1. History, Profile, Mission and Goals of Widener University
Founded in Wilmington, Delaware, in 1821, Widener University, an independent, Carnegie-classified doctoral/research university, is composed of seven schools and colleges and the Center for extended Learning. Widener is a three-campus university offering more than 60 undergraduate and 13 graduate and professional programs leading to certificates, minors, and associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees. The main campus is located in Chester, Pennsylvania and include College of Arts and Sciences, School of Business Administration, School of Engineering, School of Human Service Professions, and School of Nursing. The Commonwealth Law School is located in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania and the Delaware Law School is located in Wilmington, Delaware.
Widener’s nine predecessor institutions each had different educational missions. The Bullock School (1821-1846) and the Alsop School (1846-1853) were Quaker institutions for young gentlemen. In 1853, Alsop School became Hyatt’s Select School for Boys (1853-1859). It introduced military instruction in 1858 and shortly thereafter changed its name to the Delaware Military Academy (1859-1862).
In 1862, the Academy was moved to facilities near West Chester, Pa. The institution received its universal charter from the Pennsylvania Legislature on April 8, 1862, as the Chester County Military Academy. Two months later, on June 26, 1862, the school was renamed Pennsylvania Military Academy (1862-1892). In 1867, the cornerstone for the present Old Main was laid on a newly purchased tract of land in Chester and the first baccalaureate degree was awarded to 3 civil engineering students. In order to indicate without ambiguity that the academy was vested with collegiate powers and privileges, the name was changed in 1892 to Pennsylvania Military College (1892-1966).
In the 1940s and 1950s, the profile of the student body began a dramatic change: World War II Army trainees were admitted to an Army Specialized Training Program as early as 1943; World War II veterans entered in 1946; off-campus living privileges were extended to nonveterans in 1949; and an Evening Division opened in 1954. While in fact there was still a boarding Corps of Cadets, an ever-growing number of civilian students were enrolled in both day and evening programs. In 1965, non-cadet boarding students were accepted and in 1966, with the acquisition of the College of Nursing of the Crozer Foundation, the first women were enrolled.
In 1966, Pennsylvania Military College officially became PMC Colleges (1966-1972). The name Pennsylvania Military College was retained for the cadet college and Penn Morton College was adopted for the civilian component
The modern structure of the university was introduced in 1972, when the cadet corps was disbanded and the academic offerings were reorganized into the Centers of Arts and Sciences, Engineering, Management, and Nursing, the forerunners of today’s schools and colleges. Concomitant with these changes, the institution adopted the name Widener College (1972-1979) in honor of the Widener family which is as famous for its philanthropy and collections of art and rare books as it is for its contributions to higher education, business, finance, transportation, and thoroughbred horse racing.
In recognition of its comprehensive offerings, Widener College became Widener University in 1979 (to present). Graduate programs had been introduced in 1967 with a master’s program in engineering, followed by the M.B.A. and then by some 35 additional master’s and doctoral programs, most opened in the 1980s. Moreover, the university had, by 1979, expanded from a single campus in Chester, Pennsylvania to a two-campus institution.
The Delaware Campus of Widener University was opened in 1976 as the result of a merger with Brandywine Junior College (closed in May 1992), with a 40-acre campus located on Rte. 202, north of Wilmington, Delaware. For the first several years, the campus in Delaware was shared by Brandywine College and by the Delaware Law School, a formerly independent institution that had been acquired by Widener in 1975. In 1980, University College was organized on both the main campus in Chester and on the Delaware Campus to serve the nontraditional learner seeking part-time undergraduate programs. One year later, in 1981, the School of Hotel and Restaurant Management was opened, also on the Delaware Campus.
Three significant events took place in 1988: The School of Hotel and Restaurant Management was moved to new facilities on the Chester campus, thus consolidating all full-time undergraduate programs on the main campus; the law school’s name was changed to the Widener University School of Law; and the university broke ground for its third campus, located in suburban Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The Harrisburg Campus, officially opened in the fall of 1989, originally housed a branch of the School of Law and graduate level courses in nursing, education, and social work.
