Untitled Document

Prepare for Westmont

Did You Know....?| Westmont History

  • ...that Westmont was originally named the Bible Missionary Institute, then Western Bible College, and finally the name "Westmont" was coined during Dr. Wallace Emerson's time. He recalled, "Well it's out in the West and it's in the mountains.... Westmont became the name for no rhyme nor reason except that it was a name that sounded all right and had a little significance as far as location was concerned."

  • ...that so many Westmont men were drafted during World War II, that in 1944 a lot of women came to the Valentine banquet without a date?

  • ...that for the college's first months in Santa Barbara the women lived in "Jefferson Barracks," an abandoned elementary school on the Riviera - twelve of them in "The Dungeon," a large basement room?

  • ...that girls living in the Emerson Hall on Ashley Road used to come out on the balcony when guys would come to serenade them at night?

  • ...that during the first years in Santa Barbara, some faculty families lived in apartments in Deane Hall, where professors' offices are now?

  • ...that students raised funds and volunteered their time for construction of the present post office building - for student government and publications offices, and for their mailboxes?

  • ...that the English department has a wardrobe that belonged to C.S. Lewis - and it fits his description of the one that led to Narnia?

  • ...that if your grandparents went to Westmont in the sixties, they probably helped build floats for the college's annual Homecoming parade on State Street?

  • ...that before Senior Sneak, a three-day annual retreat, the juniors would try to discover the seniors' plans and spoil their "secret" departure from campus?

  • ...that until 1998 no social dancing was allowed on campus - only folk or performance dance?

  • ...that Deane Chapel, the oldest structure on campus, was built around 1900 next to Henry Strong's estate house, as a home for his pipe organ?

  • ...that when President Roger Voskuyl was still a chemistry professor at Wheaton College, he was enlisted as a "heavy water" expert for research in the Manhattan Project, which produced the first atomic bombs?

  • ...that the level of Westmont's track and field was raised six feet with earth removed from the sites of Winter Hall and the Museum of Art?

  • ...that students used to hold "go-cart" races each year, circling the campus in homemade carts with a woman driver and men pushers?

  • ...that when students helped evacuate valuables during the 1970 fire in Kerrwood Hall, radio news reported they were looting while the building went up in flames?

  • ...that to move the library from Kerrwood to Vokuyl in one day, classes were canceled and 450 Westmonters each carried one stack of books from here to there?

  • ...that when the Yom Kippur War began in 1973, fourty Europe Semester students escaped on the last two commercial airplanes to get out of Israel?

  • ...that during January Interterms of the 70s and 80s, some students would take their skis along for a course at Mammoth in Work and Leisure?

  • ...that before the gym was built, Westmont played their home basketball games downtown at the National Guard Armory?

  • ...that after the Sycamore Fire in 1977, hundreds of students helped clean up many of the 200 burned-out properties?

  • ...that one winter in the early 90s, the campus had forty straight days of rain?