SALT LAKE CITY -- Western Governors University (WGU) today named Sal Monaco, Ph.D. as its new provost and vice president of academic affairs, according to President Robert W. Mendenhall. Dr. Monaco joins WGU following a distinguished career developing and delivering high quality educational programs in business, technology, health care administration, and education. Dr. Monaco spent 10 years at University of Maryland University College (UMUC), serving until 2006 as vice provost and dean of the Graduate School of Management and Technology, delivering online degrees to more than 12,000 students enrolled in 20 degree and 40 certificate programs. He has more than 25 years of management responsibility in business, higher education, in the private sector, and with the United States Air Force. Since leaving UMUC in 2006, Dr Monaco has successfully served as interim president of the New England College of Finance in Boston, Massachusetts, and most recently as provost and executive vice president of the American College of Education. He holds a B.S.E. from Manhattan College, an M.S.E. from the University of Michigan, and a Ph.D. from the Lally School of Management and Technology at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. His appointment will be effective January 21, 2008. "WGU is redefining the model for higher education by preparing students with a set of integrated competencies, rather than a succession of courses, that define the skills, knowledge, and abilities needed in today's competitive marketplace," says Dr. Monaco. "Through a thorough and carefully crafted objective assessment of each competency, WGU ensures that graduates actually possess these critical workforce skills. Today, the university is on the threshold of becoming a formidable and dominant force in providing education for working professionals in career areas that are most in demand." According to President Robert Mendenhall, "What attracted us most to Dr. Monaco is his commitment to high academic quality and his demonstrated success in managing faculty and student success in a high growth online education enterprise. As WGU continues to grow at a fast rate (45 percent growth last year), Dr. Monaco's leadership will serve our growing student enrollment and the WGU academic staff extremely well."