Flexible, Faith-Based Liberal Arts Education at AMU
Ave Maria University appears in our ranking of the 50 Most Affordable Master’s in Theology Degree Programs Online.
Recommended by The Newman Guide in 2019, Ave Maria University is a private, nonprofit Catholic ACCU member in South Florida that offers 33 bachelor’s and three graduate degrees, including five fully online, plus a JumpStart Dual Enrollment Program at a 13:1 student-teacher ratio. For example, the B.S. in Marine Biology follows a 128-credit, SACS-accredited path advised by Dr. Nicholas Curtis where undergrads can research in Rookery Bay, intern at the Gulf Specimen Marine Lab, and study abroad in Australia. Chaired by Dr. Gabriel Martinez, the 128-credit B.A. in Political Economy & Government provides opportunities to semester in Washington DC, volunteer with the American Life League, join Christians United for Israel, engage in Aquinas Center projects, and enter the Honors Program.
Online on Canvas since August 2017, the Master of Business Administration has delivered a 32-credit, 16-month sequence led by Dr. Peter Whalen with rigorous 500-level courses like Managerial Strategy and Entrepreneurship from a Catholic worldview for $20,820 total. Directed by Dr. Michael Dauphinais, the Ph.D. in Theology currently has 13 full-time Gyrenes tackling a 48-credit, post-master’s curriculum dedicated to Ephesians 4:20 with weekly colloquia, teaching practicum, and dissertation research for 90 percent university placement. Other Ave Maria degrees include the B.S. in Nursing, B.A. in Elementary Education, B.S. in Marketing, B.A. in Psychology, B.A. in Early Christian Literature, B.S. in Biochemistry, B.S. in Exercise Physiology, B.A. in History, and M.A. in Theology.
About Ave Maria University
Ave Maria University originated on March 19, 1998, when Domino’s Pizza founder Thomas S. Monaghan purchased two schools near Ypsilanti, Michigan, to open Ave Maria College. In 1999, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia helped devise the curriculum for an Ave Maria School of Law. In 2002, Ann Arbor Township rejected Monaghan’s idea to build a satellite Ave Maria campus. The next year, Monaghan invested $250 million to move Ave Maria College to Florida. In August 2003, an inaugural class of 100 Ave Maria University students enrolled in Naples. In 2007, its permanent Ave Maria home was opened with funding from the Barron Collier Family. In 2008, Bishop Frank Dewane formally dedicated the AMU campus. In Fall 2009, the School of Law relocated its three-year Juris Doctor program there. In 2013, AMU sold its Latin American property in Nicaragua to Keiser University. In 2014, AMU launched the Mother Teresa Project Exhibition Hall.
Endowed for $4.6 million, Ave Maria University now employs 95 faculty teaching 1,123 Gyrenes from 44 states and 20 countries online or face-to-face at its 100-acre Collier County campus near Naples with 50+ clubs like the St. Thomas More Debate Team for 70 percent retention. In 2007, AMU won the Commercial Real Estate Digital Innovation Digie Award. In 2018, Ave Maria accepted the CBIA Community of the Year Award. Ave Maria University received a 2017 NABC Team Academic Excellence Award too. The U.S. News & World Report ranked Ave Maria among the top 215 liberal arts schools with the 99th best social mobility. On Niche, AMU boasts America’s 127th best dorms, 159th top history degrees, and 175th hardest admission. WalletHub declared Ave Maria University the third-best Florida value. College Factual picked AMU for the 147th best Catholic education and 240th most diversity.
Ave Maria University Accreditation Details
On June 25, 2010, Ave Maria University proudly announced that the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) Board of Trustees voted favorably for its initial Level V accreditation under President H. James Towey, who received the Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice Medal. Located 618 miles up Interstate 75 in Decatur, Georgia, this elite 11-state Southeast Region accreditor is recognized by the Council on Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) and Florida Department of Education (FLDOE). Further, Ave Maria has been accredited by the American Academy for Liberal Education (AALE) since 2000. The American Bar Association (ABA) also re-accredited the Ave Maria School of Law on February 15, 2018.
