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University of the Rockies Student and Ashford University Alum Wins APSCU GREAT Award


SAN DIEGO, March 8, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The Association of Private Sector Colleges and Universities (APSCU) awarded its highest honor, the Graduate Recognition for Excellence, Achievement and Talent (GREAT) Award, to Ohio's Debra Stewart in a March 7 ceremony on Capitol Hill.


"I am speechless. I am very excited, honored and humbled to receive this award," said Stewart. "I can only imagine that there are so many people who are doing great things."

Stewart, of Laura, Ohio, was one of five honorees recognized for demonstrating excellence in outstanding academic and personal achievement. She is a PhD candidate at University of the Rockies and a graduate from Ashford University, both educational institutions owned by Bridgepoint Education, Inc. (NYSE: BPI).

Stewart, who grew up an orphan on an Indian reservation, overcame many hurdles on her road to receiving the GREAT Award. She cites going back to college to complete her bachelor's degree in her 50s as her greatest academic accomplishment. And, since then, she has earned two additional degrees – a Master of Business Administration and a Master of Arts in Teaching and Learning with Technology, both from Ashford University. She is currently enrolled in a Doctor of Psychology, Educational Leadership and Health and Wellness Psychology Specialization program online at University of the Rockies.

With more than 15 years experience in the healthcare industry, Stewart is the director of wellness for the St. Leonard senior living community. She was instrumental in facilitating the non-profit organization's certification as the first Vital Life Community in the nation, which she calls her greatest professional achievement thus far. Stewart also teaches for Sinclair Community College, owns a company called Picture Yourself Stronger that offers corporate wellness programs to various organizations, and serves on the advisory boards of Mental Health Technology and Vital Nation.

After years of working with dementia patients, Stewart was inspired to pursue her most recent project: developing the "Learning Styles Inventory Tool" to help caregivers communicate with individuals who have dementia and Alzheimer's disease. The tool has been successfully piloted and is now in the process of being implemented at St. Leonard as part of Stewart's dissertation for her doctorate program.

About Bridgepoint Education
Bridgepoint Education, Inc. (NYSE:BPI) improves the way individuals learn. By harnessing creativity, knowledge and proprietary technologies, such as Constellation, Thuze and Waypoint Outcomes, Bridgepoint Education has re-engineered the modern student experience with innovative solutions that advance learning. Its accredited institutions – Ashford University and University of the Rockies – embody the contemporary college experience. Ashford University offers associate's, bachelor's and master's degree programs while University of the Rockies offers master's and doctoral degree programs. Both provide progressive online platforms, as well as traditional campuses located in Clinton, Iowa (Ashford University), and Colorado Springs, Colorado (University of the Rockies). For more information about Bridgepoint Education, visit or call Shari Rodriguez, associate vice president of Public Relations, at 858.668.2580.

About Ashford University
Ashford University is defining the modern college experience by combining the heritage of a traditional campus with the flexibility and effectiveness of online learning. The University provides a vibrant learning community where high-quality programs and leading-edge technology create a dynamic, immersive and stimulating learning experience. Ashford University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association ( The University offers practical and progressive associate's, bachelor's and master's degree programs online, as well as bachelor's degree programs at its Clinton, Iowa, campus. Ashford University – where heritage meets innovation. For more information, please visit or call Shari Rodriguez, associate vice president of Public Relations, at 858.513.9240 x2513.

About University of the Rockies
University of the Rockies is an advanced graduate institution for tomorrow's thought leaders. The University provides an intimate and dynamic learning environment, offering highly specialized master's and doctoral degree programs in the social and behavioral sciences, access to industry experts, campus clinical programs for practical experience, and research and publishing opportunities. University of the Rockies is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association ( Small by design, University of the Rockies classes are presented in a progressive online format and at its Colorado Springs, Colorado, campus. For more information, please visit or call Shari Rodriguez, associate vice president of Public Relations, at 866.621.0124 x2513.

SOURCE Bridgepoint Education, Inc.

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