Western State College of Colorado

Western State College of Colorado

Western State College of Colorado is a four-year public liberal arts college located in Gunnison, Colorado. The enrollment stands at about 2400 students with a high percentage, one-fourth, from out of state. The far flung appeal for some students is found in the idyllic mountains and ski slopes. The most popular majors at Western are business, art, recreation, biology, and a double major in business and recreation. Western also offers a state of the art petroleum geology program, founded and funded by Western State College alumni donations. The college's home town of Gunnison is located 30 minutes south of Crested Butte. The college also has one of the oldest collegiate radio stations in the state with KWSB on the air since 1968.


The college was originally founded as Colorado State Normal School by a bill signed on April 16, 1901 by Governor James B. Orman. In 1923, the college's name was changed to Western State College because its role expanded from a teaching institution to a liberal arts college. Western State College was the first public college west of the Mississippi River to be designated a liberal arts college.


Western State College's athletics are among the best in the nation in NCAA Division II. The athletic teams are nicknamed the Mountaineers. In addition to a rich tradition in football under former head coaches Bill Noxon and Carl "Duke" Iverson, the school boasts elite wrestling, cross-country, and track teams. Legendary cross-country coach Duane Vandenbusche retired after the 2007 season after winning 13 national championships at the school. The wrestling program is coached by 2004 Division II coach of the year Miles Vanhee. Western also has a rich tradition in NCAA skiing. The school competes in the NCAA Championship Sport against Division I schools in the Rocky Mountain Intercollegiate Ski Association (RMISA). Western State Skiing was a charter member of NCAA Skiing when it was formed in 1954 under Coach Sven Wiik. The team is currently coached by Jesse Crandall (Nordic) and Evan Weiss (Alpine). As of the 2008 fall semester not enough funds could be collected to allow the ski team to compete.

In most sports, the Mountaineers are members of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference.

External links

* [http://www.western.edu/ Official Western State College website]

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