Seal of Walden University
|Motto||A higher degree. A higher purpose.|
|Type||Private, Public Benefit Corporation|
|Location||Minneapolis, Minnesota, U.S.|
Walden University is a private institution of higher education, organized as a Public Benefit Corporation and headquartered in the Mill District in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Walden University offers Bachelor of Science, Master of Science, Master of Business Administration, Master of Public Administration, Master of Public Health, Education Specialist, Doctor of Education, Doctor of Business Administration, and Doctor of Philosophy degrees in a number of academic fields.
Walden is a part of a global network of 80 universities across 29 countries owned or managed by Laureate Education Inc. The network includes a mix of both for-profit and public benefit universities, with most of those operations located outside of the United States. The network also includes traditional non-profit education partnerships with established institutions such as The University of Liverpool, University of Roehampton, and Monash University. In 2015, Laureate Education converted to a public benefit corporation. In an effort to measure public benefit performance against an objective third-party standard. Laureate chose to be assessed by B Lab, an independent non-profit organization.
Walden was established in 1970 by two New York teachers, Bernie and Rita Turner, who created a program for working adults to pursue doctoral degrees. In the summer of 1971, the first classes took place in Naples, Florida, focusing primarily on school administrators. These initial classes were to allow the students to form dissertation topics with their faculty partners before returning home to work at their respective schools while also working on their dissertations. In 1972, Walden conferred its first degrees: 46 PhDs and 24 Ed.D.s at its first commencement in Naples, Florida.
In 1979, the Minnesota Higher Education Coordinating Board licensed Walden to grant Ph.D.s and Ed.D.s in the state and in 1982 the school moved its headquarters to Minneapolis. In 1990, the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools accredited the University. In 1995, the school expanded its offering with the nation's first fully online master's program in education, offering a Master's in Educational Change and Technology Innovation.
Sylvan Learning Systems, Inc., purchased 41 percent of Walden University in 2001, gaining a controlling interest in 2002. In 2004, Sylvan Learning Systems became Laureate Education, Inc. Former President Bill Clinton, founder of the William J. Clinton Foundation and 42nd President of the United States, was until 2015, an Honorary Chancellor of Laureate International Universities. President Clinton was the keynote speaker at Walden University’s commencement on July 30, 2011. In 2015, Ernesto Zedillo, former president of Mexico and current director of the Yale University Center for the Study of Globalization, succeeded President Clinton as Laureate Education’s Presidential Counselor.
In 2010, Walden reported 76.4 percent of revenue from Federal financial aid programs. However, this amount does not include revenue received from the Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs education programs. Department of Defense Tuition Assistance and post-9/11 GI bill funds accounted for approximately 1.4 percent of Walden’s revenue, or $6.2 million. With these funds included, an estimated 77.8 percent of Walden’s total revenue was federal education funds.
During hearings in 2013, Sen. Tom Harkin, the Iowa Democrat who has been a fierce antagonist of for-profits, grudgingly praised the organization stating that graduates of Walden’s master and doctoral programs were faring well, due largely to the fact that many of these students entered their programs possessing significant experience in their fields. Moreover, Harkin went on to report that the percentage of Walden students who default on their loans within three years of entering repayment ranged from 1.7 to 3 percent from 2005 to 2008, a rate that was dramatically lower than the average not only for-profit universities (17.1-22.6 percent) but also for all U.S. colleges (8.4 to 12.3 percent).
Walden University has been regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, a regional accreditation agency, since 1990.
Walden's Richard W. Riley School of Education and Leadership is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE)
A number of Walden's degree programs are also individually accredited. The M.S. in Mental Health Counseling program is accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). Walden University’s Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP), Master of Science in Nursing (MSN), and Bachelor of Science in Nursing programs are all accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), a national accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.
Walden University's B.S in Business Administration, Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.), Executive M.B.A., Doctor of Business Administration (D.B.A.), and Ph.D. in Management programs are accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP). Walden’s M.S. in Project Management program is accredited by the PMI Global Accreditation Center (GAC) for Project Management Education Programs. Walden’s B.S. in Information Technology is one of only a few online programs accredited by ABET, the internationally recognized accreditor for college and university programs in applied science, computing, engineering, and engineering technology.
Walden University’s Ph.D. specializations in Clinical Psychology and Counseling Psychology are not accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA) and have not received designation by the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards/National Register (ASPPB/NR), which are requirements for licensure in some states. The M.S. and six other Ph.D. in psychology specializations offered by Walden are not governed by APA.
Walden University consists of five colleges:
- Richard W. Riley College of Education and Leadership
- College of Management and Technology
- College of Health Sciences
- College of Social and Behavioral Sciences
- College of Undergraduate Studies
Walden University sponsors several peer-reviewed and refereed academic journals.
- International Journal of Applied Management and Technology (ISSN 1544-4740)
- Journal of Social Change ( ISSN 1931-1540)
- Journal of Social, Behavioral, and Health Sciences ( ISSN 1948-3260)
- "The Higher Learning Commission". Ncahlc.org. Retrieved 20 January 2015.
-  Archived May 5, 2010 at the Wayback Machine
- PR Newswire (2010-04-26). "Page 2 - Walden University Press Release: President Bill Clinton Accepts Role As Honorary Chancellor Of World's Largest University Network - TheStreet". thestreet.com. Retrieved 2014-03-26.
- Senate HELP Committee staff analysis of Proprietary School 90/10 numerator and denominator figures for each OPEID provided to the U.S. Department of Education pursuant to section 487(d)(4) of the Higher Education Act of 1965. Data for fiscal year 2006 provided to the committee by each company; data for fiscal year 2010 provided by the Department of Education on October 14, 2011. See Appendix 9.
- "Walden University : Introduction" (PDF). Help.senate.senate.gov. Retrieved 26 February 2015.
- "About Our Accredited Online University | Walden University". Waldenu.edu. Retrieved 2015-02-26.
- "Walden’s Richard W. Riley College of Education and Leadership Receives NCATE Accreditation | News & Events | Walden University". waldenu.edu. Retrieved 2014-03-26.
- "State by State List of Accredited Institutions". ncate.org. Retrieved 2014-03-26.
- "CACREP Accreditation - M.S. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling". Waldenu.edu. Retrieved 20 January 2015.
- "Directory". CACREP. Retrieved 2015-02-26.
- "Accredited Online University | Accreditation | About Us | Walden University". waldenu.edu. Retrieved 2014-03-26.
- "PhD Psychology | PhD In Psychology | Doctorate In Psychology | Walden University". waldenu.edu. Retrieved 2014-03-26.
- "Ijamt.org". Ijamt.org. Retrieved 2015-02-26.
- "Publications and Journals". Walden.edu. Retrieved 20 January 2015.