Western Carolina University

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2017 Undergraduate Tuition

$3,971

2% growth from 2016

2017 Average Net Price

$14,456

After Financial Aid

2016 Student Loan

6.06%

Default Rate

2017 Acceptance Rate

38.8%

19,391 Applicants

2017 Enrolled Students

11,034

79.8% Full-Time

2017 Graduation Rate

59%

886 Graduates

About

Western Carolina University is a higher education institution located in Jackson County, NC. In 2016, the most popular Bachelor's Degree concentrations at Western Carolina University were Registered Nursing (219 degrees awarded), Criminal Justice - Safety Studies (155 degrees), and General Psychology (135 degrees).

In 2017, 2,759 degrees were awarded across all undergraduate and graduate programs at Western Carolina University. 60.1% of these degrees were awarded to women, and 39.9% awarded men. The majority of degree recipients were white (2,177 degrees), 14 times more than then the next closest race/ethnicity group, black or african american (155 degrees).

The median undergraduate tuition at Western Carolina University is $3,971, which is $-16,762 less than the national average for Masters Colleges and Universities ($20,733).

Costs

The median undergraduate tuition at Western Carolina University is $3,971, which is $-16,762 less than the national average for Masters Colleges and Universities ($20,733).

After taking grants and loans into account, the average net price for students is $14,456.

In 2017, 68% of undergraduate students received federal grants, while 60% of undergraduate students received federal loans.

Student Expenses

Tuition Costs

$3,971

2017 Undergraduate Tuition

In 2017, the cost of tuition at Western Carolina University was $3,971. The cost of tuition at Western Carolina University is $-16,762 less than than the overall (public and private) national average for Masters Colleges and Universities ($20,733).

This chart compares the tuition costs of Western Carolina University (in red) with those of other similar universities.

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Average Net Price

$14,456

2017 Value

5.94%

1 Year Growth

In 2017 Western Carolina University had an average net price — the price paid after factoring in grants and loans — of $14,456. Between 2016 and 2017, the average net price of Western Carolina University grew by 5.94%.

This chart compares the average net price of Western Carolina University (in red) with that of other similar universities.

Average net price is calculated from full-time beginning undergraduate students who were awarded a grant or scholarship from federal, state or local governments, or the institution.

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Other Student Expenses

$9,808

Room and Board

$2,151

Books and Supplies

The average yearly cost of room and board at Western Carolina University was of $9,808 in 2017. During the same period, the average yearly cost of books and supplies was $2,151. The cost of room and board increased by 7.77% between 2016 and 2017. The cost of books and supplies decreased by 0.0929% during the same period.

This chart compares the average student costs at Western Carolina University (in red) with that of similar universities.

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Financial Aid

Financial Aid by Income Level

68%

Of Undergraduates Receive Grants

60%

Of Undergraduates Receive Federal Loans

68% of undergraduate students at Western Carolina University received grants or loans in 2017. This represents a growth of 1.49% with respect to 2016, when 67% of undergraduate students received financial aid.

This chart compares the average award discount at Western Carolina University (in red) with that of other similar universities.

The average award discount is the ratio between the average grant or scholarship value, and the cost, which is the sum of out-of-state tuition, room, board, book, supplies, and other expenses.

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Student Loan Default Rate

Cohort default rates only account for borrowers who default in the first three years, and some schools only have a small proportion of borrowers entering repayment. These rates should be interpreted with caution, as they may not be reflective of the entire school population.

6.06%

2016 Default Rate

144

Number of Defaults

In 2016 the default rate for borrower's at Western Carolina University was 6.06%, which represents 144 out of the 2377 total borrowers.

A cohort default rate is the percentage of a school's borrowers who enter repayment on certain Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program or William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan (Direct Loan) Program loans during a particular federal fiscal year (FY), October 1 to September 30, and default or meet other specified conditions prior to the end of the second following fiscal year.

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Admissions

Western Carolina University received 19,391 undergraduate applications in 2017, which represents a 5.98% annual growth. Out of those 19,391 applicants, 7,532 students were accepted for enrollment, representing a 38.8% acceptance rate.

There were 11,034 students enrolled at Western Carolina University in 2017, and 40% of first-time enrollees submitted SAT scores with their applications.

