AccessAbility Servics (formerly Disability Services)
The Office of AccessAbility Services directs and coordinates accommodations and services for students with disabilities. The office provides advocacy, reasonable accommodations, early registration, confidential counseling, complaint processing, exam proctoring, assistive technology, writing assistance, foreign language alternatives, specially designated math sections, and other services that are of value and consequence to students with disabilities.
The AccessAbility Services staff works collaboratively with the university community to create a welcoming, inclusive and accessible campus. 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 disability documentation and request accommodations in a timely manner. Communication of a disability to other sources does not serve as a substitute for official notification to AccessAbility Services.
To discuss a disability concern or to request an accommodation, contact the coordinator of AccessAbility Services in Higgins Annex, Room 017, or call (203) 837-8225 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. AccessAbility Services policies and procedures are posted on our website: wcsu.edu/accessability.
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 Carolyn Lanier, Executive Assistant to the President/Chief Diversity Officer, Old Main 101, at (203) 837-8277 or email@example.com.
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: Athletic Director Ed Farrington; Pete Algarin; Mark Allen; Scott Ames; Bob Campbell; Jill Cook; Don Ferguson; Patrick Hull; George Kostelis; Joe Loth; Danielle McDonnell; Joe Mingachos; Kelly Niznansky; Jason Ouellet; Jennifer Ouellet; Kimberley Rybczyk; Heather Stone; John Susi; Ritush Venugopal.
A complete list of the Athletics Department Aadministration and coaches with contact information can be found on the WCSU website at www.wcsu.edu/sports/AthleticStaff/staffdirectory.html.
Western offers a variety of opportunities for the student-athlete to excel at the 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 and diving
Spring — Softball, lacrosse
All programs 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 opportunities for worship celebrations, service projects, pastoral counseling, community outreach, and various programs of a religious, ethical and philosophical nature.
Places for study, reflection, friendship, and relaxation are available at the Student Center and the Newman Center (across the street from Newbury Hall).
Campus ministers can be reached at:
- Catholic — Student Center 211, (203) 837-3240 or Newman Center, (203) 744-5846
- Protestant – Student Center 211, (203) 837-8328
- Jewish — For leadership call Student Affairs at (203) 837-9700
Career Development Center
The Career Development Center (CDC) provides a wide range of services to help students with career planning and job searches. Students who are exploring career options can discuss their plans with a CDC staff member and use the “SIGI3” software, which assesses career interests and provides extensive information on different job fields.
You can also take advantage of an extensive career library which offers a large collection of literature on career fields, job search, company profiles, and graduate and professional school information. The CDC also hosts several online resources such as Going Global, and VAULT Career Insider, which makes extensive career and employer information available 24 hours a day.
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 online job posting and job search information site, College Central, which students can access 24 hours a day at www.collegecentral.com/wcsu.
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. “Drop-in hours” are offered several days a week. Further information is available on the CDC website: wcsu.edu/cdc or by calling the office at (203) 837-8263.
The primary goal of the Counseling Center is to support the mental health and well-being of WCSU’s students. We pursue this endeavor principally through the provision of confidential psychotherapy and crisis intervention services to students, at no additional expense to them or to their families.
The staff also provides consultation services to faculty, administration and staff, as well as a series of presentations, seminars, and workshops for the academic community about a wide variety of mental health-related topics.
The Counseling Center employs four full-time, licensed therapists during the academic year, two of whom are also available during the summer session. Additionally, we have three clinical or counseling psychology graduate students in training under the supervision of the senior therapists. Our administrator has more than 10 years of experience in the Counseling Center. The staff is both gender and culturally diverse.
The Counseling Center is equipped to address the full range of mental health problems, including such issues as adjustment to college life, stress, time management, difficulties with interpersonal relationships, loneliness and isolation, sleep disturbances, anxiety, depression, eating concerns, suicidal thinking, interpersonal and/or sexual violence, alcohol and substance abuse, grief and loss, anger management, and identity issues. Treatment is tailored to the unique needs of each student. Referrals to clinicians in the community can be made when indicated.
The Counseling Center is located on the Midtown campus at Student Center 222, 181 White St. Our hours of operation are from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. Students can call or come in for information or to schedule an appointment, and faculty should feel free to contact us for consultation.
The Counseling Center can be reached by telephone at (203) 837-8690, with information online at www.wcsu.edu/counseling.
In case of an emergency outside of regular business hours, students should dial 911 or call the 24-hour mental health emergency hotline at (888) 447-3339.
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, two nurse practitioners, and a secretary. Office hours are 8 a.m. – 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. Appointments are required for non-emergencies. Changes in hours are reported to the Dean of Student Affairs, University Police, and Office of Residence Life.
An office visit at Health Service is not billed to the insurance company or charged to the student.
