The Church’s BYU–Pathway Worldwide, has surpassed 50,000 students this year. What started as a pilot program by Brigham Young University–Idaho, it is now a global success helping students have access to affordable higher education online. Since its initial announcement in Febuary 2017, it has expanded to more than 150 countries worldwide.
BYU–Pathway Worldwide started as PathwayConnect, a non-matriculated program that makes higher education more attainable. It now offers two core programs. PathwayConnect, a one-year, low-cost educational program helps students return to college. An online degree program in partnership with Brigham Young University–Idaho and Ensign College is the other option.
This year, more than 33,000 students enrolled in PathwayConnect — a 19 percent increase from 2019. International students who completed PathwayConnect and later continued in an online degree program doubled from 24 percent to 59 percent in 2020.
For the first time, PathwayConnect is serving more students outside the United States than within it. The largest international student enrollments are in the Philippines (more than 2,100 students) and Africa (over 6,700 students).
In July 2020, Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles delivered the BYU–Pathway Worldwide monthly devotional.
“We live in times where the pages of history are anything but empty. COVID-19 is forcing us to find and use different ways of communication,” he said. “I am pleased to say the Church’s Pathway program is way ahead of its time!”
Elder Uchtdorf continued, “Most of the learning in BYU–Pathway Worldwide happens online. … [This program] can be a wonderful and informed guide as you set out on your own grand adventure to slay your own dragon. I invite you to see BYU–Pathway Worldwide for what it is: a guide that will help you in your own great adventure.”
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints established this higher education organization to provide more members of the Church access to higher education. Today, BYU–Pathway Worldwide provides access to more than 40 BYU–Idaho online certificates and degrees, including business, family, health, technology and professional studies. All classes are taught in English. BYU–Pathway Worldwide also helps non-native English speakers learn the language by partnering with the Church’s EnglishConnect program.
In addition, the worldwide program offers preapproved admission for service missionaries of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Since 2009, BYU–Pathway Worldwide has served more than 116,000 people.
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