Hackler Graduates From Western Governors U.

Michael Hackler of Wellington has received a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Western Governors University. On July 14, the online, nonprofit university held its semiannual commencement ceremony in Salt Lake City, Utah, and celebrated the graduation of more than 3,200 graduates — WGU’s largest class ever.

This year, Western Governors University celebrates its 15th anniversary. Incorporated in 1997, the university has grown to a national institution with more than 33,000 students and 16, 000 graduates in just 15 years.

The university conferred 2,036 undergraduate degrees and 1,199 graduate degrees in four disciplines: business, information technology, teacher education, and health professions, including nursing. Graduates from 49 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Canada, as well as military personnel working overseas, were recognized during the ceremony.

WGU founding governor Michael O. Leavitt delivered the commencement keynote address. WGU founding governors Roy Romer and chairman of the WGU Board of Trustees, Jim Geringer, also spoke at the event. Students and graduates who were not able to attend the ceremony were able to watch the event via live video stream on the WGU web site.

Featured on NPR’s All Things Considered, The NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams, CNN’s Schools of Thought and in The New York Times, 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 K-12 teacher education, business, information technology, and health professions, including nursing. WGU is self-sustaining on tuition of approximately $6,000 per 12-month year for most programs.

WGU is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities and nationally accredited by the Distance Education and Training Council (DETC). WGU’s Teachers College is the first and only exclusively online provider of teacher education to receive accreditation for its teacher licensure programs from NCATE, the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education.

The WGU bachelor’s and master’s nursing degree programs have been accredited by the Commission for Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), and its B.S. in Health Informatics is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM).

The university has earned the support of more than 20 leading corporations and foundations. They include institutions such as AT&T, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Lilly Endowment, HCA, Hewlett-Packard, the Lumina Foundation, Microsoft, Oracle, SunGard Higher Education and Zions Bank.

More information about Western Governors University is available at www.wgu.edu or by calling (866) 225-5948.