Excelsior College

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Excelsior College
Seal of Excelsior College
Former names
Regents College
Motto Ever Upward
Established 1971
Type Private, Non-profit
President John F. Ebersole
Provost Mary Beth Hanner
Students 36,500
Undergraduates 35,100
Postgraduates 1,400
Location Albany, New York, USA
Campus Urban
Philosophy What you know is more important than where or how you learned it.
Colors Purple, Gold          
Website www.excelsior.edu
Excelsior College logo
Alumnus June Jones, Head Football Coach at Southern Methodist University

Excelsior College is a private, non-profit[1] college, located at 7 Columbia Circle in Albany, New York, offering degrees at the undergraduate and graduate level. The college comprises five schools: the School of Business and Technology, the School of Health Sciences, the School of Liberal Arts, the School of Nursing, and the School of Public Service.


Excelsior College was founded in 1971 by the New York State Board of Regents as its external degree program, known as The Regents External Degree Program (REX). The initial development of the program was funded by major grants from the Ford Foundation and the Carnegie Corporation. Known as Regents College from 1984 until 1998, it operated as a program of the Board of Regents (which also served as its board of trustees). In April 1998, the Board of Regents granted the school an absolute charter to operate as a private, nonprofit, independent institution. On January 1, 2001, Regents College, required to change its name under the terms of the separation, became Excelsior College (Excelsior means "ever upward" in Latin; it is also the motto of New York).

Excelsior College has more than 36,000 students enrolled in a wide variety of undergraduate and graduate degree programs.


Excelsior College is regionally accredited by the Commission on Higher Education of the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools. Its nursing programs are accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing, Inc. (ACEN), formerly known as the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission. The School of Nursing has twice been designated a Center of Excellence in Nursing Education by the National League for Nursing. Its baccalaureate degree programs in electrical engineering technology and nuclear engineering technology are accredited by the Technology Accreditation Commission of ABET, Inc.The bachelor's degree programs in accounting (NYS CPA Track) and business are accredited by the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education (IACBE). The Master of Arts in Liberal Studies program has been accepted into full membership by the Association of Graduate Liberal Studies Programs (AGLSP).


Excelsior College is exceptionally liberal in accepting transfer credit from other institutions. Essentially, any credit from a regionally accredited institution will be accepted, if the course(s) falls within one of Excelsior's degree programs. In fact Excelsior, then Regents College, was founded in part precisely to address this question (the non-transferability of credit, leading to uncompleted degrees).[2] The college has recently added time limits: transfer credit will not be accepted if it is more than 5, 7, 10, or 20 years (depending on the specific degree program) prior to the date of enrollment. Even with these restrictions, this is a more liberal policy than most other colleges.

Excelsior College is well known for its flexible, non-resident degree programs.[3][4][5]

Sources of college credit that can be used towards an Excelsior College degree program, and to which advisors will refer an Excelsior student, include Excelsior College distance learning courses, courses from other regionally accredited institutions, college-level subject-matter examinations (including CLEP exams, and DSST/DANTES exams), non-collegiate training (including corporate, governmental, and military training) that has been evaluated for college-level credit by the American Council on Education (ACE), and assessments of prior learning portfolios. Unlike most colleges, Excelsior College sets no limitations on the amount of allowable transfer credit.

Excelsior College also offers Excelsior College Examinations (ECE) which are comparable to CLEP and DSST exams and are accepted as a source of credits by many colleges in the United States.

Excelsior College is a member of the Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges (SOC) Consortium of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities. SOC institutions are dedicated to helping servicemembers and their families earn college degrees. Military students can take courses in their off-duty hours at or near military installations in the United States, overseas, and on navy ships.[6] Additionally, Excelsior College has repeatedly been nominated as a top military-friendly school by multiple organizations.[7][8]

Excelsior College is one of several regionally accredited colleges operating on a model similar to Thomas Edison State College in New Jersey and Charter Oak State College in Connecticut; they are referred to in distance learning circles as The Big Three.

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ "National Center for Education Statistics: Excelsior College". Retrieved 2009-10-28. 
  2. ^ Donald J. Nolan, Regents College: The Early Years, Walsworth, 1998, ISBN 157864030X
  3. ^ US News and World Report: Education: Best Colleges: Excelsior College, accessed 26 February 2010.
  4. ^ National Program on Noncollegiate Sponsored Instruction: College and University Profiles: Excelsior College, accessed 26 February 2010.
  5. ^ Excelsior College: EC Tops Two US News & World Report Lists, accessed 26 February 2010.
  6. ^ "Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges: Home". Retrieved 2009-11-05. 
  7. ^ "2nd Annual Top Military-Friendly Colleges and Universities". Retrieved 2009-11-05. 
  8. ^ "Top Military Friendly School: Excelsior". Retrieved 2009-11-05. 
  9. ^ http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/25/books/gilbert-king-on-his-pulitzer-winning-devil-in-the-grove.html
  10. ^ "Charles Bowen, USCG". uscg.mil. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  11. ^ Dan Petty. "Navy.mil Leadership Biographies". navy.mil. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  12. ^ "City Colleges of Chicago - Leadership". ccc.edu. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  13. ^ "Anthony J. O'Donnell, Maryland State Delegate". maryland.gov. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  14. ^ "Home - The Ohio State University Alumni Association". ohiostatealumni.org. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  15. ^ "About TAG". talutoag. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  16. ^ "Senators - TN General Assembly". tn.gov. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  17. ^ "Infantryman named new sergeant major of the Army". Stars and Stripes. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 42°42′19″N 73°51′47″W / 42.705388°N 73.862934°W / 42.705388; -73.862934