In 1912, the Portland Regional Community of the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas founded Saint Joseph’s College after nearly four decades of hard effort. Now Maine’s only Catholic university, the school continues to combine religious tradition with contemporary higher education in order to offer students an enriching college experience. Saint Joseph’s adheres to seven core values: faith, excellence, integrity, community, respect, compassion and justice. These values shape not only campus life but the university’s curriculum as well.
A relatively small college, Saint Joseph’s has a total enrollment of approximately 3,000 students, but most of the students who attend the school do so online. The physical campus of Saint Joseph’s is located about two hours north of Boston on 474 acres bordering Sebago Lake in Standish, Maine. The school is a private, Catholic liberal arts college, but it welcomes students of all backgrounds and faiths. Students enjoy a faculty-to-student ratio of 14:1.
Saint Joseph’s College Accreditation Details
Saint Joseph’s maintains institutional accreditation through the New England Association of Schools and Colleges. In addition, several of the school’s programs hold individual accreditation through various organizations. For nursing students, the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education has accredited the bachelor’s and master’s degree programs in nursing. The Maine State Board of Nursing has also approved the pre-licensure program in nursing. Students enrolled in the long-term care administration program will appreciate that the program has been accredited by the National Association of Boards of Examiners of Long-Term Care Administrators.
Saint Joseph’s College Application Requirements
To apply to an on-campus program at Saint Joseph’s, students will use the Common App, a link to which is available on the school’s website. This applies to freshman students. Graduate students and transfer applications will need to contact the school for further instructions. The university offers rolling deadlines, which means that students can apply at any time during the year, with the exception of nursing majors, who need to submit applications by Jan. 15. Applicants will need to submit:
- A completed application
- A personal essay
- A letter of recommendation from a guidance counselor
- Official school transcripts
- Standardized test scores from the ACT or SAT
Saint Joseph’s does not charge an application fee. For online programs, students should visit the school’s admissions webpage. There, they’ll find a link to the online application form that Saint Joseph’s uses. One of the more unique aspects about this school is the fact that students who apply for an online program will be automatically enrolled in their first course by an assigned adviser.
Tuition and Financial Aid
As a private university, the tuition rate at Saint Joseph’s is both higher than the cost of an average public school and universally applied. This means that in-state and out-of-state students will pay the same amount for tuition and fees; however, individual program costs still may vary. For a four-year, on-campus program, the tuition is $32,620 as of the 2015-2016 academic year. The school’s admissions website estimates a total cost of $45,130 for the year based on additional expenses such as books and housing.
Students who exceed the semester cap of 19 credit hours will pay an additional $1,000 for each credit above 19. Those who attend part-time will also pay a prorated amount. The university charges additional fees for various programs and school functions, including a $200 fee for education majors and lab fees of $100.
Students have the option to apply for financial aid at Saint Joseph’s, and income isn’t always the sole determining factor in whether a person qualifies for assistance. According to the financial aid department’s website, more than 90 percent of families who send their kids to school here applied for financial aid. In addition to federal loans, the Pell grant and other federal or state-sponsored aid awards, students can apply for one of the following university scholarships:
- Presidential Scholarship
- McAuley Scholarship
- Saint Joseph Scholarship
- Mercy Scholarship
- Xavier Scholarship
The school reports that more than $9 million was awarded for these scholarships during the previous academic year, and an extra $3.8 million was awarded via grants to students in need. Saint Joseph’s also participates in the Dollars for Scholars program. Students who need aid will find detailed information on the school’s financial aid website.
Master of Accountancy Degree
For business professionals or those with an undergraduate degree in business, Saint Joseph’s offers a Master of Accountancy program that is designed to further their careers and prepare them to attain licensure as Certified Public Accountants. While the program has been created with business students in mind, candidates do not need to hold an undergraduate degree in business. Students with different educational backgrounds will need to complete the five prerequisite courses in order to proceed with the standard curriculum.
The master’s degree requires 36 credit hours, and the program is offered entirely online to meet the demands of working adults. There are five 10-week terms available throughout the year in order to accommodate busy schedules, and students can apply any time since applications are reviewed regularly. In addition, applicants with a bachelor’s degree in accounting may be eligible to have up to six credits waived, thereby getting a head start on the master’s degree. All applicants are eligible for credit waivers based on their educational background, but interested students will need to check with the program director for details.
The fully integrative curriculum that supports the Master of Accountancy degree focuses on ethics, leadership and accounting. Upon completion of the program, students will be eligible to sit for the CPA exam having met the 150-hour education requirement adopted by most states. Courses in accounting cover topics such as financial standards, information systems, leadership and relationship management, and corporate financial management. In addition to the 36-hour requirement, students will have to maintain an overall GPA of 3.0 in order to earn the degree.
At Saint Joseph’s, students will learn from instructors with detailed experience in the industry. Online classes have been designed to encourage interaction between students and professors. According to the program’s website, students will benefit from a curriculum that “emphasize(s) engagement, credibility and quality over quantity through small class sizes and constructive guidance.” Saint Joseph’s has been offering distance education courses for more than 35 years.