As the westernmost institution in the University of North Carolina System, WCU attracts students from around the globe for its nationally ranked programs, affordability through NC Promise and exceptional student support. Recognized as a top adventure college and surrounded by the Blue Ridge and Great Smoky Mountains, students can explore the region's vast natural diversity through unrivaled experiential learning and recreational activities. Offering residential, hybrid and online programs for undergraduate and graduate degrees at our main campus in Cullowhee, WCU in Asheville located at Biltmore Park, and wherever students are through distance learning.
Western Carolina University’s main campus is located in Cullowhee, NC, just over 50 miles west of Asheville. Our instructional site in Asheville is located at Biltmore Park Towne Square. Students can study online, on their time, through asynchronous learning.
Our 600-acre mountain campus is surrounded by one of the most biodiverse regions in the state that provides students unparalleled learning and adventure opportunities.
Offering part-time undergraduate programs in nursing and engineering for working professionals as well as graduate programs in business administration, accounting, school administration and more.
Discover degrees for in-demand fields with top-ranked online programs. Our learning communities bring accomplished students together with professors dedicated to their success.
As Western North Carolina’s regional comprehensive university, Western Carolina University is dedicated to academic excellence, affordability, and access. WCU inspires student learning through innovative teaching, nationally recognized programs, exceptional support, and a robust connectedness with surrounding communities in Southern Appalachia, including the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Through a broad range of scholarly activities, our faculty and students seek to better understand our region, state, nation, and world. With an emphasis on engaging students both inside and outside the classroom, WCU’s bachelor’s, master’s, and professional doctoral programs in Cullowhee, Asheville, and online aim to improve lives and promote economic prosperity throughout Western North Carolina and beyond.
Western Carolina University will be a national model for public comprehensive universities serving rural regions and an innovative driver for the social and economic mobility of its students. WCU will break barriers to student access and opportunity, and leverage the expertise of its faculty, staff, and students in confronting the complex health, educational, social, and economic challenges in its region and state.
Excellence in Teaching, Learning, and Scholarship
Collaboration with and Respect for our Communities
Free and Open Interchange of Ideas
Diversity and Inclusive Excellence
Robust and Engaging Student Experience
Investment in our People
Western Carolina University has deep roots in the western North Carolina region and rich history of education, spanning over 100 years. From small rural teaching, college into a global university with over 12,000 students, discover the history of WCU.Explore WCU's History
Explore WCU and the supportive community you'll find here whether you're an undergraduate student studying at our main campus in Cullowhee, a graduate student at our instructional site in Asheville or online in one of our many distance programs.
For Jim Costa, biology professor since 1996 and director of Western Carolina University’s Highlands Biological Station for the past 17 years, the study of evolution has always been one of his main interests and areas of research.
Western Carolina University held three spring commencement ceremonies May 12-13 at the Ramsey Regional Activity Center.