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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 July 2016, he retired as APUS president and continued as CEO of APEI. In September 2017, he was reappointed APUS president after the resignation of Dr. Karan Powell. In September 2019, Angela Selden was named CEO of APEI, succeeding Dr. Boston who will remain APUS president until his planned retirement in June 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. During his tenure, APUS grew to over 100,000 students, 200 degree and certificate programs, and approximately 90,000 alumni. In addition to his service as a board member of APUS and APEI, Dr. Boston is 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, a board member of the Presidents’ Forum, and a board member of Hondros College of Nursing and Fidelis, Inc. 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. Dr. Boston lives in Owings Mills, MD with his wife Sharon and their two daughters.

President Obama Offers a Boost to Community Colleges

Last week President Obama announced the American Graduation Initiative, a 10-year, $12 billion plan focused on community colleges.  Community colleges play an integral role in the American higher education system and will play an even bigger role as America works toward President Obama’s goals of regaining America’s place as the world’s leader in college completion rates and establishing an American workforce that is able to compete with that of other nations. 

Ignore Everybody and 39 Other Keys to Creativity

While I have listed the gapingvoid blog as one of the websites that I visit, I doubt that many readers have visited the site.  Hugh MacLeod, the author of that site, is a marketer.  He has a hobby/profession as a cartoonist and usually illustrates those cartoons on the back of business cards, publishing them on his blog.

Trends in College Spending

The Delta Cost Project recently released a report titled, “Trends in College Spending: Where Does the Money Come From? Where Does it Go?” The report is enlightening given the well-documented increases in college costs combined with the current financial crisis. 

The Forward to the report, written by Delta Cost Project’s Executive Director, Jane Wellman, notes that “Our country needs to increase capacity and improve performance in higher education. 

Facebook: The Future of the Internet?

There can be little doubt that social networking has become a significant part of many of our everyday lives.  An article last month in Wired Magazine explains that not only has the phenomenon taken hold in our personal lives, it has become a coveted aspect of the online industry with the largest internet powerhouses vying for the opportunity to take advantage of the wealth of personal information we share everyday on such sites.

Some Colleges and Universities Considering Three-Year Degrees in Attempt to Increase Access while Reducing Costs

Questions of access and affordability have plagued higher education for many years.  Coupled with the implications of the recent global economic downturn, these issues have received even greater consideration in the last several years.  As college administrators attempt to tackle the problems associated with providing greater access and affordability, creative ideas are being formulated.

One such idea recently gaining attention is scaling back the length of time it takes to receive a bachelors degree from the traditional four years to three. 

Characteristics of the Class of 2020

Whenever I can find a good book or research paper on the topic of distance education, I will usually obtain a copy in order to see if there’s a trend or idea that is worth noting or pursuing.  For a few weeks, I had noted the ad in The Chronicle of Higher Education touting their new report, “The College of 2020:  Students.” 

The Economic Benefits of Closing the Achievement Gap in American Schools

McKinsey & Company released a report in April of this year titled, “The Economic Impact of the Achievement Gap in America’s Schools.”  The report identifies four aspects of the achievement gap in American schools: the international achievement gap, the racial achievement gap, the income achievement gap, and system-based achievement gaps.  The findings in the report are striking in their sense of urgency and are worth discussing.

Department of Education Study Finds that Online Education is Beneficial to Student Learning

The U.S. Department of Education released the findings of a meta-analysis conducted by its Office of Planning, Evaluation, and Policy Development on Friday that confirm what online educators have known for years: “on average, students in online learning conditions performed better than those receiving face-to-face instruction.” 

Online education has gained tremendous momentum in the last several years. 

The Fourth of July

Tomorrow is the Fourth of July, the date on which Americans celebrate our nation’s independence.  Robert F. Kennedy once said, “It is from numberless diverse acts of courage and belief that human history is shaped.  Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope.” 

Cry, the Beloved Country by Alan Paton

Alan Paton wrote Cry, the Beloved Country about his native country, South Africa, in 1946.  In the 60 plus years since, it has become a classic.  When I was an undergraduate at Duke in the 1970’s, this book was required reading in a class that I did not have to take.  In preparation for a trip to South Africa this month, I recently read it for the first time.