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Office of the President

Greetings current and future Cougars!

Cleary University is a place of transformation, where we have educated people who believe in leadership, innovation and community to change the world. Our founder, P.R. Cleary, had a vision of an educational institution that welcomed all people seeking skills and training to improve their communities by contributing in meaningful ways. In 1883, when Cleary was first established, the Cleary family knew well that not everyone was welcome in higher education at the time. They were Irish immigrants who wanted to make sure that every person could have access to education and the benefits that come from it.

That legacy has led us through three centuries of empowering Americans with business skills that lead them forward. Our first two students were women at a time when many women were not even taught to read. We continue that tradition of eliminating barriers and providing access, introducing programs and activities that move us all forward. In the last decade, we’ve added 20 varsity athletic teams. We have expanded our educational offerings to include an MBA in Women’s Leadership, an MBA in E-learning, and so much more. We have passionate leaders imagining new ways to learn and connect, and our students remark that their experiences learning in-person and online are equally inspiring and personal. We are known for knowing our students and making sure every person within the Cleary brand matters.

If you’re looking for a transformational education at a place where you’ll never get lost, Cleary is the place for you. Cleary graduates are impacting every corner of our world. With a business degree from Cleary University, you never know how far you can go!

Alan Drimmer, PhD
Cleary University


Alan Drimmer, PhD, was named the 12th President of Cleary University on July 1, 2021. Dr. Drimmer has an extensive background in higher education, from the classroom to administration, and is thrilled to bring his expertise to Cleary.  

It’s his goal to advance Cleary’s distinctive mission based on being flexible, affordable and career-focused for traditional and non-traditional students alike. He is most excited to raise awareness with students and employers for the Cleary Mind initiative, which threads critical workplace competencies in the classroom and across the entire student experience. 

In previous roles, Dr. Drimmer served as Provost at National Defense University, Chief Academic Officer and Senior Vice President at the University of Maryland Global Campus and the University of Phoenix, and President at Western International University and American InterContinental University. Over the years, he has been active with institutional accreditors including the Higher Learning Commission, the Southern Association for Colleges and Schools and the Middle States Commission for Higher Education.

Dr. Drimmer has also been a Senior Advisor in the Boston Consulting Group’s education practice, and early in his career served as a management consultant at McKinsey & Company. He has experience in corporate training and workforce development, having led the Learning and Development Roundtable at the Corporate Executive Board, a consortium of Chief Learning Officers at Fortune 500 companies.

With BA, MA and PhD degrees in political science from the University of Chicago, Dr. Drimmer also earned an MBA from the Wharton School at University of Pennsylvania where he was a Gruss Scholar. He was a National Security Fellow at Harvard University’s Center for International Affairs and won a prestigious Derek Bok Undergraduate Teaching Award at Harvard College.

Dr. Drimmer has two adult children – one who is a physicist in Zurich, Switzerland, and another who is a textbook editor in New York City. He is an avid traveler, cyclist, wine enthusiast, and baseball fan. In addition, he speaks French and is pursuing scholarly research on Alexis de Tocqueville’s Democracy in America.