PennWest California Reviews

  • 38 Reviews
  • California (PA)
  • Annual Tuition: $15,726
73% of 38 students said this degree improved their career prospects
84% of 38 students said they would recommend this school to others
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Student & Graduate Reviews

Grad Student
  • Reviewed: 2/24/2022
  • Degree: Exercise Science
"Underwhelming. Not sure if it is the course materials, online environment, professors, departments, or just the institution as a whole but this program is NOT worth the paper my degree is printed on. Absolute waste. Stuck it out because when I realized that this program was not worth it, transferring would have been costly in both time and money. Basically, I was stuck there. Not to mention, "professors" barely communicate with students so asking for letters of recommendation seemed ridiculous. Most "professors" could more appropriately be called guides and some of them barely do that. Why don't actually teach and don't seem to care to try either. They are there for a paycheck and it is obvious. Some classes, grades weren't provided for assignments for 4-6 weeks!!! They don't respond to questions and when they do, it's a vague sentence or two. How am I supposed to improve as a student if I can't correct mistakes on new assignments? There was also A LOT of irrelevant homework. Things completely unrelated to classes that we were expected to know without any instruction being provided. Course materials listed as suggested turned out to be required as many assignments could not be completed without them. Most classes have noting to do with the concentration of study either. They are at best "filler" courses to achieve a certain number of credits. Overall, a frustrating experience and honestly this is a small fraction of the crap this place doles out as education. This whole institution is a joke."
  • Reviewed: 9/27/2020
  • Degree: Criminal Justice
"This is not a real Ph.D program. The professors in the program have social work or law degrees or masters of laws. Only a few actually have doctoral degrees in criminal justice. In fact, the department chair only has a law degree from Cooley. After a couple of classes I saw it for what it was: police officers and probation officers who want to be called “doctor” but not really work for it with a real Ph.D program. I cannot say that the doctor of criminal justice is worth your time. You will be disappointed as to the level of teaching, the lack of publishing by your professors, and the lack of original thought by those in your co-hort. Save your money and your time and get a real Ph.D. If you can’t meet the academic qualifications and don’t mind taking on debt, then maybe Cal is for you."
  • Reviewed: 5/31/2019
  • Degree: Liberal Arts
"Teachers and staff alike are amazing to work with. They will listen to your needs and help guide you to what's right and wrong. I did have a great relationship with all my tutors and staff, always on task providing help and they do listen. When I went to CALU for the first time for my graduation day, some of the staff members I used to speak to online, made the time to come and congratulate me the day of my graduation and I am for ever thankful for that."
  • Reviewed: 11/10/2018
  • Degree: Information Technology
"If you are looking for an online degree related to Computer Science do not go to Calu. I had classes where teachers do not submit grades on assignments for months. This made it hard for me to know how well I was progressing in the class. That same class the professor did not respond to my emails or discussion board questions for over a month. In my major related courses, the professor would always push you to ask questions on the discussion board but would give vague and short answers that did not help you learn the material. When I sought help from the online tutors at the Stem Lab they did not understand what was happening in my class, and could not help me. I feel as though you could get good grades and get by with Calu Online. However, I was hoping for more a learning environment. I was told going into the program that the online environment at Calu was very interactive, and set up similar to a classroom, but this is not the case."
Akil Patterson
  • Reviewed: 9/12/2018
  • Degree: Sports Management
"The Program was new when i attended and they really had a lot of people trying to figure out what track each would be on, I wanted to focus on marketing but the team really had not yet moved in that direction. I will say that the staff was willing to support you at great lengths to make sure you got all the information you needed."
Akil Patterson
  • Reviewed: 9/12/2018
  • Degree: Sports Management
"The Program was new when i attended and they really had a lot of people trying to figure out what track each would be on, I wanted to focus on marketing but the team really had not yet moved in that direction. I will say that the staff was willing to support you at great lengths to make sure you got all the information you needed."
  • Reviewed: 9/1/2017
  • Degree: Counseling
"It has a beautiful campus with lots of amenities. Financial aid office is very helpful. Professors cared about your well-being."
  • Reviewed: 9/1/2017
  • Degree: Communications
"I wouldn't recommend going to this university in the current climate. Treats students and alumni poorly."
Exercise Science Grad Student
  • Reviewed: 8/11/2017
  • Degree: Exercise Science
"The Exercise Science program can be very demanding, but in a very good way. It really pushes you to know your field well. The professors were very knowledgeable and always answered my questions in a timely manner, especially since the program I was in was an online program. That said, be prepared to do a lot of work, but know that it will help you understand your field better while also helping fine tune your skills in the area of exercise science. My experience with CAL U was exceptional and I would recommend this school and program to anyone!"
