Now is an exciting time of growth at Thiel College in Greenville, Pa. In addition to its 38 undergraduate degrees that comprise new programs — including environmental safety management, sports management, data analytics, and exercise science — as well as time-tested majors such as accounting, education, and psychology, the College recently introduced five new graduate degree programs that are pioneering several valued courses of study in the current job market.
The graduate program options at Thiel include master’s degrees in business administration, clinical mental health counseling, communication and leadership, physician assistant studies and speech-language pathology. All the graduate programs include a fifth-year option for undergraduate Thiel students. If accepted into a program, students can graduate with a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in five years. Applications are currently being accepted for the first class of students of the Master of Arts in clinical mental health counseling program, which will begin in the summer of 2022.
“Thiel College is an institution committed to creating the leaders the world needs now,” said Thiel College President Susan Traverso, Ph.D. “Thiel is a place of opportunity that puts our graduates in a place to reach their full potential and become leaders, whether that is in the boardroom, the emergency room, the classroom, or the meeting room. The addition of graduate programming and the strength of the last two recruiting classes have elevated the academic profile of our students.”
The College’s undergraduate nursing program has also been recently restored, which comes at a time when the importance of healthcare workers has been particularly emphasized during the worldwide pandemic. This collaborative nursing program requires students to complete their studies at both the College and at a local hospital, which provides to them the advantages of a college experience and the practicality of training in a hospital setting to earn an R.N. degree.
To support these academic additions, a recently completed $3.5 million campus project created a floor of dedicated lab, office and classroom space for the College’s physician assistant and speech-language pathology students. New labs and classroom space were also added to the College’s science building. These projects are the first phases of a $16 million project that is going to include more major improvements to the College’s Academic Center and athletic, health, and wellness facilities.
These academic and physical changes are among the reasons that growth at Thiel College is anticipated to continue. Published reports in western Pa. media cited declining enrollments at colleges and universities regionally and nationally. Contrary to these trends, enrollment at Thiel increased by 7.5 percent in 2020 and was just shy of 10 percent in 2021. Undergraduate enrollment grew about 4 percent each of the last two years.
“I’m happy to report that our efforts to offer new undergraduate and graduate programs have led to enrollment increases,” Traverso said. “At Thiel, our emphasis is on letting students shape themselves into the type of leaders they want to be.”
Thiel College was ranked as the top school in western Pennsylvania overall and recognized for the social mobility of its graduates among the Regional Colleges in the North in the 37th edition of U.S. News & World Report “Best Colleges” rankings. Overall, Thiel College rose to a tie for 18th among North Regional Colleges. Furthermore, in the north region, Thiel College was fifth among colleges ranked for the social mobility of its graduates because of the successful post-graduate outcomes of Thiel students who received federal Pell Grants. This success can likely be partially attributed to the College’s mentorship, peer counseling, and first-year experience programs, which have bolstered Thiel’s standard academic and social activities and provided more opportunities to disadvantaged students to encourage their college success.
Thiel College is a renowned and respected private residential liberal arts, professional studies and sciences college located in the heart of scenic northwest Pennsylvania. Founded in 1866 as a coeducational institution with roots in the Lutheran tradition, the College is committed to connecting a diverse and inclusive community with a quality and personalized learning experience. It is this distinct combination of exceptional faculty, signature programs (academic, athletic and career), a historic campus, and modern facilities that drives the return-on-investment Thiel graduates receive. Thiel College is dedicated to providing access to high-quality undergraduate and graduate education that develops students for careers and lives of meaning and purpose.