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School of Continuing Studies to Become School of Professional Studies

Northwestern University Trustees approve name change

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June 17, 2014 | by Alan K. Cubbage

EVANSTON, Ill. --- The Northwestern University Board of Trustees this week approved changing the name of the University‘s School of Continuing Studies (SCS) to the School of Professional Studies, effective Sept. 1, 2014.

“The School of Continuing Studies has dramatically changed over the past decade from an academic unit focused almost exclusively on undergraduate studies to a school that offers a wide assortment of professional graduate, post-graduate, post-baccalaureate and certificate programs, which today comprise the majority of our academic offerings” said Thomas Gibbons, dean of SCS. “In keeping with that change, I proposed to Northwestern leadership that we align our school identity with the students it serves and rename SCS to Northwestern University School of Professional Studies.”

Northwestern began offering evening classes in 1908 in what was then the School of Commerce and now is the Kellogg School of Management. The current SCS school was officially established in 1933 as University College and has had several different names since then.

Gibbons noted that SCS increasingly serves adult students who seek professional advancement or career change. “Our programs are overwhelmingly comprised of students in professional programs, and our long-term strategy is to continue to build professional program capacity, so our name should reflect the nature of what we teach,” he said.