Mission & Campus Profile

Promoting intellectual maturity and personal growth.

Located in the heart of the Rocky Mountains, Western Colorado University delivers career preparation, engineering, computer and other sciences and a liberal arts curriculum to 2,900 intellectually adventurous students. Here, students can explore their field of study, gain leadership experience and discover extraordinary adventure in western Colorado.

Our Mission

Dedicated to education, enriched by our community.

Western Colorado University promotes intellectual maturity and personal growth in its students and prepares them to assume constructive roles in local, national and global communities. Western’s distinctive character emerges from its unity among academic and professional disciplines, high standards of scholarship, and a unique environment in the mountains of western Colorado.

Discover tomorrow’s leaders

Western programs combine academic rigor with personal development, so students have the skills to succeed as professionals in their field of study.

Setting the stage for success

Western’s location in Gunnison, Colorado provides an excellent academic experience in a gorgeous setting.

Facts & Figures

Western’s size and setting promotes exceptional educational experiences.

Our university’s small size and unique setting ensures students receive personalized attention, gain hands-on experience and become better leaders. We are proud to serve our state and country by preparing our students to make meaningful contributions in Colorado and beyond. From cybersecurity experts to social workers and teachers, Western graduates become preeminent leaders in their fields.

The following statistics reflect the most recent stable data compiled by the institution encompassing retention, graduation rates, institutional research, common data sets, student outcomes, and student achievements. For more information, visit Western’s profile on the National Center for Education Statistics website.

Annual Report

Established: 1901
Location: Gunnison, Colorado
Type: Public, 4-year
Religious affiliation: None
Highest degree offered: Master’s
Student-to-faculty ratio: 18 to 1
Mascot: Mad Jack the Mountaineer
Colors: Crimson and slate
Graduation rate: 51%

Applicants admitted: 84%

Students considered for aid: 100%
Students who receive aid: 80%

Total enrollment: 3,418
Undergraduate: 3,015
Graduate: 403
Male: 51%
Female: 49%
In-state: 76%
Out-of-state: 24%

White: 59%
Hispanic: 16%
Black or African American: 4%
Multi-Race: 2%
Asian: <1%
American Indian or Alaska Native: <1%
Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander: <1%
Unknown/Other: approx. 20%

The Office of Institutional Research performs statistical and analytical studies that support the academic, co-curricular and administrative functions of the University, including compilation and interpretation of information for enrollment analysis, student tracking, assessment, planning, budgeting and evaluation. The Institutional Research office generates and interprets data for individual campus departments, student projects, the Colorado Department of Higher Education and federal offices. Institutional Research personnel develop surveys of alumni, faculty, staff and students to further understanding of perceptions and emerging trends among University constituents.

INSTITUTIONAL AND STUDENT OUTCOME DATA

Download the Institutional Data Set containing the following:

  • Enrollment
    Enrollment (All student levels)

    Resident FTE-S Non-resident FTE-S Cash Funded FTE-S Total FTE-S Fall Headcount
    2009-10 1423.52 428.5 196.37 2048.38 2244
    2010-11 1394.62 459.92 226.13 2080.67 2329
    2011-12 1340.2 455.08 199.9 1995.18 2242
    2012-13 1335.78 456.22 198.95 1990.95 2301
    2013-14 1344.83 481.65 230.57 2057.05 2404
    2014-15 1473.08 517.93 116.1 2107.12 2584
    2015-16 1534 564.55 144.45 2243 2726
    2016-17 1630.28 566.12 157.88 2354.28 2921
    2017-18 1528.18 590.89 149.99 2269.07 2822
    2018-19 1524.1 646.02 183.4 2353.52 3042
    2019-20 1588.78 599.61 186.17 2374.56 3498
  • First Time Freshman Retention Rates
    Retention Rate defined (source IPEDS glossary)
    A measure of the rate at which students persist in their educational program at an institution, expressed as a percentage. For four-year institutions, this is the percentage of first-time bachelors (or equivalent) degree-seeking undergraduates from the previous fall who are again enrolled in the current fall. For all other institutions this is the percentage of first-time degree/certificate-seeking students from the previous fall who either re-enrolled or successfully completed their program by the current fall.

