There are 24 campuses in the Penn State system. The one that gets the most attention is University Park, but what about the other 23? That’s where we come in with our newest 23 part series, Better Know a Branch Campus, inspired by Stephen Colbert’s Better Know a District. Next up: Penn State World Campus.
Name: Penn State World Campus, or “Penn State Online.” It’s like the University of Phoenix, only for Penn State.
Director: Craig Weidemann, vice president for Outreach and vice provost for Online Education
Enrollment: There’s no official number, but according to Debbie Benedetti of Penn State World Campus, there are more than 14,000 people enrolled from every state, the District of Columbia, three territories, and 62 countries. Not bad.
Location: The Internet. It’s in State College, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and just about everywhere else in the world.
Sports: It’s kind of tough for there to be athletics at an online school. Penn State World Campus is no exception, as there are no intercollegiate teams.
Fun Fact: Penn State World Campus plans on growing to 45,000 students in the next decade. That would mean it’s about as big as the University Park campus, and would make it the fifth largest school in the Big Ten. It has potential to be an enormous educational asset and money maker for the university.
History: The World Campus was established in 1998, making it the youngest campus associated with Penn State. According to the PSWC official site, “Our mission is making sure you have access to a quality academic experience, even if you have job and family obligations to fulfill. If you can’t come to one of our brick-and-mortar campuses, we’ll bring our campus to you.”
Right Now: The courses offered are the same ones offered at University Park, and the World Campus offers more than 100 online professional certificates and associate, bachelor’s, and master’s degrees in collaboration with Penn State’s academic colleges. As for housing, well, do you have a living room or another place with Internet access?
Story Time: Nothing submitted. Oh well. There are plenty of testimonials here, though.
Next Time: Penn State Great Valley School of Graduate Professional Studies! Well, that’s a mouthful. Did you go there? Tell me about it.
Previous Better Know a Branch Campus Features: Abington, Altoona, Beaver, Berks, Brandywine, DuBois, Erie, Fayette, Greater Allegheny, Harrisburg, Hazleton, Lehigh Valley, Mont Alto, New Kensington, Schuylkill, Shenango, Wilkes-Barre, Worthington Scranton, York, Penn Tech.