  • Reviewed: 3/26/2017
  • Degree: Physical Therapy
"The PTA program was rigorous as far as curriculum involved and hours needed to study, along with the competitive nature of the limited seating available in the program. The MBA degree was highly recommended and seems to have a strong following behind it."
Lindsey A. Tyrrell
  • Reviewed: 3/23/2017
  • Degree: Health Sciences
"CALU is a great school with a lot to be involved in! The University is making some really great updates to the campus an staff. The Communication Disorders program at CAL prepares students for graduate school and after graduation life. Professors are really invested in student success!"
  • Reviewed: 3/22/2017
  • Degree: Political Science
"I loved attending the university. The university provides a wide variety of programs to get involved in. Additionally, the college provides many opportunities to network and make contacts to help with future employments. The class sizes are adequate for the material being taught. I have had several professors who were on a first name basis with many of their students. My professors and supervisors have been able to assist with my career and education opportunities even after graduating. The educators are highly invested in the subjects they teach and are passionate about providing their students with the most relevant and necessary information for their futures."
Allison Y.
  • Reviewed: 1/31/2017
  • Degree: Business
"California University of PA is growing in size and career options. It is a smaller school, but does not lack in opportunity. It is technologically advanced and offers many career paths. It is a very friendly atmosphere where students can feel they receive individual attention- it is not overwhelming."
Nicholas C. Nelson
  • Reviewed: 8/3/2016
  • Degree: Biology
"California University of Pennsylvania is a small state school located south of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The university has been nothing but outstanding, and has upgraded a lot of its facilities in the past few years. The smaller campus and small town it resides in gives it a somewhat of a cozy feel. The professor to student ratio is pretty small as well, which helps with the easy learning process. I have decided to major in Environmental Studies, concentrating in Fisheries & Wildlife Biology, with a minor in Biology. The program has been amazing, I've had the opportunity to gain much needed hands on skills in the field with this line of study. The professors in the program are the best of the best in my opinion, several have even helped with endangered species work! The university and environmental program has also helped me with getting my internship. This internship has helped me learn to become more professionalized, and has also helped with learning more hands on skills, and guiding me in a path for the future. Overall, my time at California University of Pennsylvania has been nothing but a wonderful experience."
Brian Landry
  • Reviewed: 11/4/2015
  • Degree: Teaching
"California University of PA is part of the state college system of schools in Pennsylvania which is a rural setting and small class size which promoted interaction with the professors there. There are a lot of opportunities offered at CAL U of PA, you need to take advantage and apply yourself there."
  • Reviewed: 10/13/2015
  • Degree: Political Science
"The program doesn't offer any additional funding for going abroad, an to be honest, you need to go abroad to work in international affairs, global studies, global trade, etc. However, since it is a more affordable school, I was able to afford to go abroad twice, whereas at many other schools I was considering, this would not have been possible due to higher tuition. And if you are interested in going abroad but are on a budget, there are teaching abroad programs or some companies that offer paid placements, so it's still possible after graduation. Cal is a pretty great value overall. I would encourage people to check it out. I had a fantastic overall college experience."
  • Reviewed: 7/27/2015
  • Degree: Secondary Education
"Cal was a great education school. Certain professors were willing to do whatever was needed to help you achieve your goals. Since Cal is a big commuter school, the social life can be hard to live up to expectations, but can easily be achieved if you persevere and continue to look around for things to do."
  • Reviewed: 3/18/2015
  • Degree: Sports Management
"Helped me understand the business side of sports. Good pace and helpful information given during the courses. The workload prepares you for what you will face in the real world. I would recommend this school to anyone. Also to anyone who needs a flexible schedule."
  • Reviewed: 3/16/2015
  • Degree: Health Education
"This was my first experience with online education! I work full-time & appreciated the gentle prompts to sign up for classes. Staff was always available to answer questions about educational requirements, registration or financial concerns. The customer service was impeccable and I always received a response from someone within 24 hours, even if I had contacted the wrong department! It was almost as if their goal was to make me their number one priority! Instructors were no less magnificent & were easy to contact, even on weekends and evenings. Instructors were so accessible, I never really felt like a long-distance learner! I enjoyed the different venues used by some of my instructors. One instructor used the Maestro classroom and I was able to chat with students from other regions and listen to lectures, raise my hand and ask questions as if I was in a real classroom. If you like a challenge, are somewhat self directed (but could also use a little direction) & enjoy responding to thought-provoking discussion topics, choose Cal U!"
Sports Management/ MBA Student
  • Reviewed: 3/16/2015
  • Degree: Management
"The sports management program is a fantastic opportunity for anyone who is interested in the business of sport. The professors do a great job of setting up real life experience opportunities with professional sports organizations. This helps you get into the field of sports in your favorite way. Whether ticket sales, group sales, marketing and advertising or even being involved on the coaching side. Sports management can open a lot of doors and helps you grow as a networker of yourself and any product you endorse."