6 Milestones of HPU’s Academic Transformation: 2005-Today

May 02nd, 2016

6 Milestones of HPU’s Academic Transformation: 2005-Today


When Dr. Nido R. Qubein was appointed president of High Point University in 2005, it sparked a wave of change on campus.

The purpose of Qubein’s work was to enhance the university. He built on what the previous six presidents and their teams had done and led HPU into a spectacular metamorphosis.

Since 2005, more than $425 million has been raised and major academic milestones have been achieved. Yet there’s so much more to come as the Nido and Mariana Qubein Arena and Conference Center, and the adjoining Jana and Ken Kahn Hotel, near completion.

Here’s a look at six impactful academic milestones HPU has made in its transformation:


1. Increasing from three to 10 academic schoolsHPU TV Studio 1

In 2005, HPU had just three academic schools. Today, it has 10 academic schools. New schools added are the Nido R. Qubein School of Communication, Fred Wilson School of Pharmacy, Congdon School of Health Sciences, Wanek School of Natural Sciences, Webb School of Engineering, School of Art and Design and the School of Dental Health and Oral Medicine. The addition of these 7 new schools – and the expansion of majors across the board – lets students thrive in an engaged community built on robust academics.

Thanks to this expansion, HPU now offers majors such as biochemistry, actuarial scienceinternational relationsentrepreneurshipsales, physician assistant studies, pharmacy, communication, exercise science, graphic design and more.


School of Education2. Achieving doctoral status

In 2012, the School of Education welcomed its first cohort of Ed.D. students. The Doctor of Education degree, with its emphasis on educational leadership, reflects the visionary thinking that transformational leaders need to guide today’s educational organizations.

HPU bestowed its first-ever doctoral degrees in 2016.


3. Establishing the Triad’s first pharmacy school

HPU Pharmacy 2HPU’s Fred Wilson School of Pharmacy is the only pharmacy school in the Piedmont Triad Region. Dr. Ronald Ragan, the school’s founding dean, has more than 25 years of experience as a community and hospital pharmacist and educator and holds a Ph.D. in pharmacology and toxicology.

The Doctor of Pharmacy curriculum integrates the basic science disciplines with clinical application to provide the best patient care in the workforce. This program not only trains students to design and manage medication therapies, but also provides them with the kinds of inter-professional experiences necessary to learn to work collaboratively as a member of the health care team.


4. Focus on experiential learning

Study Abroad photoIn 2005, the university transitioned to a four-hour credit model that allowed for more flexibility, the creation of first-year seminars, service learning opportunities and an increased focus on interdisciplinary study. By adding a fourth credit hour, the students and faculty invest 25 percent of the course in experiential learning – learning that breaks down traditional classroom walls and brings theories to life through real-word experiences.

HPU’s liberal arts education is supplemented by holistic learning programs designed to further enrich students’ academic lives. Establishing programs including a Survey Research Center (HPU Poll)Human Biomechanics and Physiology LaboratorySuccess Coach programStudy Abroad, Undergraduate Research and Creative Works, Entrepreneurship CenterCareer and Professional Development and many others prepare students for the world as it is going to be.


5. Freshman life skills seminar

President On StageIn his New York Times best-selling book “Outliers: The Story of Success,” Malcolm Gladwell highlights “practical intelligence” as an important component of achievement.

That’s why Dr. Qubein introduced and leads the “President’s Seminar: Learning through Experience” each fall – a required course for first-year students. During the freshman seminar, Qubein focuses on topics that new students can benefit from immediately, such as time and energy management, fiscal literacy and presentation skills. He also shares with students his experience in communication, leadership and service.

The seminar not only teaches students how to think critically and creatively, but it also gives them the practical skills they need to thrive in a competitive global marketplace.


6. 97 percent employment and graduate school placement

All of these initiatives lead to impressive outcomes for HPU graduates. In fact, 97 percent of graduates are employed or in graduate school within six months of earning their degree – 11 points higher than the national average.