Western Carolina University

Western Carolina University

Western Carolina University, or WCU, is a coeducational public university located in Cullowhee, North Carolina, United States. It was founded in 1889 with the intention of educating the people of the western North Carolina Mountains. WCU is a constituent campus of the University of North Carolina system. The university offers a wide variety of degrees and programs through the following academic divisions:

  • College of Arts and Sciences
  • College of Business
  • College of Education and Allied Professions
  • College of Fine and Performing Arts
  • College of Health and Human Sciences
  • Kimmel School of Construction Management and Technology
  • The Graduate School
  • The Honors College

Western Carolina University 's sports teams are nicknamed the Catamounts. WCU is a member of the Southern Conference, and its athletic teams participate in the NCAA Division I athletics.

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Contacting Western Carolina University

Western Carolina University
Cullowhee , NC 28723-9646
General Phone: (828) 227-7211

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Western Carolina University Programs and Degrees (2008-2009)

General CategoryDegreesMost Common Majors [see all]
Education and Teaching547education, educational administration, educational supervision, community college education, secondary school administration, special ed, school counseling, college student counseling, elementary school teaching, ...
Business and Management317business management, business administration, accounting, entrepreneurship, finance, human resources, international business, MIS, marketing, ...
Therapy and Counseling139psychology, school psychology, communication disorders, physical therapy
Liberal Arts135German language, French language, Spanish language, English, liberal arts and sciences, social services, anthropology, geography, political science, ...
Engineering Technician134engineering technology, electronics tech, industrial tech, manufacturing tech, construction engineering tech
Nursing and Emergency Medicine127EMT paramedic, registered nursing
Security and Law Enforcement114criminal justice and safety, forensic science
Nutrition and Exercise Therapy109parks and recreation management, sports and fitness management, athletic trainer, recreational therapy, dietitian
Media69communication studies, media and digital communications
Family and Social Work67public administration, social work
Science59biology, science and society, chemistry, geology
Fine Arts42fine arts
Hospitality28hospitality management
Medical Administration28health care administration, medical records admin, environmental health
Design19interior design
Music18music, music performance
Medical Support and Technology15clinical lab tech
Conservation and Resource Management12environmental science, natural resources management
Mathematics12mathematics, applied mathematics
Drama and Performing Arts8drama
Religion and Philosophy7philosophy
Computer Science and Engineering4computer science
Engineering3electrical engineering
Art Studies2art studies

Number of programs and degrees for Western Carolina University in 2008-2009:

Degree LevelTotal
Number of
Bachelor's degree1,52573
Master's degree47138
Post-master's certificate41
Doctor's degree151
Postbaccalaureate certificate01

Western Carolina University Student Body

In 2007-2008, Western Carolina University had a total enrollment of 9,056 students (8,066 full-time equivalent).

Students in the Freshman Class:

Group Percent
Men 48%
Women 52%
Full-Time 99%
Part-Time 1%

Students By Class:

Group Percent
Undergraduate 75%
Graduate 25%

Racial Diversity:

Race Percent
White 83%
Black 6%
Hispanic 2%
Asian 1%
American Indian 1%
Unknown 7%
(Foreign Students) 1%

Students by Age:

Age Percent
Under 18 0%
18-19 24%
20-21 26%
22-24 17%
25-29 10%
30-34 7%
35-39 5%
40-49 7%
50-64 3%
65+ 0%

Incoming (Freshman) Students by Place of Residence:
(From available data sampling)

North Carolina92%
South Carolina2%

Western Carolina University Graduation, Retention, and Transfers

Retention Rates (2007):

Group Returning From
Previous Year
Full-Time 66 %

Western Carolina University Room and Board (2007)

Western Carolina University offers campus housing for 3,427 of its 8,066 (full-time) students. Freshmen are required to live on campus.

(Please refer to our profile of Cullowhee, North Carolina for details about the area surrounding the campus. Also see our list of other North Carolina Colleges).

The school offers students a meal plan with 21 meals per week.

Western Carolina University Admissions and Selectivity


EnrolledPercent of
Accepted Enrolled

Standardized Test Scores:

Test25th Percentile75th Percetile
SAT Verbal450550
SAT Math470560
SAT Writing430530
ACT Verbal1622
ACT Math1823
ACT Composite1823

Application Requirements:

Class Rankrequired
High School Recordrequired
College Prep Programrequired
Recommendationsnot required
Formal Demonstration of Competencerecommended
Standardized Tests (SAT and/or ACT)required
Percent of Applicants Submitting SAT94%
Percent of Applicants Submitting ACT19%
TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language)required
Other Standardized Testsnot required

Western Carolina University Expenses and Financial Aid (2008-2009)

Expenses and Financial Aid:

Expense Amount
In-state tuition and fees $ 4,196
Out-of-state tuition and fees $ 13,779
Room and board $ 5,626
Room charge $ 2,916
Board (meal plan) charge $ 2,710
Books and supplies $ 2,005
Other expenses $ 2,150

Financial Aid:
Western Carolina University participates in Federal Title IV financial aid programs. (The school's OPE ID is 298100)

Western Carolina University Faculty

Western Carolina University has a tenure system for faculty.

Tenure Status of Faculty (2008-2009):

Full-Time Faculty LevelMenWomen
Non-tenured, but on tenure track8675
Non-tenured and not on tenure track5465

Salaries for full-time faculty:

Full-Time Faculty (2008-2009):

Full-Time Faculty LevelContract LengthNumber MenAvg Salary MenNumber WomenAvg Salary Women
Professorcalendar year10$107,7351*
Associate professorcalendar year14$107,3653$95,649
Assistant professorcalendar year3$65,2941*
Instructorcalendar year1*0*
No academic rankcalendar year9$103,0592*
All faculty totalcalendar year37$101,6397$88,520

*: salaries are not displayed where there are fewer than 3 professors in the category.

