Faculty Handbook

Institutional Characteristics and History of Western Connecticut State University

Western Connecticut State University (WestConn) is located in Danbury, in northwestern Fairfield County, adjacent to New York State.  The University enrolls more than 6,500 students.  Although WestConn serves the entire State of Connecticut, the vast majority of students come from within a 30-mile radius of the campus.  By virtue of its proximity to New York State, WestConn has large numbers of students from Putnam and Westchester counties.  WestConn offers an Ed.D. in Instructional Leadership and master’s degrees in Education, Business (MBA), English, Earth and Planetary Sciences, History, Mathematics, Biological and Environmental Sciences, Health Administration, Nursing, Visual Arts, Professional Writing, and Justice Administration.  WestConn also offers 38 undergraduate majors, and approximately 40 minors and concentrations.

WestConn’s roots lie in the Danbury Normal School, a two-year teacher training institution, established in 1903 in downtown Danbury.  In 1937, the Normal School became the four-year Danbury State Teachers College, and in 1959, it was renamed Danbury State College.  In 1955, a graduate program was established; and in 1967, the College became Western Connecticut State College.  In 1978, the University was organized into three Schools with strong liberal arts, professional, and business offerings:  Arts and Sciences, Professional Studies, and the School of Business, subsequently renamed the Ancell School of Business.  On March 1, 1983, as part of the reorganization of higher education in Connecticut, University status was conferred upon Western.

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