Western Governors University Reviews | Glassdoor

Western Governors University Reviews

Updated August 14, 2018
500 reviews

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3.3
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Western Governors University President Scott D. Pulsipher
Scott D. Pulsipher
122 Ratings

500 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • "Cannot work from home when we are an online university" (in 30 reviews)

  • "Work Life Balance is hard at times" (in 15 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "Great Place to Call Work!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Program Mentor
    Current Employee - Program Mentor
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Western Governors University full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Great staff. Very helpful with orientation and onboarding.

    Cons

    Hard to manage working from home with no live communication at times.


  2. "Great!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Enrollment Counselor
    Current Employee - Enrollment Counselor
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Western Governors University full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    WGU is a super fun place to work.

    Cons

    Wage/salary is the biggest con.

  3. "Evaluator"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Western Governors University part-time

    Pros

    Bonus, salary, convenience, pay, time

    Cons

    Opportunity for advancement and upward mobility


  4. "Program Mentor"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Western Governors University full-time

    Pros

    Great job with good benifits. I enjoy helping students on their path to graduation.

    Cons

    Work Life Balance is hard at times


  5. Helpful (1)

    "Program Mentor- Teachers College"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Program Mentor
    Current Employee - Program Mentor
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Western Governors University full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Flexible schedule, work from home, supportive work environment and institution (even when working remotely)

    This position is not for everyone. You have to be intrinsically motivated, and be open to learning new things and be able to move with the innovative changes that frequently occur.

    WGU isn't perfect, but no company is. The difference with working at WGU is that the university is constantly trying to improve student experience, as well as listen to faculty input on how to improve employee satisfaction.

    It may not always be the most exciting day-to-day position, but I always feel rewarded each day when I know I've directly helped students achieve their long-term professional goals. This isn't a "teaching" job in the traditional sense (I come directly from a career as a teacher), but there is still a lot of learning happening for my students when I am working with them. I am still a true educator, just in a different capacity.

    Cons

    Salary is a little low


  6. Helpful (3)

    "Weird mix of corporate and education"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Faculty
    Current Employee - Faculty
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Western Governors University full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    * Work from home
    * Pay is better than in classroom teaching (for intermountain region)
    * I lucked out and have a good manager who treats me as a professional
    * The bonus
    * I enjoy working with my students
    * WGU's non-profit status and mission
    * Future plans to expand advancement and role options for staff
    * Benefits ( except Cigna, but all US healthcare is terrible being for profit)

    Cons

    * The business speak and new corporate tenor, Amazon is not a fabulous model for education or worker treatment
    * New non- transparent pay model based on " industry" where I may do the same job, or perform better than a role in another college and make less purely because teachers are undervalued in the US
    * The training is terrible, from onboarding on. Since our faculty is always heavily "new" the required trainings are repetitive and boring for anyone here past two years. Much of it could be online modules or emails, including our in-person meetings, which must cost a lot. It would be better to let us take online courses or attend conferences, and cheaper.
    *Lack of diversity. Most of our hires seem to come from areas with low cost of living or low base salaries, and are very white.
    * This could be just my silo, but religion comes up a lot from staff and this so so unprofessional. It also leads to joking that borders on misogyny, classism, and racism.
    * Data obsession is not 100% helpful when working with human variables. Outcomes need to be measurable, but lately all I feel I do in meetings if look at spreadsheets of numbers. I would prefer mentoring from my manager, not pressure to pressure my students to meet a deadline set by an analyst who has never met a student in my program struggling with job loss or tragedy.
    *Our courses are outdated- my students often complain it is repetitive. They lack differentiation and flexibility for materials, which I think is possible even with the competency based model.
    *Technology is cumbersome. Too many programs, too many crashes, and too mauch hardware. I would be much more efficient with a cell phone and large screen tablet.

    Advice to Management

    See above. I'm excited for all the big ideas we keep hearing about, but what I do day-to-day seems removed from what has been promised. It would be great if we could add loans and healthcare coverage to what we offer students.


