We are an accredited online university founded to serve Rescue Missions and The Salvation Army. Providing degrees in nonprofit management, addiction counseling and more.

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City Vision provides scholarships to those from The Salvation Army:
• Tuition is $720/course for divisions/units sending one student a year ($80/course or 10% scholarship).
• Tuition is $550/course for divisions/units sending two or more students a year ($250/course scholarship) and those outside the US.

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After I studied at City Vision University, I came to believe in their mission enough that I became their board chair. Their courses and degrees are extremely flexible. They are a perfect match for the mission of the Salvation Army.

– Commissioner Jim Knaggs

City Vision's History with the Salvation Army

Students from the Salvation Army
Full Time Interns Placed in TSA
Past & Current Board Members & Faculty


City Vision founded as the education arm
of AGRM called Rescue College.



TechMission partners with Salvation Army on Equip for Success. Major Bill Hurula joins board and eventually becomes board president.



Rescue College is accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission with a degree completion program in Missions.



TechMission starts placing AmeriCorps
interns with The Salvation Army.

Rescue College becomes a part of the
Christian nonprofit TechMission
 and is renamed City Vision College.



City Vision College starts offering graduate programs and becomes City Vision University.



Former Western Territory Commander Commissioner Jim Knaggs becomes City Vision Board President.



Colonel Dr. Janet Munn joins CVU Board


City Vision's Past Partnerships with The Salvation Army

Current & Past Board Members

• Commissioner Jim Knaggs (former Western territory commander) 
• Colonel Dr. Janet Munn
• Major Bill Hurula

Current & Past City Vision Faculty

• Commissioner Jim Knaggs
• Major Dr. Brian Jones
• Major Penny Shaffer
• Gina Gardea (SA staff)

Past City Vision Internship/TechMission Corps AmeriCorps Supervisors & Interns 

• National HQ. Supervisor: Major Betty Israel, Intern: Candice Griffith
• Compton Corps. Supervisors: Captain Martin Ross, Lieutenant Robert Davidson, Jenny Davidson, Interns: Sean McDonaldRobert Williams
• South End Corps. Supervisor: Major Irene Norman, Interns Grant Kaidi, Shayna HollinquestPearcy Ballah
• St. Louis Corps. Supervisors: Laura Grainger, Sara Johnson, Major Phil Aho, Interns: Kierra Jackson, Kristina Hunter, Hunt Sayres, Cheryl Punzalan, John Stewart, Jessica Lugo, Michael Parisi, Kelly Ridge, Corey Dresser, Kim Thornton

Past Students from Western Territory

• Commissioner Jim Knaggs 
• Alvaro Ruiz Garces
• Deann Aiu
• Captain Felicia Grant
• Jodianne Lutcher
• Juan Oregel
• Captain Kevin Pope (Divisional Secretary Alaska)
• Captain Kyna Kelley (Seattle ARP)
• Karen Lovelady (Pueblo Corps)
• Lorretta Dulay
• Naomi Metzler
• Major Premysl Kramerius
• Todd Lovelady (Santa Rosa Corps)

Past Students from Central Territory

• Ella Edison
• Kathy Hyden
• Kimberly Thornton

Past Students from Southern Territory

• Adrianne Sherman
• Major Benjamin Bridge
• Cheryl Gibson
• Devin Smith
• Drew Smith
• Erica Barnes (Baltimore ARC)
• Kevin Barnes (Baltimore ARC)
• Major John Murphy (General Secretary, Southern Territory ARC)
• Joshua Morefield
• Ruthie Forgey

Past Students from Eastern Territory

• Christine Tilley (Folsom, PA)
• Donna McCullough
• Michael Schiffhauer
• Walter Holmes 

Which City Vision Degree is Right for You?

$ 800
  • 60 credits, 2 years
  • $8,000 per year (full-time)
  • 7 required core courses
  • Up to 45 transfer credits
  • Pell Grant Eligible
$ 800
  • 120 credits, 4 years
  • $8,000 per year (full-time)
  • 10-12 required core courses
  • Up to 90 transfer credits
  • Pell Grant Eligible
$ 800
  • MBA & MSADC: 36 credits, 1.25 years
  • MSNM & MACML: 30 credits, 1 year
  • $8,000 per year (full-time)
  • Up 25% as transfer credit

City Vision and Salvation Army Success Stories

SAConnects Article: Perfect Focus – City Vision University and The Salvation Army

By Colonel Richard Munn

How does this City Vision University trio strike you: “Jesus, Justice and Technology?” 

