League of Your Own: The Real West - The Western Water Polo Association

Joan Gould
Water Polo Planet
Updated 7/4/2013

Water Polo Planet continues to take a closer look at some of the schools in each individual conference to help acquaint potential students and parents with these schools. This month the schools of the WWPA are discussed.  We would like to present a less intimidating, brief overview of schools with water polo programs to help provide the basis for students to start looking at what is available.

It Is Time to Test Some Schools in the West - the WWPA

The WWPA is one of the largest conferences in the West, encompassing many schools from Colorado in the west to San Francisco in the North. WWPA schools have a two pronged benefit;  they offer top competition, much against MPSF schools with top shots for playing time, individual attention and exposure.

WWPA schools offer the full breadth of educational choices; public, private, military and religious and thus its member schools have something to offer every prospective student. For both men and women, the schools of the WWPA are worth a strong look.

Information Is the Right Tool for Choosing a School

US Air Force AcademyU.S. Air Force Academy


The United States Air Force Academy is located immediately north of Colorado Springs in El Paso County, Colorado, United States, is an institution for the undergraduate education of officers for the United States Air Force. Graduates of the four-year program receive a Bachelor of Science degree and most are commissioned as second lieutenants in the United States Air Force.[2] The Academy is also one of the largest tourist attractions in Colorado, attracting more than a million visitors each year.

The Air Force Academy is among the most selective colleges in the United States, although many publications such as U.S. News and World Report do not rank the Academy directly against other colleges because of the Academy's special mission. Candidates are judged based on their academic achievement, demonstrated leadership, athletics and character. To gain admission, candidates must also pass a fitness test, undergo a thorough medical examination, and secure a nomination, which usually comes from one of the candidate's members of Congress. Recent incoming classes have usually consisted of about 1400 cadets; just under 1000 of those usually make it through to graduation. Cadets pay no tuition, but incur a commitment to serve a number of years in the military service after graduation.

The program at the Academy is guided by its core values of "Integrity First, Service Before Self, and Excellence In All We Do," and based on four "pillars" of excellence: military training, academics, athletics and character development. In addition to a rigorous military training regimen, cadets also take a broad academic course load with an extensive core curriculum in engineering, humanities, social sciences, basic sciences, military studies and physical education. All cadets participate in either intercollegiate or intramural athletics, and a thorough character development and leadership curriculum provide cadets a basis for future officership. Each of the components of the program is intended to give cadets the skills and knowledge that they will need for success as officers.

Claremont Mckenna CollegeClaremont Mudd Scripps College  

Men and Women

Claremont McKenna College is a highly selective, independent, coeducational, residential, undergraduate liberal arts college. Its mission, within the mutually supportive framework of The Claremont Colleges, is to educate its students for thoughtful and productive lives and responsible leadership in business, government, and the professions, and to support faculty and student scholarship that contribute to intellectual vitality and the understanding of public policy issues.

The College pursues this mission by providing a liberal arts education that emphasizes economics and political science, a professoriate that is dedicated to effective undergraduate teaching, a close student-teacher relationship that fosters critical inquiry, an active residential and intellectual environment that promotes responsible citizenship and a program of research institutes and scholarly support that makes possible a faculty of teacher-scholars.

Claremont McKenna College covers nearly fifty acres in the heart of The Claremont Colleges in Claremont, California. A comfortable college town of 35,000 residents, Claremont is nestled at the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains and 35 miles east of downtown Los Angeles.

Colorado State UniversityColorado State University

Women: Progam is being Dropped as of 2014

As one of our nation's leading research universities, Colorado State University is committed to realizing its vision as a 21st century land-grant university. Last year, CSU awarded degrees to over 5,000 graduates, attracted more than $220 million in research funding and contributed to the prosperity of Colorado and the nation with new graduates; advances in science, technology and learning; and community enrichment via the arts, humanities and the intellectual richness of a great research university.
CSU leads the world in such areas as infectious disease research, atmospheric science and environmental science. Its faculty members are tackling such issues as the reemergence of tuberculosis, the brown cloud of air pollution in Asian cities, severe weather forecasting, nutrition and wellness, and bioterrorism. Colorado State University is the “university of choice” for Colorado residents; 30% of all of Colorado’s science, math, engineering and technology majors study at CSU. In addition to its excellent programs in those areas, CSU offers among the very best professional programs in the United States in areas like veterinary medicine, occupational therapy, journalism, agriculture and construction management. Its programs in the arts, humanities and social sciences are also outstanding.

