Accredited Degree Programs, Scholarships and Resources for Top Schools
In recent years, Maine has offered many incentives for people to move to and attend school in its state, such as the Live and Work in Maine program that reimburses visitors their vacation costs if they move there. For those who want to earn a college degree, Maine offers many higher education options, from its coastal towns to big cities and rural areas near the Canadian border. The best online universities in Maine will offer a variety of degree programs, flexibility and employment services to help fuel the state's growing labor demands. Learn about these colleges and universities, and how choosing an online program in Maine can be the gateway to career success.
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Best Online Colleges in Maine
State incentives encourage individuals to join the burgeoning workforce in Maine. For example, the Live and Work in Maine program reimburses visitors their vacation costs if they move to Maine. For college students, Maine offers many higher education options in coastal towns, big cities, and rural areas near the Canadian border.
The best online schools and colleges in Maine offer a variety of degree programs, flexible scheduling options, and career services. This guide provides information about schools in the state and how choosing an online program in Maine can lead to professional success.
These rankings include
#1 Online Schools and Colleges in Maine [2022 Guide]
Central Maine Community College
- 2 years
- Online + Campus
Central Maine Community College offers flexible online programs that meet high academic standards. Located in Auburn, the school's academic options include in-person programs and seven online programs. At the institution, 1,041 enrollees choose to complete their studies online.
Distance learners can work with peers on group projects. With virtual communication tools, such as videoconferencing and chat, participants can develop their network and connect with classmates. Many employers prefer candidates with professional experience, which students can gain by completing internships and research projects. Online learners can access institutional resources such as academic advising. Opportunities such as job fairs and career workshops help enrollees explore their professional options.
Federal financial aid programs can help degree-seekers afford higher education. Along with providing information about institutional funding, the school's financial aid office can help learners explore additional funding options, such as third-party scholarships. According to the institution's statistics, 88% of enrollees benefit from financial aid of some type.
#2 Online Schools and Colleges in Maine [2022 Guide]
Kennebec Valley Community College
- 2 years
- Online + Campus
While completing Kennebec Valley Community College's online programs, enrollees develop field-specific knowledge and practical skills that apply to roles across industries. The 952 learners who study online receive the same high-quality education as the school's on-campus students. Flexible scheduling and enrollment options allow distance learners to earn their degree faster than many on-campus students.
Enrollees studying online can pursue individual assistance by connecting with professors through email and videoconferencing. The supportive online community enables participants to collaborate with peers and faculty on subject-specific research projects or pursue other experiential learning opportunities, such as internships. Institutional resources, including career services and academic advising, encourage academic and professional success among online students. Job fairs provide opportunities for learners to network and explore potential employment opportunities.
Educational expenses can vary based on the program. For specific information regarding program costs, applicants can contact an admissions counselor. Eligible enrollees can benefit from internal and external funding opportunities to help lower the total.
#3 Online Schools and Colleges in Maine [2022 Guide]
York County Community College
- 2 years
- Online + Campus
At York County Community College, online students can access programming of equivalent quality to in-person academic options. Based in Wells, the school educates 738 remote enrollees through 15 online programs. Busy learners who need flexible scheduling options can choose asynchronous online programs to complete coursework around other obligations.
The institution's virtual learning platform provides opportunities for students to communicate with instructors and classmates. In addition to internships, research projects provide opportunities for learners to collaborate with professionals in their field and gain practical experience. Career counselors help enrollees identify the best professional path for them and prepare to find and secure jobs after graduation. Mock interviews allow degree candidates to practice their interpersonal skills and improve their chance of landing a job after graduation.
Financial aid counselors help applicants explore funding options to reduce out-of-pocket costs. Enrollees who demonstrate financial need can submit the FAFSA to apply for federal financial aid. According to the school, the number of degree-seekers receiving financial aid amounts to 86% of the student body.
#4 Online Schools and Colleges in Maine [2022 Guide]
Saint Joseph's College of Maine
- 4 years
- Online + Campus
While attending Saint Joseph's College of Maine, students can choose from online programs across fields. Located in Standish, the school boasts a robust online learning community, supporting 792 remote enrollees across 23 programs. Working professionals in online programs can complete assignments and class requirements on evenings and weekends.
Distance learners benefit from an online learning community, which can lead to professional connections. Degree-seekers often complete internships in their field to prepare to succeed in job interviews and their chosen field. Enrollees can meet with academic advisors to ensure they choose classes aligning with their career goals. Mock interviews help students prepare to secure positions in their field after graduation.
