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. 

Dr. 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 global online university it is today, accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and the Association of Theological Schools, Marianne helped sow the seeds of that growth by serving as education director from 1983 to 1985, executive director from 1985 to 1996, and executive vice president from 1997 to 2008 before becoming president.

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. She also volunteered at her local parish for many years as a Eucharistic minister.

She earned her Ph.D. in Human Development from Virginia Tech in 2008, and Verlag Publishers published her dissertation, The Lived Experience of Adult Faith Formation in an Online Learning Community, in 2009.

In 2022, Marianne was appointed as a consultor to the Vatican’s Congregation for Catholic Education. This 5-year assignment recognizes her many years of service in the innovative realm of distance education. She is the only American to receive this honor, and CDU is the only U.S. institution represented. This year, she also published an article in Educatio Catholica, the journal of the Congregation for Catholic Education.

Marianne has served as a public member of the Board of Commissioners of the Association of Theological Schools and as a commissioner of the Accrediting Commission of the Distance Education and Training Council. She has also served as associate director of the Board of Trustees for the Arlington Catholic Herald Diocesan Newspaper. In 1998, she was invested as a Dame of Malta.

As an innovative leader in the field of education, Marianne has received numerous awards and served as a presenter for a variety of organizations. Just this summer she spoke at the International Federation of Catholic University’s General Assembly on how Catholic universities serve the public good.

In 2017, she addressed the staff of the 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.

In 2022, Christendom College honored Marianne with the St. Catherine of Siena Award for Distinguished Service to the Church and Catholic Higher Education. Other awards Marianne has received include 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.