April 26, 2013
From dailyunion.com: “MATC, UW-Whitewater sign articulation agreement” – The Warhawks and Wolfpack might be ominous mascots in sports competitions, but from this point forward, Willie and Wolfie make excellent study buddies when it comes to obtaining a college degree.
Administrators from both the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and Madison Area Technical College were on hand at Madison College’s Fort Atkinson campus Wednesday for a special signing ceremony formalizing a direct program-to-program transfer of credits between the two schools.
Two separate institutional contracts, formally called articulation agreements, where made official with signatures Wednesday. First, the Liberal Arts Journalism Pathway program begins at Madison College and is designed for students who obtain an associate degree in liberal arts, but wish to complete the coursework required to earn a baccalaureate degree in journalism from UW-Whitewater’s College of Arts and Communication.
Second, the Liberal Arts Business Pathway is tailored toward Madison College students who complete a customized mix of liberal arts and business courses leading to an associate degree. Once the associate degree is achieved, students can then pursue a bachelor’s degree in any major offered by UW-Whitewater’s College of Business and Economics.
While there were multiple administrators, professors, instructors, admission personnel and staff from both institutions on hand Wednesday, the actual signatories for the ceremony were Madison College Dean of Arts and Sciences Todd Stebbins, Dean of Business and Applied Arts Bryon Woodhouse, Associate Vice President for Learner Success Turina Bakken and UW-Whitewater Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Beverly Kopper.
Serving as master of ceremonies was Lynn Forseth, executive director of Economic and Workforce Development for Madison College’s Eastern Region.
“Due to our geographic proximity to Whitewater, the Fort Atkinson campus regularly serves students who are planning to transfer to UW-Whitewater, and often, in fact, dual-enroll at both institutions,” Forseth said during introductory remarks. “Both colleges also work closely with area K-12 districts to help high school-age students to formulate their educational and career plans. The agreements we will sign today give high school graduates yet another opportunity to begin their education anywhere in the Madison College district and transfer those credits to UW-Whitewater.”
Forseth added that she has heard positive feedback from regional K-12 school districts about the agreements, and she thanked them for their support.
Bakken was the first speaker.
“Just before we started today, we were talking about the state of higher education, and the new environment that we do our work in,” she said. “Whether you’re a two-year school, a four-year university or a private institution, we can’t exist in isolation anymore; these kinds of partnerships we sign today are so very important – not only for our communities and students, but for us, too, as they make us the most efficient we can be with the scarce resources that we have.
“Just a few weeks ago, we signed an agreement with UW-Madison that essentially says that for those students who start at Madison College and transfer to UW-Madison without their associate degree, once they earn enough credits, we will honor those credits toward the associate degree; and if they continue on for a bachelor’s degree or beyond, fantastic, but no matter what happens, they will at least have that credential, Bakken continued.
“There are very few agreements like that in the country, and we were very proud to sign that one.”
She noted that last week, Madison College signed an agreement with UW-Platteville for students in biology and bio-technology.
“Their last year in biology at UW-Platteville, they will be enrolled in our bio-tech post-baccalaureate certificate. So, they will graduate in four years from Platteville with a degree in biology or bio-tech and a post-baccalaureate certificate from Madison College,” Bakken noted. “We are thinking more innovatively at our college and with our partners beyond simple agreement where we hand students off; we are really looking at more integrated partnerships.”
The agreements signed Wednesday were another example of an integrated partnership, Bakken said.
Stebbins, meanwhile, spoke on the Journalism Pathway.
“It guarantee’s Madison College students a direct program-to-program if they wish to pursue a bachelor’s degree in journalism at UW-Whitewater,” he said. “Some of you may be aware that Madison College currently offers a journalism certificate for students who are interested in moving into entry-level careers in journalism or people who are already in the industry, but want to get an education to position themselves in that industry. The sweeping majority of students come to us because they are interested in at least a four-year degree, sometimes beyond that.”
Stebbins noted that more than 83 percent of Madison College students enrolled in the current certificate program go on to a four-year program.
“This new Liberal Arts Journalism Pathway is tailored to students who have met the requirements for a liberal arts degree from us, and wish to complete their coursework required for a baccalaureate degree in journalism from UW-Whitewater’s distinguished College of Arts and Communications,” he continued. “By taking advantage of the strengths at both institutions, access, academic rigor, and shared commitment to excellence, graduates of the Liberal Arts Journalism Pathway should be very prepared for success as they enter the workforce beyond their bachelor’s degree.”
Woodhouse spoke about the Business Pathway.
“The second contract we are signing today is the Liberal Arts Business Pathway agreement with UW-Whitewater’s College of Business and Economics,” he said.