For applicants who need help determining the best funding options for their situation, the financial aid office provides support and insights. The federal government supports enrollees with financial need through loans, grants, and work-study programs. The school reports that 98% of its students receive some form of financial aid.
#5 Online Schools and Colleges in Maine [2022 Guide]
University of New England
- 4 years
- Online + Campus
University of New England’s online degrees provide enrollees with a competitive education, preparing them for their future careers. The school offers 13 online programs and enrolls 3,521 distance learners based throughout the country. Along with working professionals, students with children often pursue online learning because of the increased flexibility it offers.
Distance learners can pursue individual assistance by connecting with professors through email and videoconferencing. To impress prospective employers, degree-seekers often complete internships and original research. Institutional resources, including career services and academic advising, encourage academic and professional success among online students. To explore employment options, learners can attend job fairs organized by the school.
Degree candidates in some programs may have additional costs, such as lab fees. For specific information regarding program costs, applicants can contact an admissions counselor. Enrollees often pursue institutional funding and scholarships from third-party organizations.
#6 Online Schools and Colleges in Maine [2022 Guide]
University of Maine at Fort Kent
Fort Kent, ME
- 4 years
- Online + Campus
University of Maine at Fort Kent offers flexible online programs that meet high academic standards. The school delivers seven online programs, along with on-campus options in Fort Kent. Of the institution's enrollees, 894 attend classes online.
Students benefit from a supportive online learning community. Virtual communication tools provide opportunities for participants to connect and network with peers and colleagues. Learners can collaborate with professors on original research projects and can pursue internships with local organizations. The institution's virtual resources help degree candidates make the most of their program. Enrollees can take advantage of career services and networking opportunities to prepare to secure a job after graduation.
Many students apply for financial aid to reduce the financial burden of earning a degree. Along with providing information about institutional funding, the school's financial aid office can help learners explore additional funding options, such as third-party scholarships. The institution's statistics indicate that 94% of enrollees receive financial aid.
#7 Online Schools and Colleges in Maine [2022 Guide]
University of Maine
- 4 years
- Online + Campus
University of Maine is a leader in online education. In addition to delivering in-person programs on campus in Orono, the school offers 35 online programs. The flexibility of online programs can benefit learners with personal and professional responsibilities.
Students earning a degree online can participate in discussions and receive assistance from professors through the virtual learning platform. Experiential learning opportunities, such as internships and research projects, help degree-seekers bolster their resume and prepare for the workforce. Enrollees also benefit from access to numerous institutional resources, receiving academic and career guidance throughout the duration of their studies. Toward the end of their program, students can partake in career workshops and mock interviews to prepare to enter the workforce.
For applicants who need help determining the best funding options for their situation, the financial aid office provides support and insights. Many scholarship programs support enrollees in specific fields of study. Of all students, 99% receive some form of financial aid.
#8 Online Schools and Colleges in Maine [2022 Guide]
University of Southern Maine
- 4 years
- Online + Campus
University of Southern Maine's online classes provide the same high-quality academic experience as its on-campus courses. The public school delivers 21 online programs from its campus in Portland. The institution's 3,393 online learners benefit from institutional resources, such as career counseling and tutoring.
The online learning platform allows enrollees to complete group projects, attend virtual office hours, and develop a supportive academic network. In addition to completing general education requirements, degree-seekers take advanced courses in their field. Before registering for classes, students consult with academic advisors to identify course options aligning with their goals. Enrollees often pursue experiential learning opportunities, such as original research and internships, to improve their skills and bolster their resume.
The financial aid office provides details about the various available funding options, which can make higher education more accessible. Potential funding options for students include federal financial aid, institutional awards, and private scholarships.
#9 Online Schools and Colleges in Maine [2022 Guide]
University of Maine at Presque Isle
Presque Isle, ME
- 4 years
- Online + Campus
Students looking for a premier online education should consider University of Maine at Presque Isle. With 11 online programs, the public school also offers on-campus programs in Presque Isle. The college prepares its 597 online distance learners for the workforce through rigorous coursework, a supportive learning community, and institutional resources.
Online enrollees can develop professional connections with classmates and professors using the virtual classroom environment. Online programs feature advanced coursework, during which learners gain the specific skills necessary for their profession. Before registering for classes, students consult with academic advisors to identify course options aligning with their goals. Enrollees can also collaborate with faculty members on research projects and independently pursue internships and other experiential learning opportunities relevant to their studies.
The financial aid office provides information about degree costs and funding options to help applicants create a budget. Eligible learners may receive institutional scholarships and awards from external organizations.
