AccessAbility Servics (formerly Disability Services)
The mission of the Office of AccessAbility Services is to facilitate and advocate the best university environment for students with disabilities. The AccessAbility Services staff works collaboratively with the university community to accomplish this mission. Students with documented disabilities who are in need of disability services or accommodations are encouraged to contact AccessAbility Services. The university respects students’ rights to disclose or not to disclose a disability; however, the university is not responsible for providing services or accommodations for students who do not disclose a disability to AccessAbility Services. To receive services or accommodations, students must provide appropriate documentation. Communication of a disability to other sources does not serve as a substitute for official notification to AccessAbility Services. Please contact Coordinator Deborah Cohen at (203) 837-8946 in AccessAbility Services when requesting accommodations.
To discuss a disability concern or to request an accommodation, contact the coordinator of AccessAbility Services in the Student Center, Room 207, or call (203) 837-8225 or (203) 837-8946, or voice, (203) 837-8284 TTY.
Discrimination in programs and services due to a disability is prohibited at Western Connecticut State University and is a violation of state and federal law. To file a complaint of discrimination because of a disability, contact Dr. Bryan Samuel, Director of Affirmative Action, Old Main 101, at (203) 837-8277 or (203) 837-8284 TTY. Please note that the discrimination complaint procedure does not replace and is not a substitute for other established university procedures such as judicial, grade appeal, housing, public safety, or other such policies and procedures. Students with disabilities are held to the same standards and must follow established policies and procedures as other students at Western Connecticut State University.
Faculty: Director E. Farrington; P. Algarin; M. Allen; S. Ames; K. Bernstein; M. Bourque ; J. Burrell; J. Burrows; R. Campbell; J. Cook; P. Hull; D. McDonnell; J. Mingachos; J. Ouellet; G. Poole; P. Schachter; S. Slater; H. Stone; J. Susi; R. Venugopal.
WestConn offers a variety of opportunities for the student-athlete to excel at the local, regional and national levels of competition. Sporting events are scheduled throughout the academic year and opportunities are provided for male and female teams.
Fall - Soccer, Football
Winter - Basketball
Spring - Tennis, Baseball, Lacrosse
Fall - Volleyball, Tennis, Soccer, Field Hockey
Winter - Basketball, Swimming & Diving
Spring - Softball, Lacrosse
All programs for men and women belong to the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division III. The football program is a member of the New Jersey Athletic Conference. The 13 other intercollegiate athletic programs are members of the Little East Conference. In addition, all programs hold membership in the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC).
The university belongs to conferences and associations appropriate to the specific athletic program.
Eligibility To Participate In Varsity Athletics
Eligibility is determined in accordance with policies established by the NCAA, including requirements for satisfactory progress and good academic standing.
The spiritual needs of the students are served by a staff of three religious leaders of the Roman Catholic, Protestant, and Jewish communities. They offer students opportunities for worship celebrations, service projects, pastoral counseling, community outreach, and various programs of a religious, ethical and philosophical nature. Available to the students are places for study, reflection, friendship, and relaxation at the Student Center and the Newman Center (across the street from Newbury Hall). Campus ministers can be reached at: Catholic –– Student Center 224, (203) 837-3240 or Newman Center, (203) 744-5846; Protestant –– Student Center 223, (203) 837-8328; for Jewish leadership, call Student Affairs at (203) 837-9700.
Career Development Center
The Career Development Center (CDC) provides a wide range of services to assist students with their career planning and job search needs. Students who are exploring career options can discuss their plans with a CDC staff member. You can utilize our career software, "SIGI3", which assesses career interests, while also providing extensive information on various career fields. You can also take advantage of our extensive career library which offers a large collection of literature on career fields, job search, company profiles, and graduate and professional school information. Students who want to receive practical experience in their field should take advantage of our highly successful Cooperative Education (Co-op) Internship Program, which provides career related experience linked to major or career interest. Students receive academic credit, and in most cases, a salary, for their co-op work experience. The CDC provides an On/Off Campus Recruiting Program for graduating seniors to interview for career opportunities with area employers. We also have an on-line job posting and resume service which students can access 24 hours a day. The CDC hosts a major Career Fair each year that provides job opportunities for full-time, part-time, and summer employment as well as co-ops and internships. We also host a number of special workshops on resume writing, interviewing, job search strategies, as well as resume critique sessions to help you with your job search. The CDC is located on the second floor of the Student Center on the Midtown campus, Room 227. The office number is (203) 837-8263.
