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Online Degrees

Part of Western Governors University

November 4, 2020

Online University Experience

How WGU is helping students during COVID-19.

Woman doing online school outside

During these times of uncertainty, one thing remains positively constant. You can still work toward earning your degree. And WGU is here to help you get there no matter what. Studies have shown that Americans around the country are deeply concerned about the coronavirus pandemic. This is also true for WGU students. They have expressed fear and anxiety about moving forward with their education. Can they still do it? How can they do it? And how can WGU help them? We hear you, Night Owls, and we’re determined to keep you on course toward your dreams, even through unprecedented adversity. Here are some of the top concerns people across the U.S. have about the pandemic—WGU students included—and how we’re focusing on ensuring we can help you overcome these challenges.

I fear I won’t be able to find a job.

WGU’s 100% online courses can help you earn a degree that will prepare you to stand out from the competition and get a great job. Perhaps the pandemic has left you pondering a career change? WGU can help you make the transition. “Knowing that my college already perfected the art of online schooling, and isn’t having to figure it out as they go, has given me so much peace of mind,” said Sarah Hunter (B.S. Business Administration–Marketing). “I lost my job due to COVID-19, and ever since I have dedicated all my time to finishing my degree. I am well on my way to ending 2020 with a bachelor’s degree, and it’s thanks to the great accelerated features and a mentor that is always available to help me succeed and advance as quickly as possible.”

I’m afraid of getting sick.

For most WGU degree programs, you don’t have to set foot in a classroom at WGU, which helps reduce your risks of getting infected with COVID-19—and most other infectious diseases for that matter. If you are enrolled in a program that requires in-person attendance, such as a nursing or teaching program, you can trust that precautionary measures (mask requirement, social distancing, smaller group settings, hand sanitizer widely available) have been firmly established to keep our students safe. 

I’m careful, why aren’t others?

Truth be told, there are some folks out there who are not cooperating in the interest of the larger community, potentially putting others at risk. Rest assured, we are taking the pandemic seriously and encourage our students to do so as well. For example, we have sent masks to all WGU employees and have asked all mentors to continually check in on their students. 

How long will the pandemic last?

We wish we had a definitive answer for this. What we do know, without a doubt, is that with WGU you can earn a degree faster, from home, and be ready to enter the job market sooner. And no matter how long the pandemic may last, WGU is dedicated to helping students succeed. “I felt very grateful that WGU listened to my situation and my needs and helped me out financially during this pandemic,” said Brandie Sullivan (Master of Business Administration). “My mentor and course instructors have been readily available at all times during this term to assist me with anything I needed. I am doing the expedited program where I finish the degree in one term. They have supported me throughout the process to keep my motivation going. I have been more than pleased with my entire experience thus far.”


What can I do to help?

The pandemic has forced many businesses to close, either temporarily or permanently. If a local business has managed to stay up and running (a cafe, for instance) consider supporting that business. Earning a degree online can lead to a better-paying job, which could help you support that business and others on a regular basis even more.

I lost my job due to the pandemic.

How can I still pursue my degree? WGU believes nothing should stand in the way of earning a higher education, even if you’re unable to afford tuition. In addition to our already-affordable tuition, we offer scholarships to students who are faced with financial hardship. Students like Brandon Leirer (B.S. Software Development): “WGU has provided me with a safe way to be able to work towards a better future for my family. My business and career in large-scale corporate live events disappeared instantly at the end of February, with no significant return in sight. Without the panic and worry, WGU has given me hope and a path forward onto a new and promising career path.”

There’s been a rise in COVID-19 cases in schools that have reopened. What should I do?

Earning your degree online, from the comfort of home, is one safe bet if the schools that have reopened are colleges, universities, or technical learning institutions. Even if the school in question is one that your child attends, that school would likely revert to remote learning, which might be challenging to juggle with your own academic pursuits, but at least you’ll all be under the same roof, therefore reducing you and your family’s risk of getting infected. 

What if there’s a widespread shutdown of the economy?

A quality education is something that can never be taken away from you. Earning a degree will make you more marketable and help you land on your feet. It can even prepare you for a number of recession-proof jobs

I’m concerned about the cost of tuition rising.

We are too. That’s why WGU is committed to keeping tuition low and reducing student debt—in fact, we're about half the cost of most other online universities. In addition to keeping higher education affordable, we make sure you have everything you need to get your assignments completed, even when life throws you a curveball. 

WGU also came to the rescue of Caley Walker (B.S. Business Administration–Accounting). “When I woke up one morning to a computer that wouldn’t turn on, I was pretty devastated,” said Caley. “This meant that my tight budget was about to get a lot tighter—not to mention the stress and time it would take to research and purchase a laptop during a pandemic. 

“Just hours after a call with my mentor, I got an email from student services saying they were going to send me a laptop,” Caley continued. “Four days after my computer broke, I was already back to working on classes with the computer WGU sent me. I’m on track to finish my bachelor’s in accounting in December and wouldn’t have been able to do this without WGU. I am so thankful for a school that cares so much about their students’ success.”

WGU is continually focused on helping students reach their educational goals, even when unexpected things happen in their lives. Financial strain, health concerns, and lifestyle adjustments are things everyone in the world is dealing with. Here at WGU, our goal is to ensure that you can still pursue higher education, no matter what is going on in the world around you.

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One online university. Four colleges. Flexible degrees.

Our focus on your success starts with our focus on four high-demand fields: K–12 teaching and education, nursing and healthcare, information technology, and business. Every degree program at WGU is tied to a high-growth, highly rewarding career path. Which college fits you?

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