On July 1, 1993, the School of Human Service Professions was formed on the main campus. Most of the programs initially offered or administered by the School of Human Service Professions were previously housed within the College of Arts and Sciences. On July 1, 2012, the Center for Education, previously a part of the School of Human Service Professions, was merged with University College to form the School of Education, Innovation, and Continuing Studies. At that time, the School of Human Service Professions was reorganized to become the home for the Human Sexuality Program that had previously been a part of the Center for Education.
On July 1, 2015, the School of Hospitality Management was merged with the School of Education, Innovation, and Continuing Studies to create the School of Education, Hospitality, and Continuing Studies. On that same date, the Widener University School of Law, formerly one law school with a branch campus, became two separate, independent law schools – Commonwealth Law School and Delaware Law School. The Commonwealth Law School is located on the university’s Harrisburg Campus. The Delaware Law School is located on the university’s Delaware Campus and includes the university’s Legal Education Institute.
On July 1, 2017, programs within the School of Education, Hospitality and Continuing Studies were merged with other academic units. The Center for Education was moved to the School of Human Service Professions, the Center for Hospitality Management was moved to the School of Business Administration, and the Center for Continuing Studies was renamed the Center for Extended Learning and placed under a new administrative unit, Graduate Studies and Extended Learning.
1.2. Institutional Profile
1.2.1. College of Arts and Sciences
The College of Arts and Sciences has three divisions: Humanities, Science, and Social Science, as well as curricular oversight for military science and physical education. The College also operates the Music Program, academic assistance centers in mathematics and writing, the Lone Brick Theater and Fresh Baked Theater, and the Widener University Art Gallery & Collection. A&S also hosts student digital media activities including the Blue and Gold Widener student media site, Widener University TV, and Widener films. Annually, the magazine journalism class produces Chester Magazine to promote community and economic development in Chester. All undergraduate students receive a well-rounded liberal arts education through our general education offerings and have opportunities to do service and other types of community-based learning, research with faculty, and study abroad. Community-based arts programs are gaining national attention as is the work with Las Lajas coffee farm in Costa Rica, where Widener has established a global study/research hub. Internships, externships, and/or practicum experiences are available to all majors.
Students interested in law, medical, dental, or veterinary school are offered special advising; pre-health care students may choose any major in the College but are required to take a particular sequence of courses in science and math and will receive special advising to prepare. The College offers multiple majors and a sequence of preparatory courses for students interested in pre-Physical Therapy and an admissions guarantee to Widener’s doctoral program in PT for students who achieve high standards. An accelerated B.A./B.S./M.B.A. option is also offered in conjunction with the School of Business Administration. The College also offers graduate certificates in Creative Placemaking, Diversity in the Workplace, Liberal Studies, Nonprofit Leadership, and Urban Studies, as well as Master’s degree programs in Public Administration and in Criminal Justice in evening formats. All programs are offered on the Main Campus in Chester, Pennsylvania. The College of Arts and Sciences offers two interdisciplinary majors: gender and women’s studies and media informatics. The college offers a wide range of writing enriched courses available for all undergraduate students. An interdisciplinary team-taught capstone course, the Values Seminar, is required of all undergraduate Arts & Sciences majors.
Humanities. The Humanities Division offers majors in creative writing, English, fine arts, French, history, and Spanish. Courses in art history, art studio, Chinese, Italian, music, dance, and philosophy are also available. A Bachelor of Arts degree is granted. In conjunction with the School of Human Service Professions, a six-year program awarding both the baccalaureate degree in Fine Arts and the Doctorate in Physical Therapy is available.
Social Science. The Social Science Division offers Bachelor of Arts majors in anthropology, communications studies, criminal justice, international relations, political science, psychology, and sociology. In conjunction with the School of Human Service Professions, a six-year program awarding both the baccalaureate degree in anthropology, psychology or sociology and the Doctorate in Physical Therapy is available.
