- Warren Wilson College
name = Warren Wilson College
motto = "We're not for everyone... but then, maybe you're not everyone."
established = 1894
type = Private Liberal Arts
president = Sandy Pfeiffer
city = Asheville
state = NC
country = USA
undergrad = 900
postgrad = 70
faculty = ~60 full-time, ~15 part-time
campus = Rural suburban
free = | nickname = Owls
colors = Blue █ and Gold █
website = [http://www.warren-wilson.edu/ www.warren-wilson.edu]
affiliations = Presbyterian
Warren Wilson College is a small
liberal arts collegein Swannanoa, North Carolinajust east of Asheville, near U.S. Highway 70. It is known for its curriculum of work, academics, and service, called "the Triad." The Triad requires every student to work an on-campus job, perform at least one hundred hours of community serviceover four years and complete a requisite course of academic work in order to graduate.
Warren Wilson is one of the few colleges in the United States that require students to work for the institution in order to graduate. It is part of the
Work Colleges Consortium, which also includes Alice Lloyd College, Berea College, Blackburn College, College of the Ozarks, Ecclesia Collegeand Sterling College. The college still operates a working farm.
The property was purchased in 1893 by the Women's Board of Home Missions of the
Presbyterian Church. The women of the church were concerned that many Americans in isolated areas were not receiving a proper education. The women decided to establish church supported schools in areas where there were few public services. There was a need for a nonconventional grading system as the young people who came to these mission schools usually had no prior formal education.
In 1894 the
Asheville Farm Schoolofficially opened with 25 boys attending and a professional staff of three. It was not until 1923 that the school graduated its first class. The first post-high school programs offering vocational trainingbegan in 1936. School leaders hoped that this type of training would give the students more prospects in the job market.
In 1942 the
junior collegedivision was established. That same year the Asheville Farm School merged with the Dorland-Bell Schoolof Hot Springs, which brought high school age girls to campus. The Farm School and junior college operated under a common administration.
World War II, the public educationsystem in North Carolinaimproved dramatically and the need for the mission's high schooldiminished. The last high school class at WWC graduated in 1957.
WWC made history in 1952 by becoming one of the first colleges or universities in the Old Confederacy to desegregate, when it invited Alma Shippy, an African-American, to attend. [http://www.cnn.com/2007/EDUCATION/02/23/schools.open.arms.ap/index.html College's invitation to integrate made history] , "CNN.com", Accessed
23 February 2007.]
WWC was a junior college until 1967, when it became a four-year college offering six majors. The first bachelor's degrees were awarded in 1969. In 1972, the
National Board of Missionsdeeded the WWC property over to the college's Board of Trustees.
Since that time, the college has grown into a small (about 900 students) liberal arts school with some nationally known programs. In contrast to its original student population of underprivileged mountain youth, Warren Wilson now enrolls students of many different geographic and socioeconomic backgrounds. It confers both
bachelor of artsand bachelor of sciencedegrees and, via its MFA Program for Writers, the Master of Fine Artsin creative writing. In addition to traditional majors such as biology and English, undergraduates have the option of majoring in outdoor leadership or environmental studies.
The college has been featured in Outside Magazine, which named Warren Wilson and Asheville No. 4 on it list of "40 schools that turn out smart grads with top-notch academic credentials, a healthy environmental ethos, and a A+ sense of adventure." The college also has been profiled in The
New York Times, USA Today, The Boston Globeand Southern Living, among many publications. Warren Wilson College was also rated as the 7th most politically liberal college by the Princeton Review in 2007.
Warren Wilson maintains a working relationship with the North Carolina chapter of
Outward Bound, located on the western edge of campus. The college also has forged partnerships with The Jane GoodallInstitute, the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, the Mountain Area Child and Family Center and many other organizations.
William Sanborn "Sandy" Pfeiffer, Ph.D., began serving as the college's sixth president in July 2006. He was formally installed in April 2007.
Warren Wilson College is renowned for its environmental commitment. The college's farm was named the 2006 "Outstanding Conservation Farm Family" for the Mountain Region of North Carolina. Warren Wilson also received the national 2006 Campus Sustainability Achievement Award. That same year, the Doug and Darcy Orr Cottage became only the second building in North Carolina to receive the prestigious Gold level certification from the U.S. Green Building Council's
Leadership in Energy and Environmental Designprogram. The Village South residence hall, which opened in 2006, recently became the first dormitory in North Carolina to receive a LEED Gold rating.
The Natural Science Seminar is the name for the undergraduate research and presentation that is required for all B.S. degrees given by the college. Students completing undergraduate research as a part of the Natural Science Seminar (NSS) often present their research at the North Carolina Academy of Science conference, and have historically taken home many awards. Students of Biology, Environmental Studies, and Chemistry have frequently been inducted into Sigma Xi, the Scientific Research Society. This year's inductees were Seniors George Keel, Ryan Morra, and Eliza Sydney. [ [http://www.ncacadsci.org/cancas/News/Report&Letters/2007_AnnualReport.pdf Dr ] ]
Notable events, rankings, and alumni
*David Wilcox, folk musician
Billy Edd Wheeler, singer/songwriter
Tony Earley, novelist
The mountain biking team was second place in the nation (Division II) in 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007.
Warren Wilson College is No. 4 among "Sierra Magazine's" "10 Coolest Schools" nationwide in the fight against global warming. TheDailyGreen.com ranked Warren Wilson second among the nation's 10 "Greenest Colleges."
The 20th anniversary issue of "Blue Ridge Country" named Warren Wilson College as one of "14 People and Places Making a Difference in the Region".
Virginia Techwas the only other university or college to be selected.
The "Fiske Guide to Colleges" has selected Warren Wilson College as one of its 26 "Best Buys of 2009" among private colleges and universities nationwide. Warren Wilson is one of only two independent institutions in North Carolina to receive this recognition. According to the guide, the schools "qualify as Best Buys based on the quality of the academic offerings in relation to the cost of attendance." With tuition and fees of less than $23,000 for the 2008-09 academic year, Warren Wilson is rated as "inexpensive" compared with other private schools in the selective guide.
Miriam Weinsteincontinues to list WWC in her guide, "Making A Difference".
WWC is included in "Barron's Best Buys in College Education," The Princeton Review" and Forbes.com rankings.
In addition, Warren Wilson is mentioned in "Cool Colleges for the Hyper-Intelligent, Self-Directed, Late Blooming, and Just Plain Different" by Donald Asher, a guidebook for those students seeking unique college experiences.
The Parent Soup Financial Aid and College Guide selected Warren Wilson for inclusion in "Discounts and Deals at the Nation's 360 Best Colleges."
* [http://www.warren-wilson.edu/ Official website]
* [http://www.workcolleges.org Work Colleges Consortium]
* [http://www.warren-wilson.edu/~research/Undergrad_Res/NSS.html Natural Science Seminar Research]
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