The University of West Georgia is a comprehensive doctoral-granting university in Carrollton, Georgia, approximately 45 miles (80 km) west of Atlanta, Georgia. The University is built on 645 acres (2 km²) including a recent addition of 246 acres (1 km²) from the city of Carrollton in 2003. The university's off-campus classes are available in Dalton, Newnan, Georgia Highlands College in Rome, Georgia. Around 13,308 students are enrolled at the university. The University is classified as one of R3-Doctoral University by the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education and has been repeatedly named one of the Best Southeastern Colleges by The Princeton Review.
In 1906 the decision to create the Fourth District Agricultural and Mechanical School occurred in response to a call for "more realistic educational program for rural youth" aged 13 to 21. The Bonner plantation was chosen as the location for the school.
John H. Melson, the school's first principal was who served from 1908 to 1920. John Melson and his wife Penelope worked intimately along beside the students who attended the school and further enhanced the institution. In addition, Penelope Melson was the one responsible for creating the library at the college. In January 1908, she conducted a "book shower" which provided the school with a little over 300 manuscripts.
In 1920 Irvine S. Ingram became Melson's successor and the second principal of the A&M school. He married fellow faculty member Martha Munro in 1921 and they had one daughter, Anne, in 1924. Ingram was instrumental in developing the concept of "extension" education and adult-education offerings along with a summer school program for local teachers to develop their skills. The school's name (Fourth District Agricultural and Mechanical School) was changed to West Georgia College in 1933 and it became a two-year institution. When this occurred, Ingram became the college's first president. He served until 1960 and was succeeded by William H. Row. Shortly after, Row died from a heart attack and Ingram filled in as president for six months in 1961 until James E. Boyd was appointed to the position. While president, Ingram saw West Georgia became a four-year institution in 1957. He can also be credited with obtaining a substantial grant of $250,000 from the Rosenwald Foundation used to expand the college's facilities and programs, including the Sanford building, originally used as a library and creating the College in the Country program, initially an adult or continuing education program that eventually involved student teachers from the college, and foreign exchange programs that brought national recognition to the college.
James E. Boyd became the President of West Georgia College in 1961 after William H. Row (who had held the position a mere nine months) died due to a heart attack. Boyd is most known for peacefully integrating the campus (without waiting for a court order) in 1963 by inviting a young black woman, Lillian Williams, to attend the college; she would eventually earn two degrees in education and earn the college's highest honor, the Founder’s Award, in 1985.
In May 1964, Boyd invited Robert F. Kennedy to the dedication of the campus chapel as the Kennedy Chapel, as U.S. President John F. Kennedy's death had occurred in November 1963. Robert would promote the Civil Rights Act of 1964 which was being debated in the United States Senate.
Boyd dramatically expanded the college during his tenure in both headcount and academic diversity. In sheer numbers, there were 1089 students upon his arrival and 5503 students with his departure. In 1959, there were two degrees and five programs available; in 1969-70 there were seven degrees and 45 programs. There were 94 graduate students in 1961 and 741 in 1969, due to the first master's programs being offered in 1967.
In 1969 alone, 80 new faculty members were hired, a number larger than the total number of faculty members a decade prior. Several new buildings, including but not limited to nine residence halls and five academic buildings, were constructed. Policy changes occurred as well: in 1966, the curfew for junior and senior women was abolished, and fraternities and sororities were allowed on campus. In 1970, Boyd was named Georgia's first vice chancellor for academic development, effective once his successor was found, which occurred in 1971; it was Emory graduate Ward Pafford.
The University offers numerous programs of study at the undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral levels through the College of Science and Mathematics, the Richards College of Business, the School of Nursing, the College of Social Sciences, the College of Education, the College of Arts and Humanities, and the Honors College. The University also offers Certificate Programs and Specialist programs for Educators to help undergraduate and graduate students better their profession. In addition, the university was one of few in the United States to hold a residential, early entrance to college opportunity for high school juniors and seniors, the Advanced Academy of Georgia. Advanced Academy students took college courses and resided on campus under the supervision of professional residential staff.
