Franklin University isn’t your typical university—geared to the educational needs of working adults, this private university provides courses and delivery options tailored to fit the needs of people with work and family responsibilities.
The school does not provide a lot of the “frills” of traditional colleges, but instead provides flexible programs for adult students who are serious about developing their careers through higher education. Most classes are conducted online, with traditional courses available on their main campus in Columbus, Ohio and spread throughout various locations in the Midwest.
The school opened its doors in 1902 as a program of the Columbus, Ohio YMCA. At the time, it was known as the YMCA School of Commerce and was intended to help adult learners. Later the name changed to Franklin University in the early 1930s and made an amicable split from the YMCA in the mid-1960s.
Accreditation from the North Central Association was received in 1976 and the school steadily kept ramping up its programs. By 1993, an MBA program was first offered. Staying true to its mission to provide quality adult education, the university created a program to help community college students transfer over with most of their two-year college credits being recognized by the school. About 265 community colleges nationwide participate in the program.
In the 2000s, its international reach was broadened and now has educational agreements with schools in nine countries and maintains an MBA program in Poland. The college has also significantly increased its online learning opportunities and now offers many courses online.
There are a wide variety of academic programs suited to fill the educational needs of adult students, as well as more traditional college students.
The academic programs are divided into three colleges:
The College of Arts, Sciences and Technology
The College of Business
The College of Health and Public Administration
The university offers approximately 30 undergraduate degrees and five graduate programs. Undergraduate degrees include associate’s and bachelor’s programs while graduate degrees include master’s programs, including a MBA.
The university’s business programs appear to be its biggest attraction, with a majority of students enrolled in the business track.
The school has been a pioneer in online learning, and many of its degree programs can be completed online. The university also has a virtual library which students can use from the convenience of their homes or anywhere they can access the Internet.
Military Friendly University
An excellent relationship with the U.S. Armed Forces has been established. The university has been cited as a military-friendly university, and many students who are also military personnel take advantage of the school’s distance learning programs to complete their degrees. In fact, Franklin was recently selected by the U.S. Department of Education to pilot a program, along with 14 other universities, that would provide unlimited distance learning and it was one of 29 universities picked by the Army to provide distance learning courses to soldiers.
Most Popular Fields of Study
The university’s mission is to remove barriers to higher learning, so its admissions requirements are not as onerous as those of other universities. Students who have a high school diploma, GED or community college credit may attend. The university’s graduate programs have more stringent requirements, however.
Because of its open admissions policy, SAT and ACT scores are not relevant to admission, but may be applicable to some scholarships and forms of financial aid.
Students are eligible for federal grants and student loans and about 79 percent of students here receive some sort of aid. There are also a number of grants and scholarships offered by the state of Ohio, the university itself, and other organizations that students may be eligible for.
Eligible students can take advantage of the Ohio College Opportunity Grant, a need-based grant available to students seeking their first associate’s or bachelor’s degree. The grant can pay up to $2,808 per year to students who qualify. The money can only be used toward tuition and fees.
The university’s office of financial aid stands ready to help students find other grants and scholarships they may be eligible for.
The main campus is in Columbus, Ohio, offering students a broad range of entertainment, cultural, and career networking opportunities. The university also has a number of satellite campuses and students from all over the world are taking distance learning courses. Students all over the world can take advantage of the university’s online library to look up important research materials they may need in their classes.
A number of support services are offered to students including tutoring and leadership development services. Many of the programs are online. A unique coaching service is also available to students by teaming up students with graduates who help them with issues such as work/life/study balance, academic support and other relevant issues to the campus.
The school attracts an older, diverse crowd. Most students are over the age of 30 and because many students are paying their own way, students tend to be more focused and motivated than “typical” college students. Traditional student clubs and organizations are rare because of its focus on adult education.
Student Enrollment Demographics
Student Graduation Demographics
Being primarily a center for adult learning, athletic programs are not available.
Accreditation is provided by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
Justine Ventimiglia graduated with a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Michigan – Dearborn. Currently residing in a 1950’s modest ranch in Metro Detroit, she enjoys researching and writing about Mid Century Modern furniture and decor as she works on restoring her home and documenting the process.