Slate features article from Professor Kahn about burgeoning online degree program

USC Annenberg Professor Gabriel Kahn wrote an article for Slate about Southern New Hampshire University and its growing online degree offerings.

The school's online division currently offers 180 different programs. In just five years, the private New England University has gone from being a small, private school to “the of higher education,” said Kahn.

Kahn explained that, for the most part, college is designed for young people that enroll to learn, as well as engage in extracurricular activities. However, those students make up only 20 percent of people pursing post-secondary education.

As a result, low graduation rates and debt accumulation were common.

For this reason, SNHU President Paul LeBlanc pushed for the expansion of the school's online programs, offering a more flexible schedule, as a way to bring in more revenue, as well as boost graduation rates. With a focus on "customer service" and a lower cost than other online degree programs, SNHU also prides itself on a 50 percent six-year graduation rate.

Additionally, many students are enrolled part time, taking longer to finish. Kahn added that many other universities may follow SNHU’s lead and expand their online degree offerings in the coming years.