What sets Colorado State University apart is its committed teaching faculty who bring to the student learning experience the environment of a major research university with laboratory and field experiences as an integral part of the educational experience. CSU continues the land-grant philosophy by coupling the intellectual experience of the classroom with the practical experience of the field and laboratory. Colorado State's Office of Service Learning and Volunteer Programs hosts some of the strongest community-service programs in the country, allowing more than 6,000 students to participate in the university's proud tradition of public outreach. CSU faculty played a significant role in the founding of the Peace Corps, and CSU remains one of the primary sources of Peace Corps volunteers today.

Colorado State is ranked in the top tier of universities in U.S. News and World Report's rankings of "America's Best Colleges and Universities," while Kiplinger's Personal Finance Magazine named CSU one of the top public universities in the United States in terms of educational quality and affordability. The Templeton Foundation named Colorado State among the nation's leading higher-education institutions that encourage student character development.

Colorado State University is located in Fort Collins – on the Front Range of the Rockies with the foothills and 14,000-foot peaks visible to residents. Easy access to hiking, skiing, rafting and other outdoor sports is a great advantage to CSU students, faculty and staff. Located north of the Denver metro area, CSU is less than an hour away from one of the nation’s leading airports – Denver International Airport.

Colorado State is an institution on the move, dedicated to addressing the great global challenges of Colorado and the world. It is a world-class research university, in the public interest, focused on learning and innovation.

CSU Esat BayCSU East Bay


Cal State East Bay offers much more than you'd expect -- for a lot less than you might think. More than 100 areas of study. Award-winning curriculum. Small classes. Expert faculty. A fast, flexible quarter system. And surprising affordability. All in an inspiring hilltop setting overlooking Northern California's beautiful San Francisco Bay and East Bay hills. It adds up to a remarkable college experience that's uniquely personal, professional, and achievable. Learn more by exploring 10 reasons why Cal State East Bay is a great first choice.

Cal State East Bay tops the index for value and affordability with among the lowest fees in the country for comparable universities, at only $2,916 per academic year (for full-time undergraduates). With an emphasis on expert instruction and individualized, professional education, it's no surprise that Cal State East Bay is nationally recognized as a best value in higher education. Our costs are not much higher, in fact, than those of community colleges, yet the academic depth and breadth we offer -- plus the advantages of a California State University degree -- are exponentially greater. And as part of our commitment to making high-quality higher education truly accessible, each year we award more $37 million in financial aid, ensuring that every student at Cal State East Bay has the opportunity to realize his or her college dreams.

With more than 100 majors, minors, and program options, Cal State East Bay offers you a wide choice of fields of study -- plus unlimited career possibilities. In all, you can choose from 42 baccalaureate degrees with 66 minors, 30 master's degrees, and a new joint doctoral program with UC Berkeley. Our most popular majors are Business Administration, Liberal Studies, Computer Science, Communication, Art, Psychology, and Biology. Our newest undergraduate major is Industrial Engineering, and our newest graduate major are Social Work and Engineering Management. And, at Cal State East Bay, you can even create your own special major. But whatever your choice, Cal State East Bay balances academic rigor with real-world experience through internships, faculty research projects, and overseas study. Our goal? To prepare you to succeed in your career and in your life.

