Can Ordinary Folks Build a New Online Accredited College
The dozen points Dr. Fred DiUlus says must be included in the development and fulfillment of a new online college.
November 30, 2016 (FPRC) -- Can anyone build their own private online university? In simplest terms, the answer according to online higher education pioneer, Dr. Fred DiUlus is yes. Admittedly it won’t be a Harvard, Yale or even equivalent to State U but it can be done, approved and accredited says DiUlus.
As the founder of the nation’s #1 online and blended university builder, Global Academy Online, DiUlus has 15 years of experience building new schools and has laid out how it can be done by anyone who possesses the passion and dedication to make it so. He offers that any effort to build a new online approved and accredited online school needs to adopt and adapt the basic things that make a school of elementary or higher education possible. The following are the dozen points he says must be included in the development and fulfillment of a new online college:
1. A clear convincing motive that centers on delivering knowledge and quality education to a clearly identified target market.
2. Organize as a nonprofit tax exempt organization. For-profit schools in the USA are dead if they are designed to be degree granting new online schools.
3. Select an appropriate name for the school. Avoid a knock-off of famous names or derivative of another very well-known school. Such a mistake would beg for such a school to be labeled a diploma mill.
4. Fill out a state application in the state of your choice for approval to open a school. Avoid the Golden Bear state and all of New England and make sure your state will approve a nonprofit online college.
5. Create and/or license copyright curriculum. Very important that your curriculum is original and created by those who have the credentials to do so.
6. Keep your initial submission of curriculum simple and what you believe is the demand. If you have no idea. Quit now, you won’t make it.
7. Provide backup data for your application including flawless documentation as required by regulators that includes a complete Catalog, Enrollment, Admissions, Registration, Student Rights, Student Grievance Procedures, Faculty Handbook, local city or county license, secretary of state approval to operate in the state, liability insurance, internal security for records, retention procedures, library (electronic) and librarian, and a never-give-up commitment to rewrite documentation often to satisfy whims of regulator reviews.
8. Demonstrate the school’s financial integrity. It is key. Answer the ‘what ifs’ if all or some students quit and want a refund or in the worst case if your school goes bankrupt? Regulators at every step of the way want to know this.
9. Select real and experienced faculty. Make sure they are capable of teaching at an accredited university and can prove it.
10. Have financial statements prepared by a professional that demonstrates your resources available to back up the school. No bankruptcy or felony conviction are permitted for sponsors, financial backers or board members.
11. Project a three to five year financial and income statement pro-forma demonstrating flow of funds based on tuition and contribution expectations such as endowments and sponsor’s and benefactor funding in order to build a base for the new school.
12. Build your website. Tell the truth. Claim only what is real.
DiUlus cautions that success is not predicated on money as much as it is on dedication and one’s ongoing passion to educate others. If you truly want to start a school, he says, and you have that passion to fill a unique niche, then creating a tuition driven nonprofit online university will find the world is your stage.
Send an email to LaFonda Oliver-Bowen of Global Academy Online