Aspen U. President Quits. Stock at .16 cents, still no word on accreditation renewal.

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by Ed Edwards, Mar 7, 2014.

  1. Ed Edwards

    Ed Edwards Member

    Here is the link again not sure what happened: Dr. Cheri St. Arnauld: Provost Perspective - YouTube

    I don't really follow GC but maybe I should start..
  2. Ed Edwards

    Ed Edwards Member

    Hi Delta. You came on pretty strong in this thread and I am now concerned that you have other motives. This is an odd statement and one that to me seems designed as a trap to built an external case against me. I searched the forum and in your one thousand and nineteen posts so far, you only have two mentions of Aspen, your last thread about them, according to the search results I got, was you making fun of all the interested and posts about the school in 2010.

    You also have not addressed my concerns above about which statements of mine you require me to retract, and on what basis. Please advise.
  3. Ed Edwards

    Ed Edwards Member

    Dear Delta: I see you are still active on this thread yet you have not provided me the information necessary to address your request for a retraction of some of my prior statements. Please do provide which statements in this thread of mine your are asking me to retract and on what basis so that I may comply. Please advise.
  4. Mary A

    Mary A Member

    Just to clarify, Michael Milken was associated with Cardean. Cardean acquired ISIM which was founded by Dr. Eric Boehm. ISIM became Aspen.
  5. John Bear

    John Bear Senior Member

    We have two former Presidents of Aspen University who post here. I wonder if either Mary A. or David Lady have any insights or thoughts on the accreditation situation?
  6. The_Professor

    The_Professor New Member

    Hey DI’ers, long time, no post… FWIW, here is what I can share with regard to Aspen University at this time:

    I am currently a little more than half way thru my Master of Science in Technology and Innovation, Project Management program with Aspen at this time.

    Contrary to the opinions of some others, I am a strong proponent of DETC-accredited schools and this is one of the reasons I chose to go with Aspen; that coupled with the fact that I liked their program, PMI accreditation (and the three courses of transfer credit for my PMP cert, coupled with the PDU’s earned thru course completion), the rigorous coursework that includes a great deal of reading, research and writing, good professors, the $3500 price tag, and so forth.

    Like we all are, though, I am always concerned with the ongoing ability of my schools of choice to remain accredited.

    I had also inquired in January with both the DETC and Aspen as to their accreditation renewal status, and was advised that I needed to wait until the DETC’s report from their January meeting was published.

    When the report was finally published in mid-February I was befuddled to find nothing whatsoever pertaining to Aspen University; no mention of accreditation renewal, show cause order, accreditation denial, no nothing.

    Follow up status requests with both the DETC and Aspen were either not responded to, or with a little persistence I would get a canned “Aspen University is accredited at this time” which in my view was totally unresponsive to the question at hand.

    Not one to appreciate getting yanked around, subsequent requests copying senior folks in both organizations prompted a letter from Executive Director Leah Matthews to be sent to me stating essentially: “To whom it may concern, Aspen University is accredited by the DETC” (I would attach the PDF here but I cannot seem to get the file size reduced under the DI restrictions for attachments and keep the resolution high enough for the letter to remain legible).

    Hmmm, the thot plickens, in my mind.

    Follow up and ramped up protestations on my part prompted a phone call from Aspen University CEO Michael Matthews telling me that “I kicked up a real firestorm,” that Aspen’s financial and legal issues have been exaggerated, and that everything is rosy in la-la land (to paraphrase).

    It was not stated specifically, but I got the distinct impression that the DETC’s accreditation decision with regard to Aspen has been deferred at this time, and if Mr. Matthews spin is to taken at face value; this is standard stuff, really no big deal, I am reading more into the situation than is appropriate, and 12 months from now all will remain rosy in la-la land.

    Hmmm...perhaps so. I advised Mr. Matthews that I appreciated his call, but in my mind the jury remains out with regard to how this all transpires over time.

    Now we are hearing of a senior leadership change at Aspen, which we can all speculate and read into this whatever we see fit. I will keep my take to myself, other than to just say that in the long run I am cautiously optimistic that this plays out to be a positive development.

    I, of course, am hoping for the best and this is all satisfactorily resolved on behalf of a good school and the many folks, including myself, with a lot at stake with their hard-earned credentials hanging in the balance.
  7. The_Professor

    The_Professor New Member

    Also throw in a high regard for Dr. Lady; a true innovator, trailblazer, higher education old-school model disruptor, and all around decent guy.
  8. Delta

    Delta Active Member

    I believe you clarified that the subject of this thread is speculative. However, speculative remarks like the president "jumping ship before bad news comes out" can and does have a negative impact on the current operation of a DETC accredited school! I for one now have concerns about enrolling in a program that I was interested in.
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 8, 2014
  9. gbrogan

    gbrogan Member

    Interesting. I came here today after seeing a comment on Aspen's FB page from February asking what was the deal with the accreditation and the response they got was:

    "Our CEO is happy to discuss the details of our accreditation with you. You can contact him at mike at He's expecting your email."

