Elmhurst Moves to Expand Its Service to Nontraditional Students

March 19, 2012 | by the Office of Marketing and Communications

Elmhurst College will open a new school this summer, one that will offer innovative and exceptional academic programs for people with busy lives who want a better future.

On Saturday, March 17, the College’s Board of Trustees unanimously approved a charter that authorizes the creation of the School for Professional Studies, a new division of the College that will be dedicated to the education of nontraditional students.

The school will offer accelerated undergraduate programs, graduate programs and certificate programs that are aligned with the mission of the College, that meet the needs of employers and, most importantly, that will effectively serve people who don’t fit the mold of the traditional, 18- to 22-year-old full-time college student.

Because flexibility and innovation will be crucial to serving these students well, the new School will offer on-line and campus-based learning environments, as well as hybrids that blend both approaches. Programs and courses also may be offered in off-campus satellite locations around the Chicago area, or in accelerated semesters, or they may start multiple times a year.

“This is a moment of great opportunity for our College,” said Elmhurst College President S. Alan Ray. “Over the next several years, the School will significantly increase the number and kind of academic programs that serve working adults and those whose life commitments have previously precluded higher education.

“The School for Professional Studies will be distinguished by its unyielding commitment to academic quality and its constant focus on serving the needs of nontraditional students.”

On Monday, March 19, President Ray announced that Dr. Tim Ricordati will serve as the College’s first Dean of the School for Professional Studies.

With a long career that has focused on organizational development and operations for educational institutions, Dr. Ricordati has extensive experience in online education. He has served in senior faculty and leadership roles at DeVry University and its Keller Graduate School of Management and, most recently, as vice president of administration at American Quality Schools, a Chicago-based not-for-profit educational management company that operates charter schools in the Midwest.

The School for Professional Studies will officially get under way on July 1.

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