Full-Time Faculty (2008-2009):

Full-Time Faculty LevelContract LengthNumber MenAvg Salary MenNumber WomenAvg Salary Women
Professoracademic year45$93,71623$81,574
Associate professoracademic year56$74,91444$71,274
Assistant professoracademic year78$63,43575$57,327
Instructoracademic year5$53,64911$46,960
Lectureracademic year0*2*
No academic rankacademic year39$56,05850$53,642
All faculty totalacademic year223$70,919205$61,413

*: salaries are not displayed where there are fewer than 3 professors in the category.

Western Carolina University Athletics

Athletic Conferences:

Football Southern Conference
Basketball Southern Conference
Baseball Southern Conference
Track Southern Conference

Students on Athletic Scholarships (2007):

All Other Sports85765

Western Carolina University Degree Programs (2007)

Art Studies
Art/Art Studies, General

Business And Management
Business Administration and Management, General
Business Administration, Management and Operations, Other
Entrepreneurship/Entrepreneurial Studies
Finance, General
Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration, General
International Business/Trade/Commerce
Management Information Systems, General
Marketing, Other
Marketing/Marketing Management, General

Computer Science And Engineering
Computer Science

Conservation And Resource Management
Environmental Science
Natural Resources Management and Policy

Interior Design

Drama And Performing Arts
Drama and Dramatics/Theatre Arts, General

Education And Teaching
Art Teacher Education
Biology Teacher Education
College Student Counseling and Personnel Services
Community College Education
Counselor Education/School Counseling and Guidance Services
Education, General
Education, Other
Educational Leadership and Administration, General
Educational, Instructional, and Curriculum Supervision
Elementary Education and Teaching
English/Language Arts Teacher Education
French Language Teacher Education
German Language Teacher Education
Junior High/Intermediate/Middle School Education and Teaching
Kindergarten/Preschool Education and Teaching
Mathematics Teacher Education
Music Teacher Education
Physical Education Teaching and Coaching
Science Teacher Education/General Science Teacher Education
Secondary School Administration/Principalship
Social Studies Teacher Education
Spanish Language Teacher Education
Special Education and Teaching, General
Teacher Education/Profess Development, Levels & Methods, Other
Teaching English as Second/Foreign Language/ESL Language Instructor

Electrical, Electronics and Communications Engineering

Engineering Technician
Construction Engineering Technology/Technician
Electrical/Electronic/Communications Engr Technology/Technician
Engineering Technology, General
Industrial Technology/Technician
Manufacturing Technology/Technician

Family And Social Work
Public Administration
Social Work

Fine Arts
Fine/Studio Arts, General

Hospitality Administration/Management, General

Liberal Arts
English Language and Literature, General
French Language and Literature
German Language and Literature
History, General
Liberal Arts and Sciences/Liberal Studies
Political Science and Government, General
Social Sciences, General
Spanish Language and Literature

Applied Mathematics
Mathematics, General

Communication Studies/Speech Communication and Rhetoric
Radio, Television, and Digital Communication, Other

Medical Administration
Environmental Health
Health Information/Medical Records Administration/Administrator
Health/Health Care Administration/Management

Medical Support And Technology
Clinical Laboratory Science/Medical Technology/Technologist

Music Performance, General
Music, General

Nursing And Emergency Medicine
Emergency Medical Technology/Technician (EMT Paramedic)
Nursing/Registered Nurse (RN, ASN, BSN, MSN)

Nutrition And Exercise Therapy
Athletic Training/Trainer
Dietetics/Dietitian (RD)
Parks, Recreation and Leisure Facilities Management
Sport and Fitness Administration/Management
Therapeutic Recreation/Recreational Therapy

Religion And Philosophy

Biology/Biological Sciences, General
Chemistry, General
Geology/Earth Science, General
Science, Technology and Society

Security And Law Enforcement
Criminal Justice/Safety Studies
Forensic Science and Technology

Therapy And Counseling
Communication Disorders, General
Physical Therapy/Therapist
Psychology, General
School Psychology

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Western Carolina University Highlights

(Details are provided further down on this page.)

What Sets Western Carolina University Apart:

Number of degree programs
(vs. all colleges)
Top 4%$pretty_college $award_cats{$char}
Lowest tuition & fees (in-state)
(vs. colleges with similar degree levels)
Top 8%Western Carolina University Lowest tuition & fees (in-state)
Number of students
(vs. all colleges)
Top 9%Western Carolina University Number of students
Dorm rooms per full-time student
(vs. all colleges)
Top 12%Western Carolina University Dorm rooms per full-time student
% of full-time faculty on tenure track
(vs. all colleges)
Top 13%Western Carolina University % of full-time faculty on tenure track
Faculty/student ratio (full-time)
(vs. colleges of similar size)
Top 13%Western Carolina University Faculty/student ratio (full-time)
% of degrees in nutrition and exercise therapy
(vs. colleges of similar size)
Top 17%Western Carolina University % of degrees in nutrition and exercise therapy
% of degrees in education and teaching
(vs. all colleges)
Top 19%Western Carolina University % of degrees in education and teaching
Salaries of full-time faculty
(vs. all colleges)
Top 19%Western Carolina University Salaries of full-time faculty

checked Accepts some high school credits
checked Offers credit for life experience
checked Grants credits for AP courses
checked Offers distance learning
checked Career counseling
checked Career services
checked Student employment services
checked On-campus day care
checked Option to study abroad
checked Offers part-time study
checked On-campus library
checked Offers campus housing
checked Offers a board (meal) plan
checked Tenure system for quality teaching
checked Offers athletic scholarships
checked NCAA athletic conference member

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