Washington & Jefferson College

Washington & Jefferson College

Infobox University

name=Washington & Jefferson College
type=Private liberal arts college
president=Dr. Tori Haring-Smith
undergrad= 1,525
campus=Small Town
colors=Red and Black
website= [http://www.washjeff.edu/ www.washjeff.edu]

Washington & Jefferson College (W&J) is a private, coeducational, liberal arts college located in the Pittsburgh metropolitan area, in the city of Washington, Pennsylvania, USA. The college has an enrollment of approximately 1,525 students in the 07-08 academic year.

It is noted primarily as a good Pre-Med and Pre-Law institution due to its fine liberal arts curriculum and as an excellent preparatory school for graduate level studies in general, but especially in chemistry, biology, economics and history.

The school has been ranked at no. 106 among the top liberal arts colleges in the US according to the "America's Best Colleges 2008" issue of US News and World Report, and the Princeton Review recently named W&J the 14th fittest college in the US. [http://colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/usnews/edu/college/directory/brief/drglance_3389_brief.php] It has also been highlighted as a strong liberal arts institution by the college search website Colleges of Distinction. [http://www.collegesofdistinction.com/collegetemplates/default.asp?cid=107]


Washington Academy was founded in 1781 and was one of the first institutions of higher learning west of the Allegheny Mountains. W&J was originally two distinct schools, Washington College and Jefferson College, which were each founded by Presbyterian ministers seeking to introduce higher education to what was then the American West. Andrew Wylie president of Jefferson College from 1811 - 1817, and president of Washington College from 1817 - 1829 tried unsuccessfully to unite the two institutions in the 1820s.

In 1865, decreased enrollment due to the Civil War forced Washington College and Jefferson College to combine to form Washington & Jefferson College. The new, combined college traces its roots back to the original Washington College charter, hence the founding date of 1781. The college campus is 51 acres large and its architecture is mostly colonial [http://washjeff.cdmhost.com/cdm4/washjeff.php] in a small city which serves as the county seat.

Perhaps the college's highest national sports honor is that the football team, coached by Earle "Greasy" Neale, played the University of California in the 1922 Rose Bowl, which ended as a 0-0 tie. [http://www.washjeff.edu/content.aspx?section=2852&menu_id=629&crumb=138&id=2858] The team played just 11 players for the entire game and started Charles "Pruner" West at QB, an African American, who would become a noted physician. The school played major college football from 1900 to 1935 and is the smallest college to have played in the Rose Bowl. The football team has become a powerhouse in Division III in the last 25 years and is a perennial playoff team.

Founded as men's college, it became a coeducational institution in September of 1970. [http://www.washjeff.edu/content.aspx?section=372&menu_id=133&crumb=137&id=54]

In 1990, the film based on the Stephen King novel "The Dark Half" was filmed in part on W&J's campus. [http://www.washjeff.edu/content.aspx?section=2210&menu_id=517&crumb=518&id=399&page_title=2004%20Press%20Releases] The primary locations used in the film were the Chapel in Old Main and the large office next to it, currently used by the chair of the W&J Religion Department.

Coach John Heisman, of whom the Heisman Memorial Trophy Award is named after, coached at Washington and Jefferson College. [ [http://www.answers.com/topic/heisman-john-william] ]

W&J's Old Main is home to the plaster model used to sculpt the head of Jefferson for the Jefferson Memorial. [ [http://www.washjeff.edu/content.aspx?section=372&menu_id=133&crumb=137&id=61] ]

Recent campus improvements

Beginning in the late 1990s, W&J embarked upon a massive building campaign. First, the campus' [http://www.washjeff.edu/content.aspx?section=1361&menu_id=384&crumb=627&id=103# Rossin Campus Center] was completely renovated, complete with a new "ski lodge" and coffee shop. For student housing, two new apartment-style [http://www.washjeff.edu/content.aspx?section=1361&menu_id=384&crumb=627&id=103# residence halls] were added by the fall of 2004, and more than half a dozen "special interest," colonial-style, duplexes and triplexes were completed by the fall of 2005.