Science. The Science Division offers majors in biology, biochemistry, chemistry, computer information systems, computer science, environmental science, mathematics, physics, and science education. A Bachelor of Science degree is granted for all programs; biology also offers a Bachelor of Arts degree. Minors are offered in all disciplines as well as in astronomy, natural science or sustainability science. Double majors are offered between biology and environmental science, mathematics and computer science and in response to student interest. An interdisciplinary major in digital media informatics is offered within the College of Arts and Sciences. Students majoring in computer science or computer information systems may enroll in an optional cooperative education program designed for completion within the usual four-year academic program. Dual degrees in chemistry/chemical engineering, physics/mechanical or electrical engineering are offered in conjunction with the School of Engineering. Internships, senior thesis or senior projects and undergraduate research opportunities are offered in all majors. Biology and environmental science offer courses that include short term study abroad and service learning. In conjunction with the School of Human Service Professions, a six-year program awarding both the baccalaureate degree in biology and the Doctorate in Physical Therapy is available for either the Bachelor of Science or the Bachelor of Arts in biology. Accelerated programs offered in biology in cooperation with Philadelphia professional schools lead to the B.S./DMD, B.S./Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine, Doctor of Optometry or Doctor of Podiatric Medicine.
1.2.2.School of Engineering
Widener University’s School of Engineering is dedicated to providing quality undergraduate and graduate education and to advancing the state of knowledge in engineering, with the aim of preparing graduates for successful professional careers. The four-year undergraduate curricula consist of a blend of mathematics, basic science, engineering science, engineering design, practical engineering applications, and the humanities and social sciences. The School of Engineering offers six undergraduate degree programs in biomedical, chemical, civil, electrical, mechanical and robotics engineering. Dual Bachelor of Science degrees are offered in biomedical and chemical engineering, electrical or mechanical engineering, and in electrical and mechanical engineering. Dual bachelor’s degrees in chemical engineering and chemistry, electrical engineering and physics, and mechanical engineering and physics are also offered with the College of Arts and Sciences. Qualified freshmen are invited to enroll in the engineering honors program upon completion of their first semester at Widener. Students are encouraged to pursue minors in biomedical, chemical, electrical, environmental, mechanical, and robotics engineering, or outside the School of Engineering to broaden their horizons.
Engineering students can gain practical experience through an optional cooperative education program in which the student can participate in two periods of employment for a total of up to 12 months of practical experience, while obtaining the bachelor’s degree within the normal four-year period. Summer internships offer another opportunity for gaining practical experience. An accelerated program allows qualified students to earn both the Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in 5 years. The biomedical, chemical, civil, electrical and mechanical engineering programs are accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET (www.abet.org). The robotics engineering program will seek accreditation at the earliest opportunity allowed under the policy of ABET.
The Master of Science in Engineering degree program is offered with specialization in biomedical, chemical, civil, electrical and mechanical engineering, and in engineering management. A graduate certificate is available in land development. In conjunction with the School of Business Administration, a dual degree program leading to the Master of Science in Engineering and Master of Business Administration is also offered.
1.2.3. School of Business Administration
The School of Business Administration offers undergraduate programs in accounting, business analytics, economics, finance, international business, management, and marketing. Within the management program, students may focus their studies in human resources management, operations management, sport management or general management. Economics and finance majors have the option of taking a financial track which prepares them for taking the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards certification exam (CFP™). Accounting majors have four different options available to pursue the 150 credit hour requirement to become a CPA. Each option allows for experiential learning and one option enables students to earn their Masters degree. Each major curriculum is built upon a common foundation of courses which emphasize fundamental business principles, conceptual skills, and analytical tools. The school also offers full-time undergraduates an optional cooperative education program through which students may participate in a total of 12 months of pre-professional employment while still obtaining the bachelor’s degree within the normal four-year period. All full-time, undergraduate programs in business lead to the degree Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (B.S.) and are offered on the main campus in Chester, PA. Accelerated B.S./M.B.A. and B.S./M.S. in Business Process Innovation or Taxation & Financial Planning are also available.
