The University of Wisconsin-Washington County (UW-WC) is one of thirteen University of Wisconsin colleges, this one primarily serving students from Washington, Ozaukee, Dodge, and Milwaukee counties. Located in West Bend, UW-WC offers courses leading to 250 majors at this freshman/sophomore campus. Collaborative bachelor degree programs with UW-Oshkosh, UW-Platteville, and UW-Milwaukee allow students to obtain four-year degrees at the West Bend campus. In 2018, the University of Wisconsin System joined UW-WC with the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
UW-WC opened its doors in September of 1968 after an agreement was reached between the City of West Bend, Washington County, and the UW-WC. In 1980, 34,300 square feet of additions were implemented after a bitter dispute between the city and county over funding. Citizens’ groups, students, and alumni rallied together to gain public support for the project. A second expansion of the campus began in 1989, adding 21,143 square feet of new construction and linking the buildings into one unit.
More classrooms and science and computer labs were included in a third expansion that began in 2001, and in 2007, funds were obtained to complete the third floor of the Collins Science Wing. A learning center, new lecture halls, faculty offices, classrooms, a board room, and a common area were completed in 2008.
Each spring, UW-WC serves the community by hosting a Festival of Arts that includes a wealth of exhibits and activities. This program includes a professional art fair, several displays of elementary, middle, and high school artwork, a photography display, live music, seminars, and children’s art projects—all offered free of charge. A Fine Arts Series sponsors concerts from artists in a variety of musical styles. The Moraine Chorus, a “mixed ‘communiversity’ chorus consisting of community members and UW-WC students,” and the Moraine Symphonic Band hold two concerts per year.  The campus theatre provides the county with two productions per year with casts composed of students and community members. West Bend’s local theatre group, Musical Masquers, also presents a variety of productions each year.
Students can participate in the Engaging Students Program during their first year to help ease the transition to college life. A learning commons offers tutoring assistance. Those students who graduate from UW-WC are assured admission to UW System institutions as part of the Guaranteed Transfer Program. The UW-Washington County Foundation provides $135,000 in scholarships annually to new, returning, and transferring students. The University’s Continuing Education and Professional Development Department provides summer youth programs and a Washington Express Degree program for working adults who wish to obtain a degree through evening classes. A free lecture series is offered to the community each semester, covering various aspects of a topic or geographic region.
UW-WC Wildcat athletics provide opportunities for students to participate in Wisconsin Collegiate Conference athletics. Teams in co-ed golf and soccer, men’s basketball and tennis, and women’s basketball, tennis, and volleyball have enjoyed success throughout the years. Intramural sports, including basketball, table tennis, and volleyball, along with a campus fitness center, afford all students the opportunity to train their bodies as well as their minds.
- ^ Karen Herzog, “Merger of University of Wisconsin Campuses Goes Full Steam Ahead, Despite Calls to Slow Down,” Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, November 9, 2017.
- ^ History, University of Wisconsin-Colleges website, accessed May 15, 2016.
- ^ Fine and Performing Arts, University of Wisconsin-Colleges website, http:/www/washington.uwc.edu/campus/arts, accessed May 15, 2016.
- ^ Community Outreach, University of Wisconsin-Colleges website, http://www.washington.uwc.edu/communityoutreach/continuingeducation/campusresources, accessed May 15, 2016.
- ^ Athletics, University of Wisconsin-Colleges website, http://www.washington.uwc.edu/athletics/intermurals and http://www.washington.uwc.edu/athletics/fitnesscenter, accessed May 15, 2016.