Originally created 05/24/05

'Trump University' plans announced



NEW YORK - He's built buildings, written books, married models and starred in a reality TV show. On Monday, Donald Trump announced his latest venture: Trump University.

Don't expect ivy-covered walls or a football team. Trump University will consist of online courses, CD-ROMS, consulting services and Learning Annex-type seminars.

"In today's hyper-competitive business climate, the need for the highest quality education has become more crucial than ever," Trump said. "But people are looking beyond the traditional business education model, which involves hours in the classroom and relies primarily on book learning."

The for-profit university will not offer degrees or grades. Courses will cost $300 and will take one to two weeks to complete. Trump said longer courses of two to three months would be offered in the future.

Michael Sexton, a management consultant most recently with Accenture in New York, will serve as president of Trump University.

Roger Schank, professor emeritus and founder of the Institute for Learning Sciences at Northwestern University, will act as chief learning officer.

Schank, who joined Trump and other faculty members at a Trump Tower news conference, said the school would emphasize "learning by doing."

"The problem with school is that school is a little academic, a little theoretical, not necessarily practical," Schank said. "It doesn't necessarily serve the general public, who may just want to know how to do something."

Students - or customers, as Trump University staffers refer to them - will be able to register starting this week for classes in marketing, real estate and entrepreneurship, with additional curriculum areas planned for the future.

"It's going to be a tremendous venture. It's going to really help a lot of people, which is what we really want to do," Trump said.

The faculty includes John Vogel, adjunct professor of business administration and associate faculty director of the Allwin Initiative for Corporate Citizenship at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth; Jack Kaplan, adjunct professor of entrepreneurship in the Eugene M. Lang Center for Entrepreneurship at Columbia University and founder and president of Datamark Technologies Inc.; and Don Sexton, professor of business at Columbia University and founder and president of the Arrow Group, Ltd.

Trump said that the idea for a university had been at the back of his mind for years and that the project could develop into a brick-and-mortar school.

"When I make speeches, a lot of people show up," he said. "A lot of people."

On the Net:

www.trumpuniversity.com