Press Release

Urbana University Now a Branch Campus of Franklin University


Sherry Mercurio
Executive Director, Office of Community Relations
Web site:

Urbana, OH (July 14, 2017)

Franklin University, a private, nonprofit institution, founded in 1902 in Columbus, Ohio, has received approval for its change of status application by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) to bring Urbana University under Franklin’s accreditation as a “branch campus,” effective August 1, 2017.

While the Urbana University name will be maintained, it will now add the descriptor “a branch campus of Franklin University,” or “a division of Franklin University” after its name. In addition, as an element of moving under Franklin’s accreditation, Urbana’s current accredited (probation) status no longer applies. This change is of great significance as it positions Urbana to move forward with growth strategies that leverage existing academic strengths, as well as offer new academic programs and athletics that align with the interests, needs and workforce skills necessary for economic prosperity.

Franklin acquired Urbana University’s assets in April 2014 to assure Urbana’s ability to continue to serve students effectively.  Working together, Franklin and Urbana’s executive leadership have spent the past three years identifying strategies to position Urbana University for short and long-term success.

Investing more than $15 million, Franklin University has provided funding for scholarships as well as a number of improvements to the Urbana campus. Infrastructure improvements have included upgrades to science labs, upgraded security features, resurfacing of the all parking lots, installation of new sidewalks and new stadium turf, as well as upgrades to Grimes Hall.  In addition, the University is currently in the process of refreshing the dining commons and installing stadium lights.

Through today’s announcement, Franklin and Urbana further solidify the foundational support needed to continue efforts to better serve Urbana’s students, alumni, faculty, and staff. Under the leadership of Dr. Christopher Washington, Urbana University will continue on its path toward revitalization by assessing organizational needs, and service configurations that leverage the shift to branch campus status, while maintaining a strong focus on Urbana’s unique brand in its own market.

Franklin will spend the next few weeks updating web content followed by an update of marketing materials to reflect the new accreditation status.  For additional information regarding the branch campus accreditation status, visit our Frequently Asked Questions: 

About Urbana University - A Branch Campus of Franklin University

Urbana University, a branch campus of Franklin University, prepares students for successful and professional careers within a caring and supportive environment. Regionally well known for education and teacher preparation programs, Urbana was founded in 1850 and acquired by Franklin in 2014. Urbana’s 128-acre, residential campus nestled in heart of Ohio provides a background for students actively engaged in campus activities through 20 student-led academic, professional, performing arts, social and service organizations. Blue Knights athletics includes 17 NCAA Division II sports and three intercollegiate club sports. Urbana University is a division of Franklin University, which is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

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