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Faculty Members Attend Conference

Posted by Catholic Distance University on Sun, Mar 08, 2020 @ 01:53 PM

Newsletter 2020 Feb export for web-1

Four faculty members, Dr. Peter Brown, Dr. Marcellino D’Ambrosio, Dr. James Kruggel, and Prof. Steven Najera, traveled to lovely San Diego, California, to attend the annual joint conference of the Society of Biblical Literature and the American Academy of Religion. The conference provided an opportunity to reconnect with colleagues, friends, and peers from other universities and to hear presentations from professors all around the world on the latest developments in Biblical and theological scholarship.

Pronto Takes Communication to the Next Level

Posted by Catholic Distance University on Sun, Mar 08, 2020 @ 01:49 PM

To facilitate communications between students, faculty, and alumni, CDU is adding Pronto, an app that works with Canvas, to move discussion forums directly to smartphones. Pronto is an interactive application that can function like text messages, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Periscope live-streaming all rolled into one.

CDU students will soon also be able to form their own interactive groups for focused communication in particular areas of interest.

Dr. Josh Hood Named Digital Humanities Fellow

Posted by Catholic Distance University on Sun, Mar 08, 2020 @ 01:41 PM

Newsletter 2020 Feb export for web

Congratulations to long-time Greek and Latin professor Dr. Josh Hood for being named a partial fellow in the Digital Humanities at Beth Mardutho: The Syriac Institute for the upcoming semester. Dr. Hood received the fellowship for his excellence in teaching ancient languages and skill in teaching online. Digital Humanities is a long-running, many faceted project to use modern computing, databases, and interactive software to improve and modernize teaching and research in humanities and humanities- related fields including theology, philosophy, and ancient languages.

CDU Ranks Among The Best!

Posted by Catholic Distance University on Sun, Mar 08, 2020 @ 11:49 AM

According to Online Schools Report released in January 2020, online education is getting bigger and better—and giving traditional college campuses a run for their money. Leading education researchers have predicted that online education will surpass traditional learning within a decade.

In addition, theology is a popular online degree. There are over 50 bachelor’s and 50 master’s degrees offered online. Online Schools Report ranked the top MA theology degrees available today using six data points to determine the quality of the online program. Three data points focus on the quality of the school, and three focus on the quality of the individual program. OSR included these programs in the ranking because their students graduate with minimal debt and have a great support system while in school. These schools are dedicated to delivering a quality theology degree online.

Out of all the accredited Christian theology schools, CDU’s MA Theology degree ranked #11. CDU is the second top Catholic theology program offered online. CDU is ranked before University of Dallas (#17), Liberty University (#19), St. Joseph’s College of Maine (#23), and Franciscan University of Steubenville (#31).

Out of all the accredited Christian theology schools, CDU’s MA Theology degree ranked #11.
CDU is the second top Catholic theology program offered online.

From Our President

Posted by Catholic Distance University on Fri, Mar 06, 2020 @ 09:58 AM



The start of a new year should begin with hearts full of gratitude for the many graces of the previous year that have helped build great hope for our dreams in the new year. Our dreams for 2020 began with a move January 15 to a larger campus in Charles Town to accommodate a growing staff and services to a growing student body. One of the most significant additions is a new chapel and a chaplain assigned to CDU from the Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston, Father Cody Ford, who will offer Mass for the staff and help to strengthen our identity as a Catholic university. For those of us who have worked at CDU for many years, it was a welcome sight to unveil the altar donated by Bishop Welsh from the Diocese of Allentown in 1994 and the tabernacle donated by the Vice-rector of Mount Saint Mary’s Seminary in Emmitsburg, Maryland, in 1995.

As many of our students know, the university will host evaluators in March for full programmatic accreditation in theology by the Association of Theological Schools (ATS) and evaluators from the Higher Learning Commission, our regional accreditor in Chicago, for full regional accreditation in April. We have been working toward these goals for five years while continuing to maintain the accreditation standards of the Distance Education Accrediting Commission, our long- time national accreditor since 1986. Students and alumni will participate in these upcoming visits to help ensure accreditors of the quality of a CDU education that meets all the standards of each accreditor and fulfills a beautiful mission that is part of the new evangelization. Our students inspire us to achieve these credentials and confirm their historic accomplishments.

These visits have a historical dimension that has been a driving force among the CDU community, especially the leadership of the Board of Trustees. CDU is the only independent, nonprofit Catholic university that was founded to do distance education exclusively in 1983 and continues that tradition through our fully online programs today.

It reminds me of a compliment by Archbishop Christophe Pierre (Papal Nuncio) who reminded us last year at the 2019 Gala that CDU has broken new ground in education by using technology exclusively for 36 years to reach the underserved with theological education and catechetical formation. As he said, we cannot continue to do things the way we have always done them.

We are praying that 2020 will be the year that CDU breaks new ground as a full regionally and programmatically accredited Catholic university serving students globally, exclusively, and fully online. Please join us with your prayers and continuing resources to help fulfill this dream for CDU and for the Church.