The Counseling Center offers confidential, short term, multi-cultural counseling for personal, career and academic concerns. During the past year, students have expressed concerns about: relationship problems, loneliness, depression, anxiety, stress, motivation, eating disorders, grief issues, post-traumatic stress, physical and emotional illness, substance abuse problems, family problems, study skills, test anxiety, physical, sexual and emotional abuse, and gay/lesbian/bisexual concerns.
Our staff of professional counselors also offer interest and personality inventories to help students select a major or choose a career path. Outreach and group sessions are offered on a variety of topics, including: depression, stress and coping, eating disorders, abusive relationships, self-injury, loss and mourning, the impact of alcohol on sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), self-esteem issues, diversity, issues involving families of alcoholics, and assertiveness training. The Counseling Center staff facilitates new support groups for special populations on specific topics as needed.
Counseling Center services are free and available to current WestConn students. The center is located on the second floor of the Student Center on the Midtown campus, Room 222. For an appointment, call (203) 837-8690 or visit the Counseling Center weekdays between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.
The Health Service Office, located in front of Litchfield Hall, provides full-time students with primary care and health education on a year-round basis. It is staffed by a doctor, nurse practitioner, nurses and a secretary. Office hours are 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. Appointments are required for non-emergency problems. Please bring your medical insurance card with you at the time of your appointment. Changes in hours are reported to the dean of student affairs, University Police, and the Office of Housing and Residence Life, and they are listed on a telephone recording at (203) 837-8594. Referrals can be made for specialized health care to nearby Danbury Hospital. Costs of laboratory tests, prescription medicines and any additional services are the student’s responsibility. Parents or guardians of minors will be contacted in the event of an emergency.
All students – full and part time – must show proof of one rubella and two measles immunization prior to registration. Connecticut state law mandates resident hall students to submit documented proof of immunization with meningococcal (meningitis) vaccine to the Health Service Office prior to entering on-campus housing. The Hepatitis B vaccine, though not required, is strongly recommended. This is a serious viral infection which can be prevented through vaccination. Some groups that recommend this vaccine include the Center for Disease Control, the National Collegiate Athletic Association and the American College Health Association. For vaccine availability please contact your health care provider or local health department. Failure to comply with the state law mandating one rubella and two measles immunization will restrict registration for the following semester.
All full-time students are required to submit the WCSU Confidential Health Form to the Health Service Office by start of the first semester. This requirement is the responsibility of the student. This form can be found in your admission packet and obtained at www.wcsu.edu/healthservice/onlineforms.asp. Failure to comply with this requirement will result in restricting your future registration process.
Please note: Some academic programs may require additional immunizations or examinations prior to the student’s participation in an internship or other assignment.
Housing & Residential Life
WestConn Housing & Residence Life offers its residents an integrated program known as CULTURE™, which stands for “Creating Undergraduate Learning Through Unique Residential Experiences.” The CULTURE™ program is designed to help students excel academically and provides a myriad of opportunities for community and leadership development. Students who live on campus are expected to participate in and support their living and learning environments.
Once you have made the decision to live on campus, it is important to find the residence hall that best suits your needs. There are six halls at WestConn: three on the Midtown campus and three on Westside.
The three residence halls on the Midtown campus are all traditional-style residence halls. Newbury and Litchfield Halls are coeducational, as well as the newly-renovated Fairfield Hall. All buildings are state-owned and staffed with professional residence directors. Rooms have basic cable, local telephone and voicemail access, and students may access the internet through the campus ResNet program.
Rooms accommodate two or three students. Beds, desks, bookshelves, chairs and dressers are provided, and roommates may enhance the decor with items such as drapes, bedspreads, rugs and lamps. Linens are not provided, so students must supply their own mattress pads, pillows, sheets, towels and pillow cases. All beds are regular twin size.
Grasso Hall is an apartment-style, upperclass, residence hall. Each apartment is furnished and has two bedrooms, a living/dining room, a kitchen, a bathroom and is provided with basic cable service, local telephone and voicemail access, and access to the internet via ResNet, the campus provider. Traditionally, four students live in each apartment — two students per bedroom. While Grasso students are usually very involved in academic and campus life, they still maintain an active hall council which provides a variety of social and educational events throughout the year.