  7. Helpful (9)

    "student mentor"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Student Mentor in Remote, OR
    Current Employee - Student Mentor in Remote, OR
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Western Governors University full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    work from home, that's about it

    Cons

    Terrible environment. WGU has become almost a cult-like experience. Do not EVER offer constructive advice, management only wants to hear positive statements. IF you don't agree with the way something is being handled, or if you have insight into improvements keep this to yourself as you will be treated like a hostile employee for not just smiling and agreeing to whatever it is senior management throws out at any given moment. Change is constant. Policies seem inconsistent and punitive. There is a growing culture of fear. Always the veiled threat of being put on warning, especially if you have an opinion about anything. Mentors do not teach, in fact new policy carries punitive response if a mentor tries to actually share course specific assistance with students. The dis-aggregated model prohibits collaboration and completely removes the student mentor from anything that resembles academic input. Morale is terrible, with many employees whispering to each other, but never feeling comfortable voicing real concerns for fear of retaliation and alienation from upper management. Respected, insightful program managers of yesterday have left in droves leaving ill prepared, bullying, unqualified program managers to act as babysitters and yes people to the autocratic, unenlightened senior management staff. The heart of WGU seems to have been beaten out of it. For many years I loved working here, unfortunately the many heros I had grown to respect and trust have been driven out and a vacant, hollow management team has driven the workplace into a sad reality.

    Advice to Management

    honesty, kindness, intuition, and respect for those you manage would be a good starting point.

  8. Helpful (2)

    "WGU Employee"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Data Analyst in Salt Lake City, UT
    Current Employee - Data Analyst in Salt Lake City, UT
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Western Governors University full-time

    Pros

    Non profit, student driven, stable, annual performance bonus for all employees

    Cons

    Some difficulties with salary when promoted from within... this has, however been a point of focus in recent years

    Advice to Management

    Allow flexibility on working remotely for those who have shown good productivity and responsibility


  9. Helpful (14)

    "Many years of experience have led me to write this."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Enrollment Counselor in Phoenix, AZ
    Current Employee - Enrollment Counselor in Phoenix, AZ
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Western Governors University (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    WGU is mission driven. It's a nice non profit that truly is revolutionizing the education model. Gone are the days of credit hour, time based situation. WGU has a competency based approach that is fantastic. Because of this, we are getting records broken monthly in terms of attendance and unless you absolutely suck and screw up at your job, you will not lose it.

    Cons

    HOWEVER, the rising number of enrollments is a good thing but brings a lot of issues that mgmt does not care about. Stress is running amok. Morale is low because of the lack of opportunities for pay raises and promotions. Leveling is an absolute failure and mgmt is clueless on what to do to help their employees. Rumors are, we have no money for honest pay raises so they are getting tight with leveling.
    I am sure you've read this before, but advancement is almost impossible. It truly is based on your location and or who you know.

    The only thing that is constant here is change...as everything changes. This is a major source of frustration as no one can get settled in as they will change it down the road..whatever concept it is. No wonder there is no consistency.

    Upper mgmt is clueless as to what their employees are doing. I had a major life change within the past year...did I hear anything from them..nope!

    Our president is clueless and shielded by what is truly going on at the lower levels. Rolling out programs to a messy situation, ever changing curriculums that always leave questions from students we can't answer and make us look silly.

    Pay is a huge huge issue. Again, nothing happens yet it is CONSISTENTLY on our great places to work surveys as the number one issue.

    Advice to Management

    Depends..talking front line, middle mgmt or upper mgmt? Upper mgmt needs a wake up call. Too many Salt Lake City based employees.

    Your motto is expanding access to education for your students...but you fail to do this for your employees.


  10. Helpful (8)

    "Financial Services"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Financial Services Specialist in Salt Lake City, UT
    Current Employee - Financial Services Specialist in Salt Lake City, UT
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Western Governors University full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Awesome teammates who you can depend on, nice perks/conveniences at office.

    Cons

    Its becoming more and more business/number driven to the point you don't know you are working in higher education. QA/performance review is such that it is very doifficult to achieve level needed to have certain priviledges, i.e. working from home, but one mistake is enough to lose it. Also HR has a habit of either misdirecting internal applications or simply choosing to hire from outside instead of promoting within

    Advice to Management

    Give employees the chance ot advance. The turnaround numbers only show percentange, not that you are losing the most experienced people who have to look and can get opportunities elsewhere


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