Western Carolina University has an overall enrollment yield of 26.5%, which represents the number of admitted students who ended up enrolling.

Acceptance Rate

38.8%

Acceptance Rate in 2017

7,532

Accepted Out of 19,391

In 2017, the undergraduate acceptance rate of Western Carolina University was 38.8% (7,532 admissions from 19,391 applications). This is lower than the acceptance rate of 2016, which was 40.7%. Between 2016 and 2017, the number of applicants grew by 5.98%, while admissions grew by 1.17%.

This chart compares the acceptance rate of Western Carolina University (in red) with that of other similar universities.

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SAT Scores

40%

Submission Percentage

804

Scores Submitted

40% of enrolled first-time students at Western Carolina University in 2017 submitted SAT scores with their applications.

This chart shows the SAT scores for the 25th and 75th percentile of applicants broken out into each section of the test that their are evaluated on.

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Enrollment

Western Carolina University has a total enrollment of 11,034 students. The full-time enrollment at Western Carolina University is 8,807 students and the part-time enrollment is 2,227. This means that 79.8% of students enrolled at Western Carolina University are enrolled full-time.

The enrolled student population at Western Carolina University, both undergraduate and graduate, is 78.6% White, 6.4% Hispanic or Latino, 6.23% Black or African American, 3.81% Two or More Races, 1.15% Asian, 0.671% American Indian or Alaska Native, and 0.0816% Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islanders.

Students enrolled at Western Carolina University in full-time Undergraduate programs are majority White Female (42.7%), followed by White Male (35.4%) and Hispanic or Latino Female (3.76%). Students enrolled in full-time Graduate programs are majority White Female (59.7%), followed by White Male (24.3%) and Hispanic or Latino Female (4.17%).

Full-Time vs Part-Time Enrollment

79.8%

Full-Time Enrollment

The total enrollment at Western Carolina University, both undergraduate and graduate, is 11,034 students. The full-time enrollment at Western Carolina University is 8,807 and the part-time enrollment is 2,227. This means that 79.8% of students enrolled at Western Carolina University are enrolled full-time compared with 68.6% at similar Masters Colleges and Universities.

This chart shows the full-time vs part-time enrollment status at Western Carolina University (in red) compares to similar universities.

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Retention Rate over Time

79%

2017 Retention Rate

Retention rate measures the number of first-time students who began their studies the previous fall and returned to school the following fall. The retention rate for full-time undergraduates at Western Carolina University was 79%. Compared with the full-time retention rate at similar Masters Colleges and Universities (75%), Western Carolina University had a retention rate higher than its peers.

This chart shows the retention rate over time at Western Carolina University (highlighted in red) compares to similar universities.

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Enrollment by Race & Ethnicity

Most Common Race or Ethnicity

  1. White

    8,673

  2. Hispanic or Latino

    706

  3. Black or African American

    687

The enrolled student population at Western Carolina University is 78.6% White, 6.4% Hispanic or Latino, 6.23% Black or African American, 3.81% Two or More Races, 1.15% Asian, 0.671% American Indian or Alaska Native, and 0.0816% Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islanders. This includes both full-time and part-time students as well as graduate and undergraduates. By comparison, enrollment for all Masters Colleges and Universities is 54.4% White, 15% Hispanic or Latino, and 13.2% Black or African American.

Any student who is studying in the United States on a temporary basis is categorized as a "Non-Resident Alien", and the share of those students are shown in the chart below. Additionally, 115 students (1.04%) did not report their race.

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Graduates

In 2017, 557 more women than men received degrees from Western Carolina University. The majority of degree recipients at Western Carolina University are white (2,177 degrees awarded). There were 14 times more white graduates than the next closest race/ethnicity group, black or african american (155 degrees).

The most common Bachelor's Degree concentration at Western Carolina University is Registered Nursing (219 degrees awarded), followed by Criminal Justice - Safety Studies (155 degrees) and General Psychology (135 degrees).

The most specialized majors across all degree types at Western Carolina University, meaning they have significantly more degrees awarded in that concentration than the national average across all institutions, are Physical Sciences (75 degrees awarded), Public Administration and Social Service (129 degrees), and Engineering Technologies (115 degrees).

