|Western Michigan University|
|Endowment||$198.4 million |
|Location||Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA|
|Former names||Western State Normal School (1903–1926)
Western State Teachers College (1927–1940)
Western Michigan College of Education (1941–1955)
Western Michigan College (1955–1957)
|Colors||Brown and Gold|
Western Michigan University (WMU) is a public university located in Kalamazoo, Michigan, United States. The university was established in 1903 by Dwight B. Waldo, and as of the Fall 2010 semester, its enrollment is 25,045.
WMU has one of the largest aviation programs in the United States, and it is the site of the annual International Congress on Medieval Studies. The university's athletic teams compete in Division I of the NCAA and are collectively known as the Western Michigan Broncos. They compete in the Mid-American Conference for most sports.
On May 27, 1903, Michigan Governor Aaron T. Bliss signed a bill authorizing the creation of the State's fourth teacher-training facility. The three other normal schools were in Ypsilanti (Eastern), Mount Pleasant (Central), and Marquette (Northern). Kalamazoo was chosen as the new school's location on August 28, 1903. Other locations considered included Allegan, Muskegon, Grand Rapids, Decatur, Three Oaks, and Hastings. The first building, then known as the Administration Building, and now known as East Hall, was constructed in 1904.
The University was first officially known as Western State Normal School, and originally offered a 2-year training program. The first principal and president was Dwight B. Waldo, who served from 1904 until 1936. The school was renamed Western State Teachers College in 1927 and Western Michigan College of Education in 1941. On February 26, 1957, Governor G. Mennen Williams signed into law a bill making Western Michigan College the state's fourth public university.
Most of the oldest and original WMU buildings and classrooms are collectively known as East Campus, located directly East from the more centrally located "West Campus".
Access to the East Campus site was an issue because of the steep grade elevating it above the city. The Western State Normal Railroad was established in 1907 to carry students and staff up and down the hill via a funicular. It operated until 1949.
WMU’s campuses encompass more than 1,200 acres (4.9 km2) and roughly 150 buildings. Western is divided into five campuses in and near Kalamazoo:
West Campus 
West Campus is the primary and largest WMU campus in Kalamazoo, and is usually referred to as "Main Campus." Most of the university academic and administrative buildings are located on West Campus, including the College of Arts and Sciences, Haworth College of Business, College of Education, College of Fine Arts, and the Lee Honors College. Many of the residence halls are found scattered throughout West Campus, while other dormitories (affectionately referred to as "The Valleys") are located adjacent to West Campus in Goldsworth Valley.
The Bernhard Center is a centrally located multi-purpose Student Union which provides student and community groups with meeting space. Located within the Bernhard Center is the Bronco Mall, a one-stop-shop for students which includes a large 24-hour computer lab, a food court and dining area, a full service bank, and one of two school bookstores. Waldo Library and the attached University Computing Center are located on West Campus, as is the Dalton Musical Center. Recently constructed buildings on West Campus include the Richmond Center for Visual Arts and the new Chemistry Building, which replaces aging McCracken Hall.
West Campus is also the site of Miller Auditorium. A large entertainment venue seating nearly 3500 people, it is Michigan's fourth largest auditorium. Miller Auditorium hosts many events ranging from popular musicals and concerts to graduation commencements and film screenings. The Gilmore Theater Complex is located directly next to Miller Auditorium, and features three performance stages and faculty offices. The Richmond Center for Visual Arts was added to the Fine Arts Complex in 2007, then South Kohrman Hall was renovated into the Kohrman Hall Studios in 2008. Both house the Gwen Frostic School of Art.
East Campus 
East Campus is the original development dating from when the university was founded in 1903. It contains many of the university's historical buildings including, East Hall, West Hall, North Hall, Walwood Hall, Spindler Hall, Vandercook Hall, and The Little Theater. Many of these buildings are located on a hill overlooking the city of Kalamazoo. Walwood Hall, renovated in 1992 is home to the Graduate College and the Graduate Student Advisory Committee.
In December 2012, WMU announced plans to demolish several of the university's original historic buildings located on East Campus and plans to replace the space with a parking lot.
Oakland Drive Campus 
The Oakland Drive Campus is the university's newest land acquisition. It is home to the university's College of Health and Human Services and the WMU Army ROTC program.
Parkview Campus 
The Parkview Campus is home to the University's College of Engineering and Applied Sciences and the Business Technology and Research Park. Erected in 2003, the $72.5 million building is 343,000 square feet (31,900 m2) and features two two-story 600-foot (180 m) wings connected by a middle glass enclosure. The campus is located about 3 miles (4.8 km) southwest of the main campus.
The 265-acre (1.07 km2) campus contains the paper coating plant with space available for the paper pilot plant on west campus. The school offers 17 undergraduate engineering, technology and applied sciences programs, while the graduate level, the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences offers 9 master programs, and 6 doctoral programs.
College of Aviation 
The College of Aviation, with over 700 undergraduate students, offers one of the largest and most prestigious(top 3) Flight Science programs in the nation.
New Runway Because the demand for training was so high, the city of Battle Creek and the Air National Guard, in conjunction with the College of Aviation, decided to construct a new runway. The new runway is just to the west of the original runway 23 and runs parallel to it. This caused Battle Creek's main runway to be renamed runway 23R and the new runway 23L. The total cost of the project was around $7 million, 95% of the money coming from the government. The runway is now currently open and fully operational.
