College Search

Report Abuse

Western Carolina University

Western Carolina University is a coeducational public university located in Cullowhee, North Carolina, United States. The university is a constituent campus of the University of North Carolina system.


Highway 107

Contact Information


Total Undergrad enrollment
Total Graduate enrollment
In State Tuition Fees
Out State Tuition Fees
ACT Score
SAT Score
Grade Point Average(GPA)
Male Female Ratio
Acceptance Rate
Student Faculty Ratio

Additional Information

College Type
Religious Affiliation
Campus Housing
Paws The Catamount
Purple Gold

College History


In 1888, the residents of Cullowhee desired a better school for the community than was offered in public schools of that day, organized a board of trustees and established a community school that came to be known as Cullowhee Academy. Founded in August 1889 as a semi-public secondary school and chartered as Cullowhee High School in 1891 (also called Cullowhee Academy), it served the Cullowhee community and boarding students from neighboring counties and other states. The founder, Robert Lee Madison, wanted to provide an education for the young people in the region and train teachers to spread education throughout the western part of the state. In 1893, through the efforts of Walter E. Moore, representative from Jackson County, the North Carolina Legislature authorized an appropriation for the establishment of a normal department at the school "for the purpose of training teachers". This designation became the first publicly funded normal school in North Carolina. In 1905, the state assumed title to the school�s buildings and property and made it a state institution. That same year, the school�s name was changed to Cullowhee Normal & Industrial School. In 1925, the school�s name was changed to Cullowhee State Normal School. During its years as Cullowhee Normal, the stated purpose of the school was to train teachers for the North Carolina public schools. A coeducational institution, Cullowhee Normal trained over two thousand teachers by the mid-1920s. Over the next forty years, the school expanded its curriculum and evolved into a junior college, and in 1929 it was chartered by the Legislature as a four-year institution under the name Western Carolina Teachers College. Called "the Cullowhee experiment", Madison�s idea became a model for the other regional colleges in the state. The demand for both liberal arts and other programs led to an expansion of the school's offerings. Postgraduate studies and the Master of Arts in Education degree were added to the curriculum in 1951. In 1953, the name "Western Carolina College" was adopted. In 1967, the institution was designated a regional university by the North Carolina General Assembly and given its current title, "Western Carolina University." On July 1, 1972, WCU became a member of the University of North Carolina system.

College Specialty


Western Carolina University's College of Business is a leader among schools of business in graduating baccalaureate and master's degree students�primarily from the lower Appalachians and the Carolina Piedmont who are Business Ready� to meet the needs of industries, markets, and institutions.



Gerald Austin � NFL referee James A. Beaty, Jr. � current U.S. District Judge and former nominee to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit Dean Biasucci � Athlete, actor; former placekicker, Indianapolis Colts (NFL) Sean Bridgers - Actor, writer, director, producer Andrew C. Brock � North Carolina State Senator Jared Burton - professional baseball pitcher for the Minnesota Twins of Major League Baseball0 Kevin Cassels and Tommy Dennison � Musicians with the rock band Mother Vinegar Joe Firstman � musician, former musical director for Carson Daly's house band on Last Call with Carson Daly on NBC Ernest A. Fitzgerald (1947) � a Bishop of the United Methodist Church Judy Green � head volleyball coach for the University of Alabama Mel Gibson � former basketball player for the Los Angeles Lakers Rich Hall- comedian, former cast member on Saturday Night Live Season 10 and writer for the Late Show with David Letterman Randall Harris - drummer for Christian rock band NEEDTOBREATHE Jarvis Hayes � Current NBA player for the New Jersey Nets, later transferred to the University of Georgia after a year Greg Holland (baseball)- pitcher, Kansas City Royals, participant in the 2013 MLB All-Star Game for the American League Brad Hoover � former Fullback for the Carolina Panthers (NFL). Frank Huguelet � Retired professional wrestler who wrestled under the name "'Heavy Metal' Ric Savage.'" Now hosts Spike TV series "Savage Family Diggers" (formerly "American Digger"). Paul Johnson � Class of 1974 � Head football coach at Georgia Tech, Johnson received one of the coaching profession�s most prestigious honors the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Award in 2004. Tony Jones � (football) Started Super Bowl XXXII and Super Bowl XXXIII with the Denver Broncos Andrew Jordan � In the NFL for eight seasons for the Minnesota Vikings, the Philadelphia Eagles, and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Keith LeClair � Both an athlete and coach at Western Carolina University (Player-1985-88 & Coach-1992-97) Henry Logan � Athlete, in 1964 became North Carolina�s first African-American collegiate athlete, and the first to play basketball for a �white� public institution in 1964 Ralph Lundy � Men's soccer coach at the College of Charleston. He ranks fifth in victories among Division I coaches. Kevin Martin � Shooting Guard for the Minnesota Timberwolves. He was drafted No. 26 in the 2004 NBA Draft by Sacramento.0 Manteo Mitchell � 2012 World Indoor Champion in Men's 4�400 m Relay, participant in the 2012 London Olympic games for Track and Field, won Silver medal after helping Team USA advance to finals Nick McNeil � WWE professional wrestler. McNeill wrestles under the ring name '"Showtime!' Percy Watson". He appears on WWE NXT. He previously played football in the NFL and was a former WCU football all-conference defensive end. David Patten � NFL wide receiver, three-time Super Bowl Champion New England Patriots. Currently with the Cleveland Browns Dave Pember � former pitcher, Milwaukee Brewers Rachel Reilly- Contestant on the reality television show "Big Brother" in season 12 and winner of "Big Brother" season 13; contestant on season 20 of the reality television show "The Amazing Race." David Sedaris � author, humorist Geno Segers � Actor. Former WCU football standout. Played rugby league for American National Rugby League and professionally for Richmond Rovers in New Zealand. Performed as Mufasa in the Australian production of The Lion King. Currently seen on Disney Channel's Pair of Kings. Clyde Simmons � Defensive end for the Philadelphia Eagles Matt Stillwell � Nashville Recording Artist John Taylor, star of the reality television series Too Fat for 15 on the Style Network Wayne Tolleson � Athlete; former Major League Baseball player. Tony White - President/CEO, Applera Corporation0 Willie Williams � NFL Defensive Back for Pittsburgh Steelers and Seattle Seahawks



Rural/Valley 589 acres (2.38 km2)