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Profile: Dr. Marcia Bankirer, President, Argosy University/Denver

Her recent appointment as head of Denver’s newest higher-educational kid on the block is a good match for her skills and interests, says Dr. Marcia Bankirer, President of Argosy University/Denver. Actually, most of the learners at Argosy are adults rather than kids, and most are women. The University, which will offer doctoral, master’s, bachelor’s and associate’s degree levels as well as continuing education, is one of 14 primary Argosy campuses throughout the U.S. Argosy’s parent, Education Management Corp. already owned the Art Institute of Colorado, also in Denver.

“These students often are returning to change careers and they are motivated and vote with their feet. They are informed consumers and they are concerned with quality,” says Bankirer. “They want to be in class. I enjoy that challenge of meeting their needs. ”

A profile of the incoming class of 2004 at Argosy’s total sites details the student body: 1,500 of 2,300 students were aged 25 to 39, and 500 were aged 48 to 64. About 78% of the students were women, and about 85% were pursuing graduate degrees.

“Many of Argosy’s degrees focus on work in the helping professions where opportunities arise to change lives,” she notes.

Currently Argosy/Denver is offering undergrad degrees. Graduate degree programs in psychology and the behavioral sciences, business, education, and the health care professions begin in fall 2006. Bankirer notes that the university is seeking faculty and welcomes resumes from qualified individuals.

“Our goal is to have about 250 students for the 2006-2007 year; however, we offer six starts a year with 7 ½ week courses, so there are many different options for structuring schedules,” she says.

Bankirer characterizes the courses as in many cases solution-based with students working on real-life projects guided by very experienced faculty. “It really fits the students’ needs,” she says.

Previously, Bankirer was president of Argosy/Chicago. Having worked at Colorado State University, in addition to various universities throughout the U.S., she expressed interest in a job in Denver. Now the Argosy/Denver campus is taking advantage of the synchronicities offered by its affiliation with Art Institute of Colorado and their spacious location at 1200 Lincoln St.

Denver is expected to be a destination campus, just as Chicago proved in attracting a majority of students from outside the city.

Bankirer sees plenty of room for Argosy’s offerings in Denver’s educational marketplace. For example, the doctorate in forensic psychology is matched only at the University of Denver.

While Bankirer has amassed extensive experience in distance learning, she notes that Argosy uses the technology for its strengths, such as to deliver information to the adult or busy student. But the ultimate goal is to create a more robust exchange in the classroom or online as a result. Argosy’s education is predominately face to face.

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For more information on the university, go to http://www.argosyu.edu/.