For an army committed since its inception to deploy every medium possible to communicate the Gospel and serve humanity, it’s a natural fit for our day.  Thus, the affiliation and rapport between The Salvation Army and City Vision University (CVU) is gaining momentum. 

CVU aims to “transform lives through radically affordable online education.” Starting in 2008 as Rescue College, the endeavor to provide online Christian degrees to “those serving the poor, addicted and underserved” has evolved into the sophisticated and well-respected CVU operation of today.  Here is “an online university founded by Christian nonprofits for Christian nonprofits.” 

Certificates, Associate and Bachelor Degrees are available in Addiction Counseling, Business Administration, Nonprofit Management and Christian Ministry and Leadership, as well Master’s Degrees in Business (MBA), Nonprofit Management and Christian Ministry. 

Courses typically are 8 weeks in duration, with assignments due weekly and frequent live Zoom meetings with lecturer and cohort. 

The Salvation Army is increasingly part of the story with board member presence, providing online teachers, and affiliation with the USA East Education Department and the Adult Rehabilitation Command (ARC).  

Commissioner Jim Knaggs says, “After I studied at City Vision University, I came to believe in their mission enough that I became their board chair. Their courses and degrees are extremely flexible. They are a perfect match for the mission of the Salvation Army.” 

The aims, constituency and wide ranging boots-on-the-ground access of The Salvation Army makes this a win-win relationship.  We treasure the transforming Gospel, we know about addiction, we include the recovery community profoundly into our midst, and we are all about coming alongside and helping people to step up. 

CVU founder and president Andrew Sears, a catalytic, compassionate, and visionary man, sees great potential, and actively solicits counsel and input to sharpen the CVU mission.  Says Sears, “Our students from the Salvation Army have been almost equally officers and staff, but we also have had significant success with graduates of ARC programs as students.”

Stymied by that elusive, expensive, exclusive long-dreamed higher education degree?  Is there someone you love who could greatly benefit from this schooling? Apply to City Vision and let the dream come into focus, to the ultimate benefit of many. 

The original version of this article was published at https://saconnects.org/2023/06/06/perfect-focus-city-vision-university-and-the-salvation-army/.It has been lightly edited for this context.


Founded by Nonprofits for Nonprofits

Flexible Admissions & Transfer Credit Process


We are accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission, which is listed by the U.S. Department of Education as a recognized accrediting agency. We are an Approved Provider for NAADAC, which means that our addiction counseling courses are approved for Certified Addiction Counselor credit in most states.

Flexible Online Courses

With our 8-week format and 5 start dates per year, you can study on your schedule in 100% online courses. You never have to travel to a physical campus.

Our online courses are like live courses but instead of live lectures, most are recorded. Instead of live discussion, you have discussion forums with other students.

Radically Affordable so You Can Graduate Without Federal Loans

2023 City Vision Undergrad Tuition Comparison Chart

What Our Students are Saying:

Every single time City Vision courses came up in something that works perfectly alongside of the work I was doing...That’s the first time I’ve been in a college where it seems to fit perfectly with life.
Jeff Cook
Chief Program Officer
Springs Rescue Mission
What I was able to do was directly applied to my workplace...and to my future and I feel like it's really equipped me well to serve the people God's called me to serve.
Christian Dennis
Former Education Administrator
Adult & Teen Challenge Ohio Valley
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You Work to Transform Lives - Let Us Be a Guide

Like us, you work to transform lives. But some people you serve may appear stuck in dysfunction. You may feel over your head, like no one trained you for this. The needs seem endless, and you want to be more effective.

You know you need training to serve well, but you don’t have the time to stop working to get trained. City Vision’s flexible online programs allow you to balance work, family, and the rest of your life.

You deserve an affordable, flexible degree so you can help move your nonprofit to profound success. We want our students to know they are making a difference.

