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Students, professionals share value of Arizona university

Avery Jones | The Feather Online

13 students from the senior class traveled to Grand Canyon University for the Discover Trip last year.

In the past four years, 21 alumni have decided to attend Grand Canyon University. Offering around 200 various practical and hands-on degrees, the university offers a private school environment.

Grand Canyon University first began on August 1, 1949, with about 100 students attending and 16 staff members. Originally starting in Prescott, Arizona, GCU decided to relocate to West Phoenix in 1951.

Grand Canyon University’s admission counselor, Colleen Ault, shares her idea of why GCU is appealing to Fresno Christian students.

“I think that the combination of the price and the available scholarships is why so many people are drawn to GCU,” Ault said. “The campus is big enough that you have your people from your small private school but you don’t see them everyday. The Christian aspect is a personal decision, you can make your own decision to attend chapel and grow in your faith.”

Alumna Amanda Grimmius, ’19, shares her reasoning for choosing Grand Canyon University for her college degree.

“I really knew I wanted to attend GCU after coming out here on a Discover trip,” Grimmius said. “The community was so welcoming, and the campus is beautiful. I’d say that my favorite part about being at GCU is the Godly atmosphere that they create around the whole campus, from the students to the teachers.”

Grand Canyon University offers over 200 different practical and hands-on degrees.

Cayla Rivas | The Feather Online

Grand Canyon University offers 21 different Division I sports programs.

According to Grand Canyon University’s website, the mission of the university is “preparing learners to become global citizens, critical thinkers, effective communicators and responsible leaders by providing an academically challenging, values-based curriculum from the context of our Christian heritage.”

Majoring in nursing, Grimmius discusses why she decided to further her education at an Arizona-based school over local colleges in The Valley.

“I chose GCU over other schools in Fresno because the nursing programs are severely impacted,” Grimmius said, “meaning you could possibly wait months or years to get in to the program. GCU was less impacted and they have extremely high test scores, so I know I’ll be well prepared when the time comes.”

The university grew from under 1,000 students on campus in 2009, to 19,000 students on campus in the fall semester of 2017. 22,000 students currently attend Grand Canyon University on campus while over 72,000 students are receiving a college education online from GCU.

Kayden Marquez, ‘20, committed to GCU for the upcoming 2020 fall semester and plans to major kinesiology.

“I committed to GCU after going on my discovery trip,” Marquez said. “During the trip I fell in love with the campus along with its atmosphere. I’m super nervous to meet my roommates, I’m not rooming with anyone I’ve known, which is kind of scary. I’m sure they will be great though and we’ll get along just fine.”

Currently 11 seniors from FCS have committed to attend Grand Canyon University in the fall semester.

For more articles from features, check out COLUMN: Seniors travel to Israel for a new perspective on scripture and Gen. John F. Kelly speaks at SJV Town Hall about drug epidemic, time in White House. 

Paige Provost can be contacted via email.

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