#10 Online Schools and Colleges in Maine [2022 Guide]
University of Maine at Machias
- 4 years
- Online + Campus
University of Maine at Machias is a leader in online education. With four online programs, the school provides a variety of academic options for its 469 online enrollees. Busy learners who need flexible scheduling options can choose asynchronous online programs to complete coursework around other obligations.
While completing an online program at the institution, degree-seekers can form connections with like-minded peers through the virtual learning platform. In collaboration with faculty members and colleagues, learners can pursue research projects, internships, and other experiential learning opportunities relevant to their field. Enrollees can meet with academic advisors to ensure they choose classes aligning with their career goals. During career workshops, students can explore professional opportunities aligning with their academic background.
For applicants who need help determining the best funding options for their situation, the financial aid office provides support and insights. Enrollees who have demonstrated academic excellence in their previous studies may qualify for merit-based awards. Of the school's student body, 99% of degree-seekers qualify for some form of financial aid.
How Can I Find Which Online Colleges Offer the Degree I'm Looking for in Maine?
Maine institutions offer many online options, and sorting through them can be intimidating. Maine.gov maintains a list of schools in the state that offer online programs. Additionally, you can click the icon below to learn about online schools and colleges in Maine.Search All Accredited Schools in Maine
How Much More Do College Grads in Maine Make?
Earning a college degree can help individuals significantly increase their income. The state Department of Labor projects growth throughout the state in fields such as nursing, management, accounting, and education through 2026. These fields require skilled candidates with advanced degrees. As the table below illustrates, higher education tends to lead to increased earning potential nationwide.
|Less Than a High School Diploma||High School Diploma||Associate Degree|
|Bachelor's Degree||Master's Degree||Doctoral Degree|
Paying for Online College in Maine: Tuition and Financial Aid
The average tuition for in-state students at public schools in Maine costs about $600 per year more than the national average, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. The University of Maine offers some of the state's most affordable four-year programs. Private schools often cost more than public institutions, and the average tuition for private schools in Maine is more than $6,000 per year higher than the national average.
Students at any of Maine's higher education institutions can benefit from public and private grants, scholarships, and tuition discounts. The tables below compare the average costs of tuition at Maine institutions to the national averages.
|In-State Tuition||Out-of-State Tuition||National Average|
|$9,664||$26,939||$9,037 (In-State) $25,657 (Out-of-State)|
|Tuition||Out-of-State Tuition||National Average|
Source: National Center for Education Statistics
Cost Considerations for Online Students in Maine
The figures above do not include the cost of room and board or online learning fees. Additionally, tuition rates and financial aid options vary by institution. Below are some cost considerations for learners attending online schools and colleges in Maine.
- Tuition Agreements
- Tuition agreements allow students in participating states throughout the New England region to access reduced tuition rates at Maine schools.
- Residency Requirements
- Many online programs require campus visits for orientation, labs, or summer programs. Students may incur costs associated with room and board and transportation.
- Specific Degree Cost
- Online tuition rates may vary based on the specific degree and major. Additionally, some programs require fees to cover the use of labs and facilities.
- Enrollment Status
- Full-time learners often pay lower tuition rates than part-time students. Additionally, part-time learning typically delays graduation and can increase the overall cost of earning a degree.
- Work-Study Programs
- Online learners may qualify for federal work-study programs, which pay students for work at their school or in their community.
Qualifying for In-State Tuition in Maine
Students must typically meet residency requirements to qualify for in-state tuition from online schools and colleges in Maine. Generally, to qualify for in-state tuition rates, students must prove that they have lived in Maine for at least one year for a purpose other than education
Spouses and domestic partners of individuals employed in Maine may also qualify for in-state tuition, along with active-duty members of the armed forces stationed in Maine. Online students should contact their school to learn about residency requirements. In some cases, distance education learners may qualify for in-state tuition rates, regardless of their residency status.
Scholarships for Maine College Students
Career Advancement Scholarship
Who Can Apply: The Maine Business and Professional Women's Club offers this scholarship to women over the age of 30. Candidates must be Maine residents attending school part time or full time.
Foster Care to Success Scholarship
Who Can Apply: This renewable scholarship is available to students who were in the foster care system for at least 12 months, were adopted after age 16, or were orphaned for at least one year before turning 18.
Amount: $2,500 to $5,000
Central Maine Credit Union Scholarship
Who Can Apply: Applicants must be members of the Central Maine Credit Union. Either the candidate or their family member must work, live, or attend school in Androscoggin County.
Adult Degree Completion Scholarship
Who Can Apply: Applicants for this publicly funded scholarship must be pursuing their first baccalaureate degree. Candidates must attend a Maine institution and must have taken a gap of at least three years before returning to school.