You may feel like your current position is an accident. But there are no accidents in God’s plan. Study with City Vision, clarify your calling, and be equipped to transform more lives than you’ve imagined.

Awards & Recognition

Frequently Asked Questions

To get credit for experience, first take City Vision’s Prior Learning Assessment Portfolio Development course, which uses the CAEL portfolio process. In this course you will develop a portfolio of your learning experience using a template we provide. For each subject area where you believe you should receive credit, you must identify a course at an accredited institution where you believe that you have already mastered the learning outcomes for that course. For each course that you want to receive credit for, you need to develop a specific portfolio section where you provide several pages of documentation on how you have achieved the learning outcomes of the course. A faculty member then reviews your portfolio to assess whether you have provided adequate documentation to be granted credit.

After completing this eight-week course, you will get 3 elective credits toward your degree plus the credits for any courses where you documented that you met the course outcomes through your portfolio. You have up to 3 months to submit the rest of your portfolio to get credit for additional courses where you can document learning. After the three months, you can pay $100 to have additional sections of your portfolio reviewed. Undergraduate students can receive credit for up to 25% of their degree through prior learning (30 credits for a bachelor’s or 15 credits for an associate’s) and graduate students can receive credit for up to 25% of their degree (9 credits for an MBA).

We have credit recognition partnerships with Wheeler Mission, The Urban Ministry Institute (TUMI), Third Millennium, Saylor Academy, Vision International, Harvestime Institute, Genesis Process and YWAM’s University of the Nations. If you are with an organization that would like to set up a Credit Recognition Partnership, please contact us.

For the 2023-24 year, we offer the following tuition scholarships:

Here are the steps to request a scholarship:

  1. New Students Only: Fill out a free enrollment application. If you have already applied to the school, don’t do this again.
  2. All Students: Email the financial aid office at financialaid@cityvision.edu to say which scholarship you are requesting. There is not a form for requesting scholarships.
  3. The financial aid office will contact you if we need documentation to verify you are eligible for a scholarship.
  4. Be sure to read our criteria to keep scholarships.

City Vision offers two types of partnerships with organizations.

Multi-Student Organizational Discounts. We offer a scholarship to students from any organization that refers multiple students to City Vision in a given year. The scholarship makes tuition $5,500 ($550/course) for both undergraduate and graduate programs. If an organization does not have more than one student for at least a year, that organization loses its scholarship status. If you are with an organization that would like to receive this discount, please contact us.

Credit Mapping Partnerships. City Vision sets up credit mapping articulation agreements with ministries that have high-quality ministry training that can be evaluated through our prior learning assessment process. We have credit mapping partnerships with Wheeler Mission, The Urban Ministry Institute (TUMI), Third Millennium, Saylor Academy and YWAM’s University of the Nations, among others, that work in conjunction with our prior learning process. If you are with an organization that would like to set up a Credit Mapping Partnership, please contact us.

Yes. City Vision has worked with many employers that offer tuition assistance or reimbursement.

For students whose employer will pay their full tuition, we can work with you to send your tuition invoice to your employer for them to pay directly.

For students that pay their own tuition and need reimbursement with their employer, we provide the invoices and documentation you need to get reimbursed.

City Vision believes we are among the best in the world in providing an extremely practical Christian education for those interested in Addiction Counseling and Nonprofit Management. 

While state schools can provide information about counseling, City Vision will provide very practical counseling education with deep Christian integration. Similarly many state schools’ nonprofit management programs are often essentially generic business degrees, while we help our students integrate their Christian values in how they run nonprofit organizations and businesses.

Many community colleges or state schools will advertise “free” or nearly free tuition. Historically, for City Vision students that have applied for a Pell grant, 79% have qualified. For students that receive a full Pell grant, the grant will pay all your tuition making the cost to the student only the cost of books (which is similar to many community colleges or state schools). 

City Vision is very focused on providing extremely practical Christian education for those interested in Addiction Counseling and Nonprofit Management. City Vision offers fewer degrees than the mega-universities, but the degrees that we do, we do very well. We like to think of ourselves similar to the family-run hardware store where staff can answer all your questions with personalized service as opposed to the big box department stores like Walmart that offer everything. 

