National University Partners with the Carlsbad 5000 to Raise Awareness of the Value of Achieving Personal and Academic Goals

The Carlsbad 5000, known as the “World’s Fastest 5K,” encourages participants to achieve their personal bests, just as the San Diego-based private nonprofit university supports adult learners to achieve education and career goals; 2023 Carlsbad 5000 presented by National University returns for 37th edition the weekend of April 1-2

CARLSBAD, CA – March 27, 2023 — Recognizing the shared alignments of the running community and the nation’s college students, the private, nonprofit National University is pleased to partner with the Carlsbad 5000, known as the “World’s Fastest 5K,” to recognize the hard work and dedication of students who are striving to achieve their academic and personal bests. Carlsbad 5000 Presented by National University will host its 37th edition on the weekend of April 1-2, 2023, marking a unique collaboration between the education and running communities.

“I’ve always thought that life, education, and running have a lot in common. In each, we set goals and work hard to achieve those goals. We truly could not be more grateful to partner with National University to promote health and wellness,” said Meb Keflezighi, co-owner of Carlsbad 5000 and the first athlete in history to win the New York Marathon, the Boston Marathon, and an Olympic Marathon medal. “Whether it is your first 5K or you are pursuing a new personal best finish time, the Carlsbad 5000 is an event that is accessible and welcoming for everyone.”

Providing access to a quality degree is core to the mission of National University. And aspiring to a college degree is a priority for the nation’s runners – today’s core runners are highly educated, with 79 percent having earned a college diploma, compared to 27 percent of the United States population (ACS, 2006-08), according to the National Runner Survey.

“We are so pleased to be partnering with Meb and the Carlsbad 5000 in support of this world-class event,” said NU President and CEO Dr. Mark D. Milliron. “Meb’s message of perseverance against the odds serves as an inspiration for our students – adult learners pursuing college degrees while also holding jobs, raising children and filling many other roles in their lives. Our goal is to serve that whole person – and to help all of them earn degrees that will improve their lives and the lives of their families, as well as have positive impacts on their communities.”

Keflezighi and National University have joined forces over the years to celebrate the accomplishments of the nation’s adult and lifelong learners, with Meb as a featured guest speaker at two National University commencements and the recipient of an honorary doctorate. Born in Eritrea, Africa, Keflezighi and his family escaped famine, drought and a brutal war of liberation from Ethiopia, eventually making their way to San Diego. He won the 2014 Boston Marathon just two weeks before turning 39, becoming the oldest winner of one of the world’s premier distance events in more than 80 years.

The running community and National University students are committed to long-term training and success. More than 60 percent of the University’s graduate students are female, with an average age of 36, and have stated a preference for running or related activities. The typical U.S. female runner is 38.6 years old and a higher education degree holder.

Additionally, National University is awarding two $5,000 Go Further, Faster scholarships, giving preference to applicants who are participating in the Carlsbad 5000. To be considered, applicants must apply to National University, submit a 500- to 700-word essay on their plans to “dedicate yourself to crossing the finish line with a degree,” and start their undergraduate or master’s program between March 27, 2023 and June 26, 2023. Find out more about the Go Further, Faster Scholarship.

Since the inaugural edition in 1986, the Carlsbad 5000 annually attracts amateur, competitive and professional runners from around the world. Over its 37-year history, runners at the Carlsbad 5000 have set 16 world records and 8 U.S. records, as well as numerous national and age-group marks that resulted in the event being dubbed the “World’s Fastest 5k.” Race weekend promises a fast oceanfront course, healthy competition and an energetic atmosphere for participants of all ages and paces. A health and fitness expo on Saturday, April 1, will be followed on Sunday by the main event, which will feature races by age group throughout the morning, leading up to the legendary pro women and men’s races in the early afternoon. The popular Junior Carlsbad features multiple races designed for children ages 12 and under. Kids’ distances range from one mile to a half mile.

The post-race celebration gets started as soon as the first runners cross the finish line, with participants 21 and older celebrating in the Pizza Port beer garden with two complimentary craft brews, as well as runners of all ages rocking out to live music on the streets of Carlsbad Village. Participants are also invited to have fun at the Go Further, Faster lounge in the National University tent at the event.

For more information or to register for the event, visit and follow @Carlsbad5000 on Instagram.

About National University: National University, a Veteran-founded nonprofit, has been dedicated to meeting the needs of hard-working adults by providing accessible, affordable, achievable higher education opportunities since 1971. As San Diego’s largest private nonprofit university, NU offers over 100 online and on-campus programs and flexible four-week classes designed to help students reach their goals while balancing busy lives. Since its founding, the NU community has grown to 40,000 students and 200,000 alumni around the globe, many of whom serve in helping industries such as business, education, health care, cybersecurity, and law and criminal justice. Learn more at

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