Maine Community Foundation
Who Can Apply: The Maine Community Foundation awards more than 600 scholarships to qualifying Maine residents who plan to attend one of the state's accredited colleges, universities, or technical schools.
Grants for Maine College Students
Tuition Waiver Program (Public Servant)
Who Can Apply: Spouses and children of Maine firefighters, emergency medical service providers, and law enforcement officers who were killed in the line of duty can apply for this tuition waiver, which is valid at participating public institutions in Maine.
Amount: Tuition waiver
Tuition Waiver Program (Foster Care)
Who Can Apply: This tuition waiver grant supports learners who were in the foster care system or who were adopted. Applicants must plan to attend a public institution in Maine.
Amount: Tuition waiver
Alfond Leaders Program
Who Can Apply: This state-funded program helps professionals in STEM fields repay student loans. Candidates must work for a Maine-based employer in a qualifying field, such as math or engineering.
The Maine State Grant Program
Who Can Apply: Applicants for this need-based grant must attend an eligible Maine institution or participate in the New England Regional Student Program. Candidates may attend school part time or full time.
Maine State Grant Program for Adult Learners
Who Can Apply: Half-time and full-time undergraduate students born on or before January 1, 1996, who attend a Maine institution can apply for this need-based grant. Applicants must have an expected family contribution below a certain amount.
The Importance of Accreditation for Online Colleges and Universities in Maine
Accreditation refers to a voluntary process by which schools establish credibility. Many financial aid options are only available to students at accredited schools, and graduate schools typically require applicants to hold a degree from an accredited institution.
In Maine, the New England Commission of Higher Education awards regional accreditation, the most prestigious type of institutional accreditation. Maine institutions can hold several types of accreditation. Learners should ensure that they understand prospective schools' accreditation status before applying.
Regional and National Accreditation
Most colleges and universities hold regional or national accreditation. Regional accreditation often applies to research universities, community colleges, and liberal arts colleges. Religious and vocational schools may earn national accreditation. All legitimate regional and national accrediting agencies are recognized by the Department of Education or the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.
Programs and departments can secure subject-specific accreditation. For example, the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs evaluates business programs. This specialized accreditation demonstrates that a program meets industry standards and prepares learners to succeed in the field.
How to Know if Your School or Program is Accredited
Accredited schools typically feature their accreditation status on their website. Learners can contact schools directly to confirm accreditation status. Additionally, students can consult the Department of Education database and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation directory. These resources list all accredited schools and programs in the United States.
Online College and Adult Education in Maine
Adult learners can pursue a variety of education options in Maine. In addition to two- and four-year programs, adult learners can complete ESL programs, job training options, and high school completion courses. The sections below include statistics and information about adult education in Maine.
By the Numbers: Adult Education in Maine
College enrollment in Maine decreased 1.9% between 2016 and 2017.
In 2015, 23,706 Maine students were enrolled in at least one online course.
In 2015, 67% of online learners in Maine were enrolled in public institutions.
Source: National Student Clearinghouse Research Center, Distance Education State Almanac
Adult Education Programs for Maine Students
- YMCA of Southern Maine
- With four branches throughout Southern Maine, this YMCA offers programs including English language education for non-native speakers. The YMCA offers free childcare during class time.
- Portland Adult Education
- This educational initiative of the Portland public school system provides English courses, job training, and high school and college classes.
- Maine Adult Education
- This organization manages adult and community-based learning programs throughout the state. Courses cover topics including literacy, business training, college transition, and personal enrichment.
Online College Resources for Maine Students
Choosing from online schools and colleges in Maine can seem overwhelming. However, resources from public and private organizations can help learners make an informed decision. The resources below provide information about accreditation, financial aid, community college options, and potential scams.
- New England Resource Center for Higher Education: This nonprofit organization offers resources for learners throughout New England, including a list of accredited colleges and universities in Maine.
- New England Board of Higher Education: This website provides information about public and private schools in New England. Students can also learn about financial aid opportunities in the region.
- University of Maine System: This state-sponsored website provides information about all of Maine's public institutions. Site visitors can review tuition costs, find information for military and veteran students, and arrange campus visits.
- Maine's Community Colleges: This resource delivers information about Maine's community colleges, including details about online programs, admission requirements, and costs. The website also provides information about workforce training.
- Maine Department of Education: The Maine Department of Education maintains several pages of information about early college opportunities, degree mills, and approved educator preparation programs. Students can also learn about state requirements for online education programs.