    Fall to fall retention rate of first-time freshman cohort by year of matriculation
    Full Time
    Headcount % retained
    2005 474 61%
    2006 512 61%
    2007 489 62%
    2008 541 56%
    2009 497 59%
    2010 482 63%
    2011 432 63%
    2012 449 68%
    2013 466 70%
    2014 448 69%
    2015 464 69%
    2016 464 64%
    2017 445 69%
    2018 501 64%
    2019 449 67%
  • Four- and Six-Year Graduation Rates
    Graduation Rate defined (source IPEDS glossary)
    Data are collected on the number of students entering the institution as full-time, first-time, degree/certificate-seeking undergraduate students in a particular year (cohort), by race/ethnicity and gender; the number completing their program within 150 percent of normal time to completion; the number that transfer to other institutions if transfer is part of the institution’s mission.

    Graduation rate of first-time freshmen listed by cohort year
    Full time
    4 Year 6 Year
    2005 18% 39%
    2006 18% 38%
    2007 22% 42%
    2008 19% 36%
    2009 18% 42%
    2010 23% 45%
    2011 21% 41%
    2012 24% 48%
    2013 28% 51%
    2014 28% 50%
  • Major Head Counts
    Undergraduate Majors

    Head Count Majors 2005-06 2006-07 2007-08 2008-09 2009-10 2010-11 2011-12 2012-13 2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20
    ACC 55 51 50 40 33 48 56 52 52 57 61 57 55 44 22
    ANTH 43 37 42 32 27 30 37 34 28 22 23 21 18 18 17
    ART 172 170 159 150 150 138 137 110 126 115 100 102 98 106 107
    BIOL 203 175 171 179 169 186 204 208 224 222 229 254 241 242 247
    BUAD 453 420 404 403 354 369 345 363 363 390 396 412 384 398 361
    CHEM 24 21 21 17 26 26 29 33 37 35 43 35 30 32 35
    COM 83 73 67 64 58 69 68 76 78 82 80 81 80 67 78
    CS 31 34 28 35 33 31 34 32 32 46 44 48 56 61 67
    ECON 23 24 29 18 19 24 29 24 23 27 26 27 27 41 33
    EDUC 58 52 53 55 45 64 59 54 60 65 53 62 60 57 59
    ENG 84 85 82 88 69 66 69 61 65 59 64 63 57 47 53
    ENVS 110 102 98 125 134 131 123 108 106 102 124 133 142 136 130
    ESS 151 169 211 202 197 208 192 204 214 199 226 218 181 170
    GEOL 43 46 59 62 58 71 73 66 71 82 90 68 55 44 41
    HIST 70 62 69 72 65 53 56 46 39 34 32 38 45 47 41
    MATH 33 36 38 37 30 41 47 39 42 52 52 43 45 50 48
    MUS 32 30 31 28 26 30 29 18 23 20 20 27 18 21 21
    POLS 50 40 30 34 46 49 48 48 39 39 38 44 49 63 65
    PSY 181 158 126 129 144 142 160 171 139 147 151 151 143 150 130
    ROE 120 137 175 169 180 153 147 140 140 138 115 129 136 157 116
    SOC 88 89 103 78 97 103 108 120 117 121 110 116 95 89 84
    SPAN 21 24 22 19 25 25 18 12 10 11 14 10 12 13 11
    UNDCL 193 211 204 239 187 180 142 161 165 156 151 133 121 139 135
  • FTE-S Generated by Program Code
    Undergraduate FTES

