10 Fun Facts about Fort Lewis College

Fort Lewis College, nestled in the scenic town of Durango, Colorado, is a public liberal arts institution known for its stunning mountainous surroundings and commitment to providing a quality education. Established in 1911, the college originally served as a military fort named Fort Lewis during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Today, it has evolved into a vibrant academic community, offering a range of undergraduate programs in the arts, sciences, and professional fields.

The college’s campus is situated at an elevation of about 6,872 feet, providing students with breathtaking views of the Animas River Valley and the San Juan Mountains. This unique setting allows for unparalleled outdoor recreational opportunities, making Fort Lewis College an ideal choice for those who appreciate the fusion of academic pursuits and a love for the great outdoors.

Fort Lewis College is renowned for its commitment to Native American and Indigenous education. With a significant Native American student population, the college emphasizes cultural diversity and understanding. The presence of the Center for Southwest Studies further reflects this commitment, focusing on the history and culture of the American Southwest and fostering an appreciation for the region’s rich heritage. Fort Lewis College stands as a testament to the intersection of academic excellence, cultural diversity, and the natural beauty that defines the college experience in Durango, Colorado.

Fort Lewis College
Fort Lewis College

Do you want to know more about Fort Lewis College? Let’s take a look at these 10 fun facts about Fort Lewis College.

  1. Military Heritage: Fort Lewis College’s roots trace back to its establishment as a military fort named Fort Lewis in 1911. The fort was originally set up in 1878 to protect settlers in the region.
  2. Elevation: The campus of Fort Lewis College is situated at a high elevation of approximately 6,872 feet above sea level, providing stunning panoramic views of the Animas River Valley and the San Juan Mountains.
  3. Outdoor Recreational Hub: Located in Durango, Colorado, the college is surrounded by a playground of outdoor activities. Students and faculty can enjoy hiking, skiing, mountain biking, and various other outdoor adventures right at their doorstep.
  4. Center for Southwest Studies: Fort Lewis College is home to the Center for Southwest Studies, which focuses on the history and culture of the American Southwest. It houses extensive archival collections and promotes research and education about the region.
  5. Unique Mascot: The college’s mascot is Skyhawk, a name chosen to reflect the region’s Native American heritage and the stunning sky that graces the college’s mountainous location.
  6. Diverse Student Population: Fort Lewis College is known for its diverse student population, with a particular emphasis on Native American and Indigenous students. The college actively promotes cultural understanding and inclusivity.
  7. Sustainable Initiatives: The college places a strong emphasis on sustainability, incorporating environmentally friendly practices into campus life. This commitment is reflected in initiatives such as the use of renewable energy and eco-friendly construction.
  8. Award-Winning Radio Station: KDUR, the college’s radio station, has received recognition and awards for its programming. It serves as a platform for student DJs and community members to share diverse musical and cultural content.
  9. Unique Academic Calendar: Fort Lewis College operates on a unique academic calendar known as the “Skyhawk Station,” which features a block schedule system. Students typically take one class at a time, allowing for in-depth focus and immersive learning experiences.
  10. Ancient Puebloan Ruins: The college campus is built on land with a rich history. Ancient Puebloan ruins can be found nearby, providing a connection to the region’s indigenous past and offering opportunities for archaeological studies.

Fort Lewis College stands as a testament to the harmonious blend of academic pursuits, cultural diversity, and the boundless beauty of the American Southwest. From its origins as a military fort to its current role as a thriving liberal arts institution, the college boasts a unique elevation that not only affords breathtaking views but also serves as an outdoor recreational haven for students and faculty. Fort Lewis College’s commitment to Native American and Indigenous education, underscored by the Center for Southwest Studies, adds a rich layer of cultural understanding to its academic fabric. With its unique block schedule system, sustainability initiatives, and recognition for its radio station, the college fosters an environment where education is not only immersive but also reflects a deep appreciation for the environment and community. Fort Lewis College truly embodies the spirit of intellectual curiosity against the backdrop of Colorado’s stunning natural wonders.