Medical School 
Western Michigan began planning a medical school in 2008, and it will admit its first class in 2014. Privately funded and created in partnership with Borgess and Bronson hospitals, the school was seeded by a $100 million anonymous cash donation, the largest cash gift ever given to a college or university in Michigan. It is also the 15th largest cash gift ever given to any public university in the nation. The announcement received publicity via Western's http://www.operationhistoricmoment.com (now defunct).
Regional sites 
Western Michigan University also has several regional sites that offer education to more than 6,000 students each year. These regional sites are located in various cities throughout Michigan:
- Battle Creek (website)
- Grand Rapids (website)
- Lansing (website)
- Muskegon (website)
- Benton Harbor (Southwest) (website)
- Traverse City (website)
|U.S. News & World Report||181|
The University has seven degree-granting colleges: the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Aviation, the Haworth College of Business, the College of Education, the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences, the College of Fine Arts and the College of Health and Human Services. In addition, the university has a Graduate College and the Lee Honors College.
The Haworth College of Business is the university's business school. One of the largest business schools in the United States, it has some 4,000 undergraduate students and 500 Master of Business Administration (MBA) and Master of Accountancy (MSA) students. The college is located in Schneider Hall on the main campus. The College of Business was renamed in honor of alumnus G. W. Haworth after Haworth gave a large donation in the 1980s.
In 2001, WMU and the Thomas M. Cooley Law School entered into a partnership where students could work on obtaining a Master in Public Administration from WMU while simultaneously working on a law degree from Cooley. In 2008, WMU and Cooley expanded this partnership so now WMU students enrolled in both MPA and Masters in Business Administration programs at WMU may simultaneously work on obtaining a law degree from Cooley Law School at Western Michigan University.
Student life 
Western Michigan offers a wide range of activities and student organizations for its students to get involved on and off campus. There are currently over 300 registered student organizations that students may join. Students are welcomed to school each year with "Bronco Bash", an event with live entertainment performances and booths sponsored by student and community organizations. On-campus housing provides 23 residence halls and special interest housing for students in programs such as the honors college, aviation, business community, engineering and applied sciences, science scholars, education, fine arts, health and human services, second year students, transfer students, magellan housing, wellness housing.
The Campus Activities Board is the main student organization responsible for bringing entertainment events for students. Some events the organization sponsors include "At The Show" concerts, "Bernie's After Hours" comedians, "Special Events Live" and "Miller Movies," presented at the school's main theater, Miller Auditorium. CAB sponsors both Bronco Bash and WMU's student Homecoming activities.
Student government 
The Western Student Association is the primary body of student government at Western Michigan University.
Social groups 
WMU sponsors or recognizes several groups aimed towards personal and social development. This includes Faith and Spiritual Development, LBGT Student Services, Greek Life, services for International Students, Multicultural Affairs, Off-Campus Life, and Sponsored Student Organizations.
Student groups 
Placement of the Chemistry Building generated much controversy from student groups because it displaced a large portion of greenery in the center of West Campus. A temporary outdoor plaza was constructed outside of Sangren Hall in 2007 to replace the greenery. However, this also generated controversy and protests among students and faculty because of its aesthetic characteristics and costs. One such protest by a student group involved requesting the financial records of the construction and using chalk to depict the costs of each item on the plaza.
The College Republicans at Western Michigan University were voted "Best College Republican Chapter in the Country" in 2006.
Fraternities and sororities 
Some of the fraternities established on campus include Alpha Kappa Psi, Alpha Eta Rho, Alpha Phi Alpha, Alpha Tau Omega, Delta Chi, Delta Sigma Phi, Delta Sigma Pi, Kappa Alpha Psi, Kappa Kappa Psi, Lambda Chi Alpha, Omega Delta Epsilon, Omega Psi Phi, Phi Beta Sigma, Phi Chi Theta, Pi Kappa Alpha, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, Phi Sigma Kappa, Phi Sigma Pi, Pi Kappa Phi, Sigma Alpha Epsilon, Sigma Chi, Sigma Lambda Beta, Sigma Phi Epsilon, Sigma Pi and Tau Kappa Epsilon.
Some of the sororities established on WMU's campus are Alpha Omicron Pi, Alpha Chi Omega, Alpha Kappa Alpha, Alpha Phi, Alpha Xi Delta, Chi Omega, Delta Sigma Theta, Delta Zeta, Pi Beta Phi, Sigma Alpha Iota, Sigma Gamma Rho, Sigma Kappa, Sigma Lambda Gamma and Zeta Phi Beta.
Health services 
Western Michigan University students and faculty are served by Sindecuse Health Center. Resources include full clinical, diagnostic, and nursing services, health promotion options, sports medicine and therapy, dental services, and a pharmacy. Sindecuse Health Center is located on West Campus.
The Western Michigan Broncos are an NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision school. They compete in the Mid-American Conference in men's basketball, baseball, football, soccer and tennis; and women's basketball, cross-country, golf, gymnastics, soccer, softball, track and field, and volleyball. The men's hockey team competes in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association.
School songs 
The current "Alma Mater" and "WMU Fight Song" are the result of a 1959 contest to replace existing songs. Open to the University community, the two-stage contest solicited first lyrics and then music. Alumnus James H. Bull won in the lyrics category for the "Alma Mater". Alumnus Walter Gilbert took the honors for the fight song lyrics and the music for both the fight song and "Alma Mater".
- Dwight B. Waldo (1904–1936)
- Paul V. Sangren (1936–1960)
- James W. Miller (1961–1974)
- John T. Bernhard (1974–1985)
- Diether Haenicke (1985–1998)
- Elson Floyd (1998–2003)
- Judith Bailey (2003–2006)
- Diether Haenicke (interim) (2006–2007)
- John Dunn (2007–present)
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