Ashford University Graduates more than 8,000 Students

Graduates travel worldwide to attend commencement ceremonies in Clinton, Iowa

Ashford University graduated a total of 8,185 students since the university’s previous commencement ceremonies. Collectively, Ashford graduates earned 562 associate’s degrees, 5,701 bachelor’s degrees and 1,922 master’s degrees. The spring graduating class is the largest in Ashford University's history.

More than 1,000 graduates participated in the commencement ceremonies held April 28 and 29 in Clinton, Iowa.  Graduates traveled from across the United States and several foreign countries to receive their diplomas.

More than 98% percent of the Ashford graduates earned their degrees online. Since the last graduation in October, there were 8,055 online graduates and 130 on-campus traditional and accelerated graduates.  Commencement ceremonies are held semi-annually. 

“We have tremendous pride for our graduates,” said Dr. Elizabeth Tice, president of Ashford University. “They worked diligently to earn their degrees, sometimes making huge sacrifices in the process,” noting that a large percentage of the graduates took courses while they were “employed, raising families or had other responsibilities.”

Motivational poet Sekou Andrews delivered the keynote address and his animated presentation entertained and inspired audiences on Saturday and Sunday. Andrews won the National Poetry Slam championship twice, shared the stage with Jay-Z, Stevie Wonder, Carlos Santana, Maroon 5, and several symphony orchestras, and has been featured on ABC World News, MSNBC, Good Morning America, HBO, Showtime, MTV, BET, and in several national commercial spots and three feature films.

The graduation weekend’s impact on the Clinton area’s economy was estimated at nearly $4 million, according to Marsha Smith, director of the Clinton Convention and Visitors Bureau.

About Ashford University

Ashford University is defining the modern college experience by combining the heritage of a traditional campus with the flexibility and effectiveness of online learning. The University provides a vibrant learning community where high-quality programs and leading-edge technology create a dynamic, immersive and stimulating learning experience. Ashford University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association ( The University offers practical and progressive associate's, bachelor's and master's degree programs online, as well as bachelor’s degree programs at its Clinton, Iowa, campus. Ashford University – where heritage meets innovation. For more information, please visit or call Shari Rodriguez, associate vice president of Public Relations, at 858.513.9240 x2513.