“Madison College currently offers 26 areas of programming that are covered by the broad umbrella of business management and administration,” Woodhouse remarked,.
” That includes many specialties, like accounting, human resources, paralegal and many others. As Todd noted, the majority of students who enter these programs intend to transfer to a four-year college. For most of them, their first choice is to transfer somewhere into the UW System. That is why we partnered with UW-Whitewater.”
He said this agreement is designed for Madison College students who completed a customized mix of liberal arts and business courses required for an associate degree.
“In turn, these students can pursue a bachelor’s degree in any major offered by UW-Whitewater’s College of Business and Economics,” Woodhouse noted. “I want to emphasize the word ‘in.’ That is, all credits earned at Madison College will transfer to UW-Whitewater, including those earned in our business courses. This program-to-program transfer allows business students to take their careers into whatever direction they choose. Of course, it opens a whole world of possibilities for each student as they choose their career path.
“This agreement, like the others between Madison College and the UW System, really maximizes our finite resources,” he concluded. “It encourages academic and administrative coordination with an eye toward continuous improvements.”
Kopper said that she was excited about the articulation agreements.
“The UW-Whitewater is certainly an enthusiastic partner in paving pathways for students of all walks of life to achieve success,” she said. “These agreements show our joint commitment to making that happen.
“Students from Madison College will now be able to seamlessly transfer credit to UW-Whitewater, and enroll in upper-level courses in both business and journalism,” the provost said. “The College of Business and Economics, the College of Arts and Communication, and the College of Letters and Sciences are all ready to welcome these students into our challenging and innovative programs. As we strive to increase the number of baccalaureate degree holders in Wisconsin, working closely with our technical college partners is extremely important as we develop these credit agreements. These are vital, certainly, to our mission at UW-Whitewater.”
She continued: “UW-Whitewater graduates will enter the workforce with a strong liberal arts education that prepares them for the ever-changing world that we are in, with the skills that we hear from employers that they value, and demand, and with the knowledge to power the state’s economy. Many of our business alumni are leading accountants, entrepreneurs, they have their own businesses, and are CEOs in their respective fields. Our journalism alumni travel the globe, working for broadcast networks, trade publications, marketing companies and social media enterprises, just to name a few.
“I would like to thank everyone at both Madison College and UW-Whitewater for crafting theses agreements,” she concluded. “They deserve our thanks, we look forward to more partnerships.”
After Kopper’s remarks, each of the speakers signed the official paperwork needed to formalize the agreements, receiving a round of applause from those gathered for the event.
Then, in a somewhat humorous moment, Forseth presented Bakken and Kopper with a stuffed mascot from the opposite school – Willie Warhawk for Bakken and Wolfie for Kopper – to symbolize the partnership of the two institutions.
After the ceremony, Kopper said that UW-Whitewater has similar agreements with other two-year colleges in southern Wisconsin, but in other areas.
“We have an articulation agreement with every technical college in the state related to our Early Childhood program,” she said. “That is with Madison College and all other technical colleges. I believe next month, we are sending a team over to UW-Waukesha to look at further articulation agreements and partnerships.”
Qualified students are eligible to participate in the Liberal Arts Journalism Pathway and Liberal Arts Business Pathway programs this fall. For more information, contact Carlotta Calmese, associate dean of student development at Madison College, CCalmese@madisoncollege.edu, or Troy Moldenhaur, associate director of admissions at UW-Whitewater, email@example.com.
April 25, 2013
From fourthestatenewspaper.com: “UWGB attracts more transfer students” – The number of students to transfer to UW-Green Bay is increasing, likely due to the capability for credits to transfer from many area colleges to UWGB.
A provision in Gov. Scott Walker’s budget would require a strong partnership between technical colleges and the UW system to make it easier for students to transfer. UWGB has been making sure the transfer process is successful for some time.
In fact, transfer students are a major contributor to enrollment numbers at UWGB. The university has historically seen significant enrollment of transfer students.
“It always surprises people when I tell them that more of the students that cross our stage at graduation come to us as transfer students than came to us as new freshmen,” said Michael Stearney, dean of enrollment services at UWGB, in an interview with Fox 11 News.
Student Services and the Registrar’s office provide prospective transfer students with a quick review of student’s transcripts to give them an approximation of what credits will transfer and how they will transfer. The review is non-binding, pending a full transfer credit review upon application.
“For many transfer students, transferability of credit is a primary consideration. UWGB actively participates in the Transfer Information System and is working to become a full participant in the U-select consortium,” Stearney said. “These two systems allow students to quickly and easily see how their coursework at one institution transfers to another institution.”
