GCU responds to court ruling vs. Department of Ed

Grand Canyon University shares the following statement regarding its lawsuit against the US Department of Education after the court ruled against GCU’s request that the Department recognize the university’s nonprofit status for the purpose of funding federal student grants. This decision in no way affects the right of GCU students to receive such funds. It just means that the university must continue to follow regulations unique to for-profit universities — regulations that GCU far exceeds, and is expected to continue to exceed.

GCU is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, granted that status in 2018 by the IRS and the State of Arizona—a structure also recognized by the Arizona Board for Private Postsecondary Education, the Higher Learning Commission, and the AZ and NC Government Authorization Reciprocity Agreement. GCU will continue to operate as a legal non-profit organization while achieving unprecedented results in addressing the key issues facing higher education — most notably, the high cost of education, the magnitude of student debt, the lack of relevant industry-focused programs, and the declining diversity on college campuses.

Unfortunately, this case appears to be a philosophical disagreement with the Department of Education, particularly given the results GCU has produced and the fact that similar agreements have been approved at universities across the country. We will consider all options to resolve this issue for the benefit of our students, faculty, staff, alumni, and the communities we serve as a Christian university.

Specifically for the above issues, the GCU was able to achieve:

  • academic growth: GCU has maintained its admissions standards while increasing its high-calibre student body to 25,000 students on its ground campus with average GPAs of 3.6 and its online student body to 90,000, nearly half of whom are studying at the graduate level.
  • costs of training: GCU has frozen tuition at its Phoenix campus for 15 straight years, unheard of in higher education. Over the same period, tuition and fees have increased by 63% at 4-year public universities and 51% at private 4-year colleges, according to the College Board. After institutional scholarships, GCU students pay an average of about $9,000 in tuition per year to attend the private university. Additionally, GCU has kept its average room and board rates of $8,628 well below the national average of $11,950 at four-year public colleges and $13,620 at four-year private institutions, despite the fact that 55% of the university’s beds are new and are very modern, living in apartment style for single use.
  • student debt: By keeping tuition affordable, GCU graduates incur less debt ($21,073) than the reported national median across public and private universities ($28,950 according to The Institute for College Access and Success).
  • diversity at universities: Studies show that as tuition increases, college campus diversity decreases. By keeping tuition affordable, GCU has created equal opportunities and attracted a student body that is 46% black, including 28% Hispanic and 6% African American.
  • Industry-oriented courses: By focusing on where the economy is going and where new jobs and careers are being created, GCU has tripled its range of academic offerings, particularly in occupations facing severe labor shortages across the country — including nurses, teachers, counselors and electricians – while also developing programs in high-growth career fields such as engineering, computer science and cybersecurity.
  • Regulatory Requirements: Due to its affordable tuition and high-quality student body, GCU’s cohort default rate on student loans is 1.5% (well below the national average of 2.3%). None of GCU’s academic programs have failed previous federal employment laws for the department and the university is 66.2% well below the 90/10 federal funding requirements – these are the key regulations governing for-profit universities.
  • Public good: GCU continues to make higher education affordable while investing $1.7 billion in academic infrastructure, which will mark its 17thth– Rated the best campus in the country according to niche.com. The university is also investing heavily in its community with a five-point plan that addresses poverty issues in its community, created 14,000 jobs, improved safety in surrounding neighborhoods, renovated 421 homes, and supported K-12 education with free tutoring and 643 full scholarships for low-income students in the past six years and has provided more than $3 million worth of home goods to 6,500 families in need in its first year alone.
READ :  Helium Foundation Executive Responds to Binance’s Sudden Delisting of HNT Token: Report