Ave Maria University Application Requirements
Enrollment at Ave Maria University is classified “moderately difficult” by Peterson’s because 1,171 of the 2,703 Fall 2018 applicants were chosen for competitive 43 percent acceptance. First-year Gyrenes must culminate an approved high school, homeschooling, or GED diploma. Cumulative GPAs of 2.6 or better are required. Only the JumpStart Dual Enrollment Program enrolls secondary juniors and seniors age 16+ from 49 states, excluding Massachusetts, with GPAs over 2.8. Freshmen need at least 1060 SAT or 21 ACT scores. Transfers typically need 24 or more regionally accredited credits and minimum 2.6 GPAs. International undergrads must surpass the 550 TOEFL pBT or 6.5 IELTS score. Online MBA cohorts need four bachelor’s business prerequisites and GPAs over 3.0. Business post-grads generally have three years of experience plus at least 144 GRE and 440 GMAT scores. The Ph.D. in Theology mandates a Master of Arts degree and 12+ credits of philosophy courses graded B or better.
Ave Maria University conveniently has free rolling admission year-round. Priority undergrad entrance dates are July 1st and December 1st. The Ph.D. in Theology closes on February 1st. School of Law cohorts must file before July 15th. The AMSL Advantage Summer Start has an April 15th deadline. Accordingly, complete the Ave Maria or Common Application online. Have official transcripts mailed to 5050 Ave Maria Boulevard in Ave Maria, FL 34142. Submit testing reports using SAT/GRE code 4249 or ACT code 6212. Send supplemental materials, such as the 1,500-word statement of intent, pastor reference, 1-3 recommendations, eight-page writing sample, and resume of experience. Contact (239) 280-2500 or firstname.lastname@example.org with questions.
Tuition and Financial Aid
For 2019-20, Ave Maria University is charging full-time undergrads $10,468 per semester or $20,938 annually. Bachelor’s students pay the $524 technology fee, $318 activity fee, and $72 athletic fee each year. Extra credits beyond 18 cost $366 apiece. Residing at the Naples campus’ dorms like Saint Maria Goretti Hall adds $6,728 for yearly rent. Meal plans for the Gyrene Cafe are $5,158 extra. Annual undergrad attendance equals $36,261 on-site or $29,747 at home. The JumpStart Dual Enrollment Program costs $750 per course. Online studies are priced $425 per credit. Traditional full-time graduate students are billed $14,518 per year.
According to the NCES College Navigator, the Enrollment Center in the Thomas & Selby Prince Building gets 98 percent of new full-time AMU Gyrenes started with median financial aid of $15,547 for $4.30 million combined. University funds include the Eastern Catholic Brilliant Jewel Scholarship, Mary Cross Tippmann Foundation Scholarship, Robert & Mary Ullen Scholarship, Saint Rita of Cascia International Scholarship, Shakespeare in Performance Scholarship, Kazma Family Foundation Scholarship, Greater Orlando Area Full Scholarship, Bill Raskob Foundation Scholarship, Faith & Football Scholarship, and Homeschool Scholarship. The Florida Diocesan Scholarship gifts $3,000 yearly to local Catholic Church employees who maintain 2.5 or greater GPAs. The $3,000 Chicago Scholarship selects first-year Illinois residents meeting the 23 ACT or 1140 SAT minimum. Federal programs, such as the Pell Grant or Direct Unsubsidized Loan, require FAFSA applications coded 039413. Floridians also pursue the Bright Futures Scholarship, Resident Access Grant, Jose Marti Scholarship, Horatio Alger Scholarship, and more.
Search through the three academic divisions for 35+ close-knit Catholic majors placed 241st overall by Washington Monthly at the Ave Maria University website.