    What's all the hush-hush? Very odd and disconcerting as a graduate of the school. I read their prospectus about six months ago and immediately thought that investors reading it would explore other options.

    I wish David Lady would comment on this but I doubt he will. I think he was a kick ass kind of guy who probably ruffled a lot of feathers during his tenure and left when his radical ideas were met with nothing but resistance. If he was still in charge there-- in my opinion-- the school would be in a much better place.

    In my view, Aspen has little to offer at the tuition they are charging. My experience there was a good one with regard to course intensity and format but I got the tuition deal back in the day.

    I thought Aspen was a school that had a reasonably good reputation considering it's an online only school. After they offered that deep discount that many here took advantage of, they should have stayed on that road, relied on volume and the good word of mouth they were getting and even offered payment plans on the reduced tuition. They could have run their school in the same way that schools like Ashworth and Penn Foster do. Instead, they chose to go the route of charging high tuition for a limited utility degree and hoped the student loan train would drop many students on them at inflated prices.

    I was looking to get a second Masters and immediately considered Aspen but could not justify paying their price tag for an NA degree (no alumni discount, apparently).
  10. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Thanks - I appreciate learning the correct sequence of events. And it was unfeeling and immature of me (especially at 70+) to kid about "junk bonds." Aspen has offered a lot of good deals over the years and I hope it can surmount its present difficulties.

    A resounding agreement to all the good things said here about Dr. Lady. He's now Provost at ILM - which is offering a $3,000 DETC-accredited MBA, discussed elsewhere in the forum. Dr. Lady has been at the forefront of some hugely important advances in distance education, throughout his career.

    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 8, 2014
  11. The_Professor

    The_Professor New Member

    To give Mr. Matthews the benefit of the doubt, one of his roles and responsibilities would be to evangelize and put the best foot forward in support of his organization... Just so long as he comes across as genuine and not sounding like Joe Isuzu...

    Joe Isuzu - He's Back - YouTube
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 8, 2014
  12. The_Professor

    The_Professor New Member

    Yes, I am old enough to remember how much I loved the Joe Isuzu campaign!

    Joe Isuzu - YouTube
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 8, 2014
  13. CalDog

    CalDog New Member

    As this thread indicates, there was some uncertainty regarding Aspen's DETC accreditation status earlier this year:

    The DETC website now shows that Aspen's accreditation is due for renewal in January 2015.
  14. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Yes - but the stock is now down to 13.4 cents. :smile:

  15. Delta

    Delta Active Member

    Fact: Aspen University is still accredited and the DETC website says until January 2015!

    Seeking Accreditation

    Aspen University

    720 South Colorado Boulevard, Suite 1150-N
    Denver , CO 80246
    United States Phone: 1-800-441-4746 or 303-333-4224
    Fax: 303-336-1144
    Email: [email protected]
    Website: Online University - Online Degree Programs | Aspen University Founded: 1987
    Accredited: June 1993
    Accreditation Renewal: January 2015
  16. Delta

    Delta Active Member

    A lot of things can happen when the stock price drops ie: buyout, re-organization, nothing, etc. My point is that it is all speculation which can have a negative impact on the school's business!
    Disclaimer: I am not associated with Aspen in anyway nor am I a stock holder, just a perspective student.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 6, 2014
  17. Delta

    Delta Active Member

    ........................................................duplicate post
  18. CalDog

    CalDog New Member

    DETC can renew accreditation for up to five years. For example, Abraham Lincoln University's DETC accreditation expired in January 2014, was renewed for the maximum 5-year period, and is now set to expire in January 2019.

    Aspen's previous DETC accreditation also expired in January 2014, and is now set to expire in January 2015 (i.e., six months from now). So the renewal period was clearly well below the maximum. The renewal of accreditation is obviously a positive development, but the fact that DETC wants another full accreditation review in six months suggests that they still have concerns of some sort.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 6, 2014
  19. Ed Edwards

    Ed Edwards Member

    Or serve as a legitimate concern that a potential student should consider before selecting a school! BTW at the current stock price and with ~70M shares outstanding, someone could buy 51% on the open market and take this thing over for around $4.5M. Just saying.

    In the latest DETC report issued here on June 2 (4 days ago), it does not mention any reaccreditation.
  20. geoffs

    geoffs Member

    To weigh here as I have had a few FB/Linked in requests
    • Yes that post on FB was with me
    • Also Mike did call me...give him his due
    • I rather not disclose what he said as it's out of this scope, he offered me a copy of his new Ebook coming out Q1 2014 (not here tho?)

    Now financially, I have even considered buying Aspen as the stock is in the toilet and as a former educator and education management person I have a turn-around strategy but I worry about brand issues.

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