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COVID-19 CDU Community Update

Be assured that Catholic Distance University remains fully operational, and there will be no disruption to educational services or contact with our staff or faculty. Until further notice, staff will work remotely. We encourage you to communicate with us by email to ensure a prompt response. Staff will continue to receive phone calls and voicemail, but mail will be checked only occasionally. We pray that you and your loved ones remain safe and healthy during this unprecedented time. University officials will continue to post any updates here.

Don't Put Your Education on Hold. Make This the Year to Grow in Your Faith. Apply to an Academic Program Today!

Registration for the Fall terms is underway! Fall I classes begin August 22nd, and Fall II classes begin October 24th. View courses here.


July 21, 2022

Search for CDU’s Next President Underway

Earlier this year, Dr. Marianne Evans Mount informed the CDU Board of Trustees of her desire to retire as President of CDU as soon as her successor can be recruited and engaged. A Presidential Search Committee, appointed by the CDU Board of Trustees and representing all constituencies of the university, has selected executive search firm Hyatt-Fennell to manage the search process under the guidance of the Committee. Hyatt-Fennell was chosen from a field of highly regarded search firms because of its expertise in serving small- to medium-sized faith-based institutions and deep connections across the Catholic higher education community.

President Mount has served CDU tirelessly since 1983. Under her leadership, CDU has grown from a catechetical institute with a staff of two offering paper correspondence courses to the world’s only exclusively online, fully accredited Catholic university. She served as Education Director from 1983 to 1985, Executive Director from 1985 to 1996, Vice President from 1997 to 2008, and as President since 2008 after earning her PhD. Marianne’s zeal for CDU’s mission, in partnership with dedicated employees, have brought CDU to an inflection point, with unprecedented opportunities to enhance the value of a CDU degree and the contributions of our graduates to the Church. The enhanced value will be created by the university’s recent HLC and ATS accreditations, innovations in curricula enabled by grant opportunities, enrollment growth, and new academic partnerships.

Hyatt-Fennell’s two founding partners, Cheryl Hyatt and Sister (Dr.) Marylouise Fennell, will be leading the search, supported by Partner Dr. Robert Head, a former university President with 40 years of leadership experience. They will conduct listening sessions with individual Trustees in early August and with faculty, staff, administrators, and students during the weeks of August 8 and August 15. Our goal is to have the newly appointed president begin work in early 2023.

This is an exciting period of challenges and opportunities to advance CDU's mission by playing a larger role in Catholic higher education in service to the Church. I will keep our community apprised of the progress achieved by the Search Committee at key junctures in the search process.

Thank you for all you do to advance the mission of Catholic Distance University. Your contributions are deeply appreciated.--Steve Pryor, Chairman Board of Trustees

July 7, 2022

Online Seminar Offered in August: Making the Case for Christ

Making the Case for Christ, offered August 8–29, 2022, will help Catholics strengthen their faith and develop objective and persuasive reasons for belief, which are valuable for sharing with those who may doubt the historical reality, divinity, or resurrection of Jesus. This continuing education seminar will help attendees better perform the Spiritual Works of Mercy to “counsel the doubtful” and “instruct the uninformed.” Making the Case for Christ is one of six online Apologetics seminars offered. Students who complete all six will earn a Non-Credit Basic Certificate in Apologetics.

The course instructor, Steven R. Hemler, is President of the Catholic Apologetics Institute of North America (CAINA). He is author of a trilogy of apologetics books, The Reality of God: The Layman’s Guide to Scientific Evidence for the CreatorSearch No More: The Keys to Truth and Happiness, and Catholic Stories of Faith and Hope: How God Brings Good Out of Suffering.

Learn more and enroll today at

June 29, 2022

Higher Learning Commission Accredits CDU

On June 23, 2022, the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) granted initial accreditation to Catholic Distance University for its undergraduate and graduate degree and certificate programs. Accreditation by the HLC provides assurance that an institution meets high standards in all aspects of educational quality, institutional capabilities, and governance, with a commitment to continuous improvement. HLC is the largest of six historically regional accreditors in the United States recognized by the Department of Education to accredit the nation’s institutions of higher education. In response to new regulations from the Department of Education, several of the historically regional accreditors have recently eliminated their geographic boundaries, expanding their accreditation service area to the entire United States. President Dr. Marianne Evans Mount, who has served as president since 2008, lauded the landmark accomplishment. "Catholic Distance University celebrates with joy our welcome as an accredited member of the Higher Learning Commission and the broader higher education community of accredited schools. The hard work and adherence to high academic accrediting standards and practices have strengthened CDU and given further assurance to our students and graduates of the value of their educational credentials. We look forward to the witness of their service to the Catholic Church and the world, as they strive to serve the common good and especially the underserved." “CDU is now recognized with the same accreditation as many of the most prestigious brick and mortar universities in the U.S.,” said Board Chairman Steve Pryor. “This major milestone marks the beginning of the next stage of CDU’s mission: to communicate the mind and heart of the Church to a wider audience. As trustee Sr. Mary Brendon Zajac observed, this should be viewed ‘…as a Commencement rather than a Graduation….the real work is just beginning.’” University Chancellor Archbishop Timothy P. Broglio, who heads the Archdiocese for the Military Services, USA, said, “The news that the Higher Learning Commission has accredited Catholic Distance University offers a significant recognition to the commitment of the CDU community to academic excellence. I hope that this decision will be an impetus for the growth of the university and one more sign of its role in forming committed scholars especially in the theological sciences.” Students will benefit in newfound ways from HLC accreditation, which ensures a quality of education that the general public has the right to expect and that the educational community recognizes widely.
Would recommend
Achieved their
learning goals
Are satisfied with
their studies
As reported in CDU’s 2020 DEAC Annual Report, based on program exit survey data.

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For the Growth of Faith.

The mission of Catholic Distance University is to communicate the mind and heart of the Church in a digital world. Using distance education, the university educates teachers and learners worldwide in Catholic theology, the liberal arts, and faith development for the growth of faith, ecclesial service, and leadership for the New Evangelization.

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