A 425-person apartment-style building for upper-class students, Pinney Hall has five-person apartments that include three furnished bedrooms, two bathrooms, a furnished living and dining area, a full-sized kitchen, and a balcony. In addition, there are two-story floor lounges spaced throughout the building, as well as a conference/meeting room (center). All apartments are provided with basic cable service, local telephone and voicemail access, and access to the internet via ResNet, the campus provider.
Centennial Hall is a suite-style hall whose furnished suites typically have a living room, two bedrooms, and toilet, shower and sink rooms. Kitchens are not provided in this residence hall and residents are required to participate in the Ultimate Dining plan. Typically, five students share a suite. Basic cable, local telephone and voicemail access, and internet access through the campus ResNet service is provided. Study lounges are located on each floor and a large multi-purpose area is located on the ground floor. There is a parking garage at the rear of the building.
On the Midtown campus and in Centennial Hall, all resident students are required to participate in the Ultimate Dining plan. Students living in Pinney and Grasso are required to participate in the Blue 75 meal plan, or they may opt to purchase either the Ultimate Dining or the Gold 125 plan.
Application for On-Campus Housing
When students are accepted to the university, they are mailed an application for on-campus housing. Included in this packet are detailed instructions explaining the order in which available housing spaces are filled. Only full-time, matriculated students are eligible to live in on-campus housing.
Returning students who were not assigned housing the previous semester are placed on the housing assignment list on the date their housing application is received. Students who become on-campus residents must maintain a 2.0 cumulative grade point average and meet the guidelines for satisfactory academic progress in order to remain eligible for on-campus housing. Returning students, 21 and older, receive priority for housing on the Westside campus. Because of the overall demand for on-campus housing, students are encouraged to apply early for housing.
The Department of Housing and Residence Life is partnered with an off-campus listing service, Places4Students.com. Students looking for off-campus accommodations are encouraged to go on-line to check for current listings. A link to the site may be found at the Housing & Residence Life Web site, www.wcsu.edu/housing.
This office administers the student’s discipline process and serves as liaison to all university departments regarding matters pertaining to student conduct. All WestConn students are expected to adhere to the policies and procedures outlined in the Student Code of Conduct and Statement of Judicial Procedures. Formal complaints, as well as any inquiries concerning the student discipline system and student discipline records, should be directed to the assistant director of judicial affairs and residential education at (203) 837-8770.
Student Code of Conduct and Statement of Judicial Procedures
This Student Code of Conduct and Statement of Judicial Procedures is intended to present a clear statement of student rights and responsibilities and to set forth the judicial procedures established by the Connecticut State University System to protect those rights and address the abdication of those responsibilities. The code describes the types of acts that are not acceptable in an academic community, as well as the general processes by which the commission of those acts will be addressed.
Students must be aware that, as citizens, they are subject to all federal and state laws in addition to all university regulations governing student conduct and responsibilities. Students do not relinquish their rights or shed their responsibilities as citizens by becoming members of the Connecticut State University community.
Academic institutions exist for the transmission of knowledge, the pursuit of truth, the development of students and the general well-being of society. In line with this purpose, the university has the duty to protect the freedoms of inquiry and expression and furthermore has the responsibility to encourage all of its members to develop the capacity for critical judgment in their sustained and independent search for truth.
The Connecticut State University System has certain self-defined institutional values. Principal among these values is respect for the dignity, rights, and individuality of each member of the university community. The opportunity to live, study, and work in an institution which values diverse intellectual and cultural perspectives and encourages discussion and debate about competing ideas in an atmosphere of civility is a basic component of quality higher education at this university.
All members of the university community must at all times govern their social and academic interactions with tolerance and mutual respect so that the men and women who pass through the university’s doors are enriched by these experiences and are prepared for full and enlightened participation in a multi-cultural society. Because of the university’s commitment to principles of pluralism, mutual respect, and civility, certain activities are not acceptable on the university campus. Acts of intolerance, of hatred or violence based on race, religion, sexual orientation, disability, gender, age, or ethnic background are antithetical to the university’s fundamental principles and values. It is the university’s responsibility to secure the students’ right to learn by establishing an environment of civility.
The disciplinary process is intended to be part of the educational mission of the CSU System. Student disciplinary proceedings are not criminal proceedings and are not subject to court rules of procedure and evidence.