The School’s Master of Business Administration degree is offered in full-time and part-time, face-to-face and online formats. Students can concentrate in business process innovation, enterprise resource planning, financial planning, health care management, organizational leadership, and general management. The School also offers specialized masters programs in business process innovation, and taxation and financial planning. Dual degree programs lead to the B.S./M.B.A., J.D./M.B.A. and M.J./M.B.A. (with Delaware Law School), M.E./M.B.A. (with School of Engineering), Psy.D./M.B.A., Psy.D./M.B.A (all offered with the School of Human Service Professions), and M.D./M.B.A. The M.D./M.B.A. degree is offered with the Sidney Kimmel Medical College of Thomas Jefferson University.
Certificate programs include the Certificate of Advanced Graduate Studies (post master’s), Business Process Innovation, Health Care Management, Organizational Leadership, and Taxation. The graduate programs are presented on the main campus in Chester, PA.
The School’s undergraduate and graduate business programs are accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) International. Health Care Management programs are also accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Health Care Management Education (CAHME). The Master of Science in Taxation and Financial Planning and the Financial Planning track within the M.B.A., as well as the Certificate in Financial Planning, are registered with the CFP™ Board of Standards. Students completing any of these programs are eligible to sit for the CFP™ examination.
Center for Hospitality Management. Students enrolled in the Center for Hospitality Management’s four-year program are required to complete courses in liberal arts and the sciences, business administration, and hotel and restaurant management, as well as three work experiences consisting of two paid summer internships and one cooperative education semester. The program leads to the Bachelor of Science in Hospitality Management. The undergraduate program is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Programs in Hospitality Administration.
1.2.4. School of Nursing
The School of Nursing offers undergraduate coursework leading to the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.) degree. The curriculum incorporates a foundation in the humanities and natural and social sciences, expanding to a focus on health and application of the nursing process. Enrolled B.S.N. students study on the main campus in Chester and affiliate with various health care facilities in the tri-state region for their clinical experiences. Associate degree or diploma-prepared registered nurses can complete the online R.N. to B.S.N. option, after completing the pre-requisite requirements in as little three semesters.
Students can enroll in one of the available Master of Science in Nursing (M.S.N.) concentrations to prepare for certification as advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs). Concentrations include adult-gerontology clinical nurse specialist and family (individual across the lifespan) Certified Registered Nurse Practitioner (CRNP) specialties. Master’s level preparation is available, as well, in nursing education and executive nurse leadership concentrations. Post-master’s certificates are available in any of the M.S.N concentrations. The R.N./M.S.N. accelerated program facilitates seamless progression toward the master’s degree for registered nurses who hold associate degrees or diplomas in nursing and a bachelor’s degree in another field.
Widener offers two doctoral degrees in nursing. The Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) program prepares nurse scholars for roles in leadership, teaching, and research. Its focus is advancement of the science of nursing. The Doctor of Nursing Practice (D.N.P.) program, available to qualified B.S.N. or M.S.N.-prepared nurses, focuses in strengthening advancement of clinical practice.
All graduate programs offered in their entirety on the main campus in Chester. The family (individual across the lifespan) CRNP and adult-gerontology CNS programs are also offered on Widener’s Harrisburg Campus.
The baccalaureate, master’s, and DNP programs at Widener University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, One Dupont Circle, NW, Suite 530, Washington, DC 20036, (202) 887-6791, and approved by the Pennsylvania Board of Nursing.