The two newest academic buildings are the [http://www.washjeff.edu/content.aspx?section=1361&menu_id=384&crumb=627&id=103# Howard J. Burnett Center] and the [http://www.washjeff.edu/content.aspx?section=884&menu_id=622&crumb=343&id=2709 Technology Center] (formerly known as the "Vilar Technology Center" - see [http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/05156/516074.stm news report] about alleged scandal that initiated the name change). These buildings were opened in 2002 and 2004, respectively, and added multiple advanced "smart classrooms", computer labs, and seminar rooms. However, funding issues have prevented completion of the Technology Center's interior; only rooms on the ground, first and second floors are finished. A timetable for completion has not been set.

The college also added a modern radio studio and broadcast tower to expand and improve the [http://www.washjeff.edu/content.aspx?section=3251&menu_id=644&crumb=645&id=275 WNJR student radio station] . This once was licensed under the call letters WXJX and WJCR.

The focus on student life improvement continued with the re-opening of the "Hub" student center in the fall of 2006. The building was originally opened in the 1960s as a student center but later used as a home for information technology offices. The renovated Hub includes lounge areas, a game room, and continues the traditional Monticello's student-run coffee house on weekends.

On May 18, 2007 the college unveiled a new statue commemorating the institution's namesakes, George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. It is approximately 10 feet tall and cast in bronze, located at the corner of Lincoln St. and Beau St. Also unveiled was a statue of a coal miner reading a book in front of the Technology Center. The sculptor for both pieces is Alan Cottrill.


W&J follows a different academic schedule than most institutions. The Fall and Spring semesters are somewhat abbreviated in order to accommodate a one-month intersession semester during January. This schedule is referred to as "4-1-4" to indicate that the terms last four months, one month (of intensive study), and four months, respectively.

The "intersession term" was developed to enable students to pursue different opportunities, such as internships, study abroad, or general electives. During intersession, professors offer specialized elective classes, such as "Professional Selling," "Politics of the Developing World," "Basic Robotics," "Ballroom Dancing," "The Dialogs of Plato," "Literature of J.R.R. Tolkien," or "Vampires & Other Bloodsuckers." [http://www.washjeff.edu/content.aspx?section=640&menu_id=155&crumb=150&id=1614] Professors regularly offer intersession trips to London, China, and Zuni. [http://www.washjeff.edu/blog/zuni2007/]

Areas of study

Majors: Accounting, Art, Art Education, Biochemistry, Biological Physics, Biology, Business Administration, Chemistry, Child Development and Education, Economics, English, Environmental Studies, French, German, History, Industrial Chemistry and Management, Information Technology Leadership, International Business, International Studies, Mathematics, Music, Philosophy, Physics, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology, Spanish, Theatre, Thematic Major.

Minors: Accounting, Biology, Business Administration, Chemistry, Communication, Economics, Entrepreneurial Studies, Environmental Studies, French, Gender and Women's Studies, German, History, Information and Technology Leadership, Mathematics, Music, Neuroscience, Philosophy, Physics, Psychology, Religious Studies, Sociology, Spanish, Theatre.

Concentrations: Graphic Design, Professional Writing, Neuroscience, Entrepreneurship, Human Resource Management, Rhetoric

Pre-Professional and Special Programs: Teacher Certification; Engineering; Entrepreneurial Studies; Mind, Brain, and Behavior; Pre-Health Professions; Pre-Law.

Electives: Chinese, Earth and Space Science, Japanese, Physical Education, Russian, Science.

tudent life


W&J College has a strong history of political activism, with chapters of College Republicans and College Democrats. Current students currently serve as members of the Bentworth School Board and Canonsburg Council. [ [http://www.washjeff.edu/content.aspx?section=2210&menu_id=517&crumb=518&page_title=Current%20Press%20Releases&id=10680 W&J: Current Press Releases ] ]

Vice President Dick Cheney visited W&J during the 2004 presidential election. Former President Bill Clinton held a rally on behalf of his wife Hillary Rodham Clinton during the 2008 campaign.

An important event in the 1968 Presidential race occurred on campus. Democratic Vice-Presidential nominee Edmund Muskie was being heckled by students during a speech. Muskie invited students to select a leader and send him forward. Muskie agreed to listen to the student leader for ten minutes if the students would listen to him for ten minutes. Student leader Rick Brody was selected. In an emotional rant, Brody encouraged students to drop out of the 1968 campaign. Muskie encouraged them to get involved. His reasoned approach won great support and helped propel him to greater prominence although the Hubert Humphrey-Muskie ticket lost to Richard Nixon-Spiro Agnew.