With an average class size of just 26, and many classes taught by tenured professors, Cal State East Bay offers you a personalized learning environment unmatched by many other universities. Not only will your professors know you by name, you'll get to know them -- and your classmates, too. If you're a freshman, our unique Learning Communities Program will help you get to know a core group of fellow students as you build your academic foundation. As a transfer or graduate student, you will find our campus environment convenient, friendly, and ready to support you. And with two spacious campuses that comfortably accommodate our enrollment of 13,455, you won't be lost in a crowd

CSU Monterey BayCSU Monterey Bay


In the real world, a narrow skillset won't get you very far. Today's interconnected society needs professionals who can examine problems from multiple perspectives and generate creative solutions. A broader knowledge base allows you to think on your feet and apply relevant information, no matter what discipline it comes from. After all, you're more than any one label can define. Why should your education be labeled and limited?
 CSUMB majors prepare you to bring a range of knowledge and skills to your career, your hobbies, your life. Each major incorporates several traditional fields of study as well as opportunities for in-depth focus on areas that  interest you most. The bottom line: you'll graduate being great at what you do and able to adapt to a variety of work and life situations.

It's not all in your head. In fact, a lot of the learning that goes on at CSUMB is in the real world. You may find yourself out on the bay in one of our two research boats, the VenTresca or MacGinitie, or on Soledad Street in Salinas helping the community revitalize its Chinatown district. Or maybe you'll be meeting with a local business owner to help develop a new marketing plan, or working to set up the exhibit you helped design at the Monterey Maritime Museum. We don't want you to keep the things you learn inside your head—at CSUMB, we want you to apply your education in ways that really matter, that make a difference in reality. You get to practice your skills, make professional connections, and leave college with a resume that shows you've done more than sit in a classroom.

So, you want a school that's just the right size? Big enough to give you options, but small enough to get a real sense of community? Welcome to CSUMB. With just under 4,000 students, you can get the full college experience—a range of majors to choose from, 13 NCAA Division II athletic teams to compete with or cheer on, over 50 student clubs to get involved in—without getting lost in the crowd. Other perks that come with just right size? How about guaranteed on-campus housing, ample parking, and actually being able to register for the classes you want.

CSU San BernardinoCSU San Bernardino


A young, vibrant university, California State University, San Bernardino is the sole public comprehensive university serving the San Bernardino and Riverside counties of Southern California.

Founded in 1965, its mission is to provide quality higher education and leadership to promote social, cultural and economic progress in the community and region. Enrollment annually tops 16,000 and is on pace to reach more than 20,000 by 2010.

Located equidistant between Los Angeles and Palm Springs in the heart of Southern California, the campus serves the rapidly expanding Inland Empire, an area encompassing more than 27,000 square miles - a territory larger than 10 states. The two counties continue to have a population that is among the fastest growing in the nation.

Five academic colleges, offering more than 70 degree and certificates, afford a wide array of choices for students. Many programs have earned specialized national accreditation, including business, which was the first in the Inland Empire to gain national accreditation at both the graduate and undergraduate levels. Its M.B.A. program is highly respected, as are programs in computer science, geographic information and decision sciences, psychology, health, public administration, and accounting and finance, among many others. The university is one of the nation's largest teacher-training institutions, and 95 percent of the College of Education's graduates with teaching credentials are employed full-time a year after graduation. CSUSB science students are readily accepted into the most prestigious medical schools in the country. CSUSB's Inland Empire Center for Entrepreneurship was recognized among the nation's top regional programs for entrepreneurs by Entrepreneur Magazine.

Cal State San Bernardino is one of the most diverse universities among the 23 California State University campuses, with a student enrollment so diverse that there is no majority ethnic group on campus.

The university also has a permanent branch campus in Palm Desert, where a unique public-private partnership has built facilities with funds raised from municipalities, corporations, foundations and individuals. The Palm Desert campus provides the region with its only upper division institution of higher education and is helping to build the college-going rate in the Coachella Valley that is currently only 30 percent among local high school graduates (compared to the national average of 62 percent).

More than 55,000 alumni hail from CSUSB, including 85 percent who work in Southern California and make a major positive impact on the economy. CSUSB currently enrolls nearly 17,000 students and employs 3,000 faculty and staff.

Generating more than $500 million in expenditures and supporting more than 10,000 jobs in the local region, Cal State San Bernardino contributes more than $28 million in state taxes each year and produces more than $635 million annually to the state economy from alumni earnings. For every $1 the state invests in Cal State San Bernardino, university-related expenditures generate $4.53 in additional spending. As such, activities from CSUSB generate $532,863,097 in annual spending in California..