1.2.5. College of Health and Human Services
Primarily, but not exclusively, offering graduate programs, the College of Health and Human Services is composed two divisions: Health Sciences and Human Services. The Health Sciences division includes the Institute for Graduate Clinical Psychology, the Institute for Occupational Therapy Education, the Institute for Physical Therapy Education, the Institute for Physician Assistant Education, and the Institute for Speech-Language Pathology. The Human Services division is comprised of the Center for Education, and the Center for Human Sexuality Studies and the Center for Social Work Education. The College also houses several community-based clinics and services including the Biofeedback Clinic and Certification Center, the Chester Community Clinic, the Child Therapy Clinic, the Clinical Services for Vulnerable Adults (CSVA), Community Outreach Resources and Engagement (CORE), Organizational Development Services (ODS), Social Work Counseling Services (SWCS), Widener Community Connections (WCC), and the Widener Intimacy, Sexuality, Education, and Relationships (W.I.S.E.R.) Clinic. Additionally, the College provides administrative support and oversight of the Widener Child Development Center (WCDC) and the Widener Partnership Charter School (WPCS). All academic programs of the College are offered on the Main campus in Chester, Pennsylvania via on-campus, hybrid or online formats.
Center for Education. The Center for Education offers an undergraduate major and certification in PreK-4/Special Education. Secondary education certification is also available in biology, chemistry, earth & space science, English, mathematics, physics, social studies (history) and Spanish.In addition, a Master of Education (M.Ed.) with options in Counselor Education, Higher Education, and Special Education and multiple certifications are offered. All graduate programs and certifications are online or hybrid. The Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) is available in K-12 school leadership, cognitive studies in reading, and higher education leadership. The Center for Education also operates the Widener Child Development Center, plays a major leadership role with the Widener Partnership Charter School, and supervises the Widener Reads and Widener Counts programs, part of the America Reads program.
Center for Human Sexuality Studies. The Center for Human Sexuality Studies offers the M.Ed. and Ph.D. in Human Sexuality Studies which prepare future and current professionals to teach, consult, provide counseling and therapy, and conduct research in a variety of settings on complex issues related to human sexuality. Students may also pursue dual degree programs with graduate clinical psychology (M.Ed./Psy.D.), public administration (M.Ed./M.P.A.), and social work (M.S.W./M.Ed., M.S.W./Ph.D.). Programs are offered via online, hybrid, and low residency formats. The Center is also home to the Sexuality and Aging Consortium, the Interdisciplinary Sexuality Research Collaborative, and the W.I.S.E.R. Clinic.
Center for Social Work Education. The Center for Social Work Education offers a Bachelor of Social Work (B.S.W.), a Master of Social Work (M.S.W.) with an emphasis on advanced clinical practice and treating trauma, and a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in advanced social work practice and theory. The master’s program provides advanced standing for eligible B.S.W. graduatesThe Center also offers a dual degree in social work and human sexuality studies (M.S.W./M.Ed. and M.S.W./Ph.D.) with the Center for Human Sexuality Studies. The M.S.W. program is offered both in on campus and online formats. The Center is home for the Clinical Services for Vulnerable Adults (CSVA), Community Outreach Resources and Engagement (CORE), Social Work Counseling Services, and Widener Community Connections.
Institute for Graduate Clinical Psychology. The Institute for Graduate Clinical Psychology offers a five-year, full-time clinical psychology program and three-year postdoctoral respecialization program. American Psychological Association (APA) continuing education credits and Act 48 credits from the state of Pennsylvania are granted for participation in specially designed workshops and seminars. Degrees granted are Master of Arts in Psychology (M.A.) and Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.). The Institute also offers a number of dual degrees, including psychology and business administration (Psy.D./M.B.A.); psychology and health care management (Psy.D./ M.B.A./H.C.M.) with the School of Business Administration; psychology and criminal justice (Psy.D./M.A.C.J.) with the College of Arts and Sciences; and Psy.D./M. Ed. in Human Sexuality Education with the Center for Human Sexuality Studies. The Institute houses the Biofeedback Clinic and Certification Center, the Child Therapy Clinic, and Organizational Development Services (ODS).
