American Public University System

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American Public University System
American Public University System logo.jpg
Motto Educating those who serve
Established 1991[1]
Type For profit
President Wallace E. Boston, Jr.
Academic staff
2,100+ [2]
Students 55,422[3]
Undergraduates 79%[3]
Postgraduates 20%[3]
Location Charles Town, West Virginia, United States of America
Campus Online
Colors Blue and White
Mascot AMU Golden Eagles; APU Volunteers

American Public University System (APUS) is a for-profit, online learning institution that is composed of American Military University (AMU) and American Public University (APU). APUS is wholly owned by American Public Education, Inc., a publicly traded private-sector corporation (NASDAQAPEI). APUS maintains corporate and academic offices in Charles Town, West Virginia and administrative offices in Manassas, Virginia. APUS offers associate, bachelor's and master's degrees, in addition to dual degrees, certificate programs and learning tracks.


The university was founded in 1991 by Major James P. Etter (USMC, retired) as American Military University.[1] Operations began in January 1993 with the enrollment of 18 graduate students. Initially, the main goal of the university was to meet the unique educational needs of military personnel needing courses in specialized areas, such as counterterrorism and military intelligence, that were not included in typical university course offerings. In the early years, instruction was done through conventional correspondence.[4]

In June 1995 AMU became nationally accredited by the Accrediting Commission of the Distance Education and Training Council (DETC). In January of the following year, the school introduced its first undergraduate programs. In 1998 AMU made the transition from correspondence-based learning to online learning.[4]

In 2002 AMU expanded to become American Public University System and established American Public University, intended primarily for civilians interested in public service programs.[4] In 2006 APUS was granted regional accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. In 2012 American Public University System resigned its DETC accreditation.[5] Since 2013, the university has been listed on the annual U.S. News & World Report ranking of top online bachelor's degree Programs.[6]


APUS is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.[7] The University's School of Business is accredited by, and several business programs have specialized accreditation from, the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs[8] The University's Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN to BSN) program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.[9]

Professional recognition and affiliation[edit]

Select APUS programs are also affiliated with and/or recognized by such professional organizations as:[10]


APUS offers more than 190 degree and certificate programs across six academic schools through American Military University and American Public University, including the following:[13]

  • School of Arts and Humanities
  • School of Business
  • School of Education
  • School of Health Sciences
  • School of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math
  • School of Security and Global Studies

Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges[edit]

American Military University participates in the Servicemembers Opportunity College program, with eligible bachelor's degrees in Homeland Security, Intelligence Studies, Emergency and Disaster Management (Coast Guard only), Criminal Justice, Management, and Business Administration.[14] AMU is also a Navy College Program Distance Learning Partner.[15]

Notable faculty[edit]

Notable alumni[edit]

  • Nicole Malachowski, United States Air Force officer and the first female pilot selected to fly as part of the USAF Air Demonstration Squadron, better known as the Thunderbirds. (Master of Arts (with honors), National Security Policy, 2009)[20]

Student organizations[edit]

Students at APUS are involved in a variety of different student organizations and honor societies. This includes chapters for the National Association for Environmental Professionals (NAEP), International Association of Emergency Managers (IAEM), Student Veterans of America (SVA), the Society of Human Resources Management, and The Saber and Scroll for History students.

Academic Honor Societies include: Alpha Phi Sigma, Sigma Beta Delta, Delta Epsilon Tau, Epsilon Pi Phi, Golden Key, Pi Gamma Mu, Delta Mu Delta, National Society of Collegiate Scholars, and Sigma Iota Rho.[4]


  1. ^ a b
  2. ^
  3. ^ a b c
  4. ^ a b c d "American Public University System in Charles Town, WV - APUS, American Military University". Retrieved 2012-07-08. 
  5. ^ "Report from the Accrediting Commission" (PDF). Distance Training and Education Council. 10 May 2012. Retrieved 12 May 2013. 
  6. ^
  7. ^ "AQIP Institutions". Retrieved 2012-07-08. 
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^ "Accreditation". American Public University System. Retrieved 2015-06-03. 
  11. ^ "IA Courseware Institutions". National Security Agency. Retrieved 2014-12-19. 
  12. ^ "American Public University System, NCFR". NCFR. Retrieved 2014-12-19. 
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^ "NCP Distance Learning Partnership Schools". US Navy. Retrieved 2014-12-19. 
  16. ^ "AMU Faculty Member: Alan Hale". 1999-08-11. Retrieved 2012-07-08. 
  17. ^ "AMU Faculty Member: Wendy B Lawrence". Retrieved 2012-07-08. 
  18. ^
  19. ^ "Brandt Smith". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved April 7, 2015. 
  20. ^ "President Bush Appoints 2008-2009 Class of White House Fellows". 2008-06-26. Retrieved 2012-07-08. 

External links[edit]