Adam Smith University

Adam Smith University is a private distance learning university founded in 1991 by Donald Grunewald, who is still its president.[1] Grunewald was president of Mercy College between 1972 and 1984.

Adam Smith University
TypePrivate, Distance learning
PresidentDonald Grunewald

Adam Smith university espouses the principle of independence from state control and promotes free-market business economics.[1]


Adam Smith's current American mailing address is a private mailbox in Garapan on Saipan in the Northern Mariana Islands, a U.S. commonwealth.[1] Adam Smith University asserts the establishment of a French unit called École Supérieure Universitaire Adam Smith, which offers academic degrees for work experience.[2]

The institution makes no statement suggesting that it has a physical campus.[3]


Adam Smith University was accredited by the Liberian Ministry of Education since 1995, well before the most recent conflicts, and was accredited as a result of an act of the Liberian legislature.[1][4] The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board identifies the institution as operating from Liberia and Saipan, but states that it has "no degree-granting authority from Liberia or Saipan."[5][6]


Adam Smith University found early praise when it was listed in “College Degrees by Mail: 100 Good Schools that offer bachelor’s, master’s, doctorates, and law degrees by home study” by Dr John Bear (Berkeley, California, Ten Speed Press, 1995). Other's however, would criticize the institution. Steve Levicoff referred to Adam Smith University as a degree mill, and he noted that it operated in Louisiana due to the absence of laws regulating the granting of degrees.[7] Adam Smith University and Columbia State University have the same address, which is "likely a mail forwarding address".[8]

Other critics have described Adam Smith University as a "diploma mill". Alan Contreras from the Oregon State Office of Degree Authorization (ODA), an agency of that state's government, called Adam Smith "a diploma mill with a long and unattractive history" in an article[9] written in a personal capacity. However, in 2005, he updated Adam Smith's listing on the ODA website to remove the term "diploma mill."


  1. ^ a b c d "Campus". Adam Smith University. Archived from the original on 21 November 2009. Retrieved December 30, 2009.
  2. ^ École Supérieure Universitaire Adam Smith (page on the Adam Smith University website; accessed August 23, 2007)
  3. ^ "Campus". Adam Smith University. Retrieved 6 October 2013.
  4. ^ [1]
  5. ^ "Institutions Whose Degrees are Illegal to Use in Texas". Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. Archived from the original on July 16, 2011.
  6. ^ " "List of Fraudulent and Substandard Institutions".[2]
  7. ^ Steve Levicoff. Name It and Frame It?. (3rd edition) Institute on Religion and Law. 1993 (page 111) ASIN B0006F1PCQ
  8. ^ Steve Levicoff. Name It and Frame It?. (3rd edition) Institute on Religion and Law. 1993 (page 111 and 119) ASIN B0006F1PCQ
  9. ^ International Higher Education # 32:4 Archived 2005-05-04 at the Wayback Machine

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