Institute for Occupational Therapy Education. The Institute offers a full-time three-year clinical doctorate in Occupational Therapy, which culminates in the O.T.D. degree. An accelerated 3 + 3 program permits Widener undergraduate students enrolled in appropriate majors to apply to the graduate program in the junior year. Students in the O.T.D. program take interprofessional courses with other health science division students and engage in leadership and pro bono service to the Chester Community Clinic.
Institute for Physical Therapy Education. The Institute offers a Doctor of Physical Therapy (D.P.T.) degree in a full-time three-year format. An accelerated 3 + 3 program permits Widener undergraduate students enrolled in appropriate majors to apply to the graduate program in the junior year. Students in the D.P.T. program take interprofessional courses with other health science division students and engage in leadership and pro bono service to the Chester Community Clinic. The Institute also provides primary administrative support to the Ph.D. in Health Professions Education, and interprofessional offering of the College.
Institute for Physician Assistant Education. Pending accreditation approval, The Institute will offer two-year full-time Master of Science (M.S.) in Physician Assistant Studies. format. An accelerated 3 + 2 program permits Widener undergraduate students enrolled in appropriate majors to apply to the graduate program in the junior year. Students in the master’s program take interprofessional courses with other health science division students and engage in leadership and pro bono service to the Chester Community Clinic.
Institute for Speech-Language Pathology. The Institute offers a Masters of Science (M.S.) in Speech-Language Pathology in a two-year full-time format. Students in the master’s program take interprofessional courses with other health science division students and engage in leadership and pro bono service to the Chester Community Clinic.
1.2.6. Center for Graduate and Continuing Studies
The Center for Graduate and Continuing Studies offers part-time, degree and non-degree undergraduate and graduate programs for adults through online, accelerated and off-site options. Programs lead to the following degrees: Associate in Arts (liberal arts), Associate in Science (allied health, general studies, professional studies and radiologic technology), Bachelor of Arts (majors in liberal studies, organizational development and leadership, and psychology), Bachelor of Science in Allied Health, and Bachelor of Science in Professional and Applied Studies, Master of Arts (Organizational Development and Leadership) and Master of Education (Allied Health Education). Certificate, associate and bachelor’s degrees in Paralegal Studies are offered in conjunction with the Legal Education Institute on the Delaware Campus. The Center has responsibility for the Widener-Crozer Partnership Program in Allied Health and the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute for mature adults.
1.2.7. Delaware Law School
The Delaware Law School is one of Widener University’s two law schools. Delaware Law School is fully accredited by the American Bar Association: Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admission to the Bar of the American Bar Association, 321 N. Clark Street, 21st Floor, Chicago, IL 60654. Phone: 312-988-6738. Delaware Law School is also a member of the Association of American Law Schools and the International Association of Law Schools. The Delaware Law School specializes in corporate law, environmental law, family health law and policy, and trial and appellate advocacy. The curriculum at Delaware Law School offers experiential learning opportunities, including supervised clinical programs: a veterans law clinic, a criminal defense clinic, a Delaware civil clinic specializing in domestic violence matters, and an environmental law clinic, as well as innovative experiences such as those in youth courts and in the medical-legal partnership program in Delaware and Pennsylvania. The Delaware Law School also offers hands-on judicial, and public interest externships exemplified by the Wolcott fellowship program where Delaware Law School students serve as judicial clerks in the chambers of each justice of the Delaware Supreme Court. Students are eligible for semester abroad programs with the Southwest University of Political Science and Law in Chongqing, China, the Catholic University of Lyon, France, and Sookmyung Women’s University in Seoul, Korea. Dual degree programs are available with the Catholic University of Lille, located in Lille, France, and the University of Coruna, located in Coruna, Spain, and Bahcesehir University in Istanbul, Turkey.
