Alaska Methodist University (AMU) offered its first classes in 1960.
Peter Gordon Gould was an Unangax from the village of Unga in the Aleutian Islands. His mother encouraged Gould to leave home in order to receive a quality education and return with strengthened leadership skills to help his people.
He left Unga to attend the Jesse Lee Home for Children in Unalaska, attended Seminary school, received his undergraduate degree from Syracuse and became the first Alaska Native minister in the United Methodist Church.
Gould recognized a strong need “for indigenous leadership reared, educated and trained in Alaska for Alaska.” He was a pivotal member of a successful fundraising effort for the first private liberal arts college in Alaska.