Workforce

Common Jobs by Major

The most common jobs for people who hold a degree in one of the 5 most specialized majors at Western Carolina University are Elementary & middle school teachers (1,854,599 people), Secondary school teachers (304,239 people), Education administrators (252,562 people), Other managers (184,076 people), and Social workers, all other (183,481 people).

The most specialized majors at Western Carolina University are Physical Sciences (75 degrees awarded), Public Administration and Social Service (129 degrees), Engineering Technologies (115 degrees), Education (362 degrees), and Natural Resources & Conservation (32 degrees).

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Highest Paying Jobs by Major

Highest Paying Job

The highest paying jobs for people who hold a degree in one of the 5 most specialized majors at Western Carolina University are Physicians, Surgeons, Securities, commodities, & financial services sales agents, Geoscientists and hydrologists, except geographers, and Marketing managers

The most specialized majors at Western Carolina University are Physical Sciences (75 degrees awarded), Public Administration and Social Service (129 degrees), Engineering Technologies (115 degrees), Education (362 degrees), and Natural Resources & Conservation (32 degrees).

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Common Industries by Major

Most Common Industry

The most common industries for people who hold a degree in one of the 5 most specialized majors at Western Carolina University are Elementary & secondary schools (2,725,065 people), Colleges, universities & professional schools, including junior colleges (357,054 people), General medical and surgical hospitals, and specialty (except psychiatric and substance abuse) hospitals (204,936 people), Computer Systems Design (132,163 people), and Individual & family services (128,435 people).

The most specialized majors at Western Carolina University are Physical Sciences (75 degrees awarded), Public Administration and Social Service (129 degrees), Engineering Technologies (115 degrees), Education (362 degrees), and Natural Resources & Conservation (32 degrees).

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Degrees

Majors Awarded

IPEDS uses the Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) standard, so the categories may not match the exact concentrations offered by Western Carolina University.

Most Common

  1. 219 degrees awarded

  2. 155 degrees awarded

  3. 135 degrees awarded

In 2017, the most common bachelors degree concentration at Western Carolina University was Registered Nursing with 219 degrees awarded.

This visualization illustrates the percentage of degree recipients from bachelors degree programs at Western Carolina University according to their major.

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Gender Breakdown for Common Majors

Degrees Awarded to Men

  1. 1,101

  2. 1,658

In 2017, 1,101 degrees were awarded to men at Western Carolina University, which is 0.664 times less than the number of degrees awarded to females (1,658).

This chart displays the gender disparity between the top 5 majors at Western Carolina University by degrees awarded.

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Most Common Male Majors

In 2017, 97 degrees were awarded to men at Western Carolina University in General Business Administration & Management, which is 1.52 times more than the 64 female recipients with that same degree.

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Most Common Female Majors

In 2017, 244 degrees were awarded to women at Western Carolina University in Registered Nursing, which is 6.97 times more than the 35 male recipients with that same degree.

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Time to Complete

37%

100% Completion Time

57%

150% Completion Time

In 2017, 37% of students graduating from Western Carolina University completed their program within 100% "normal time" (i.e. 4 years for a 4-year degree). Comparatively, 57% completed their degrees within 150% of the normal time, and 59% within 200%.

The following chart shows these completion rates over time compared to the average for the Masters Colleges and Universities Carnegie Classification group.

Graduation rate is defined as the percentage of full-time, first-time students who received a degree or award within a specific percentage of "normal time" to completion for their program.

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Diversity

Graduation Rate by Race and Gender

Showing demographic groups with ≥ 5 graduating students.

American Indian or Alaska Native Male

Highest Graduation Rate (75%)

The student demographic with the highest graduation rate at Western Carolina University is Male and American Indian or Alaska Native (75% graduation rate). Across all Masters Colleges and Universities, Asian Female students have the highest graduation rate (68.1%).

The department of education defines graduation rate as the percentage of full-time, first-time students who received a degree or award within 150% of "normal time" to completion.

The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) categorizes any student who is studying in the United States on a temporary basis as a "Non-Resident Alien", and the graduation rate of those students is shown in the chart below. Additionally, 1.35% of graduates (12 students) did not report their race.

