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Western Connecticut State University (Western, WestConn or WCSU) is a public university in Danburymarker, Connecticutmarker. Founded in 1903, WestConn has an arts and sciences curriculum, a business school, and several professional programs including elementary and secondary education, nursing, music performance, and social work. It is also home to The Jane Goodall Center for Excellence in Environmental Studies.


WestConn started as a teachers' college, training the primary and secondary school educators for Connecticut's Fairfield Countymarker and surrounding areas. The school's name has changed over the years as it has focused on additional areas of study. First named the Danbury Normal School, in the 1950s it was called the Danbury State Teachers College. It was renamed as Danbury State College in 1959, then Western Connecticut State College in 1967, and finally, in 1983, Western Connecticut State University.



  • Ancell School of Business
  • School of Arts and Sciences
  • School of Visual and Performing Arts
  • School of Professional Studies
  • Division of Graduate Studies


Western has two campuses located five miles apart connected by a campus bus service.

The Midtown Campus is the original campus, located near Downtown Danbury. It is home to the School of Arts and Sciences, School of Professional Studies, and most of the school administration. There are also three housing facilities and the original student center.

The West Side Campus is located on land purchased in the 1970s on the outskirts of Danbury. This lot is home to the Ancell School of Business, a nature center, amphitheater, and three dormitories. The West Side also houses the athletic facilities, including the O'Neill Center. On January 23rd, 2007 the new WestSide Campus Center was officially opened. This new facility serves as a student center, meeting, and banquet facility for the West Side Campus.

A major improvement program was started in the mid-1990s to beautify the campus. Several parking lots became green space, and improvements were made to the landscaping. While a significant improvement, the full extent of this beautification is not immediately apparent and will take several years to reach full maturity.

The "WestConn at Waterbury" program is located on the campus of Naugatuck Valley Community College. The program offers undergraduate courses and the Master of Health Administration (M.H.A.).


Midtown Campus

  • University Hall (Offices)
  • White Hall (Classrooms)
  • Warner Hall (Classrooms)
  • Ruth A. Haas Library
  • Berkshire Hall (Classrooms & Theatre)
  • Science Building (Classrooms & Laboratories)
  • Old Main (Registrar, Fin. Aid, Cashier & Offices)
  • Higgins Hall (Classrooms)
  • Fairfield Hall (Dormitory)
  • Newbury Hall (Dormitory)
  • Litchfield Hall (Dormitory)
  • Student Center
  • Alumni Hall (Child Care)

WestSide Campus

  • Classroom Building (Classrooms & Robert Young Library)
  • Campus Center (Student Center & Multi-use facility)
  • O'Neill Center (Feldman Arena, Sports Facilities)
  • Football Stadium
  • Rugby Field
  • Football Practice Field
  • Softball Field
  • Baseball Stadium
  • Tennis Facilities
  • Pinney Hall (Dormitory)
  • Centennial Hall (Dormitory)
  • Grasso Hall (Dormitory)
  • Observatory
  • Ives Concert Park

Student body

As of the Fall of 2006, WestConn has approximately 4,000 full-time undergraduates and 1,900 graduate or part-time students.

4,793 students (including 962 transfer applicants) applied to the University. 2,825 (including 644 transfers) were accepted. Of those 1,262 enrolled in the Fall semester.

Most of the students at WestConn come from the Tri State Area of Connecticutmarker, New Yorkmarker and New Jerseymarker. Nearly all commuter students come from western Connecticut, Putnammarker, Dutchess and Westchester Countiesmarker in New York.

According to the University, students claiming Connecticutmarker residency come from 99 of the state's 169 municipalities.

Women comprise 49.5% of the entering class (423 of 855), and members of traditionally underrepresented groups comprise 14.7% of the entering class (123 of 839).

The Student to Faculty ratio for the 2006-2007 academic year is 15.4 to 1 (Total Student FTE divided by Total Faculty FTE).

Student Life

Student Government Association

The Student Government Association (SGA) is the the voice of the students, as well as the sole governing body over the Student Activity Fund and student organizations at the university, . The SGA has 3 branches of government: the Legislative Branch, an Executive Branch and the Judicial Branch. The Legislative Branch, known as the Student Senate which consists of six (6) seats per academic school, plus four (4) seats at large. Senators are elected by the student body. The Executive Branch consists of a President, Vice President of Operations, Vice President of Student Relations and Vice President of Finance; the Executive Branch is elected by the student body. The Judicial Branch is composed of a Chief Justice nominated by the President, who must be approved by the Senate, and two justices are elected by the student body.