Loyola Marymont UniversityLoyola Marymount University

Men and Women

With one window on dynamic Los Angeles and another on the Pacific Ocean, Loyola Marymount University is one of 28 Jesuit universities in the United States and one of five Marymount institutions of higher education.

Founded in 1911 by the Jesuit order, Loyola Marymount attracts undergraduate, graduate, and professional students who seek an ethnically diverse university dedicated to the highest academic standards, the education of the whole person, and faith-inspired concern for justice. The new strategic plan seeks to advance this vision in the 21st century.

For the 5,000 undergraduates and 3,000 graduate students at Loyola Marymount and Loyola Law School, Los Angeles is a laboratory for understanding the nation and the world through the complexity of cultures, industries, images, and opportunities embraced by Southern California.

LMU offers more than 80 majors and programs in four colleges: Bellarmine College of Liberal Arts, College of Business Administration, College of Communication and Fine Arts, and the Frank R. Seaver College of Science and Engineering; and two schools, the School of Education and the School of Film and Television. LMU also includes the Graduate Division, Continuing Education Program, and Loyola Law School, located in downtown Los Angeles.

The LMU water polo program emulates the excellence of the University with yearly appearances by both the mens and womens Division 1 varsity in the NCAA Final 4 under the leadership of Head Coaches John Loughran and Kyle Witt. 

Pomona CollegePomona College


Small classes, top-notch facilities and distinguished professors who work closely with students are key elements of a Pomona education. Established in 1887, Pomona College is widely regarded as one of the premier liberal arts colleges in America.
The college is located in Claremont, California, a charming town 35 miles east of Los Angeles. Pomona is the founding member of The Claremont Colleges, a consortium of seven independent institutions blending the intimate atmosphere of small colleges with the academic and social resources of a university. Famous beaches, ski resorts and Los Angeles' many cultural offerings all are within easy driving distance of the campus.

About 1,500 students are enrolled, of whom roughly half are men and half women. For the class entering in Fall 2005, the middle 50 percent of their SAT verbal scores were 690 to 770, and 690 to 770 for SAT math scores. Eighty-eight percent of the first-year students ranked in the top 10 percent of their high school graduating classes.

Prestigious academic awards bestowed upon Pomona students include Rhodes, Fulbright, Marshall and Watson scholarships. Pomona students come from 46 states, the District of Columbia and 26 foreign countries. In a voluntary self-report, 7 percent of all current Pomona students identified themselves as African American, 16 percent as Asian American, 11 percent as Latino American and 1 percent as Native American. About 4 percent are foreign students. Approximately 93 percent of entering freshmen receive degrees from Pomona after completing eight semesters of enrollment.

Pomona offers 44 majors in the natural sciences, humanities, social sciences and fine arts. Students may also take courses at any of the other Claremont Colleges. The most popular majors over the past five years have been Economics, English, Politics, Philosophy, Politics and Economics; Biology, Psychology, History, Neuroscience, Public Policy Analysis, International Relations, Mathematics and Media Studies. Also common are interdisciplinary majors, double majors and individual special majors, crafted by the student with guidance from faculty.

University of RedlandsRedlands, University of


University of Redlands is a private liberal arts and sciences university, consistently ranked among the best universities in the nation by U.S. News & World Report.

Since its founding in 1907, the university has been committed to a mission that emphasizes academic rigor, personal development and interdisciplinary studies.

In the residential College of Arts and Sciences, 2,400 graduate and undergraduate students pursue innovative liberal arts and sciences programs and practical pre-professional paths. The undergraduate students are diverse, free-thinking, adventurous – and among the happiest surveyed. Faculty members are committed to teaching and mentoring, both inside and outside of the classroom. More about the college ...

In the School of Business and the School of Education, 2,000 students benefit from credential, graduate and undergraduate programs designed specifically for adult learners. Innovative and relevant graduate courses are taught by experienced teacher-scholars and practitioners, and conveniently scheduled for working professionals. Classes are held on the Redlands campus and at several regional campuses throughout Southern California.

