Visionary – Curtis Pickering


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World Education University’s business model, offering free higher education around the globe, was created in the Coachella Valley three years ago.

“WEU is a degree-granting, free online university,” says Founder, Chairman and CEO Curtis Pickering. “Anytime, anywhere in the world, you can pick your degree program and get a free, high-quality education. It’s self-paced and competency-based. This is a game-changer for millions of people.”

The school offers associate degrees, bachelor’s and master’s program degrees, doctorate tracks, and certificate programs. It also will offer low-cost K-12 education in developing countries.

Advertising makes it all possible. “Advertisers are clamoring to support free education,” he says. “They know that they’re going to develop a relationship with that student forever.”

The Coachella Valley was Pickering’s top choice for WEU’s headquarters. “You have great people here, great quality of life, great schools, and it’s a place where you can raise your family and feel safe and secure.”

He also cites creative and business support from the Coachella Valley Economic Partnership. “Working with CVEP, we’ve had the ability to look at various places to locate, alternatives for tax structure and participate in the philanthropic culture,” he says.

The company has expanded to a second building and plans to keep growing. “We have students in 179 countries, and it’s our goal to have students in every country.” 

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