The costs for radiology, laboratory, and diagnostic tests are the student’s responsibility.
A nominal charge is billed to tuition if the student chooses to have a prescription dispensed on site. If a written prescription is dispensed, the student can use an in-network pharmacy to fill the order.
In the event the medical staff needs to refer a student to a specialist or the local emergency department at Danbury Hospital, the student’s health insurance plan would apply.
In the event a student is treated in Health Service during office hours and becomes incapacitated by illness or injury and needs to be transported by ambulance, or needs someone to assist following discharge, the medical staff will offer to contact an individual with consent from the student.
State of Connecticut law requires all matriculated students (full-time and part-time) to provide proof of the following immunizations. WCSU recommends all students complete the Connecticut State University Student Health Service Form available at www.wcsu.edu/onlineforms.asp
- Two measles, two mumps, two rubella, and two varicella (exempt from varicella/chicken pox if born in the United State before 1/1/1980 or if the student had the actual chicken pox per a doctor’s letter).
- The actual lab results of positive titers (blood test) may be submitted in lieu of the immunization.
- All resident hall students are required by Connecticut State Law to have documented proof of meningococcal/meningitis/menactra vaccine before a room is assigned.
Failure to comply with the state-mandated immunization requirements will restrict you from registering for the following semester.
The Hepatitis B vaccine, though not required, is strongly recommended for students. Hepatitis B is a serious viral infection which can be prevented through the vaccine. The preventative vaccine is recommended by a number of health associations, including the Center for Disease Control, the National Collegiate Athletic Association and the American College Health Association. Contact your health care provider or local health department.
Some academic programs may require additional immunizations or examinations before the student’s participation in an internship or other assignment.
All new varsity players must submit a completed “Pre-participation Physical Exam for Varsity Athletes” form, a “Questionnaire for Participation in Varsity Sports” and an “Authorization for Release of Information” form.
Also on an annual basis, all varsity athletes must complete a health questionnaire and a release of information which is reviewed by the Health Service staff. These forms are available to download at wcsu.edu/health services/athleticrequimt.asp.
Enrollment and waivers are administered through the University Cashier, located in Old Main 106. For more information, call (203) 837-8381.
Housing and Residence Life
Western Housing and 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 Western: 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 and the newly-renovated Fairfield Hall are coeducational. 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, upper-class, 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 website, wcsu.edu/housing.
The Office of Judicial Affairs administers the student discipline process and serves as liaison to all university departments regarding matters pertaining to student conduct. All Western 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 Director of Judicial Affairs at (203) 837-8770.
Student Code of Conduct and Statement of Judicial Procedures
The 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, which is available through the Office of Student Affairs in Old Main 306 and at www.wcsu.edu/stuaffairs.
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 Western and the college experience.
For students entering Western in the fall semester, orientation consists of two programs — a summer program usually held in June and Welcome Week scheduled just before and during the first week of classes.
During June orientation, students have the opportunity to get their ID and parking permit, establish computer accounts and finalize 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 June orientation will have ample opportunity to do these things and get set for the fall 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 Western’s “Entering the Gates” ceremony. Workshops are offered for both parents and students, and often include special orientation programs for commuter students, transfer students, international students, adult learners and veterans. 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 for students and their parents.
If you would like more information about New Student Orientation, please call the Office of Student Affairs at (203) 837-9700.
Pre-Collegiate & Access Programs
To enhance and ensure that pre-college students have the opportunity to develop their academic skills required for college admissions, Western has established the ConnCap (state)/Upward Bound (federal) Program for high school students and the Excel Program (state/local) for middle-schoolers.
These pre-college programs have assigned advisers and staff dedicated to assisting and closely monitoring the middle/high school students’ academic progress throughout their public school experience. These pre-college programs provide and promote academic achievement, cultural enrichment, the use of technology and instructional classes; from pre-algebra to parental workshops.
Included in the Pre-Collegiate & Access Programs is the EAP (Educational Achievement & Access Program) that offers academically under-prepared students an intense, “five-week” summer residential program in order for select EAP students to fulfill admission requirements. The five-week EAP program provides 35 to 40 students the opportunity to experience college life while living on campus and taking two academically challenging college classes.
Recreation, Intramurals and Club Sports
The recreation department at Western is dedicated to providing the campus community with many recreational activities to encourage physical fitness and promote positive well-being. Athletic facilities are available to the Western community on both campuses.
The Bill Williams Gymnasium on the Midtown campus provides aerobics and fitness classes and a fitness room for cardio workouts and strength training.
The 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. Three practice fields and six lighted tennis courts are also available.
In addition, a new cardio fitness room is located on the first floor of the Westside Campus Center. Dedicated to encouraging intense cardio workouts, this facility has top notch Precor equipment, and each machine is equipped with its own television. There is specific equipment available for core training as well.