Santa Clara UniversitySanta Clara University

Men and Women

Located in the heart of California's Silicon Valley, Santa Clara University offers a rigorous undergraduate curriculum in the arts and sciences, business and engineering.. It has nationally recognized graduate and professional schools in business, law, engineering, pastoral ministries, and counseling psychology and education.
The 8,377-student, Catholic, Jesuit university has a 155-year tradition of educating the whole person for a life of service and leadership. This diverse community of scholars, characterized by small classes and a values-oriented curriculum, is dedicated to educating students for competence, conscience, and compassion.

Santa Clara University, founded in 1851 by the Society of Jesus as "Santa Clara College," is California's oldest operating institution of higher learning. It was established on the site of Mission Santa Clara de Asís, the eighth of the original 21 California missions.

The "college" originally operated as a preparatory school and did not offer courses of collegiate rank until 1853. Following the Civil War, enrollment increased and by 1875, the size of the student body was 275. One-third of the students were enrolled in the collegiate division; the remainder attended the college's preparatory and high school departments.
Santa Clara experienced slow and steady growth during its first 60 years, becoming "The University of Santa Clara" in 1912, when the schools of engineering and law were added. In 1925, the high school was separated from the University taking the name of Bellarmine College Prep in 1928.

The Leavey School of Business opened in 1926 and within a decade it became one of the first business schools in the country to receive national accreditation.

For 110 years, Santa Clara was an all-male school. In 1961, women were accepted as undergraduates and Santa Clara became the first coeducational Catholic university in California. The number of students tripled over the next decade. The size of the faculty also tripled and the University began the largest building program in school history, building eight residence halls, a student union, and the athletic stadium.

In the early 1970s, the Board of Trustees voted to limit the size of the undergraduate population, an action that was intended to preserve the character and ensure the quality of the University for generations to come.

In 1985, the University adopted Santa Clara University as its official name.

The 106-acre campus is located in Santa Clara, Calif., at the southern tip of the San Francisco Bay, approximately two miles from San Jose Airport .. The University enjoys a moderate climate year-round; the sun shines approximately 300 days a year.

At the center of the campus is Mission Santa Clara de Asís, surrounded by the roses and palm trees of the historic Mission Gardens. The more than 50 buildings on campus include residence halls, two libraries, a student center, and extensive athletic facilities.

Sonoma State UniversitySonoma State University


Located in California's premier wine country 40 miles north of San Francisco, Sonoma State is a small campus with big ideas.With a tradition of promoting intellectual and personal growth, leadership opportunities and technological proficiency, SSU offers its 8,100 students a friendly, safe and informal atmosphere on a beautiful campus setting of 269 richly-landscaped acres. Currently, campus housing accommodates 2,400 students in both apartment and residential suite style facilities.

The university also owns and operates the 411-acre Fairfield Osborn Preserve nearby and the 3,200 acre Galbreath Wildland Preserve in Mendocino County. Both offer major opportunities for research in the natural sciences rare for students.

One of the most requested campuses in the CSU system and regularly named a “Best Value” College by Princeton Review, SSU has also been named one of the “most wired” campuses in the nation by Forbes magazine. It is the only California university that is a member of the Council of Public Liberal Arts Colleges, the prestigious group of 19 universities and colleges across the nation that are often described as the “Public Ivies.” While SSU generally accepts all qualified students who apply from high schools in its service area, 80 percent of the freshmen and 55 percent of the junior transfer students come from outside the North Bay region. With 25 percent of its student body living on campus, it is one of the most residential campuses within the system. Sonoma State is proud of its many outstanding achievements:

The Jean and Charles Schulz Information Center is named after Peanuts cartoon creator Charles Schulz and his wife. It holds one of the largest libraries in the CSU system and the state of California with more than 400,000 volumes. A unique 750,000-volume automated-retrieval system is one of only four in the country. It also houses a valued collection of Jack London’s writings, original letters and memorabilia.

The 59,000 square foot Recreation Center, designed with high standards for sustainable building design,  houses state of the art aerobic equipment, a climbing wall, exercise and dance studios, two gyms, a large weight lifting and machine area, locker rooms and a spa. Known as a ” building that teaches,” the Environmental Technology Center is a demonstration of sustainable architecture and energy efficiency that results in it consuming only 50% of the energy of similar structures.

