Online Learning: BU Virtual

Wendy Colby, BU's first vice president and associate provost for BU Virtual, poses for a photo in a Questrom online studio. Photo by Jackie Ricciardi for Boston University.
Wendy Colby

The future of work is always shifting, with professionals upskilling and reskilling as they seek to advance or pivot in their careers or switch to a different industry. Our newly launched BU VIRTUAL was created, in part, to meet those forward-thinking learners where they are—geographically, professionally, and educationally.

“As technology advances and events unfold,” says WENDY COLBY, Boston University’s inaugural vice president and associate provost for BU Virtual, “acquiring new skills is becoming even more urgent in areas like global health, management, leadership, sustainability, data science, cybersecurity, legal, engineering, and other sectors.”

Zander Dolan is a production assistant for Questrom School of Business’ Online MBA—a hugely popular program.

In 2020, BU launched its ONLINE MBA program through the Questrom School of Business. The value is excellent and so is the quality of education, with courses taught by accomplished BU faculty who are experts in their fields. More than 3,000 students from around the globe enrolled, many already in the workforce and looking to harness their master’s degree for career advancement. Success is but an invitation to grow. So, BU created online master’s degree programs in public health and in social work—with several more in the pipeline, including computing and data sciences.

Colby’s team is dedicated to identifying opportunities to expand online education. While BU has been offering online education for more than twenty years through our Metropolitan College and other schools and colleges, this new unit brings together the design, development, and delivery of a complete portfolio of online graduate and certificate offerings across BU, ranging from online programs in computer science to criminal justice. Colby has already begun forging relationships with prospective industry partners, as well.

“Scale is about collaboration and community—and not just about size,” Colby says. “It’s about how best to bring BU to the world and serve more students in ways that serve them best, and to become a vital education hub for learners everywhere.”