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Wally Boston

Wally Boston
Dr. Wallace E. Boston was appointed President and Chief Executive Officer of American Public University System (APUS) and its parent company, American Public Education, Inc. (APEI) in July 2004. He joined APUS as its Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer in 2002. In September 2019, Dr. Boston retired as CEO of APEI and retired as APUS President in August 2020. Dr. Boston guided APUS through its successful initial accreditation with the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association in 2006 and ten-year reaccreditation in 2011. In November 2007, he led APEI to an initial public offering on the NASDAQ Exchange. For four years from 2009 through 2012, APEI was ranked in Forbes' Top 10 list of America's Best Small Public Companies. During his tenure as president, APUS grew to over 85,000 students, 200 degree and certificate programs, and approximately 100,000 alumni. While serving as APEI CEO and APUS President, Dr. Boston was a board member of APEI, APUS, Hondros College of Nursing, and Fidelis, Inc. Dr. Boston continues to serve as a member of the Board of Advisors of the National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment (NILOA), a member of the Board of Overseers of the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education, and as a member of the board of New Horizons Worldwide. He has authored and co-authored papers on the topic of online post-secondary student retention, and is a frequent speaker on the impact of technology on higher education. Dr. Boston is a past Treasurer of the Board of Trustees of the McDonogh School, a private K-12 school in Baltimore. In his career prior to APEI and APUS, Dr. Boston served as either CFO, COO, or CEO of Meridian Healthcare, Manor Healthcare, Neighborcare Pharmacies, and Sun Healthcare Group. Dr. Boston is a Certified Public Accountant, Certified Management Accountant, and Chartered Global Management Accountant. He earned an A.B. degree in History from Duke University, an MBA in Marketing and Accounting from Tulane University’s Freeman School of Business Administration, and a Doctorate in Higher Education Management from the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education. In 2008, the Board of Trustees of APUS awarded him a Doctorate in Business Administration, honoris causa, and, in April 2017, also bestowed him with the title President Emeritus. In August 2020, the Board of Trustees of APUS appointed him Trustee Emeritus. In November 2020, the Board of Trustees announced that the APUS School of Business would be renamed the Dr. Wallace E Boston School of Business in recognition of Dr. Boston's service to the university. Dr. Boston lives with his family in Austin, Texas.

The Great Skills Gap: Optimizing Talent for the Future Workplace

As a keen observer of the advance of artificial intelligence (AI) technologies and the impact of those technologies on jobs, I looked forward to receiving The Great Skills Gap: Optimizing Talent for the Future of Work. Its advanced billing indicated that editors Jason Wingard and Christine Farrugia organized the book to examine how colleges and universities should be preparing students for their future careers and assembled a highly qualified group of educators, executives, and thought leaders to write about the topics.

Financial Planning for College Expenses and COVID-19

On the cover of the July 2021 Journal of Accountancy (a publication of the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants or AICPA) is an illustration of a few multi-colored college graduation caps along with the headline and subtitle: “Education expenses – Expert discusses student loans, savings tips, and making plans in a changing environment.” The cover article, a question-and-answer interview of college planning expert Ross Riskin by senior editor Dave Strausfeld, seems timely given that many college tuition bills are sent out around July 1 each year.

The 2U and EdX Merger: What Does It Mean for Students?

The announcement this week that public company 2U was buying EdX (a non-profit formed by Harvard and MIT) for $800 million made headlines everywhere (thanks to a well-oiled publicity plan). I looked at a few of the articles (and I’m sure there will be more) covering the merger and thought I would add my comments.

The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board’s Ambitious Strategic Plan – 60x30TX

I love it when states set big goals for themselves. In 2015, the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB) established the 60x30TX plan.

Federal Student Loans: Contributing to Higher Ed’s Problems?

In an opinion piece published in Newsweek last week, Ms. Neetu Arnold wrote that the federal student loan system isn’t worth it for students or taxpayers. Ms. Arnold notes that President Biden has not provided for debt forgiveness of student loans in the latest White House budget proposal, despite promising to do so when he was campaigning for President. Subsequent to the publication of her opinion piece, the Department of Education announced on June 16 that it was going to forgive $500 million in loans for 18,000 former students of the ITT Technical Institute.

Children’s Literacy: Sometimes New Ideas Aren’t Better

As a history major, I learned the importance of locating and reading multiple perspectives about an event or topic. Early in my career, I began reading a British publication, The Economist, for its non-U.S. perspective on current events and other topics. When I opened the June 12, 2021 issue of The Economist, I found an article titled “The reading wars” and subtitled “American schools teach reading all wrong.”

The Reasons Why Spring 2021 College Enrollment Fell: Will It Continue?

The National Student Clearinghouse regularly publishes college enrollment data. Its most recent report includes data from the Spring 2021 semester.

An Art Walk through the South Austin Bouldin Creek Neighborhood

In an April blog post, I mentioned how much art could be seen while walking around my neighborhood in South Austin. In the 1970s and ‘80s, many of the artists and musicians moving to Austin opted to live in South Austin neighborhoods because of the relative affordability of housing as well as its proximity to downtown Austin.

America Is Divided into Four Groups That May Never Agree

George Packer, author of soon-to-be-released "Last Best Hope: America in Crisis and Renewal" among other books, is also a staff writer for The Atlantic. Mr. Packer just wrote an excerpt from his latest book for the most recent issue of The Atlantic.

Hybrid Work: The Future for Office and Higher Ed Employees

In a recently published Wall Street Journal article, Chip Cutter writes that it took months for the transition required to coordinate bosses and employees working remotely. Mr. Cutter also noted that it may be even longer before employers and employees adjust to working together again.