Degrees offered are the Juris Doctor, the first degree in law that qualifies a graduate to take the bar exam; the Master of Laws (LL.M.) in Corporate Law and Finance and the General Master of Laws which includes concentrations in criminal law, environmental law, international and business law, and American legal studies. Online General Master of Laws which include concentrations in health law regulatory analysis & compliance, corporate law regulatory analysis & compliance, global compliance & ethics (with a health law or corporate law focus), and higher education compliance. Dual degrees are offered in conjunction with Widener’s School of Business Administration (J.D./M.B.A.) and with and the University of Delaware, the Delaware Law School offers the Juris Doctor/Master of Marine Policy (J.D./M.M.P.) program. A joint degree – the Juris Doctor/Master of Public Health (J.D./M.P.H.) – is offered with Thomas Jefferson University. Delaware Law School also offers degrees for non-lawyers: Master of Jurisprudence (M.J.) in Corporate and Business Law, M.J. in Health Law, and a General M.J. in Higher Education Compliance. The masters programs offer specific tracks that allow students to earn the M.J. in Health Law with a concentration in regulatory analysis & compliance and global compliance and ethics. Students can earn the M.J. in Corporate Law with a concentration in regulatory analysis & compliance or a concentration in global compliance and ethics. A joint Master of Jurisprudence/Master of Business Administration (M.J./M.B.A.) is offered in conjunction with Widener’s School of Business Administration. All Master of Jurisprudence programs are offered in an online only format. Graduate certificate programs are offered in the following concentrations: corporate regulatory analysis and compliance; health care regulatory analysis and compliance; global compliance and ethics, and higher education compliance. The Delaware Law School also offers in cooperation with the Continuing Studies Division of the School of Education, Hospitality, and Continuing Studies, a bachelor and associate degrees in Legal Studies. Also offered are paralegal studies certificates of completion with concentrations in corporate law, criminal law, estate administration, litigation, legal nurse consulting, forensic nursing, health law and intellectual property. Delaware Law School also offers continuing legal education programs for licensed attorneys.
1.2.8. Commonwealth Law School
The Widener University Commonwealth Law School (“Widener Law Commonwealth”) is one of two ABA accredited law schools at Widener University and is located in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Widener University Commonwealth Law School is also a member of the Association of American Law Schools. Widener Law Commonwealth specializes in public law and legislation, constitutional law, advocacy, small business advising, and environmental law. The curriculum offers experiential learning opportunities, including supervised clinical programs. The Central Pennsylvania Law Clinic is comprised of the Administrative Law Clinic, the Consumer Law Clinic, the Elder Law Clinic, and the Family Justice Clinic. The Law Clinic provides essential legal services to the community. Being in the capital city of Pennsylvania, students have numerous opportunities to do externships and internships with the state government. Through the Law & Government Institute, students may also participate in the Gedid Fellowships where they work with faculty, practicing attorneys, and government policy makers on projects designed to develop and improve government law, and hands-on judicial, public interest, and global externships. Widener Law Commonwealth offers the Juris Doctor, the first degree in law that qualifies a graduate to take the bar exam. It also offers an LL.M degree. A dual degree is offered in conjunction with Widener’s School of Business Administration (J.D./M.B.A). It also offers a Juris Doctor/Master of Library Science (J.D./M.S.L.S.) with Clarion University of Pennsylvania. Widener Law Commonwealth also offers a continuing legal education program.
1.3. Professional Accreditation
The following programs within the university are currently accredited as indicated:
|School of Business Administration
||Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International
|Child Development Center
Pennsylvania Department of Welfare (licensed)
Pennsylvania Department of Education (licensed)
||American Chemical Society approved list of schools
||American Psychological Association
|Continuing Legal Education
||Pennsylvania Continuing Legal Education Board of the Supreme Court
Pennsylvania Department of Education; Pennsylvania, Private School Board;
Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (formerly National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education)
|Biomedical, Chemical, Civil, Electrical and Mechanical Engineering
Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET
|Health and Medical Services
||Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Administration Education
||Accreditation Commission for Programs in Hospitality Administration (ACPHA)
American Bar Association
American Association of Law Schools
Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
Pennsylvania Board of Nurse Examiners (approved)
||American Bar Association (approved)
||Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education
||Council on Social Work Education
1.4. University Mission and Vision Statements and Goals
1.4.1. Vision Statement
Widener aspires to be the nation’s preeminent metropolitan university recognized for an unparalleled academic environment, innovative approaches to learning, active scholarship, and the preparation of students for responsible citizenship in a global society.
