Founder Dr. Donald Hecht envisioned a “better way” education solution.
Donald Hecht was able to land his first professional job with a Bachelor’s, but saw his colleagues getting promotions because they had graduate degrees. He quickly realized he would have to continue his education in order to advance his career.
For 15 years, Hecht worked to earn his Master’s and Doctoral degrees at the nearest university, traveling 35 miles several times a week to attend classes. Plus, the on-campus requirements for advanced degree programs added more time and stress to his long days—searching for parking in jammed lots, hours of late-night lectures in large classes with uncomfortable seats—while juggling a full-time job and family life.
Throughout this experience, Hecht became convinced there needed to be a better way for busy adults to earn advanced degrees. That “better way” ultimately developed into Northcentral University.
In 1978, Dr. Hecht founded the Southern California University for Professional Studies (SCUPS), to provide correspondence courses and degree programs designed for adult learners.
Over the next several years, technology advanced rapidly; and in 1996, Dr. Hecht met with a group of his faculty and administrators to discuss how personal computers and the Internet might be used to further improve their delivery of higher education. They all agreed that the quality courses offered through SCUPS could be made available anywhere, entirely online, to anyone who had access to a computer.
After discussions with the State Board and the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA), Dr. Hecht decided to establish a separate institution to offer 100% online degree programs—and Northcentral University was founded.
A singular devotion to innovation created a bright future for many.
In 1871, U.S. President James Garfield said the ideal learning situation was a renowned teacher “on one end of a log and a motivated student on the other.”
Northcentral replaced the 19th-century log with the set-century Internet to bring together our classes and faculty mentors with motivated learners who want a valuable education.
We began by providing a needed alternative to the classroom-based model that had been the standard in American education for over two centuries. Then, with our 100% online classes, more people than ever before had the opportunity to earn an advanced degree.
In addition to our successful history of innovation in education, Northcentral still distinguishes itself today from other online programs:
- First 100% online university to offer accredited Doctoral degrees
- One of only eight online schools worldwide to receive accreditation by the Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP), and the only 100% online institution that offers Doctoral, Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees to receive this honor