SGA Legal Clinic

Western Connecticut State University is one of the few schools in the US to have a fully funded center to provide legal counseling to students. Funded by the Student Government Association, the center provides students with initial legal counseling and advice. The clinic does not represent students in court but may make referrals for such purposes.

The legal clinic seeks to educate students about their rights and responsibilities through the sharing of information and legal resources, various informational programs and presentations, as well as individualized student counseling. Attorneys counsel and advise students on general legal concerns, consumer complaints, debts and bankruptcy, family law, landlord-tenant issues, wills and probate matters, litigation, criminal matters, administration agency matters (Veterans Administration, e.g.), and small claims.

Established in 1998 the advisor to the legal clinic has been Dr. Harold B. Schramm, Professor of English and Justice and Law Administration.

College radio station WXCI

The college radio station, WXCImarker, 91.7 FM, broadcasts to Connecticut and New York at 3,000 watts. It also streams its broadcasts on the Web.

The Echo - WCSU Student Newspaper

The Echo is a student-run newspaper, founded in 1955, and subsidized by student fees and advertising income. The Echo is published weekly in tabloid format, though in the past it has been published in broadsheet format.


The Colonials logo.
is a member of the NCAA Division III and the Eastern College Athletic Conference and fields teams in baseball, basketball, lacrosse, football, soccer, softball, swimming, tennis, and volleyball.

WestConn also fields several nationally competitive club sports on campus including Men's Rugby, Women's Rugby, Dance Team, Cheerleading, and Men's Hockey.


Varsity Sports

  • Baseball: Athletic fields baseball stadium
  • Basketball: Feldman Arena at the O'Neill Center
  • Football: Westside Athletic Complex (football stadium, aka WAC)
  • Lacrosse(2008 LEC Mens Lax Champs): Westside Athletic Complex
  • Soccer: Westside Athletic Complex
  • Softball: Athletic fields softball field
  • Swimming: O'Neill Center
  • Tennis: O'Neil Center outdoor tennis courts
  • Volleyball: Feldman Arena at the O'Neill Center

Non-varsity Sports

  • Hockey: Danbury Ice Arena
  • Rugby: Athletic practice fields

Greek Life

WestConn's Greek community, first established in 1986, is made up of three fraternities:Sigma ChiTau Kappa EpsilonZeta Beta Tau

and four sororities:

Alpha Delta PiDelta Gamma PhiKappa Chi Alpha.Sigma Delta Tau

As of October 2009, none of the Greek fraternities and sororities have an established on-campus house.

Debate Society

The Roger Sherman Debate Society participates in tournaments sanctioned by the Cross Examination Debate Association. The team competes in the North East Conference.

Noteworthy Faculty

The following faculty are noteworthy for their published works or field work or both.

Meteorology Program and Weather Center

WestConn is currently the only school, college or university in the state of Connecticut to offer a degree in meteorology. Currently, students can enter the Bachelor of Science in Meteorology program and choose from two different track options - Theoretical Meteorology or Operational Meteorology and Weathercasting.

The student population of meteorology majors increased strongly for the 2006-07 academic year with nearly 30 new meteorology students entering. The program has particular strength in broadcast meteorology. They are the only meteorology program in the country to have a full-time faculty member who is an American Meteorological Society Certified Broadcast Meteorologist(CBM). The program has strong internship affiliations with several of the top network-affiliated TV news stations in Connecticut.WestConn hosted the first Tri-State Weather Conference on October 7th, 2006. The keynote speakers were Dr. Louis W. Uccellini of the National Centers for Environmental Prediction and former Weather Channel's winter weather expert Paul Kocin. The Second Tri-State Weather Conference took place on the mid-town campus on April 25th, 2009.

The university's Weather Center, directed by Dr. Albert Owino, is located in the midtown campus. Gary Lessor, the assistant director of the Weather Center, along with a staff of student meteorologists, produce weather forecasts for local media outlets and businesses. The Weather Center also distributes information via its website.

Astronomical Facilities

WestConn houses two observatories, one public and one for undergraduate and graduate students and faculty. The Midtown observatory is located on the top of Higgins Hall. It is used for both students and on public viewing nights. The telescope has a 6-inch refractor and an 8-inch Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope. There is also a planetarium for teaching and public star shows.

The West Side campus houses a large-format thermoelectrically cooled CCD camera and is specifically used for astrophysical studies.

Other schools in the Connecticut State University system

Its three sister schools are Easternmarker, Centralmarker, and Southern Connecticut State Universitymarker.

External links



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