This event has been canceled as a preventative measure in light of the COVID-19 outbreak. Questions about this cancellation can be directed to

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Joliet, Ill. – Are you a current college student who is planning to transfer from a community college? Are you coming from military service and wanting to advance your education? Are you wanting to complete your degree as an adult learner? Are you interested in earning a master’s or doctoral degree? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, the University of St. Francis (USF) invites you to attend its Graduate & Transfer Open House on Wednesday, Mar. 18, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. in San Damiano Hall, which is located in the Motherhouse/Welcome Center at 520 Plainfield Road in Joliet. Visit to register for this free event.

USF offers a variety of on-campus and online degree options, including undergraduate, graduate, doctoral and certificate programs in the arts and sciences, business, education, nursing and social work. This variety of options is something that Eric Wignall, USF vice president of admissions, enrollment services and marketing, hopes will draw the interest of students of all ages and backgrounds.

“This is an evening event for people who are looking for a way to earn their next promotion, step up to the next opportunity, or even ‘fire-proof’ themselves against the next economic downturn. It is designed to be convenient for working adults who may have learned about the university online, but have more detailed questions For some, it might be a matter of transferring credit and earning the bachelor’s degree that they began years ago. For others it might be taking the next step to a graduate degree. Regardless the starting point, USF can help you move forward in that journey,” he said.

“You can speak with faculty, admissions counselors, financial aid representatives, academic advising staff, and even take a tour of campus,” he said. “We want you to experience USF firsthand and learn about all the academic programs our university has to offer.”

USF is unique in Illinois for having as many graduate as undergraduate students. Many public and private universities tend to have two or three times the number of undergraduates as graduate students.

“We offer a variety of options, depending on where you might be in your life and career. We offer online degree completion programs for adults who may have military training or community college credits, but did not yet finish a bachelor’s degree. We offer post-bachelor’s degree certificate programs, as well. The professional certificate programs have been very popular because they are online and very convenient for working adults, and the credits can later transfer to master’s degree programs,” Wignall said.

Wignall added that, while USF and its programs continue to be recognized nationally by ranking agencies including U.S. News and World Report, College Consensus and the Princeton Review, events like the open house on March 18 provide attendees with a personalized experience that can demonstrate the impact of its academic programs on an individual level.

“It’s nice to see us listed as a ‘best college’ or ‘best value’ but at our local events, like the open house, we can showcase the programs that work best for people who want to take that next step and earn a degree that can change their lives. Any of our students can attest to this personalized approach to education, and I really believe it makes USF unique,” he said.

“As we have grown, particularly our graduate and doctoral degree programs in nursing and business, the different rankings groups reclassified us from a Midwestern university to a national university. It was very gratifying to see our place in those rankings actually increase, even in the face of more competition from much larger institutions,” Wignall added.

Currently celebrating 100 years of higher education rooted in Franciscan values, the University of St. Francis, in Joliet, Ill., serves close to 4,000 students nationwide and offers undergraduate, graduate, doctoral and certificate programs in the arts and sciences, business, education, nursing and social work. There are over 50,000 USF alumni across the globe. For information, call 800-735-7500 or visit

University of St. Francis: Bigger thinking. Brighter purpose.

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