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Office of the President

A Message from President Scott Pulsipher


Scott Pulsipher serves as president of nonprofit Western Governors University (WGU), the nation’s first and largest competency-based university, leading all academic, operational, and organizational functions.

Pulsipher came to WGU in 2016 and blends a personal drive for making a difference in the lives of individuals and families through education and a passion for technology-powered innovation. At WGU, he is driving continuous innovation to improve student outcomes by focusing on rapidly advancing curriculum quality, new faculty models, data-driven learning, and an innovative cost model. In 2020, EdTech Digest named him one of the Top 100 Influencers in EdTech.

Pulsipher chairs the President’s Forum, a collaborative network of nearly 20 college and university presidents committed to the reinvention of higher education. He also serves as a member of Handshake’s Impact Advisory Board, Trustee for the Committee for Economic Development, and on the board of the American Council on Education.

Before coming to WGU, Pulsipher had more than 20 years of leadership experience in technology-based, customer-focused businesses, including Amazon, Sterling Commerce (now part of IBM), and two successful startups that traverse retail, supply chain, banking, payments, and manufacturing sectors.

Pulsipher holds a bachelor’s degree in management from Brigham Young University and an MBA from Harvard University.

President Pulsipher's Focus Areas

There are many areas in higher education that President Pulsipher is particularly passionate about. A few of those areas include:


Renewing the Promise of Higher Education

Higher education should move individuals forward in their lives. Pulsipher is passionate about making education affordable and accessible to all, while also ensuring that it creates value for students by aligning to workforce needs.


Closing the Digital Divide

The world of learning and work is now online, and it's here to stay. Pulsipher believe that internet access is a necessity, not a luxury, and is committed to a future in which every learner has the digital skills, device access, and connectivity needed to thrive in a technology-enabled future.


Student-Centered Design

Traditionally, higher education has been campus-based and centered on the needs and priorities of the institution. Pulsipher believes that the student should be at the center of everything we do and that the future of higher education is personalized to the needs of each individual student. 


Tech-First Mentality

History and tradition have value, but they shouldn’t constrain our approach to solving the real problems that individuals face in accessing and thriving in higher education. Pulsipher takes a tech-first, solution-oriented, innovation-driven approach in order to build what students need. 


Advancing Equity

Higher education should be an engine of economic mobility, but too often it has replicated structural inequalities instead of leveling them. Pulsipher is committed to closing equity gaps in access and attainment at WGU and across the system of higher education.

Recent Media from President Pulsipher

Embracing Technology to Make Opportunity Work for Everyone, April 2023

How Can Online College be Both "Promising" and "Predatory?", April 2023

How to Lead From the Front - with Scott Pulsipher, President of Western Governors University, March 2023

Online Backlash: Bad Policy Holds Students Back, March 2023

Challenging ‘Bad’ Online Policies and Attitudes, March 2023 

Letter to the Editor: The UC Abandons Progress and Preserves Convention, March 2023

Colleges and Universities Shouldn’t Wait for a Federal Mandate to Deliver Better Value, February 2023

How Can the Education Department Build a List of Low-Value College Programs?, February 2023

Battle Lines Drawn in Fight Over List, February 2023

We Have A Lot to Talk About at SXSW EDU, February 2023

House Education Committee Ready to Tackle Short-Term Pell, February 2023

Betting Big on Tech Apprenticeships, February 2023

5 Takeaways from Opening Testimonies in Foxx's First Education Hearing, February 2023

Clarity of Purpose, February 2023

10 Higher Ed Resolutions from Innovative College & University Presidents for 2023, January 2023

Watch President Pulsipher's Congressional Testimony

On Feb. 8, 2023, WGU President Scott Pulsipher was invited to testify before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Education and the Workforce on the topic of “American Education in Crisis.”
Watch the full hearing below or read President Pulsipher's oral testimony here.

Read President Pulsipher's
Forbes Articles

Learn more from President Pulsipher as he discusses topics such as student loan forgiveness, progress in higher education, and bridging the digital divide.

Contact President Pulsipher

President Pulsipher always welcomes feedback, concerns, and comments.

Other Inquiries

Contact the Office of the President regarding media inquiries, presentation requests, etc.