    FTES 2005-06 2006-07 2007-08 2008-09 2009-10 2010-11 2011-12 2012-13 2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19
    ACC 53.2 48.8 43.2 54.3 53.5 54.6 43.53 49.2 53.1 51.9 44.33 47.9 49.7 44.63
    ANTH 49 44.73 43.77 34.77 38.37 40.43 41.57 44.87 37.53 34.97 32.07 38.5 35.8 41.4
    ART 150.27 149.67 127.6 125.53 136.6 131.43 124.6 106.27 122.13 114.8 100.57 101.07 89.83 95.83
    BIOL 148.37 145.73 130.73 121.53 121.3 120.57 115.8 118.77 124.2 127.4 128.3 140.4 146.18 143.33
    BUAD 209.77 197.87 179.83 179.37 189.73 193.03 169.2 148.97 158.7 181.3 183.29 185.31 187.6 194.63
    CHEM 58.73 54.43 62.13 52.17 54.77 66.23 61.03 70.27 69.47 66.97 71.99 73 72.52 63.47
    COM 155.07 134.7 125.03 128.07 111.7 115.4 112.77 116.27 113.93 111.33 119.03 116.4 111.13 123.7
    CS 29.77 26.57 25.93 32.93 21.8 26.5 29.1 23.97 28.1 37.43 35.37 39.2 31.9 43
    ECON 65.1 63.9 56.6 61.5 60.5 62.5 55.5 63.63 60.47 55.8 62.59 64.86 66.63 65.2
    EDUC 79.5 50.27 55.3 41.5 33 19.6 20.1 22.3 23.53 19.23 20.5 20.6 23.57 20.18
    ENG 116.7 118.03 120.9 137.77 131.9 130.67 115.27 120.73 120 130.97 152.93 142.07 129.8 144.4
    ENVS 34.1 35.83 34.77 43.07 42.67 50.47 51.8 47.33 46.7 50.63 55.73 63.1 59.31 64.47
    ESS 114.87 124.6 113.63 119.67 125.63 126.13 117.37 112.2 111.03 109.1 115.39 119.42 107.73 101.43
    FREN 6.8 5.4 5.9 5.7 3.3 3.9 3.2 3.5 1.47
    GEOG 17.13 18 22.43 23.7 13.8 21 25.5 27.1 27.6 20.73 20.13 19.56 14.43 19.5
    GEOL 65.7 58.23 70.7 67.87 57.33 50.17 65.9 69.97 68.33 66.17 67.2 69.1 55.8 61.61
    HIST 62.57 63.9 69 62.9 76.7 78.83 65.5 60.87 47.1 39.07 49.67 52.83 53.6 50.87
    HNRS 6.43 6.3 3.93 6.27 6.63 9.1 7.43 8 8.4 12.93 14.73 14 15.07 14.4
    HWTR 0.27 0.37 0.6 0.7 1.3 2.43 1.9 18.13 18.4 17.07 17.77 17.47 17.23 18.87
    JOUR 2.6 3.1 2.77 1.93 2.83
    MATH 96.93 95.4 144.17 153.6 145.47 145.53 140.23 135.1 148.8 171.67 169.2 170.5 145.93 151.17
    MUS 59.68 56.93 55.65 54.75 52.68 51.83 49.23 47.63 50.75 48.48 51.43 47.22 52.02 59.55
    PHIL 5.8 11.5 14.1 18.7 17.6 19.8 19.1 22.67 25.57 23.7 25.6 23.7 25.6 23.6
    PHYS 32.63 37 34.2 34.9 35.03 41.63 45.3 44.77 47.17 49.87 44.86 45.13 44.03 38.57
    POLS 57.17 43.63 48.3 52.37 59.43 47.9 44.83 47.6 41.3 38.67 43.53 49.06 52.7 61.67
    PSY 126.83 124.1 114.83 118.3 123.67 111.43 109.97 115.1 119.53 109.3 113.37 112.37 111.4 114.33
    ROE 127.97 128.93 113.7 111.07 107.37 108.7 100.72 102.1 124.73 130.07 138.27 133.68 111.48 116.97
    SCI 8.87 11.77 12.77 12.93 14.23 13.47 14.07 15.07 9.53 10.33 8.53 9.6 7.93 8.97
    SOC 108.17 99.57 100.27 96.4 100.23 98.63 101.43 95.53 104.2 90.6 83.23 80.47 72.1 76.9
    SPAN 30.8 22.8 21.6 20.5 19.7 16.7 16.53 19.67 20 18.8 20.6 12.9 13.4 15.6

See more outcome data on the U.S. Department of Education College Scorecard site, or the National Center for Educational Statistics College Navigator page.

Common Data Set

Inclusion

Learning through diverse experiences and perspectives.

We know people of different backgrounds bring various experiences and perspectives to the classroom and community. Through ongoing education, attention to cultural differences and a focus on social and intellectual growth, we strive to provide a healthy and supportive academic environment for all students, faculty and staff.

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A focus on our values

Diversity is a core value at Western Colorado University, as it’s central to education and growth.

Find your voice

At Western, we provide the academic resources and social opportunities to succeed and grow as students and future leaders.

Western’s Statement on Diversity and Inclusion

“Western Colorado University takes a firm and unyielding stance in support of diversity, inclusivity, scientific inquiry and creative expression. We believe these principles are necessary for the free and open inquiry that defines our role as a public institution in a democratic society. We believe that these principles are a moral imperative requiring constant vigilance and a firm stance against actions motivated by hate or intimidation. The university welcomes people of color, people with disabilities, people of all genders and orientations, people of all religious preferences, immigrants and refugees regardless of national origin or ethnicity and other underrepresented communities regardless of socioeconomic class. We actively seek to build a civil and respectful culture which affirms these principles in all that we do.”

Both the Board of Trustees and President Greg Salsbury endorsed the above Statement on Diversity and Inclusion authored and adopted by the Faculty Senate.

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Awards

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