One of the best ways to influence future societies is through education. Teachers and education administrators have great impact on a person's life. If you feel current collegiate systems don’t offer students enough options, starting your own college could provide those options. Whatever the reasons, be prepared for a long journey.
Plan the curriculum. Choose a specialty to build the college around, such as business or economics. Create a list of courses necessary to obtain an associate degree and/or a bachelor's degree from your college. Sixty-three credits are common for an associate degree and 120 credits are common for a bachelor's degree.
Write a business plan. In the business plan, explain why your college is necessary with so many other choices for students. Explain how your approach to education that will attract students and turn out more productive citizens. List the expenses you will incur initially and how your college will grow financially over the next five to 10 years. Set admission standards and tuition fees.
Get incorporated. Retain a lawyer to help generate the articles of incorporation documents and guide you through the incorporation process. You may file as a nonprofit by first completing and submitted form 501(c)(3) to the IRS, or you may file as a for-profit institution.
Create an advisory committee. The committee doesn’t actually have to meet. Advisory committees advise on curriculum, program choices, fundraising and running the school. Solicit advice from former and current deans. Interview tenured teachers and educators who have worked within a college situation for a number of years if you can't form a committee committed to working together and meeting regularly.
Recruit a board of trustees. Look at the board of trustees as a way to attract students until your college receives its accreditation. Invite prominent members of the community to sit on your board. Print the board members names and pictures on brochures and marketing materials you create. Get them involved in the recruiting process through speaking engagements at high schools and community centers.
Raise money. Hold a fundraising dinner and invite the most influential individuals in the community. Send letters to the richest individuals in the state such as business owners, CEOs, wealthy individuals, politicians and celebrities.
Find a location for the school. Work with a real estate agent who can find distressed commercial properties to get a deal on a location. As reported on the Dow Jones Newswires in 2010, there have been record foreclosures for commercial properties. These opportunities may be available for years to come.
Establish the college’s intangible infrastructure such as 800 numbers, setting policies for student and faculty conduct, and creating application and enrollment processes. Set policies and procedures for dealing with medical emergencies, accepting and processing tuition payments, and all other day-to-day operations for the college.
Hire teachers. After interviews, if possible, observe the teachers in a classroom setting.
Get students interested in attending. Work with local employers to create intern programs for students studying at your college. Use these programs to get students interested in attending your college.
Get accreditation from the appropriate agency. You may be applying for regional, faith-based, career-related or program approval. Find an accreditation agency in your region. In the U.S. accreditation is handled by agencies recognized by the U.S. Department of Education, but there is no federal level of accreditation as in countries like the United Kingdom. However, student loans are based on accreditation.
Submit a self-evaluation of your institution, curriculum and extracurricular programs to the agency. Follow the guidelines of the accreditation agency you choose to apply with.
Schedule the peer review session. Certified administrators and educators will review your curriculum, resource allocation plans, goals, objectives and admission requirements. A site visit is also made. Await approval. This process could take six months to a year.
Sam Williams has been a marketing specialist and ad writer since 1995. He has been published in magazines such as "Reaching Out" and "Spa Search." He served in various sales and marketing positions with major corporations such as American Express, Home Depot and Wells Fargo. Williams studied English at Morehouse College.