Columbia Southern University / Joe Manjone - warning
Posted by: Billusa ()
Date: March 02, 2006 01:05PM

Columbia Southern University

[ See [] ]

I have been looking carefully at this university after it was advertised to me via a military magazine.

I was interested and contacted the then Academic Dean Joe Manjone. He gave me a big pitch about how it is DETC accredited and would help me get a great new career and help me earn lots of money. It was a good pitch. Joe Manjone is a good salesman.

But I looked carefully into this and want to warn others [about]

The *university* is a private family run business in Alabama started in [1994].

It had been around under another name...offering certificates in fire safety, burgler alarm systems and the like before then. But then they decided to use the internet to...[offer degrees].

They signed up with the DETC which is an old organization...They are one of the many long time private companies that is on the Department of Education website as being recognized as an accrediting agency. Also recognized are private companies accrediting marriage counselors, massage therapists, Asian medicine schools.

Columbia Southern University started marketing themselves as 'recognized by the US Department of Education.'...

It is a small family business started by Bob Mayes who died recently and is now run by his son as the President, his daughter as the business head...

They don't have many students from what I gather. They target military people and newly divorced people...people who are vulnerable as they need to adjust to a new life [sic]. also [offers]...their diplomas abroad...

The DETC wants to start offering Ph.Ds students...

In my opinion, be aware of this internet scam [sic] school!


[b:77c7a3134d]Note: This is a subsequently edited version of Bill's entry, which was last edited on April 7, 2006 by the moderator/administrator of this message board[/b:77c7a3134d]

Options: ReplyQuote
Columbia Southern University / Joe Manjone - warning
Posted by: Manjone ()
Date: April 05, 2006 01:19PM

Joe Manjone isn't anyone's brother-in-law at the school. Are you the same Bill that posted on another website about this? Did you actually pay for a degree? Where are you getting your information? Usually internet scam schools don't offer courses in conjunction with universities such as the University of North Alabama.

Options: ReplyQuote
Columbia Southern University / Joe Manjone - warning
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: April 08, 2006 01:48AM

"Bill" has offered criticism about Columbia Southern University (CSU) and called it a "scam school," inferring that it somehow takes advantage of its students.

Joe Manjone was quite upset by this inference and the statements made by "Bill" and offered these details in response about CSU.

"CSU is a member of HETA and all the schools listed in HETD honor our credits."

See []

But note what HETA does not do:

"HETA does not assure that transfer requests from one HETA institution will be accepted by another HETA institution. It does not, as of this date, include all institutions that might accept your transfer credit. HETA is voluntary and, for example, an institution may not yet have chosen to join HETA. HETA does not make judgments about the academic quality of individual institutions."

And also see []

There are six regional agencies that provide institutional accreditation on a geographical basis within the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), which are the Middle States, New England, North Central, Northwest, Southern, and Western. While independent of one another, the six regional associations cooperate extensively and recognize one another's accreditation.

Joe Manjone specifically noted that CSU would only be eligible in the Southern region, but CSU is not accredited there.

Joe Manjone also advises that CSU has 76 full-time staff members. This includes 10 full-time faculty and 44 adjunct part-time faculty.

Joe Manjone says amongst the ten full-time faculty members six have substantial academic credentials. They are as follows:

Dr. Larry Williams Middle States - University of Maryland; Dr. Richard Gray, HLC North Central, graduate Oklahoma State; Dr. Katherine Nelson-born HLC Southern Association, graduate of Georgia State University; Dr. James Meyers HLC Southern Association, graduate of Florida Institute of Technology and Dr. Joe Manjone, HLC Southern Association, graduate of University of Georgia.

Joe Manjone acknowledged that "CSU's predecessor was an Occupational Health and Safety training business...They issued training certificates stating that a safety professional had received training in a particular area of study (ergonomics, industrial hazards, construction safety, etc.)."

Anyone interested in attending any school should make sure how and by whom that school is accredited. This is especially important because many students will move on to another school after graduation in further pursuit of higher educational goals.

If a student moves from one school to another and that school does not accept the credits and/or recognize the degree of a previous school this could become a serious problem for that student.

If students know that they are going to transfer credits, they should in advance get pre-approval of the course from the school where they want to transfer the credits.

Be sure that every course you take and pay for is as fully accredited as possible and therefore has the most worth/value that is possible.

Some helpful organizations to consult:

Council for Higher Educational Accreditation (CHEA)

CHEA is an association of 3,000 degree-granting colleges and
universities and recognizes 60 institutional and programmatic accrediting organizations.

See []

World Education Services (WES)

WES evaluations are widely accepted and often specifically requested by academic institutions, licensing boards, employers and government agencies throughout the U.S. (WES also administers a separate credential evaluation service in Canada

See []

Higher Learning Commission (HLC)

The Higher Learning Commission is part of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. The Association was founded in 1895 as a membership organization for educational institutions. It is committed to developing and maintaining high standards of excellence.