Students are invited to join the Recreation Council, which plans events and brings recreation activities to campus. Contact Amy Shanks at (203) 837-8609 for details.
Feedback on campus recreation is welcome. Please contact the Assistant Director for Student Life/Student Activities, Amy Shanks, at (203) 837-8609 or in the Midtown Student Center, Room 207.
The Western Intramurals Program offers team and individual sports activities with women’s, men’s and coed divisions. Events include: flag football, 5-on-5 basketball, dodgeball, volleyball and more.
Individuals of all skill levels are encouraged to join for friendly competition and fun. Intramural sports encourage friendship, strengthen the mind and body and develop character, while nurturing a skill.
The intramural program is open to all Western students, faculty, staff and alumni. Suggestions for new intramural activity are welcome. Contact Amy Shanks at (203) 837-8609.
The club sports program provides an opportunity for individuals who share an interest in a recreational sport to improve their skill level and overall knowledge. 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. Active clubs include ice hockey, cheerleading, dance team, women’s rugby and men’s rugby.
The club sports program is open to all Western students. If you would like to join an existing club, or you are interested in starting up a club, contact Amy Shanks, Assistant Director for Student Life/Student Activities, Room 207 in the Midtown Student Center, (203) 837-8609.
The Center for Student Involvement
Dennis Leszko, Associate Director of Student Life/Student Activities, (203) 837-8214, Student Center 207
Amy Shanks, Assistant Director of Student Life/Student Activities, 203-837-8609, Student Center 207
The Center for Student Involvement (CSI), located in the Midtown Student Center, is the main point of contact for students wanting to form a new club or organization and those already involved with one. This is where clubs register and receive information and support.
The Center for Student Involvement staff advises more than 80 clubs including the Student Government Association, the Program Activities Council and the Recreation Council. The CSI also operates the recreation, intramurals and club sports program.
The Center for Student Involvement staff also provides assistance with leadership development, university policies and event planning as well as coordinates programs, events and activities on campus organized by and for students through the Student Activities Master Calendar.
Clubs and Organizations
Student Government Association (SGA) | Student Center 215, (203) 837-8711, sga.wcsu.edu
The SGA is the official voice of the student body. It appoints student representatives to university committees, allocates the student activities fee to student organizations and protects student rights.
The Echo | Student Center 212, (203) 837-8707 or (203) 837-8708, www.wcsuecho.com
Western’s student-run weekly newspaper is distributed on both campuses each Tuesday. All students, independent of their major, are eligible to write and work for The Echo.
Greek Council | Student Center 217, (203) 837-8217, www.wcsu.edu/studentcenter/studentorg.
This is the governing body for all social Greek-letter organizations.
Inter-Residence Hall Association (IRHA) | Newbury Hall, (203) 837-8720
The Inter-Residence Hall Association is the governing body for each of the Residence Hall Councils. Representatives are elected from each residence hall.
Program Activities Council (PAC) | Student Center 219, (203) 837-8421
PAC is the main programming board for student activities, and organizes trips, game shows, concerts, comedians, movies, and entertainment. The council meets every Wednesday at 4 p.m. in the Student Center.
Student and Campus Center Board | (203) 837-8504
The board is the collective student voice advising the Midtown Student Center and Westside Campus Center on serving student needs and enrichment.
Student Veterans Organization | Student Center 208
The Student Veterans Organization (SVO) was established in 2009 to acknowledge the needs of Western veterans who wish to better integrate into the university community. Officially recognized and endorsed by the Student Government Association, the SVO comprises student veterans who wish to support and serve other veterans — at WCSU and abroad — in a number of ways.
WXCI Campus Radio | Student Center 213, (203) 837-8387, wxci.wcsu.edu.
91.7 WXCI is a student-run college radio station located on the Midtown campus. Since its inception in 1973, WXCI has remained the second largest college station in Connecticut, transmitting with 3,000 watts.
Other Student Organizations
For a complete list of student organizations, visit wcsu.edu/studentlife.
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 academically and fulfill their potential during their college years. When substance abuse becomes a concern, it can seriously derail those dreams.
The goal of the office is to help students make informed and responsible decisions about the use of alcohol and other drugs of abuse; to collaborate with student organizations, faculty and staff in planning alternative activities that promote healthy lifestyle choices; and to work with students in creating positive changes on campus aimed at reducing underage and binge drinking.
The CHOICES Office provides accurate, current information on alcohol and other drugs, as well as information on a variety of other topics that are relevant to college life.
The office conducts individual screenings and assessments for students on a voluntary or referral basis; provides short-term substance abuse counseling; makes referrals to higher levels of care, counseling and support services — both on- and off-campus — and provides support for any student concerned about someone else’s use/abuse of substances.
The office also 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, visit wcsu.edu/CHOICES, or stop by Litchfield Hall, Room 101, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.