In 1886, a group of visionary educators and business leaders saw the need for a higher education institution focused on career-based training to meet workforce needs in the southeastern United States. Together they founded what is now known as American National University with the intent of training workers in business, banking, accounting, administration, and other skilled professions.
American National University steadily developed a reputation for providing men and women with an efficient and effective education preparing them for the world of professional work. Students from many states made the trek to Roanoke, Virginia to receive a practical education that was more focused and relevant than that offered by other colleges and universities of the time.
As the institution’s first 100 years drew to a close, however, changes had already been underway that would give the institution a different appearance even as it continued to remain true to its original purpose. Rather than bringing students from surrounding states to stay at the dormitories and large central campus in Roanoke, American National University came to them. New community-based campuses were built throughout Southwest Virginia, Kentucky, and Tennessee. As the needs of the workforce expanded, business training was supplemented by career-focused programs in computers and health care. Certificate programs were no longer the norm—students pursued more in-depth study leading to associate’s degrees, and the University’s first baccalaureate programs were introduced.
Today, American National University and National College have developed into a masters-level institution offering more than 45 academic programs through 30 community-based locations in six states. A burgeoning eUniversity serves a growing number of students in both 100% online and blended formats, while thousands of international students have turned to National for both academic degree programs and English as a Second Language (ESL) instruction.
The university’s reputation for excellence has been affirmed through numerous awards and acknowledgments, including awards for grassroots student advocacy (Association for Private Sector Colleges & Universities TOPS Award, 2012), support for veterans (Top 15% Military Friendly School, 2010-2015), and a Lifetime Achievement Award (Imagine America Foundation, 2012) recognizing American National University President Frank Longaker’s 40 years of service to the career college sector – to name just a few.
American National University provides opportunities for individuals who are seeking to achieve their career goals by offering credential and degree programs through distance education and blended learning. American National University is dedicated to ensuring adult students have access to quality programs in career-focused disciplines that provide the skills needed to be competitive in today’s changing marketplace.
- Offer credential and degree programs focused on preparing students to be competitive in the current marketplace.
- Integrate soft skills and practical knowledge students need to be effective in their chosen career.
- Assist students in achieving their academic goals through proactive support and encouragement.
- Maximize the use of current technologies to offer accessible and relevant academic programs.