Park University Reviews
Student & Graduate Reviews (12)
Columbia southern university is a fake semi-accredited university. No regional accreditation means no legitimate academic standards. If this weren't true, why would there be any discussion? They are preying on non traditional students who don't know better and want the easiest and fastest bachelors degree they can obtain. All of these alumni are embarrassed and worried people will find the truth. For-profit and not-accredited means diploma mill.
Loved the time I spent at Park pursuing my undergrad degree. Professors were very professional and helpful. Curriculum was tough, but by setting aside special study time, you can easily get assignments and discussions in on time. Financial aid was pretty good to work with, but be prepared to wait almost a week and a half on refunds. All in all, Park is a great institution, and I've referred several people to the online program.
Completed my bachelor's in Criminal Justice Security from Park in 2014. Very challenging and their was a lot of writing involved. The school also required an internship, which I was afforded the opportunity by Command Officer. Loved Park experience so much that I chose to enroll in the MBA program. The MBA program consists of many challenging projects for each class. Park University has improved my writing, reading, and communication skills. Additionally, because of the MBA program, I have vastly improved my Microsoft Excel skills too. Military friendly and a legitimate traditional brick and mortar school that does not carry the poor reputation of Ashford and UOP.
I transferred to Park after completing my Associates degree at Truckee Meadows community college in 2013. I took all of my classes online with the exception of the proctored exams until Park stopped requiring proctored exams late 2014 or early 2016. They also dropped the requirement for the Writing Competency test recently. I thought that overall the courses were challenging and set me up to start my Masters Program. The financial aid process was a little slower that I was used to at Truckee Meadows. I am in the military, so I used TA with loans when my TA ran out (I am saving my GI Bill for my daughter). Overall, I had a pleasant experience and would recommend to friends and family who are seeking to further their education while holding down full time jobs. It is challenging and will require a great deal of time and sleepless nights studying, but in the end it is rewarding accomplishing your goals. Initially I was bias on online education, but iI believe it was more challenging because it is all on you to not procrastinate and complete your assignments on time.
The school and community created within my degree program was just what I needed in my college career. The environment is welcoming and the teachers are helpful. I have to say though their financial aid office is VERY poor. I got different answers in the same day to one simple question. I sent an email that same day inquiring about the difference and it has been days with no response. It seems as if no one in the financial aid department has been trained adequately or know that they are in a service field to Park Universities students. I am not one to review things but the way the financial aid department has handled and spoke on my questions is concerning when they are the ones who are handling my funds for school. Overall happy with all aspects of Park but their financial aid department really is a problem and I wish someone would get around to addressing it.
I fully recommend this school. It is nationally accredited and it is a real university. The curriculum is excellent and the teachers are invested in the process. I had a great learning experience while attending this school. It also allowed me to travel.
Park University was about 10 minutes from my house, and everyone my Mom knew from her IT job at the VA always praised Park University and how they wanted to go to Park University for IT. They boasted their IT programs as being well-taught and having a low student-to-teacher ratio, which appealed to me. They also had won spots in several top 20 university lists. With all of this in mind, I thought hey, even though I just need certification, maybe I can go here and get my bachelors and network a bit and not have to teach myself programming languages. I MADE A HORRIBLE MISTAKE. Park University has only TWO teachers on-campus for their Software Engineering program. One is very helpful and nice, but she speaks with a very thick accent so it's always a gamble if you'll be able to understand her or not. The other teacher is a guy who intentionally withholds examples from student slides, uses his own poorly-written textbook in all of his classes, and is the smuggest, irresponsible, most unhelpful programming teacher I've EVER had. He won't even hold himself responsible for taking ATTENDANCE. He has to have students "remind" him to take attendance, and then he blames the students when he forgets! On top of that, he barely teaches programming with emphasis on actually, y'know, programming. He spends half the first semester of Java teaching psuedocode and tracing and covered algorithms for five minutes. He never actually covered functions in detail, nor did he ever explain dot notation to his students. We never even covered arrays! His homework doesn't cover material well at all, considering you don't use a compiler until midterms are over. On top of all that, he lectures off his powerpoints and with pen and paper instead of allowing students to get hands-on experience! We never went to a computer lab or got in-class experience with compilers! On top of that, he'll only give you vague answers to questions and refers you to go to a tutor for homework assistance. He has a set solution for every homework assignment, and if you deviate ever so slightly, even in a beginner programming course where variance and lack of knowledge is expected, he'll dock you points insanely. The tutors even think he's crazy, because he'll set up meeting with them to reprimand them for giving students alternate solutions! There's only one class at Park University that allows for hands-on lab experience for programming, and that's not even a programming class that uses a real language or that's required for a degree! Most of the students I know are so fed up with Park's physical teachers that they've opted to take classes online, but even then you still use the programming book created by their main teacher. There are no real hybrid software engineering courses here. After a certain point, you're forced to take online classes, because there's only two physical teachers that can lecture. On top of that, you also have to weave through their prereq tree. You always start out with Java, and