Established as a single-classroom institution in 1884, Philadelphia University claims its roots in the textile industry. Originally named the Philadelphia Textile School, it began awarding baccalaureate degrees in 1941. Several name changes and locations later, Philadelphia University is currently the only private school named after the city of Philadelphia.
Philadelphia U. was named among U.S. News & World Report’s top 15 regional “Best Value” schools in 2012. Bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees are available to interested students in 40 different majors. With an average class size of 18, the university offers 20 studios and laboratories designed for hands-on experience. The 100-acre campus houses schools of architecture, liberal arts, design and media, engineering and textiles, and business administration. Within these disciplines, undergraduate degree program offerings are extensive. Students may choose to study fields such as animation, biopsychology, international business, environmental sustainability, fashion merchandising, and landscape architecture.
With the exception of Philadelphia University’s MBA program, all graduate-level programs culminate in Master of Science degrees. Prospective grad students may major in construction management, sustainable design, textile design, occupational therapy, midwifery, or disaster medicine and management. Fittingly enough, a Ph.D. is also offered in textile engineering. Philadelphia University’s online course offerings are extensive, and facilitated via the Blackboard learning system, message boards, and multimedia presentations. Online degree programs found at Philadelphia U. include bachelor’s and master’s programs in midwifery, law enforcement, disaster management, sustainable design, health services management, and human resources management.
Working professionals may find the School of Continuing and Professional Studies especially appealing. Several accelerated Bachelor of Science degree programs, associate degrees in allied health, and professional development options are available. Philadelphia U. entices local professionals by offering a 25% tuition discount to city employees and their spouses, and also provides dedicated scholarship funding to students who transfer from community colleges into an accelerated bachelor’s degree program.
Philadelphia U. believes in the value of practical skills application. Thus, all students are encouraged to participate in internships, clinical rotations, fieldwork and co-ops that incorporate classroom learning in the real world. Community service is also an integral part of student life. Performed as part of classes or independently through service organizations, service to the community is expected of students.
Student life is varied and includes Greek social societies, NCAA Division II sports, and clubs of particular interest. Philadelphia U. is also home to student chapters of several industry-based organizations. Membership in the American Institute for Architecture Students, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, the American Society for Landscape Architects, the American Institute of Graphic Arts, and other groups helps connect students with those who share their interests, and also provides networking and potential career opportunities.
This historic Philly institution has been in business for nearly 130 years, and has evolved immensely during that time. Students who desire trade-oriented education, individualized attention from professors, and relatively low tuition costs should definitely consider Philadelphia U. when the time comes to mail college applications.