Opening in two years, the Green Music Center has been designed to become one of the great concert halls of the world and is modeled after Seiji Ozawa Hall at Tanglewood in Massachusetts (the summer home of the Boston Symphony Orchestra.

The Cerent Engineering Science Laboratories house state-of-the-art equipment for research and teaching in computer and engineering sciences and students have unique opportunities to work with hi tech companies in the area.

Founded in 1960 as a teacher education center for the North Bay, Sonoma State University is now a liberal arts and sciences university dedicated to providing high-quality undergraduate education and selected professional graduate programs. Dedicated to the liberal arts and sciences and known for its active use of technology., the SSU educational experience fosters intellectual, cognitive, social and personal growth. The faculty and staff of Sonoma State provide close mentoring relationships and an education that fosters ethical exploration, civic engagement, social responsibility, and global awareness combined with a solid foundation in an academic discipline.

Sonoma State University also serves as an educational and cultural resource for its region by offering courses, lectures, workshops and programs that are open to the public and by entering into partnerships with local businesses, industries, and cultural and educational institutions to enhance the quality of life in the North Bay and beyond.

As California's premier public undergraduate institution, SSU has a commitment to graduating students who have the ability to think critically and ethically and can effectively use information technology

UC DavisUC Davis

Men and Women

UC Davis is one of the nation's top public research universities and is part of the world's pre-eminent public university system. The campus is set in the heart of the Central Valley, close to the state capital and San Francisco Bay Area. As one of the last "small-town universities," we cherish our close relationships on campus and within the Davis community.

Academics at UC Davis challenge, stimulate and inspire. They offer more than 100 undergraduate majors and 60 graduate programs — the largest variety on any University of California campus. Many of the programs are nationally ranked — not surprising when you consider the number of internationally known, award-winning faculty who bring their knowledge and enthusiasm to the classroom.

UC Davis offers more than 110 undergraduate majors and 70-plus graduate programs in the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, the College of Engineering, the College of Letters and Science and the College of Biological Sciences. UC Davis' five professional schools — the School of Education, the School of Law, the Graduate School of Management, the School of Medicine and the School of Veterinary Medicine — is a combination unique within the University of California.

UC San DiegoUC San Diego   

Men and Women

UC San Diego’s academic excellence is built on a strong foundation. The faculty make ground-breaking research discoveries, receive the highest honors from their peers, and are among the most-cited in international publications. Impressive as this roster is, the faculty are first and foremost teachers, and they’re accessible to inspire and guide undergraduates at UC San Diego. Immersion in your classes and in college-specific and all-campus organizations allows you to discover an array of opportunities for learning, research, and leadership. The opportunities are yours for the taking – or the making – and add up to an education “beyond the books.” You’ll find yourself in a challenging learning environment with the best and brightest of classmates, 99% of whom graduated in the top 10% of their high schools.

One of the most unique features of UC San Diego is its family of undergraduate colleges. Patterned after the centuries-old Oxford/ Cambridge system, the six colleges independently provide students with individual choices in core academic programs, general education requirements, and social ties, while collectively retaining.

the impressive benefits offered by a major university. Each college has a focused educational philosophy, its own history and traditions, and its own residence halls; yet all majors and academic support programs and resources are available to every student, no matter the college affiliation. The small-college structure fosters a sense of community and belonging, allowing undergraduates to play a more active role in student government,
social life, and athletics than is often available at other large universities.

The colleges have each taken the name of an influential person who embodies the ideals sought by that college’s students and staff : Roger Revelle, John Muir, Thurgood Marshall, Earl Warren, and Eleanor Roosevelt were all leaders in the arts and sciences, in politics, and in society – and UC San Diego’s first five colleges have been named after them. Still in the naming process, the youngest college focuses on the intersection of culture, art, and technology, and is known as Sixth College. Since you can declare any major, wherever you are, the choice of your college is another singular component of a great education at UC San Diego.

There Will Be More to Explore

Each month, I will look at the schools in each conference and present a brief overview of each conference’ school. The August feature will be the schools of the MPSF and I encourage each coach to submit an overview of their school to [email protected]