The complete “Student Code of Conduct and Statement of Judicial Procedures” can be found in the Student Handbook 2007-08, which is available through the Office of Student Affairs in Old Main 306.
New Student Orientation
New Student Orientation is designed to meet the needs of newly-admitted students and to answer many of the questions they may have about WestConn and the college experience.
For students entering WestConn in the fall semester, orientation consists of two programs –– a summer program usually held in late June and Welcome Week scheduled during the first week of classes.
During June Orientation students have the opportunity to take their placement exams (if necessary), get their ID and parking permit, establish computer accounts and set their class schedule for the upcoming semester. At that time, students and parents are officially welcomed to the university by the president. They are invited to lunch with their dean and faculty, attend workshops and tour the campus. Students admitted after the June Orientation event will have ample opportunity to do these things during the summer months.
Welcome Week is organized around the first week of classes and includes the weekends before and after classes begin. Resident students move into the residence halls at this time. Both commuter and resident students and their families are officially welcomed during WestConn’s “Entering the Gates” ceremony. Workshops are offered for both parents and students, and include special orientation programs for commuter students, transfer students, international students and adult learners. Welcome Week also includes lectures, movies, concerts, Clubs Carnival and other activities intended to welcome students to campus.
For students beginning classes in January, orientation typically consists of an evening program during the first week of classes, with a dinner and program for students and their parents.
If you would like more information about New Student Orientation, please call the Orientation Hotline at (203) 837-8215.
Pre-Collegiate Access Programs
To ensure that students have the opportunity to develop the academic potential required for college admissions, WestConn has established the ConnCap/Upward Bound Program for high school students and the Excel Program for middle-schoolers. With advisers and staff dedicated to assisting and closely monitoring individual students as they progress through the public school system, these programs help promote everything from cultural enrichment to computers, from pre-algebra to parenting workshops. Also included in the Pre-Collegiate Access Programs is EAP, the Educational Achievement & Access Program that offers academically underprepared students an intense, five-week summer residential program in order to fulfill admission requirements.
Recreation, Intramurals and Club Sports
Coordinator: Amy Shanks
The recreation department at WestConn is dedicated to providing the campus community with a multitude of recreational activities to encourage physical fitness and promote a positive well-being.
The WestConn community utilizes athletic facilities on two separate campuses. The Bill Williams Gymnasium on the Midtown campus provides aerobics and fitness classes and a fitness room for cardio workouts and strength training. Our Westside campus is home to the William A. O’Neill Athletic and Convocation Center, which houses the Feldman Arena, a six-lane natatorium, a four-lane indoor track, four full courts for basketball and volleyball and a fitness center for cardio and strength training. Also, the Westside Athletic and Convocation Complex provides three spacious practice fields and six lighted tennis courts.
In addition, the Westside houses a brand new cardio fitness room located on the first floor of the Westside Campus Center. Dedicated to encouraging intense cardio workouts, this facility has top notch Precor equipment, each machine equipped with its own television. There is also specific equipment available for core training as well.
Participants’ input is critical to our success and we welcome your feedback. Please contact Amy Shanks at (203) 837-8609 or in the O’Neill Center, Room 107.
Would you like to participate in a sport or try something new? Do you crave adventure, competition and stress relief? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then the WestConn Intramurals Program is for you.
Team and individual events are offered for women, men and coed divisions. Events include: flag football, 3-on-3 and 5-on5 basketball, indoor soccer, floor hockey, dodgeball, volleyball and much, much more. Individuals of all skill levels are encouraged to join. There is an emphasis on friendly competition and fun. More than just a game, intramural sports encourages friendship, strengthens the mind and body and develops character, while nurturing a skill.
The intramural program is open to all current WestConn students, faculty, staff and alumni. Would you like to suggest a new intramural activity? Interested in joining an existing team? Please contact the coordinator of recreation, intramurals and club sports in Room 107 of the O’Neill Center on the Westside campus.
The club sports program provides an opportunity for individuals who share a common interest in a recreational sport to improve their skill level and overall knowledge of the sport or activity. Club sports can be organized on either a recreational or a competitive level. Instructional activities range from informal play to regular practices, in preparation for intercollegiate and tournament competition. Many clubs compete with other schools and are a part of a collegiate league of play.
Each club is created, organized, maintained and driven through student effort. The future remains bright for the club sports program, due mainly to the dedication, commitment and drive of the coaches, participants and advisers to provide quality programs. Active clubs include, but are not limited to, ice hockey, cheerleading, dance team, women’s rugby and men’s rugby.
