Welcome from the President

Dear Prospective CDU Student,

Thank you so much for considering CDU in your educational plans. Our programs integrate inspiring, Catholic content, always faithful to the Church’s teachings, with state-of-the-art learning management technologies that enable you to access your education in the comfort of your home or wherever you choose.

CDU has been a pioneer since 1983 using flexible, convenient distance technologies to bring high quality educational programs to each learner. You will explore the riches of Sacred Scripture, Church documents, Papal documents, and the wisdom of the saints and Doctors of the Church.

You will never be alone at CDU. Our outstanding faculty and friendly staff will guide you every step of the way. Every day our students from all over the world experience the communion of the Church by praying for one another in our online chapel, catching up in the online cafe, and sharing their family milestones through the online photo gallery. Our online campus, easy-to-navigate learning platform called Canvas, and our carefully chosen faculty encourage an engaging, dialogic approach to learning that is modeled on the conversational pedagogy of Jesus Christ in the Gospels. In each of our courses, we emphasize the importance of faculty-guided discussion and student interaction that research confirms is the best way for adults to learn.

I encourage you to find out more in these pages and on our website, www.cdu.edu, to discover if Catholic Distance University is the next step for you to further your spiritual and professional goals.

Sincerely in our Lord,

Marianne Evans Mount, Ph.D

About Marianne Evans Mount, Ph.D. 

Marianne Evans Mount became president of Catholic Distance University in 2008. She has served in a variety of leadership positions since the founding of CDU in 1983 as a catechetical institute offering paper-based correspondence courses. As CDU grew to become the international university it is today, with students from all 50 states and 60 countries, Marianne helped sow the seeds of that growth by serving as education director from 1983 to 1985 and as executive director from 1985 to 1996. Prior to being appointed president of CDU, Marianne was executive vice president from 1997 to 2008. In addition to raising her two children, Marianne spent her early career teaching English to high school and junior high school students and directing a high school religious education program at her parish.

As an accomplished scholar who earned her Ph.D. in Human Development from Virginia Tech in 2008, Marianne holds many degrees in a variety of academic disciplines.  Verlag Publishers published her dissertation, The Lived Experience of Adult Faith Formation in an Online Learning Community, in 2009. Marianne earned her Bachelor of Arts in English from Skidmore College and her Master of Arts in English and Education from Columbia University’s Teachers College. She received her Master of Arts in Religious Education from the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas, and she furthered her religious education with an Advanced Catechetical Diploma from the Vatican Congregation for the Clergy. She also completed graduate courses in distance education at Penn State University.

In the academic community, Marianne currently serves as a public member of the Board of Commissioners of the Association of Theological Schools. She is also secretary of the Board of Trustees of Catholic Distance University. From 2000 to 2005, she served as associate director of the Board of Trustees for the Arlington Catholic Herald Diocesan Newspaper. She also volunteered at her local parish for many years as a Eucharistic minister. Marianne was invested as a Dame of Malta in 1998, and she served as a commissioner of the Accrediting Commission of the Distance Education and Training Council from 1998 to 2005.

As an innovative leader in the field of education, Marianne has received numerous awards and served as a presenter for a variety of organizations. In 2017, she was invited to address the staff of the Vatican Congregation for Catholic Education on the pedagogy of distance education, as the Congregation was preparing a document for Pope Francis giving approval to use distance education courses for ecclesiastical degrees.

She received the DETC Distinguished Service Award in 2005, the Loudoun County Woman of the Year for Education Award in 2007, Mount St. Mary’s University’s Bicentennial Medal for pioneering work in Catholic distance education in 2007, and the Outstanding Graduate Research Award at the 27th Annual Research to Practice Conference in 2008.

EWTN Catholic Cable Television has featured Marianne on EWTN Live with Father Mitch Pacwa, and she has presented at numerous DETC workshops and panels through the years. She presented at the NCEA Conventions in 1993, 1994, and 1995; at the Diocese of Peoria, Diocesan Summer Institute in 1996; at the National Council of Catholic Women in 1998; and at the 2008 Annual Midwest Research to Practice Conference at Western Kentucky University. Marianne presented the keynote address at the Catechetical Conference, Diocese of Jackson, Miss., in 2009. She also served as a presenter at the Society for Phenomenology and Human Sciences at George Mason University in 2009 and at the National Association for Lay Ministry Annual Meeting in 2012. She participated in a doctoral seminar in phenomenology at the University of Utrecht in late July and early August 2013.