Washington & Jefferson College is a small, private institution in south west Pennsylvania known for its liberal arts offering.
Based in the small city of Washington, just over 15 miles east of the border with West Virginia and 25 miles south west of Pittsburgh, the long-time industrial centre, W & J College, as many call it, was founded in 1781 by Presbyterian ministers. It is named after George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, two of the country’s first three presidents, and two of the four who feature on Mount Rushmore along with Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt.
English, economics, business, accounting, communication and psychology are among the courses which the highest proportion of W & J College students sign up to. Its pre-law and pre-health programmes have received considerable praise. Its American football team has a good college sport record and has appeared in the Rose Bowl Game, the pinnacle of the sport at university level.
Its alumni include Joseph Ruggles Wilson, the Presbyterian theologian whose son Woodrow was a Democratic US president throughout the First World War and received the Nobel Peace Prize during his second term for helping to found the League of Nations, even though the Senate prevented the country from joining, and James G. Blaine, who served as speaker of both houses and ran a losing presidential campaign as the Republican candidate in 1884, beaten by Democrat Grover Cleveland.