Excelsior College Struggles in Middle Age

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by Marcus Aurelius, May 17, 2018.

  1. Marcus Aurelius

    Marcus Aurelius Active Member

  2. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    Maybe Excelsior should stop offering expensive courses to focus on its ECEs for knowledge gained elsewhere.
  3. bceagles

    bceagles Member

    I’ve read a number of articles related to EC’s most recent round of layoffs. Per the articles, the cause for the layoffs include the class action lawsuit, the college deriving a disproportionate amount of revenue from the nursing program, the college offering too many degree programs, etc.

    Is EC is serious trouble?
  4. Steve Levicoff

    Steve Levicoff Well-Known Member

    I think the most significant thing about Excelsior is its history:

    Side observation: Excelsior and TESU were founded in the same year. But the big change in identity came when the NYS Regents (a/k/a University of the State of New York) divested itself of Regents College, turning it into a private college (although still non-profit) that proceeded to rename itself after a packaging material. (Trivia note: "Excelsior" is the NY State motto, but I've never met anyone who thought it clicked as the name of a college.)

    And so, as always, I laugh. I laugh again. And again. Perhaps there's a reason that I've never recommended Excelsior to anyone. I was too busy laughing at them.
  5. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    I've often felt that a number of these non-profit colleges seem to not be doing any serious fundraising. Part of that, I'd wager, is branding. "Excelsior College" is, in my opinion, a kind of stupid sounding name. Yeah, I get it. New York with the excelsior thing. But it doesn't convey the same gravitas as Thomas Edison State College/University or even its former name (Regents). Excelsior College is on that same tier as American Intercontinental University, name wise in my opinion. It just sounds gimmicky.

    Alumni need to take pride in their college. Part of that pride comes in the form of being proud of your college's name. And trying to hustle a $25 donation from former students isn't going to keep the lights on.

    Hell, even I have found myself capable of taking some pride in the simplistic name of my alma mater. For-profit and all, the only question that usually follows saying you went to CTU/Colorado Tech/Colorado Technical University is "Oh, where did you live in Colorado?"

    Couple this with the fact that not only did the Board of Regents divest itself of Regents College, but the SUNY system has Empire State College under its umbrella. For non-New Yorkers it may be hard to imagine just how much more ESC offers residents over Excelsior. ESC has a presence on the campus of nearly every SUNY school as well as offices and off-site classrooms in areas that don't have a SUNY School. Actual physical locations. My understanding is that they periodically offer dual academic appointments to professors. So a professor at SUNY Cortland can also be on the payroll of SUNY ESC without having to go anywhere extra at all.

    So when you see these ESC programs that require residencies, realize that these are highly accessible for people throughout the state. Excelsior simply doesn't have the infrastructure to compete in areas besides nursing. That program offers great value. But it's also a program area where the name of the school matters less than in other industries.
  6. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    ESC seems to turn every 3 credit course into a 4 credit course.
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2018
  7. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    CTU did the same thing. I transferred in, for example, Ethics at 3 credits at Scranton. It became Ethics, 4 credits, at CTU. It was the same for pretty much all of my credits transferred in.
  8. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    And you paid for 4 credits with each subsequent course, no?
  9. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    This was quite a while ago so forgive me as I'm going off of memory here. But as I recall I didn't pay per course, I paid a fixed fee. How it worked was that I was automatically enrolled in two courses at a time, I think they ran for 8 weeks, then I rolled right into another two courses, then I had a two week break before rolling into four courses again (two courses at a time, back to back).

    My understanding is that after I graduated they went with a one week break after each two course session but I don't know what they do now.

    There was no option to take fewer or more courses at a time. You didn't pick which courses you took and when. You had a list of courses that you needed to take, you took them in the order they were presented to you and you moved down the list as you completed them.

    I have no idea if they changed this since then. The math worked out to be "I pay X for one session. I require Y sessions to graduate" rather than a per credit calc.
  10. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    Do they use quarter-hours or something?
  11. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member


    That would have been be too rigid a schedule for me.
  12. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    It was quite rigorous. I imagine that doing it from scratch would have been quite difficult. It wasn't too bad with the transfer credits from my A.A. It took me around a year of that to finish my degree, I took two breaks in there because of deployments. Without transfer I think it would have been 24 months of just continuous school with only those two week breaks. That would have been trickier to manage.
  13. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    Colorado Technical University is on the quarter hour system. ESC is on the semester system even though every course is four credits; I believe their degrees typically require 128 credits. I think Harvard does something similar.
    SteveFoerster likes this.

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