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Race & Ethnicity by Share

Most Common Student Race or Ethnicity

  1. White

    2,177 degrees awarded

  2. Black or African American

    155 degrees awarded

  3. Hispanic or Latino

    145 degrees awarded

The most common race/ethnicity at Western Carolina University is white (2,177 degrees awarded). There were 14 times more white recipients than the next closest race/ethnicity group, black or african american (155 degrees).

0.942% of degree recipients (26 students) did not report their race.

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Race & Ethnicity by Gender

Most Common Gender Demographic

  1. White Female

    1,305 degrees awarded

  2. White Male

    872 degrees awarded

  3. Hispanic or Latino Female

    91 degrees awarded

The most common race/ethnicity and gender grouping at Western Carolina University is white female (1,305 degrees awarded). There were 1.5 times more white female recipients than the next closest race/ethnicity group, white male (872 degrees).

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Operations

Western Carolina University has an endowment valued at nearly $70.6M, as of the end of the 2017 fiscal year. The return on its endowment was of $8.53M (12.1%), compared to the 6.94% average return ($2.3M on $33.1M) across all Masters Colleges and Universities.

In 2017, Western Carolina University had a total salary expenditure of $223M. Western Carolina University employs 180 Assistant professors, 145 Associate professors, and 99 Professors. Most academics at Western Carolina University are Female Assistant professors (99), Male Assistant professors(81), and Male Associate professors (75).

The most common positions for non-instructional staff at Western Carolina University are: Office and Administrative Support, with 203 employees, Service, with 172 employees, and Natural Resources, Construction, and Maintenance with 138 employees.

Finances

Endowment

$70.6M

2017 Endowment

9.4%

growth from 2016

Western Carolina University has an endowment valued at about $70.6M, as of the end of the 2017 fiscal year. The endowment of Western Carolina University grew 9.4% from the previous year. The value of their endowment was $37.5M higher than than the median endowment of Masters Colleges and Universities according to the Carnegie Classification grouping.

This line chart shows how the endowment at Western Carolina University (in red) compares to that of some similar universities.

The small bar chart below shows the endowment quintiles for all universities in the Masters Colleges & Universities: Larger Programs Carnegie Classification grouping.

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Government Grants and Contracts

Grants & Contracts

  1. $3.52M - Federal

  2. $255k - State

  3. $0 - Local

As of 2017, Western Carolina University received $3.52M in grants and contracts from the federal government, $255k from state grants and contracts, and $0 from local grants and contracts.

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Expenses

Salary Expenditure

$91.7M

2017 Salaries

1.96%

growth from 2016

In 2017, Western Carolina University paid a median of $91.7M in salaries, which represents 41.2% of their overall expenditure ($223M) and a 1.96% growth from the previous year. This is compared to a 5.39% decline from 2015 and a 7.4% growth from 2014.

The median for similar Masters Colleges and Universities is 31.4M (40.5% of overall expenditures).

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Instructional Salaries

$35.6M

Instructional Salaries

488

Number of Employees

In 2017, Western Carolina University paid a total of $35.6M to 488 employees working as instructors, which represents 38.8% of all salaries paid.

This is compared to a median of $16.8M (34%) for similar Masters Colleges & Universities: Larger Programs.

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Faculty and Staff

Occupations by Share

Assistant professor

Most Common Instructor

180 Employees

Office and Administrative Support

Most Common Non-Instructional Employee

203 Employees

In 2017, the most common positions for instructional staff at Western Carolina University were Assistant professor with 180 employees; Associate professor with 145 employees; and Associate professor with 99 employees.

In 2017, the most common positions for non-instructional staff at Western Carolina University were Office and Administrative Support with 203 employees; Service with 172 employees; and Natural Resources, Construction, and Maintenance with 138 employees.

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Instructors by Academic Rank and Gender

Most Common Demographic

  1. Female Assistant professor

  2. Male Assistant professor

  3. Male Associate professor

In 2017, the most common demographic for instructional staff at Western Carolina University was Female Assistant professor with 99 employees, Male Assistant professor with 81 employees, and Male Associate professor with 75 employees.

This chart shows the gender split between each academic rank present at Western Carolina University.

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