Liberty and Grand Canyon are fine schools if they are what you are looking for, but we believe we are superior for students seeking an affordable, practical education in what we teach. The following shows how we believe our strengths compare to those of Liberty and Grand Canyon:


City Vision

Liberty/Grand Canyon


$8,000 per year

$12,198/$15,725 per year

Core Competencies

Nonprofit Management & Addiction Counseling degrees, with personalized service and practical training

Hundreds of degrees, convenience that comes from scale of 100,000+ students


20+ year history of serving the poor, addicted and underserved, including partnerships with rescue missions and Salvation Army

Liberty was founded by Jerry Falwell. 

Grand Canyon was a for-profit school.

Speed to Degree

Extremely flexible acceptance of transfer credit and prior learning credit 

Somewhat flexible transfer credit.

Student Recruitment

Primarily word of mouth and partnerships with 90+ rescue missions, Salvation Army, counseling centers, 500+ nonprofits and urban ministries

$100 million+ advertising campaigns

We have never had a student who wasn’t accepted into a graduate program based on our degrees, although in some cases with state schools we have had to advocate for them.

Our alumni have been accepted into the following schools: Grand Canyon University, Bay Path University, Southwest Baptist Seminary, Fuller Seminary, California University of Pennsylvania, James Madison University, Liberty University, North Park University, Southern New Hampshire University, St Mary’s University of Twickenham, Trinity Bible College, Bakke Graduate School and AG Theological Seminary.

Ultimately the acceptance of any degree or transfer credit is up to the receiving institution.

City Vision is nationally accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC), which is recognized by the US Department of Education and CHEA. The US Department of Education does not recognize a distinction between regional and national accreditation in its standards and recently stated, “The Department does not believe…that rejecting transfer credits, an application for admission to graduate school, or a request to sit for a State occupational licensing exam on the basis of the type of Department recognized accreditation is justified.” See the US Department of Education letter on National vs. Regional Accreditation.

We have heard from a number of our students that other schools (sadly, even Christian schools) use scare tactics as a part of their sales practice, and misrepresent the significance of the distinction between national and regional accreditation.

From a Christian social justice perspective, many have called the distinction between regional and national accreditation a cartel that is a major injustice that hurts the poor.  Having said that, there are those that still maintain this distinction, so we address their concerns in this section. This letter from Dr. Leah Matthews addresses some concerns about the quality of DEAC accreditation.

Functionally, our experience has been that the distinction between regional and national accreditation is primarily of importance for:

  1. Student pursuing academic careers, since many high-end schools may require Ph.D.’s from regionally accredited schools. A very small percentage of jobs (mostly academic) require regional accreditation.  For example, a recent search of jobs in Boston showed 19 jobs out of 65,645 total requiring regional accreditation (of which 18 were in academic institutions).
  2. Students pursuing licensing in fields that often require a master’s degree from a regionally accredited school, such as Counseling or Social Work. It is because of this reason that City Vision does not offer master’s programs in these fields. As listed above, regional master’s programs to date have always accepted our bachelor’s degrees, but the decision is up to each individual school.
  3. Students planning to complete their bachelor’s degree at other schools. Many state schools and some CCCU schools may not accept transfer credits from nationally accredited schools. It is up to each school on what transfer credits they accept. Based on this, for students that come to City Vision that do not plan to complete either their associate’s or bachelor’s with us, but expect to complete at a state university or CCCU school, we recommend that they first check with that school on credit transferability.

Ultimately, choosing City Vision’s national accreditation over a regionally accredited school is a question of value: you get more for your money with City Vision. If you need the “gold plating” of regional accreditation for one of the reasons described above, then it may be worth paying 2-10 times more to get a degree with regional accreditation from another school. However, because of the career choices of our students, they prefer to choose the value of City Vision rather than more expensive high-end options.

Historically, 70-80% of our alumni work in the nonprofit or ministry sector after graduation. 

The others work in business with strong values that reflect strong social responsibility, Christian values and entrepreneurship. 
We have had hundreds of students that have come from over 90 Gospel rescue missions.

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