CDU Partners with Shepherd University

Posted by Catholic Distance University on Wed, Dec 18, 2019 @ 06:01 PM

On July 23rd Catholic Distance University signed a Memorandum of Understanding and an articulation agreement with Shepherd University, a state university in West Virginia. The agreement allows students who earn CDU’s AA degree in the Liberal Arts with a Concentration in Catholic Studies to continue on at Shepherd University to earn a Regents Bachelor of Arts (RBA) degree.  Shepherd University’s RBA program was designed to help students work around life’s challenges to earn a bachelor’s degree. CDU expects the program to be particularly attractive to Catholic students in West Virginia, who may choose to earn CDU’s online AA degree in Liberal Arts with a concentration in Catholic
Studies to save money while living at home and to become better grounded in the faith before heading off to Shepherd University to earn a Bachelor’s degree. At just $305 per credit hour, CDU’s AA degree is an affordable option.

“We are excited about the opportunities for our students,” said Dr. Marianne Evans Mount, “and continuing opportunities for our faculty to work together and explore ways of expanding our curriculum. We are thrilled to be working with a state university like Shepherd University.”

Who's Counting?

Posted by Catholic Distance University on Mon, Dec 16, 2019 @ 07:05 PM

CDU’s prison ministry program has engaged more than 100,000 prisoners in the past 17 months through digital tablet courses available in 134 prisons around the country. CDU now offers 16 courses in English and 6 courses in Spanish. The most popular courses in English are Christian Prayer and The Gospel of St. Matthew and the top courses in Spanish are The Profession of Faith and Introduction to Scripture and the Gospel. Thanks to your donations, we are able to provide courses to incarcerated students without charge.

Paper-based correspondence courses are also in demand. Serving an average of 175 courses per year by mail, CDU is embarking on a major program to update all of its academic correspondence courses to serve this growing population, enabling incarcerated students to earn degrees and certificates while behind bars.

We thank The John C. Fricano Foundation for recently awarding a prison ministry program grant. Your prayers and support make a measureable impact in the lives of many of the underserved. If you are interested in supporting our prison ministry program, give us a call, tell a friend, and keep us in your prayers.

CDU Supporters to Gather at Gala in Washington, D.C.

Posted by Catholic Distance University on Mon, Dec 16, 2019 @ 07:00 PM

The Annual Gala in our 36th Year is the occasion to celebrate the leadership of Archbishop Christophe Pierre, the Holy Father’s personal representative to the United States, and the Diocese of Brooklyn. Archbishop Pierre reminds us frequently of the dream of Pope Francis for a missionary Church that fosters a culture of encounter— willing to put out into the deep for a great catch!

The Diocese of Brooklyn under the leadership of Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio is a rich and diverse ecclesial community, in the words of Pope Francis, “A People of many Faces” (EG, 115-118). Their commitment to the New Evangelization reflects a passion for missionary discipleship through sound lifelong education and formation as a partner with Catholic Distance University.

The Gala took place on Saturday, November 16th, at the St. John Paul II National Shrine in Washington, D.C. The Board of Trustees, hosts, friends, graduates, staff, and faculty all gathered to celebrate all the support and blessings of CDU’s journey.

Our Gala Chair was the Honorable Susan R. Malone. We are grateful for our hosts, Dr. Charles R. Wasaff and The Most Reverend Timothy P. Broglio, and the Host Committee.

Giests enjoyed the museum and beautiful mosaics, then participated in an Academic Convocation Mass at the Redemptor Hominis Church followed by a Cocktail Reception and Silent Auction with exciting Amfund Bucket-list vacations.

The gala is our largest annual event andfundraiser. For more information, visit or contact Annie Hager at

Spring Holy Land Pilgrimage

Posted by Catholic Distance University on Mon, Dec 16, 2019 @ 06:54 PM

Join graduate professor Dr. Marcellino D’Ambrosio for a Catholic Holy Land
pilgrimage that will take you to the land of the Bible, from where Jesus began his
earthly life in the town of Bethlehem to following in his final footsteps on the Via
Dolorosa. You will visit many places in between, including Cana, Jericho, and Galilee. Space is limited, so don’t miss this opportunity! For more information and to register, see

CDU Is Expanding

Posted by Catholic Distance University on Mon, Dec 16, 2019 @ 06:48 PM

With record-level student enrollment, and candidacy with the Higher Learning Commission and the Association of Theological Schools, CDU is preparing to soar. Please help us welcome our new staff members. CDU graduate Mary Kate Payne is our Student Life Coordinator, helping to support and engage students on the online campus. Also joining the team are Scott Hughes as Chief Information Officer, Robert White as Chief Operations and Administrative Officer, and Dr. Marie Nuar as Faculty Chair. Please pray for our continued growth and success in sharing joy from the truth. Big news! We are relocating our administrative office to a larger building near our current location in Charles Town at the end of November. Our new address will be 300 South George Street, Charles Town, WV, 25414.