you can't take C++ until you've gotten past their Java courses. You can't even really take HTML or CSS classes until you've taken their Java classes, because of how they want the classes to build on each other. I transferred with C++ credit, and I had to fight to take Java because they wouldn't let me into the intro Java class but they also wouldn't let me into the C++ classes. They also require you to talk to your counselor to sign up for classes and receive "guidance", and the counselor for the Software Development track is the worse of the two! Not only that, but they won't let you sign up for classes until you've proven you can clear their prereqs. If you're going to Park for a business degree, a teaching degree, and accounting degree, or a psychology degree, you're fine. All of my classes I've had in business, math, and accounting were all very good. But my programming classes? A waste of time! You'll be more challenged at the Metropolitan Community College than you will here! And you'll save almost three grande by going there, too! An average semester here, with books included and no financial aid, is about 5k. You can go to an online college for much cheaper and get a much better programming experience. Another gripe I have with Park is that you can never get access to internet with a laptop or a tablet. Don't even try. You're better off going to the computer lab, because if you try and use their WiFi you'll always have IP conflicts, be disconnected randomly, or you won't be able to access the Park website. They also don't use Blackboard. They choose to use their knockoff Blackboard called eCompanion that is much more unreliable, and they use McGraw Hill for their online testing and resource hub, and it's very user unfriendly and goes down randomly. Park has lots of prestige and lots of awards, but take it with a grain of salt. Most of the faculty seem to think that Park is going in a downward spiral, and the dean is pending. Also, due to it's historic buildings and physical location, you get to experience such joys such as having to pause lectures to wait for trains to go by, ceilings falling down, dangerous & windy landscaping, and poor disability access in most buildings. They have radiators and window air conditioners, so most teachers have to speak loudly over them. They do appear to have a computer lab in every building (sometimes multiple) and they offer free printer paper. Every fourth meal in the cafeteria is free if you commute. The library is in a cave, and you only get phone access if your carrier is Sprint. Literally, it is in a cave. They claim that because they mine the limestone they can keep the tuition cheap. The bookstore is down there too, as well as faculty parking. People are frequently lost down there the first week of classes, so don't be surprised if you're asked how to get out or if you get lost. Park, despite its name, has very few parking spots. The parking is free, but if you don't have a Park sticker you get a ticket. They also are frequently doing work on the buildings and such, so be prepared for construction sounds and lawnmowers during class. Arson on campus. There have been sexual assaults (4 since Spring 2014) so they put up campaign stickers about sexual assaults and students have marked out the "only yes means yes" and replaced with "only no means no" so there are probably more sexual assaults likely to happen. They have a LGBTQIA group but I have no idea how inclusive it is or how homophobic/transphobic the members are. The American students are pretty racist despite the high international student body, and the teachers are always asking if the international students understand their slang and idioms.
After transitioning out of the Navy I was in search of a university that was both military friendly as well as (and most importantly) respected in the community, I found both at Park. From the first time I stepped on campus and told the admissions rep that I planned on using my Post 9/11 GIBILL i was treated with the respect that comes with being a veteran of two wars. The Warrior Center they have on campus is the beacon of all things military friendly, the staff is made up of current military members and veterans. The space is filled with "like minded people" that have shared many of the same experiences and have an intimate working knowledge of both the VA as well as TA. There was always coffee made and an open computer to study at. They do all the little things right, they speak the language, they have several instructors that are veterans (some come highly decorated). They read off the names of the fallen over veterans week, yes i said week. they do not celebrate veterans day, rather 5 of them. I also took online classes through them and had a wonderful experience that way as well. the technology worked correctly and the teachers were prompt with responses. Overall i think other institutions have a lot to learn from Park and the way they carry themselves, not to serious with but with a thousand yard stare, they have IT together.
As an active duty Soldier who deployed several time while pursuing my degree, I have very few problems with attaining my degree. The problems I did have were resolved quickly. Many of the professors are adjunct professors where most cared about their students but a few did not. I truly enjoyed my experience with Park University and would definitely recommend them to other potential students. The staff was extremely helpful, courteous, and willing to do everything they could to help you accomplish your goals.
I recently completed my B.S. in Management Computer/Information Systems with Park University and I must say I thoroughly enjoyed studying with this institution. I have never been to the main campus in Parkville as I completed my degree almost entirely online, but I do not think that the online experience took anything away from my education, in fact I think I may have learned more through online classes compared to past in-the-classroom experiences.
Initially, I was very nervous about taking courses online, but soon found that it was the right method for me. The mobility of online classes are great, but the thing with Park is that you are required to be in one place at a certain time once each semester for a proctored final exam. While this sometimes became problematic with my current career in the military, I think the proctored exam policy that they implement keeps a higher level of legitimacy compared to other institutions that offer degrees online.
Like any school (online or face-to-face) you will have good teachers, bad teachers, ambitious classmates, and slackers at Park, but in the end you will get out of it what you put into it. Great school, low cost, and would recommend to anyone looking to pursue an undergrad.-PK