1.4.2. Mission Statement
As a leading metropolitan university, we achieve our mission at Widener by creating a learning environment where curricula are connected to societal issues through civic engagement. We lead by providing a unique combination of liberal arts and professional education in a challenging, scholarly, and culturally diverse academic community. We engage our students through dynamic teaching, active scholarship, personal attention, and experiential learning. We inspire our students to be citizens of character who demonstrate professional and civic leadership. We contribute to the vitality and wellbeing of the communities we serve.
1.4.3. University Goals
By 2021, Widener University will be a leader among metropolitan universities in promoting STUDENT TRANSFORMATION AND SUCCESS through:
Rigorous Academic Expectations and High-Impact Educational Practices that support intended learning outcomes.
- Articulate characteristics of rigorous academic expectations and practices.
- Raise the level of academic rigor.
- Expand the use of high-impact educational practices.
- Improve high-impact educational practices and student learning outcomes.
- Promote a university culture where academic expectations and high-impact educational practices are developed, supported and rewarded.
A Dynamic Campus Environment that immerses students in meaningful curricular, co-curricular, and extra-curricular experiences.
- Increase students’ participation in co-curricular and extra-curricular activities that promote student success.
- Support and strengthen domestic and international university-recognized programs in order to engage students in global and multicultural activities.
- Develop a campus infrastructure that promotes a vibrant living and learning environment.
- Increase opportunities for student interactions outside the classroom with faculty, staff, administrators, and alumni.
- Foster life-long commitments to the university in students and alumni.
A Culture of Leadership that inspires students, faculty, and staff to have a positive influence on their workplaces, professions, communities, and the world.
- Position the university as a recognized international model for intellectual, scholarly, and experiential work on leadership.
- Develop and assess professional and civic leadership attributes in students.
- Provide collaborative academic, co-curricular, and extra-curricular programs and experiences for leadership development.
- Engage faculty and staff with challenging leadership development opportunities.
A Diverse University Community that champions a culture of respect, civility, and inclusivity.
- Continue to foster a campus climate that values multiple perspectives and experiences.
- Prepare all students for success in a diverse and global society.
- Expand and promote access, equity, and success for disadvantaged and underrepresented students, faculty, staff, and administrators.
- Create and sustain institutional structures and processes to support a culture of inclusivity.
- Promote scholarship related to diversity and inclusive excellence.
Scholarship by faculty and students that enriches learning and advances knowledge within and across disciplines.
- Strengthen a culture that values, promotes, and supports faculty and student scholarship.
- Increase faculty participation in scholarly activities, including the scholarship of discovery, integration, teaching, application, and engagement, in addition to types of scholarship specific to particular disciplines.
- Increase student participation in scholarly activities.
- Increase collaboration between faculty and students in scholarly activities.
Civic Engagement that furthers the university’s national and global leadership in educating engaged citizens and in contributing to the vitality and well-being of the communities we serve.
- Create and enhance institutional structures and processes to advance the university’s leadership in civic engagement.
- Increase the scope and impact of curricular and co-curricular civic engagement activities.
- Increase support for developing strategic reciprocal partnerships that enhance student learning through civic engagement.
- Enhance the university’s role as an anchor institution.
Institutional Agility and Innovation that make the university attractive, accessible, and sustainable.
- Optimize the university’s enrollment.
- Achieve strategic initiatives through effective allocation and stewardship of human and financial resources.
- Anticipate and adapt to the changing environment with innovative educational and business practices.
- Construct and maintain facilities, including the technology infrastructure, that serve the diverse needs of the university community.
- Adopt policies and practices that promote efficient use and conservation of natural resources.