The Association is one of six regional institutional accrediting associations in the United States. Through its Commissions it accredits, and thereby grants membership to educational institutions in the nineteen-state North Central region: Arkansas, Arizona, Colorado, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, New Mexico, South Dakota, Wisconsin, West Virginia, and Wyoming.

See []

Options: ReplyQuote
Columbia Southern University / Joe Manjone - warning
Posted by: jagmct1 ()
Date: April 20, 2006 12:39AM

I would like to take this opportunity to clarify some issues discussed on this forum regarding Columbia Southern University.

There is nothing to “warn” people about when looking into pursuing a degree through CSU. If you check there website at ( and there accreditor ( you’ll discover that CSU is nationally accredited by the Distance Education & Training Council, which is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and CHEA. You can learn more about recognized accreditation through the CHEA website at (

The university is a privately owned institution of higher learning. This has no bearing on CSU’s academic quality, commitment to excellence, accreditation and recognition. CSU is considered to be one of the leading nationally accredited online schools. In fact, CSU is one of the very few accredited schools that were selected by the DETC to start offering accredited online doctorate of business administration (DBA). The DBA is a pilot program being implemented by the DETC.

CSU’s accurate history is as follows:

Dr. Robert G. Mayes, Ph.D. founded the University of Environmental Sciences in 1993 following years of experience in developing and presenting safety-training programs to those involved in environmental management and occupational safety and health fields. Initially two certificate programs were offered:

Certified Environmental Compliance Manager (CECM) and,
Certified Ergonomic Compliance Director (CECD).

As envisioned, older and more mature individuals whose professional and family obligations prevented attendance in a traditional classroom setting took these programs. With this in mind, Dr Mayes designed these programs to be completed through Distance Learning.

The response to these programs was overwhelming. So much so, that the University of Environmental Sciences developed its first-degree programs in Environmental Engineering and Occupational Safety and Health in 1994.

In 1996, the infrastructure to administer these programs was firmly in place. So, Dr. Mayes decided the time was right to develop additional degree programs in conjunction with highly regarded subject matter specialist. The first of these new degree programs was Business Administration. It was then followed in succession by Computer Science, Criminal Justice Administration and Health Administration. It was also at this time that Dr. Mayes decided to change the name of The University of Environmental Sciences to Columbia Southern University. The University in its present form had taken shape.

By 2001 Columbia Southern University was accredited by the Distance Education and Training Council (DETC) and Hopkins Education Ltd. of Hong Kong became CSU's first international marketing representative. The College of the Bahamas also became an academic partner.

In 2002 CSU's first graduation ceremonies were held in Gulf Shores, AL on April 27th. Graduation weekend included the founding of the CSU Alumni Association and the election of its first president, Julia Wilson.

It was also in 2002 CSU established agreements with University of North Alabama and University of West Alabama to offer creative online degree programs through these two traditional universities.

CSU received DANTES and VA approval, which led to a major emphasis on marketing to military personnel.

CSU enrolls and graduates thousands of students every year on a national and international level. CSU students come from all walks of life, including major business organizations, police departments, fire departments and military. CSU has formed academic partnerships with Delta Airlines, Boeing and the Department of Homeland Security, as well as many other private organizations, universities, junior colleges and other online universities.

I wanted to ensure the readers that enjoy this online forum received solid facts about CSU and there academic online degree and certificate programs. CSU offers maximum flexibility and affordability for the adult learner wanting to pursue an accredited online degree.

Options: ReplyQuote
Columbia Southern University / Joe Manjone - warning
Posted by: Graduate ()
Date: October 09, 2006 09:42PM

As a graduate of Columbia Southern University I find Bill's comments unwarranted and disparaging.

I am a substitute teacher in two public school systems and have a successful, productive and happy life with many thanks to Columbia Southern University.

Options: ReplyQuote
Columbia Southern University / Joe Manjone - warning
Posted by: Roderick Ching ()
Date: November 05, 2006 02:12AM

Bill's comments about Columbia Southern University and Manjone are naive, irresponsible and misleading.

Whether CSU is large or small scale has nothing to link with its quality which is highly regarded by other DETC Universities. In fact, keeping a small but efficient adminstration team keeps the running cost low that benefits all CSU students on the tuition fees [...]

I love CSU and highly [...]

[b:7d899f44af][Editor's note: This board is not for advertising][/b:7d899f44af]

Options: ReplyQuote
Columbia Southern University / Joe Manjone - warning
Posted by: Rodrick ()
Date: August 12, 2007 02:08AM

Columbia Southern University Provost Selected to Establish Rules for
U.S. High School Soccer
Dr. Joe Manjone to Serve as First Southern Chair of National Federation of State High School Association Soccer Rules Committee

In the 87 year history of the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS), no individual from a southern state has ever chaired the Soccer Rules Committee – until now. Dr. Joe Manjone, Provost of Columbia Southern University in Orange Beach, Alabama, was recently selected as chairperson to lead this nine member committee consisting of soccer officials, coaches and state high school administrators from all over the nation in establishing rules for U.S. high school soccer.

“I am truly honored to be selected for this position,” said Dr. Manjone. “It will be my pleasure to serve as chair of the NFHS Soccer Rules Committee for the next four years.”

