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Business college wants to change its name

April 14, 2007|By ANDREW SCHOTZ

HAGERSTOWN-Hagerstown Business College has asked the state for permission to change its name.

The new name would be Kaplan College, according to Maryland Higher Education Commission spokeswoman Helen Szablya.

On Wednesday in Annapolis, the commission is scheduled to discuss the college's request.

Hagerstown Business College is owned by Kaplan Higher Education, part of The Washington Post Co.

Kaplan College is part of Kaplan Higher Education.

HBC offers associate degrees and certificates in business and office technology and the medical and legal fields.

Last month, the Maryland Higher Education Commission gave HBC permission to offer bachelor's degrees in information technology and business administration.

University System of Maryland representatives opposed the application, arguing that four-year degrees would compete with similar offerings at the USM campus in downtown Hagerstown.

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HBC President W. Christopher Motz said last month that the commission's approval capped a two-year process for the school. The next step, he said, is asking the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools for its approval to award bachelor's degrees.

By changing its name to Kaplan College, HBC would become the local branch of a nationwide school, Szablya said.

Kaplan College has three campuses in Indiana and one apiece in Colorado, Washington state and Wisconsin, according to Kaplan College's Web site.

Including undergraduate and graduate programs, Kaplan Higher Education has more than 70 campuses in 22 states, Kaplan Higher Education's Web site says.

Motz wasn't on campus Friday afternoon and did not return a message left at his home.

A Kaplan spokeswoman declined to comment because the name-change application is pending.

A Maryland Higher Education Commission employee, reading over the phone from a document connected to the application, said HBC's board of trustees voted in favor of the name change, which the commission would have to approve.

The employee said someone else from the commission would fax public documents related to the request to The Herald-Mail on Friday afternoon, but no one did.

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