W&J competes in 23 intercollegiate athletics at the NCAA Division III level. W&J's sports teams, named the "Presidents," have experienced great success; W&J has won more than 30 PAC Championships and produced 17 Academic All-American athletes. [http://www.washjeff.edu/athletics.aspx]

W&J also offers variety of intramural sports, and its athletic facilities (including tennis and racquetball courts, swimming pools, and weight facilities) are open to recreational student use.

The Washington and Jefferson Rugby Club was founded in 2004, and fields both men's and women's teams. It is a member of USA Rugby, the Midwest Rugby Union, and the Allegheny Rugby Union. The club competes in the Allegheny Rugby Union Collegiate Division 2. The club also competes in an unofficial Presidents' Athletic Conference Championship every spring. In 2004, the men's club won the 2004 Allegheny Rugby Union Division 3 championship.


W&J has over 60 student clubs on campus, including the Bottega Art Club, Franklin Literary Society, and clubs for most academic disciplines. [http://www.washjeff.edu/content.aspx?section=3251&menu_id=644&crumb=645&id=3253]


W&J's annual spring concert has featured New Found Glory, O.A.R, Hawthorne Heights, and The Roots. The 2006 Fall concert featured Talib Kweli. The 2008 Spring concert featured Third Eye Blind.

Greek life

W&J also has a Greek community consisting of six national fraternities, four national sororities, and the Greek honorary society Order of Omega. Approximately 44% of W&J's campus is active in the Greek communities Fact|date=February 2007. Phi Gamma Delta and Phi Kappa Psi were both founded at Jefferson College prior to its merger with Washington College. The Gamma Chapter of Beta Theta Pi, formed in 1842 at Jefferson College, is the oldest Beta chapter in continuous existence having never ceased existence since its founding. It is also the oldest continuously active chapter of any Greek Fraternity in the United States. The Gamma Chapter of Delta Tau Delta, formed in 1861, is the oldest Delt chapter in continuous existence. W&J was granted a Phi Beta Kappa chapter in 1937. [ [http://www.pbk.org/AM/Template.cfm?Section=Chapter_Chronology&Template=/CM/ContentDisplay.cfm&ContentID=1624] ]

tudent media

W&J's student media includes the 1500-watt WNJR (FM) radio station and "The Red & Black" student newspaper. [ [http://www.washjeff.edu/content.aspx?section=3251&menu_id=644&crumb=645&id=3276 W&J: Student Media ] ]

