Western Governors University (WGU), established in 1997, is a fully online university that focuses on delivering competency-based programs. The university is perhaps best known for being founded by 19 governors from different US states who joined forces and also collaborated with 20 major corporations and foundations to help establish WGU in their common quest to bring education to minorities, first-generation college students, low-income families, and geographically challenged students. Since its inception over a decade ago, Western Governors University has stayed true to its mission and has grown rapidly, and now serves more than 30,000 students from all 50 states. Currently, the Western Governors University only accepts students residing in the United States and certain areas in Canada. Outside of the United States, only active duty-military and their families that are assigned in overseas installations are accepted.
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Western Governors University has four colleges: College of Business, Teachers College, College of Information Technology, and College of Health Professions. Programs offered by the College of Business include undergraduate degree programs in Business Management (with specialization in Human Resource and Information Technology Management), Sales & Sales Management, and Accounting. They also have MBA programs with specializations in Information Technology Management and Healthcare Management. The College of Information Technology offers Bachelor degree programs in Health Informatics and in Information Technology (with 5 specializations), and 2 Master’s degree programs. The College of Health Professions offers a Prelicensure nursing program, RN to BSN, Bachelor’s degree in Health Informatics, and Master’s degree programs in Nursing with specialization in Education and in Leadership & Management. They also have an RN to MSN option. The Teacher’s College has the widest offering with 9 Teacher Licensure degree programs, 4 Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Licensure programs, 4 Master in Education with Teacher Licensure programs, and 15 Graduate programs for Licensed Teachers.
Tuition rates are the Western Governors University is very affordable with programs charged a flat rate every six months. Most programs charge only $2,890 per sin-month term, with only the Nursing Programs (MSN and BSN), BS Nursing (Prelicensure), and MBA Programs charging different rates at $3,250 per term, $4,250, per term, and $3,250 per term, respectively. Note that these rates do not include some special fees that may apply to specific programs.
Even with such low tuition rates, financial aid is still available at the university in the form of Federal aid (grants and loans), scholarships, VA and Military benefits, and corporate reimbursements. Note that aside from Military Tuition Assistance and programs that are eligible for GI Bill and VA Benefits, there is also a special military-specific scholarship, called the “Go Further” Scholarship, available at Western Governors University.
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Western Governors University is nationally accredited by the Distance Education and Training Council (DETC), and is also regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities. Many of the university’s different programs also have programmatic accreditation or certification from the following specialized accrediting bodies: Commission for Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM), National Security Agency’s Information Assurance Courseware Evaluation (IACE) Program, and the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE).