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Our trailblazer story

Southern New Hampshire University

Featuring Dr. Paul LeBlanc

As the country's largest nonprofit provider of online higher education, Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) is all in on the work of supporting alternative pathways to learning for adult students. With a strong belief that all students should have access to the type of instruction and support services that best meet their needs, SNHU has been a trailblazer in making high-quality postsecondary education more accessible and affordable for adult learners. With over 180,000 students and 250 programs, SNHU continues to be widely recognized as one of the nation's most innovative and fastest-growing universities.


About paul leblanc

President, Southern New Hampshire University

Dr. Paul J. LeBlanc is President of Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU). Since 2003, under Paul’s leadership, SNHU has grown from 2,800 students to over 160,000 learners and is the largest nonprofit provider of online higher education in the country.

The university was #12 on Fast Company magazine’s “World’s Fifty Most Innovative Companies” list and was the only university included. Forbes Magazine has listed him as one of its 15 “Classroom Revolutionaries” and one of the “most influential people in higher education.” Washington Monthly named him one of America’s ten most innovative university presidents. In 2018, Paul won the prestigious TIAA Institute Hesburgh Award for Leadership Excellence in Higher Education, joining some of the most respected university and college presidents in American higher education.

Paul served as Senior Policy Advisor to Under Secretary Ted Mitchell at the U.S. Department of Education, working on competency-based education, new accreditation pathways, and innovation. He serves on the National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity (NACIQI) and on the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine’s Board on Higher Education and Workforce (and served on its Committee on Quality in Undergraduate Education). He also serves on the ACE Board and chairs the AGB Council of Presidents.

Driving Policy Change 

to empower all students

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