental flight of steps flanked by two bronze lions, has been declared an historic landmark by the National Heritage Board. One of its functions today is to house public events under the auspices of the University.