Approaching the golden anniversary of his soccer officiating career, Dr. Manjone has officiated nearly 2,000 soccer matches in seven U.S. states and at U.S. Army bases throughout Europe. His past experience also includes sports administrator positions with the U.S. Army, Penn State, Frostburg State University, and the University of Alabama in Huntsville. Other high school and collegiate sports he has officiated include basketball, baseball, softball, football, volleyball, swimming, track and field, and wrestling.

Although the 65 year old provost underwent hip replacement surgery in November 2005, he continues to demonstrate his love for the game and in Spring 2007 officiated approximately 40 high school and middle school games.

Dr. Manjone also serves as the rules interpreter and soccer championship coordinator for the Alabama High School Athletic Association, assignor of soccer referees for the North Alabama Soccer Officials Association, and is a founding member of the National Intercollegiate Soccer Officials Association (NISOA). He currently writes the annual NISOA High School Refresher Exam used by high school referees nationwide to prepare for the upcoming soccer season.

Dr. Manjone holds a bachelor’s degree in math and master’s in sports administration from Penn State, and a doctorate in sports administration from the University of Georgia. An officiating researcher and author, his works include the Co-recreational Sports Handbook and a number of articles such as Officiating the High School Way.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Columbia Southern University / Joe Manjone - warning
Posted by: foley22 ()
Date: March 18, 2011 04:34AM

I have been taking courses for my BS in Hospitality and Tourism for the last year and a half and I have just started my last term to graduate. I had researched many schools keeping accreditation and cost as prime targets. I came across Columbia Southern University and compared with Kaplan and Phoenix the accreditation was identical but the cost was less then half. I have learned since then by talking with other online students from Phoenix that the curiculum that I am taking is actually more difficult as I believe the reason for this is that Columbia Southern is more motivated by student success rather then higher addmision fees. Because the school is still unknown to many as the higher priced online schools have more funds for advertising CSU stands superior. It has migrated as a prime candidate for government agencies and applicants of the military. The best kept secret... The students are more disciplined and determined to acheive their goals. Just from the time I have been in the school I see it has grown a great deal and the tuition has only risen 5.00 per unit. It is where you can go to get a degree completely covered by financial aid. Online school is not for everyone as you must be disciplined and understand and adhere to due dates. Most of my Professors have been superior in feedback and know what they are teaching. There has only been one professor out of several classes that I found inadequate and I just needed to stay on top of my assignments and question the feedback to prove my theories. I have now read several reviews of students who have now gained the essential tools from Columbia Southern University to start thier careers and are very happy with the results. I had already completed a little over a hundred units from a previous AA and Cert and I was able to transfer 78 of the those credits over. If your weighing out the different Universities you should heavily weigh the possibility of CSU.. Plus all my text books were included (and I get to keep them).. As you know that is big, big money saved..

Oh I forgot. Now that I am starting my second lifetime career (older student) I have been signed on with a major Hospitality management company who takes on properties in distress from owners and banks and turns them around to make them successful. I am being trained for management and I have not even finished my degree yet.. Chaching

Honestly if the school was started by a mom and pop beginnings then that is awesome. Only in America with the right education and motivation could this be achieved. Way to go and thank you for helping create a brighter future for students from all over the world and backgrounds.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Columbia Southern University / Joe Manjone - warning
Posted by: ronniee ()
Date: July 09, 2012 12:22PM

I respect other people's rights to freedom of speech and not every student is going to have a pleasant experience. In my experience, CSU has been a great school all the way from my Bachelor's program into my Master’s program as well. I have went to a top university and paid the high prices of books and tuition. I have come to find it was not what all it seemed to be, classes that were overcrowded and I found it hard to talk face-to-face with professors about assignments. I kept an A average, but I felt like I wasn’t really learning anything or being challenged enough. At CSU, my professors take their time in commenting on my assignments and where my strengths and weaknesses are. Discussion boards were nice to have because I had the time to look into other students’ comments and opinions of what we were discussing.
This school is not a cult and it is not a scam. This school has been recognized by the U.S Department of Education and they provide the school funding as well- Pell Grant, Federal Loans, etc. Most employers will accept a national accreditation because it provides flexibility on a national scale versus regional. However, regional accreditation is a must in some career fields and that is why CSU has partners that are regionally accredited to transfer to in order to complete your desired course. Times are hard enough and money is tight so what is so terrible about paying lower cost tuition and having a top-notch education. It also makes me upset that I work really hard to further myself for a better future for my family and myself. Stop hating and start learning. CSU is accredited and a perfectly fine school for those who must utilize accredited online school due to a busy work and home life. Give credit where it is due!

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Columbia Southern University / Joe Manjone - warning
Posted by: Horsley30 ()
Date: May 22, 2018 06:09PM

I think this top university is offering great educative courses. Will save the reference for my sister. She is taking classes from LSAT Courses online since last two months. Opting for law career and entrance exam is approaching soon. Hoping for the favorable results and prosperous career.

Options: ReplyQuote

Sorry, only registered users may post in this forum.
This forum powered by Phorum.