NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A group of students are about claim their diplomas and be a part of a local university's first graduating class.
Western Governors University (WGU) Tennessee will hold its first commencement ceremony on Saturday. The non-profit online university started last year as part of Governor Haslam's “Drive to 55.”
The initiative aims to bring the percentage of Tennesseans with college degrees or certifications to 55% by the year 2025.
Friday night, WGU students and their families gathered at the Renaissance Hotel for a pre-graduation celebration.
The university currently has about 1200 students, many of whom are adults who have some college credit, but never completed their degrees.
WGU offers bachelors and masters degrees in four fields, and students can complete courses at their own pace.
“Being an adult with a busy lifestyle the online option was beneficial, and easier to work with,” said Michael Jordan, a WGU graduate. “I could work on my schedule in the evening when it is quiet and get my class work done.”
WGU Tennessee Chancellor Dr. Kimberly Estep said she expects school’s enrollment numbers will only continue to grow.
“We are just so excited to be in a process of celebrating with students,” said Dr. Estep. “Most balance full-time jobs, families and school, so it is great to see their dedication rewarded.”
The graduation ceremony starts Saturday at 9:45 a.m. at the Grand Ballroom in the Renaissance Hotel in downtown Nashville.
For more information on WGU Tennessee visit http://tennessee.wgu.edu