The club sports program is open to all WestConn students. If you would like to join an existing club, or you have what it takes to start up a successful club of your own, contact Amy Shanks, coordinator of intramurals, recreation and club sports, in Room 107 of the O’Neill Center, located on the Westside campus; (203) 837-8609.
Student Insurance Requirements
Accident Insurance: As part of the student fee, all full-time students are covered under an accident insurance plan, 24 hours a day, on and off campus, from August 1 to July 31 or until full-time enrollment is terminated during this period.
Benefits under the accident plan are paid on an excess basis. This means no expense is covered if it would be covered by another health care plan in the absence of this insurance. This insurance supplements, but does not replace, other health care coverage.
Sickness Insurance: The Connecticut State University System requires that all full-time students have sickness insurance to cover medical care not provided by Health Service. The university is able to offer its students comprehensive health care coverage at a very affordable cost. Coverage under this plan includes both inpatient and outpatient services for medical, surgical and mental health needs.
All full-time students will be automatically enrolled in and billed for this sickness insurance plan unless they submit a signed waiver to the cashier’s office indicating alternative coverage. In reviewing present insurance coverage and deciding whether or not to carry this student insurance, remember that many sickness insurance plans (e.g. local HMOs or IPAs) provide appropriate or effective coverage which may, however, be based at considerable distance from the campus. This has caused problems in providing medical services for students at the university. In addition, many insurance plans may have age limits for dependents. Students with known health problems are advised to consider this insurance in addition to their family coverage, especially if the latter does not cover 100 percent of medical expenses. All parents must inform students which outpatient laboratory, x-ray, emergency room or hospital they must use, if necessary, in order to have costs paid by their HMO plan.
Currently, the WCSU student insurance plan is Aetna Student Health. This is subject to change as we approach a contract year. Insurance information is available at www.aetnastudenthealth.com.
The Substance Abuse Prevention Program (CHOICES)
The Substance Abuse Prevention Program at WCSU is called CHOICES (Cultivating Healthy Opportunities in College Environments). We believe that all students want to succeed both academically and fulfill their potential during their college years. When substance abuse gets in the way, it can seriously derail those dreams. The goal of the office is to provides resources, information and services that help students make informed and responsible decisions about the use of alcohol and/or drugs; to collaborate with student organizations, faculty and staff in planning exciting, alternative activities that promote healthy lifestyle choices; and to work with students in creating positive changes on campus and reduce underage and binge drinking.
The CHOICES Office provides: accurate, current information on alcohol and other drugs; conducts individual screenings and assessments for students on a voluntary or referral basis; refers students to counseling and support services on and off campus; provides support for any student concerned about someone else’s use/abuse by advising ways they can make a difference; plans educational workshops and presentations for residence halls, clubs, Greek Life and athletic teams; and runs support groups for students who are trying to make positive changes in their lives.
All services are confidential. We encourage all students to participate in our programs, activities, the Alcohol Task Force and Choices Peer Educators Program. For more information, please call (203) 837-8899 or stop by Litchfield Hall, Room 101, Monday through Friday 9 a.m. through 5 p.m. The Web site is www.wcsu.edu/CHOICES.
Student Life/Student Activities
Student Government Association
The Student Government Association (SGA) serves as the student voice and is responsible for the allocation of the student activities fee to student organizations. The association also represents the student body to the administration and appoints students to most university committees. In addition, the SGA provides copying services for students at the Student Center Information Desk.
The SGA is comprised of a student senate and an executive board. Students are encouraged to participate in their government. For further information, contact the SGA Office in the Student Center, Midtown campus, Room 215.
Student Activities & Clubs/Organizations
If it’s true that much of what is learned at college comes from experiences outside the classroom, then WestConn’s center for co-curricular activities is the Student Life/Student Activities Office.
The Student Life/Student Activities Office is available as a resource for all students. The Office offers leadership development programs and also assists with the administration of all student clubs/organizations. The staff will assist you in getting involved on campus and making the connection to the organization of your choice.
A complete listing of all campus student organizations can be found on the web at clubs.wcsu.edu. If you would like to start an organization on campus, please call Dennis Leszko at (203) 837-8214. The Student Life/Student Activities Office is located on the Midtown campus, Student Center 220.