Gov. John Hickenlooper has joined the Western Governors University Board of Trustees.

A nonprofit, online university, the school was founded in 1997 by 19 U.S. governors, including former Colorado Gov. Roy Romer.

WGU was established to increase higher education opportunities for working adults, offers online degrees in business, information technology, education and health professions. It now has more than 25,000 students in all 50 states.

Hickenlooper was unanimously elected to serve on the governing board for WGU.

“Today, more than any other time in our lifetimes, increasing the number of highly educated people in our country is absolutely essential,” Governor Hickenlooper said. “Western Governors University, like other higher education institutions in every state, is playing an important role in teaching tomorrow’s leaders how to compete in a global marketplace. It will be an honor to work with WGU as it continues to serve a growing population of online students.”