Notable alumni

Distinguished alumni include:
* Ernest F. Acheson, owner/editor of the "Washington Weekly Observer" and U.S. Representative from PA's 24th congressional district from 1895 - 1909
* John Astin, actor of "The Addams Family" and "Batman" fame (transferred to Johns Hopkins University) [http://www.nndb.com/people/327/000023258/]
* Carl G. Bachmann, U.S. Congressional Representative from West Virginia
* Thomas W. Bartley, 18th Governor of Ohio
* Henry H. Bingham, Medal of Honor recipient and U.S. Congressional Representative
* James G. Blaine, United States Secretary of State and a candidate for President of the United States
* Samuel Steel Blair, US Congressional Representative from Pennsylvania
* Benjamin Bristow (1851), Solicitor General of the United States and as a United States Secretary of the Treasury
* Richard Clark, (1968) President, CEO of Merck 2006-Present
* Harvey W. Cook, pilot of the first continental airmail liner
* Nicholas P. Dallis, creator of the newspaper comic strip "Rex Morgan, M.D."
* John Hoge Ewing, a Whig member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Pennsylvania and delegate to the 1860 Republican National Convention
* Stephen Foster, famed nineteenth-century songwriter of American folk classics "Oh! Susanna", "Camptown Races", "My Old Kentucky Home", "Old Black Joe", "Beautiful Dreamer" and "Old Folks at Home", among others. Foster attended W&J but never finished; he is said to have been kicked out. [http://www.washjeff.edu/content.aspx?section=372&menu_id=133&crumb=137&id=61]
* John Rankin Franklin (1836), US Congressional Representative from Maryland
* Edgar Garbisch, Member, College Football Hall of Fame [http://www.collegefootball.org/famersearch.php?id=20109]
* John W. Geary, mayor of San Francisco, governor of the Kansas Territory, governor of Pennsylvania, and Union general in the American Civil War.
* Roger Goodell, NFL Commissioner 2006 - present
* Louis E. Graham, U.S. Congressional Representative from Pennsylvania
* Melissa Hart, former U.S. Congressional Representative from Pennsylvania
* William Thomas Hamilton, 38th Governor of Maryland, 1880 - 1884, U.S. Senator from Maryland, 1868 - 1874, member United States House of Representatives from Maryland, 1849 - 1855.
* John Hemphill (1825), Chief Justice of the Texas Supreme Court and a United States Senator
* Wilbur "Pete" "Fats" Henry, Member, College Football Hall of Fame [http://www.collegefootball.org/famersearch.php?id=10071] , Member, Pro Football Hall of Fame. [http://www.profootballhof.com/hof/member.jsp?player_id=94]
* John S. Horner (1819), acting Governor of Michigan Territory from 1835 to 1836 and Secretary of Wisconsin Territory from 1836 to 1837
* Rev. George Junkin, D.D., LL.D., first president of Lafayette College
* Buddy Jeannette, professional basketball player and coach, Member of the Basketball Hall of Fame [http://www.hoophall.com/halloffamers/bhof-buddy-jeannette.html]
* Dr. Jesse Lazear, who discovered that yellow fever was transmitted via mosquito [http://www.healthsystem.virginia.edu/internet/library/historical/medical_history/yellow_fever/commission.cfm]
* Dr. Francis Julius LeMoyne, M.D. (1815) nationally known abolitionist, philanthropist, founder of the Washington Female Seminary, and benefactor of LeMoyne-Owen College, a historically-black college in Memphis, Tennessee
* William Henry Letterman and Charles Page Thomas Moore, founders of the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity.
* John Livingston Lowes (1888), American scholar of English literature
* Charles Lucas (Missouri) (1810 Jefferson College), lawyer killed in duel with Thomas Hart Benton (senator)
* Walter B. Massenberg, (1970) Vice Admiral, U.S. Navy
* William Holmes McGuffey (1826) Educator, best known as the author of McGuffey Readers
* Henry Christopher McCook (1859), member of the celebrated Fighting McCooks
* Thomas M. T. McKennan, 2nd United States Secretary of the Interior and U.S. Congressional Representative from Pennsylvania
* William Sutton Moore, delegate to the 1856 Republican National Convention; U.S. Congressman 1873
* John Murtha, attended but left in 1952 to join the Marines. U.S. Congressional Representative from Pennsylvania and current chair of the House Appropriations Defense Committee.
* John J. Patterson (1848), United States Senator from South Carolina (1873 - 1879)
* Joe Philbin (1984), Offensive Coordinator for the Green Bay Packers (2007-Present)
* Matthew Quay (1850), United States Senator from Pennsylvania (1887–1899;1901–1904) and Chairman of the Republican National Committee
* Luke Ravenstahl (2003), current Mayor of Pittsburgh
* John S. Reed, interim president of the New York Stock Exchange and former CEO of Citigroup
* Johnson C. Smith, co-founder of the McKeesport Tin Plate Company and director of the People’s Bank in McKeesport. Johnson C. Smith University, a Historically Black College in Charlotte, North Carolina, is named after him.
* Henry Stanberry, United States Attorney General
* Bill Steen, Major League Baseball pitcher for the Cleveland Indians and Detroit Tigers, 1912-15
* David Peck Todd (1888), American astronomer
* Clement Vallandigham, U.S. Congressional Representative from Ohio
* Alberto Vilar, former billionaire and founder of Amerindo Investment Advisors, now charged with fraud in federal court. His multi-million pledges to the college never materialized.
* Joseph A. Walker, NASA test pilot
* Charles S. West, Texas jurist and politician (Jefferson College)
* Ephraim King Wilson II, U.S. Senator from Maryland, 1885-1891.
* Jesse White, member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives

ee also

*List of Washington & Jefferson College people
*President of Washington & Jefferson College


External links

* [http://www.washjeff.edu/ Washington & Jefferson College]
* [http://wiki.washjeff.edu/ Washington & Jefferson Wiki] - a wiki community written by and for students at Washington & Jefferson College.
* [http://colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/usnews/edu/college/directory/brief/drglance_3389_brief.php US News ranking]

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