Westfield State University is located in Westfield, MA. It is accredited by the “Commission on Institutions of Higher Education (CIHE) of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC).” Westfield prides itself on an admirable history of being the first “co-educational college in America to offer an education without barrier to race, creed or economic status.” The principles that this university were established upon, can be considered quite progressive for its time, considering that Westfield State University was founded in 1838.
Cognizant of its past history and achievements, Westfield is just as dedicated now to promoting educational access and opportunity to everyone, remarkably more than 150 years after its inception.
Westfield offers over 30 undergraduate majors and over 40 concentrations of study. Furthermore, Westfield allows students to pursue a degree either part-time or full-time depending on what is most convenient for the student. The academic majors and departments present much to choose from including majors that are commonly found on college campuses such as political science, art, philosophy and psychology to more uncommon programs of study such as movement science and regional planning.
Additionally, Westfield offers both undergraduate and graduate level programs. The graduate level programs are master’s degrees in English and psychology. A master’s degree in public administration, a master’s of science in accountancy and criminal justice, and a master’s of social work round out the graduate degree offerings at Westfield along with more than five different types of master’s degrees in education to choose from. For example, there is the MS in Secondary Biology and an MS in Special Education, to name two popular examples. Since education is a very popular degree, various certificates and licenses for those interested are also available.
Most Popular Fields of Study
The steps you take to apply to Westfield depends on what type of applicant classification one falls into: a transfer applicant is a prospective student who has enrolled in an higher education institution previously. A freshman applicant is a prospective student who is applying immediately after finishing high school and has never enrolled in college. Keep in mind that there are minor categories under the term transfer applicant and freshman applicant as well. Some applicants are considered freshmen applicants even if they have enrolled in a dual enrollment high school program. For transfer applicants, there is a difference between a transfer student with 24 credits and one with less than 24 credits.
Students must submit an application of admission and have score reports for the SAT or ACT sent to Westfield. Students must also submit official transcripts. In addition, while in high school freshmen must have completed the following units and subjects: 3 years of sciences including 2 science labs, 2 years of electives, 2 years of social sciences, 3 years of math, 4 years of English and 2 years of a foreign language. To be consider for admission in the fall, a student must submit his or her application by the first of March. Transfer students are required to submit their application by mid March. If you are open to starting school in the spring, then the application deadline falls in mid November.
In terms of admissions requirements for international students, prospective students are encouraged to submit an application. They are required to submit satisfactory TOEFL scores along with their application. In addition, a copy of their passport and a bank statement detailing that they have the appropriate amount of funds to support themselves, is also a requirement in the process.
Those individuals seeking admissions to a graduate program have additional steps in order to apply for admission. First of all, an application for admission must be completed. A modest fee is also charged. The prospective student must also write an essay regarding his/her personal and professional goals as well as professional experience. Official transcripts from every college previously attended must be submitted as well. As part of the admission package, graduate candidates are also required to have three professional references in the form of letters. Lastly, official scores from one of the three, must be sent: GMAT, GRE, or MAT.
Prospective students should fill out a Free Application for Federal Student Aid, also known as the FAFSA. The FAFSA is the official form used to determine one’s eligibility for federal financial aid funding in the form of grants, loans, and the federal work-study program. The FAFSA takes into account information that the student provides regarding your income level and other financial factors that can impact your ability to pay tuition and fees. Some students do not apply because they believe that they are not eligible due to having a relatively high income or for other unknown reasons. All students are strongly encouraged to apply because even if one isn’t eligible for a grant from the federal government, the federal government provides loans at a much lower interest rate than most private lenders can offer such as banks or credit unions.
Westfield itself awards quite a few scholarships to qualified students that are both need based and merit based scholarships. Especially publicized are the Presidential Merit Scholarships which are awarded based on GPA and SAT scores. In order to qualify for this award, one must be a resident of the state of Massachusetts. As this scholarship is renewable, a student must maintain a 3.0 GPA and enroll and complete at least one Honors course a semester in order to be eligible the following year for the scholarship award.
Other awards that seem promising are the Tsongas Scholarships. These are merit based grants sponsored by the state of Massachusetts. This scholarship is also based on SAT and GPA. As with the Presidential Scholarship, this scholarship is also renewable, but a 3.30 must be maintained in order to be eligible for renewal.
There are also foundation scholarships available to currently enrolled students. One has to remain vigilant about scholarship funding as all scholarships have separate deadlines and requirements. Stay connected to the financial aid office to learn of scholarship opportunities that may arise during the semester.
Do not think that besides the federal government, state funds, and your institution of choice, that there are no other forms of scholarships available, because there actually are. Countless civic groups, church organizations, neighborhood groups, employers, and major corporations advertise scholarship opportunities, many of which never receive applicants. Hence, if you have no luck getting a scholarship through Westfield or the federal government, give your local community groups, civic organizations, or religious institutions a call to inquire about any possible scholarship opportunities they may have.
Student Financial Aid Details
Westfield provides housing for its study body. There are six residence halls: Courtney Hall, Lammers Hall, New Hall, Davis Hall, Dickinson Hall, and Scanlon Hall. Courtney Hall is coed and houses sophomores to seniors. Davis Hall houses only first year students. New Hall houses upperclassmen. Scalon houses sophomores to seniors as well. Dickinson houses first years. Finally, Lammers Hall includes first years to senior students. All residence halls have a full-time Resident Director on staff and provide internet access. In lieu of the residence halls, a student can choose to live in the apartment complex operated by Westfield, as well. This apartment complex is restricted to upperclassmen only.
Study Abroad Programs
Westfield State has unveiled a new study abroad program. These programs occur either in May or January of every year. Locales under consideration are Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Europe, Ireland, and Ghana. There is also an exchange program with China. Students can decide to go to China for either a semester or year through this program. The exchange programs are with the United International College in Zhuhai and Capital Normal University in Beijin.
Other study abroad options include Semester at Sea which has visited ports from India, Ghana, Japan, Brazil, Vietnam, and Malaysia just to name a few. If Europe is more appealing to you, you might want to consider the Dublin Business School study abroad program. Studying abroad is a great opportunity to meet new people, experience a different culture, all while receiving a quality education.
If meeting people while studying abroad seems a bit intimidating, you may want to try out various student clubs and organizations that Westfield has to offer first. The majority of the clubs fall under one of three categories: special interest, academic department, or social action. Examples of what Westfield has to offer includes: the Circle K Club, Disco Golf Club, Latino Association, Students Advocating for Gender Equality, and the Student National Education Association.
Student Organizations and Services
Students also have access to a variety of services including, but not limited to: Health Services, the Career Center and the Counseling Center. Health Services and the Counseling Center plays an important role in ensuring the well-being of the student body. Whether students need a flu vaccination or someone to talk to about their past and troubles, these services are integral to a healthy college environment. The Career Center is another great resource, providing workshops, assessments, interview advice, job hiring information, and a plethora of other services to students interested in entering the job market.
Student Enrollment Demographics
Student Graduation Demographics
Semester at Sea: Study Abroad Voyage. 17 May 2011. Web. < http://www.semesteratsea.org/>
Westfield State College. 17 May 2011. Web.