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February 28, 2019

WGU Receives Quality Award from International Accreditation Authority

Lucas Kavlie of Western Governors University receives the CIQG Quality Award from CHEA Senior Advisor on International Affairs Stamenka Uvalić-Trumbić.

SALT LAKE CITY – Nonprofit, online Western Governors University (WGU) recently received the 2018 CIQG Quality Award, recognized for its “outstanding performance of higher education in meeting the CIQG International Quality Principles.” 

The award was presented to Lucas Kavlie, WGU’s Vice President for Compliance and Accreditation, last month at Council for 

Higher Education Accreditation/International Quality Group Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C. 

"The award is a celebration of good practice and a demonstration of the major stake that higher education providers have in improving quality around the world," said Concepcion Pijano, an international consultant on accreditation and chair of the CIQG Advisory Council.

The international organization recognized WGU, citing that “the university, which uses a competency-based learning model with students working online, monitors its performance in key areas and works for continuous improvements and adjustments to improve the quality of students' educational experience.” 

WGU was one of two institutions to win the inaugural award, joining Conestoga College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning located in Kitchener, Ontario, Canada.  

"We applaud Conestoga College and Western Governors University for their commitment to advancing higher education quality," noted CHEA President Judith Eaton.

“Since our founding 22 years ago, WGU has remained focused on advancing quality of higher education and expanding access,” Kavlie said. “This award validates our commitment to providing our students with an experience that provides them with career advancement opportunities by earning a degree that is respected by employers, accreditors, and accrediting bodies throughout the world.”

WGU holds accreditations from multiple organizations for the university and its degree programs. The university offers more than 60 bachelor's and master's degree programs in business, K-12 teacher education, information technology, and health professions, including nursing. WGU works closely with industry leaders to ensure quality and relevance to today’s workforce needs. Because of this close collaboration with industry, WGU is able to identify the competencies needed in the workforce and develop accredited degree programs fit for purpose.  

Members of the international judging committee included Carolyn Campbell, Senior Consultant and Board Member of the Observatory on Borderless Education; Peter Okebukola, President of the Global University Network for Innovation - Africa; Concepcion Pijano, and Jamil Salmi, global tertiary education expert and former Tertiary Education Coordinator for the World Bank.

About WGU 

Established in 1997 by a bipartisan group of 19 U.S. governors with a mission to expand access to high-quality, affordable higher education, online, nonprofit WGU now serves more than 113,000 students nationwide and has more than 133,000 graduates in all 50 states. Driving innovation as the nation’s leading competency-based university, WGU has been recognized by the White House, state leaders, employers, and students as a model that works in postsecondary education. In just 22 years, the university has become a leading influence in changing the lives of individuals and families, and preparing the workforce needed in today’s rapidly evolving economy. WGU is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities, has been named one of Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies, and was featured on NPR, NBC Nightly News, CNN, and in The New York Times. Learn more at

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