Western Kentucky University - Owensboro campus, dedicated spring 2010
|Campus||27 acres (110,000 m2)|
|Colors||Red and White|
Western Kentucky University-Owensboro is a regional campus of Western Kentucky University offering public,post-secondary education. WKU-O offers 23 undergraduate degrees, partnering with the Kentucky Community and Technical College System (KCTCS) in a +2 program. Located on U.S. Route 231 directly east of Owensboro Community and Technical College (OCTC) and only minutes south of the Ohio River, WKU-O offers benefits of a university while maintaining personal student/staff relationships and a sense of community.
Western Kentucky University's presence in Owensboro dates to 1969. At that time offices were established on the campus of Kentucky Wesleyan College and classes were conducted at KWC and Brescia University, concentrating primarily on graduate courses. As the demand for a public university alternative in the Daviess County (KY) area increased, undergraduate courses in nursing and education were added to the course schedule. In July, 1980, the WKU Owensboro campus was officially established. As a result of growing enrollment, operations were moved to the Longfellow Building north of Owensboro High School, and classes were held there and on the OHS campus. After 16 years at the Longfellow location, increasing enrollment forced another change in venue. In 2005, the WKU Owensboro campus moved to the main campus of OCTC. Classes were also conducted at the OCTC southeast campus.
In 2007, and agreement between Daviess County Fiscal Court and Western Kentucky University provided land and earmarked funds for a permanent facility for the WKU Owensboro campus. The 30,000-square-foot (2,800 m2) state-of-the-art facility, located at 4821 New Hartford Road, was dedicated in the spring of 2010. Features include 18 classrooms (6 with IVS capabilities), two conference rooms, one with accommodations for 60 (with tables) to 100(without tables), the other suitable for board/conference meetings, including audio/visual equipment for teleconferencing. The campus also includes a computer lab, collaborative study areas for students, and administrative offices.
According to an agreement between WKU and the community colleges in Owensboro and Madisonville, students can now enjoy the benefits of joint admission. Through joint admission, students begin their WKU experience while earning their associate degree at OCTC or MCC. Joint students may utilize services at the WKU Owensboro campus, including academic advising, computer labs and library. Students also receive a WKU student ID which provides admission to WKU athletic events. Credits earned at WKU and the student's community college transfer between schools upon completion of each semester at no charge to the student. Joint admission offers a smooth transition from the community college to WKU. Further information is available by calling (270)684-9797 to speak with an advisor.
WKU-O offers 23 undergraduate degrees, 15 minor degrees, 23 graduate degrees, and 6 graduate certificates. Undergraduate degrees can be earned through a program in which students complete associate degree work at a Kentucky Community and Technical College facility, then transfer to WKU-O for the remaining two years of undergraduate work. The +2 program has proven quite popular and successful. Since the inception of this program in 2005, WKU-O enrollment has increased over 40%. Degrees and certificates are available in education, nursing, and business, to name a few, and new degree opportunities are added each academic year. As of fall,2010 available degrees and certificates are as follows:
The student body at WKU-O, which began with 82 students, has grown to nearly 1,200. The student body has a strong non-traditional student presence, but the traditional student population grows with each semester. The student enrollment at WKU-O has nearly doubled in the past 5 years, and with the increased exposure and development of an identity that accompanies the new campus facility, the student body is expected to continue to grow at a rapid rate.