The University is unusual in that it is one of only two public universities in the United States offering a psychology program with a humanistic and transpersonal focus. In 1967, Mike Arons, a student of Abraham Maslow, Paul Ricoeur, and Jim Klee, became chair of the West Georgia psychology department. Jim Thomas, then on the psychology faculty at West Georgia, and others had asked Maslow to recommend someone to them to initiate a humanistic emphasis there, and Arons was Maslow's recommendation.
The department has offered a Ph.D. in psychology since fall 2011. In February 2011 The Ph.D., “Psychology: Consciousness and Society,” was approved by the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia.
The psychology department has the most diverse student base within the University of West Georgia, with many of the doctoral students coming from Ivy League and other first-tier universities. Many of the students are either international or have had experience living abroad.
Students have access to 160 student organizations covering academics, cultural/international, departmental/educational, professional and honor groups, politics, science, religion, service, recreation and sports, and social fraternities and sororities.
UWG's marching band is known as "The Sound that Lights the South", consisting of over 140 members, and is known for its high energy and athleticism. Each performance finishes with the band dancing to the final number. The Jazz Percussion Group has also performed throughout Europe and the United States as well as jazz festivals and state conferences. The JPG has brought numerous honors to the University since their beginning in 2003.
The pedestrian campus also includes a library with 561,900 volumes, a gym with an eighth-mile indoor running track, computer labs, tennis courts, baseball fields, soccer fields, a nature trail, a quarter-mile (400 m) running track, two climbing walls, and basketball courts.
The University once operated a noncommercial radio station, WUWG, at 90.7 MHz. It had been on the air since 1973 as WWGC until 2001, serving all of Carrollton and Carroll County, as well as the student body of the university. Originally a diverse college radio station, it is now a listener-supported public radio affiliate of Georgia Public Broadcasting, simulcasting the GPB radio network most of the time.
In Fall 2009, the Mass Communications department soft-launched The WOLF Internet Radio. The station officially debuted in April 2010, after two months of limited programming from its studio in the basement of the Anthropology Building. The station's motto is "For students by students." Two grants from the Technology Fee Committee, totaling about $72,600, kick-started the station.
Acting as a small community within the larger UWG community, the newly opened Greek Village features 18 houses ranging in size. These houses are complete with a living and or chapter room, kitchen, laundry facilities, a mix of single and double bedrooms and semi-private bathrooms. Also included within the village are outdoor green spaces, adequate parking, and a commons building. Greek Village has also recently added a pavilion, a basketball court, a volleyball court, and a fireplace with grills for everyone's use.
The effort to create such a facility allows for the university to not only expand its housing offerings, but also attract new students to UWG, making it more of a destination university. Additionally, within the Greek system at UWG, there are three different governing councils: Panhellenic, Interfraternity and National Pan-Hellenic. In creating the Greek Village, it became possible for these different groups to share a space together for the first time.
The University of West Georgia published a "Fact Book" containing statistical data, trend analyses, and interpretative highlights on a wide variety of topics concerning the university since 1980-1981. All editions of the UWG Fact Book are housed in the Office of Institutional Research and Planning. Additionally, all Fact Books from 1991-1992 to the present are available online.
Composition of Student Body by Gender
Composition of Student Body by Race
|Year||African/Black American||American Indian/Alaskan Native||Asian or Pacific Islander||Asian||Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander||Caucasian/White||Hispanic||Multiracial||Other/Undeclared|
The university of West GA also has UREC sports, including an equestrian team.
The athletics program fields men's intercollegiate teams in baseball, basketball, cross country, football, and golf and women's teams in basketball, cross country, golf, soccer, softball, tennis, track, volleyball, and competition cheerleading. All intercollegiate sports are affiliated with NCAA Division II as a member of the Gulf South Conference. In 2006, amid the Native American mascot controversy, the UWG changed its athletic nickname from the "Braves" to the "Wolves."