July 19, 2011

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper Elected to Western Governors University Board of Trustees

SALT LAKE CITY, July 19, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Gov. John Hickenlooper of Colorado has joined the Western Governors University Board of Trustees. Hickenlooper was unanimously elected to serve on the governing board for the nonprofit, online university. The school was founded in 1997 by 19 U.S. governors, including former Colorado Gov. Roy Romer.

WGU, which was established to increase higher education opportunities for working adults, offers online competency-based degrees in high-demand career fields such as Business, Information Technology, Education, and Health Professions, including Nursing. Fully accredited and now more than 25,000 students strong, the university serves students in all 50 states.

"We are very pleased to welcome Governor Hickenlooper to our Board of Trustees," said WGU President Robert W. Mendenhall. "Colorado's Governor was a key player in the establishment of Western Governors University 14 years ago, and the continued participation of state governors has been essential to the university's growth and development over the years."

"Today, more than any other time in our lifetimes, increasing the number of highly educated people in our country is absolutely essential," Governor Hickenlooper said. "Western Governors University, like other higher education institutions in every state, is playing an important role in teaching tomorrow's leaders how to compete in a global marketplace. It will be an honor to work with WGU as it continues to serve a growing population of online students."

Elected Governor of Colorado in November 2010, John Hickenlooper is the state's 42nd governor. He served as mayor of Denver from 2003 until he took office as Governor on Jan. 11, 2011. As mayor, he consistently honed a creative, innovative, and efficient edge to government. Hickenlooper overhauled the city's financial system, created the city's first chief financial officer, and streamlined many city services. In 2005, Time magazine named him one of the five best big-city mayors in the U.S. A geologist turned entrepreneur, Hickenlooper opened Colorado's first brewpub and owned several Denver-area restaurants before entering public service. He is a graduate of Wesleyan University.

About Western Governors University

Featured on the NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams, WGU is the only university in the U.S. offering competency-based degree programs and the only nonprofit, fully online university with students in all 50 states. WGU offers 50 degree programs in Business, Education, Information Technology, and Health Professions, including Nursing. Since its inception in 1997, WGU has grown into a national institution, serving more than 25,000 students. WGU is self-sustaining on tuition, and does not rely on state or national support to fund its operations.

On June 11, 2010, WGU Indiana, referred to by Governor Mitch Daniels as Indiana's eighth state university, was formed through a partnership with the state. WGU Washington was established by the Washington State Legislature on April 22, 2011. Subsidiaries of Western Governors University, WGU Indiana and WGU Washington are state-endorsed and offer degree programs that are accredited through Western Governors University.

WGU is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities and nationally accredited by the Distance Education and Training Council (DETC). WGU nursing programs have been accredited by the Commission for Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), and its B.S. in Health Informatics is accredited by CAHIIM (Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education). WGU's Teachers College is the first and only exclusively online provider of teacher education to receive accreditation for its degree programs that lead to teacher licensure from NCATE, the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education.

The university has earned the support of more than 20 leading corporations and foundations. They include institutions such as AT&T, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Dell, Lilly Endowment, HCA, Hewlett-Packard, Lumina Foundation, Microsoft, Oracle, Qwest, SunGard Higher Education, and Zions Bank. More information is available at www.wgu.edu or by calling 866.225.5948.

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    WGU News - For Immediate Release
    Contact for media inquiries:     Contact for enrollment information:
    Joan Mitchell - Director of PR   866-225-5948
    801-428-5463                     www.wgu.edu
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SOURCE Western Governors University