The Transfer Information System, which is available via UWGB’s transfer student website, uwgb.edu/admissions/apply/transfer, allows prospective students to see how their credits will transfer from a UW college or Wisconsin technical college.
U-select is an online database that allows students to see how their credits would transfer to universities in Wisconsin and 16 other states.
Josh Martell, junior communication major, transferred to UWGB from Northeast Wisconsin Technical College. Martell said the transfer student orientation was very helpful in assisting him in the transfer process.
“I transferred here for the communication program as well as it being in Green Bay, which is where I am from and currently live,” Martell said. “I am glad that I did.”
Stearney said transfer-student orientation programs are offered several times each year to welcome new transfer students.
“We are working on connections programs with selected UW Colleges to meet with new freshmen at the two-year schools to help plan their associate degree coursework with eventual transfer of credits,” Stearney said.
Jennifer Prusow, junior communication major, transferred to UWGB from UW-Sheboygan after completing two years there. She said it was important for her to choose a school that offered her major and her sister’s major. Prusow said other contributing factors in her decision to transfer to UWGB were the cost of tuition and the proximity of the campus to her home in Sheboygan, allowing her to go home on the weekends.
“My transfer experience was fairly easy,” Prusow said. “All my credits transferred, and I was able to register for classes. They were accommodating with any concerns that I had with my credits.”
Assisting potential transfer students with any questions they have is a service UWGB advisers offer on campus, but also remotely.
“UWGB advisers and recruiters have a regular presence at our primary transfer-sending institutions,” Stearney said. “We visit the local UW Colleges on a regularly scheduled basis, and we also hold regular office hours at NWTC one day a month to talk to prospective transfer students.”
Senior human development major, Renee Kehl, also transferred to UWGB from NWTC. Not knowing what she would major in right out of high school, Kehl said going to NWTC for two years first allowed her to focus on her general education requirements while saving money.
“My transfer experience went well overall,” Kehl said. “I only lost one class in transferring.”
Stearney said historically business, social work, nursing and education are some of the most commonly chosen majors by a large number of transfer students
From bizjournals.com: “WCTC enters nursing partnership with University of Phoenix” – The University of Phoenix College of Nursing and Waukesha County Technical College have announced a transfer pathway that will enable WCTC nursing students to transfer into the University of Phoenix in pursuit of a master of science in nursing, according to a release.
Under the new partnership, eligible students and graduates of WCTC’s associate of applied science in nursing degree program will be able to transfer into University of Phoenix’s bachelor of science in nursing degree program. Students may then continue their education by enrolling in the master of science in nursing/nurse administration degree program. The University of Phoenix has local campuses in Milwaukee and Brookfield.
“A more educated nurse is a safer nurse,” said Angie Strawn, associate dean of University of Phoenix College of Nursing, in the release. “For many, the demands of a full-time career as a nurse preclude their ability to pursue an advanced degree. Our new pathway with Waukesha makes the path to becoming a nurse leader more achievable.”
March 21, 2013
From matctimes.com: “It’s strange being older than your teachers!” – Baby boomers are coming here to further their education or start a career. Not having grown up in the high tech age, vital skills are being sought to keep them at par with the current workforce. Educational dreams are being fulfilled as a wave of boomers head back to college – at MATC. The timing couldn’t be better.
There are 76 million boomers; post World War II babies born between 1946 and 1964. Many unsure of what Social Security or Medicare holds for them, laid off, widowed, divorced, displaced; they are improving their future with an education, and technical colleges are a great way for them to quickly gain skills or a new career.
Decades ago, people 50 and over wouldn’t even dream of going to college or working at a job after they hit 65. Not so today- they are an untapped market with tremendous potential, “The number of students ages 50 to 64 increased 17 percent nationwide between fall 2007 and fall 2009,” according to the latest data available from the National Center for Education Statistics and, “An increasing number of people ages 50 and up are headed to community college — 388,000 were enrolled nationwide in fall 2009,” the most recent data available from the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC).
The Wisconsin Technical College System report #VE215310 affirms that those 50 and over are responding to the call of further education. The following are four area technical colleges with their corresponding percentage of boomer admissions: MATC – 9.2%, Gateway – 10.2%, Moraine Park – 18.6%, and Waukesha – 20%. A productive 15 to 20 more years in the workforce after graduation is not unrealistic, and many who have stayed home to raise their families want to get out to begin their postponed careers.
Walter Lanier of the Counseling and Advising Center, who heads up the Diversity Council which meets twice a month said, “While age has not really been discussed (at the meetings), age diversity is well represented.” Diversity is not only ethnicity, religion, or race, it is also age. Older students bring a wealth of life experience and motivation to help younger students to succeed. They enrich any campus.
Due to a major accident and divorce, “Jay,” a 53-year- old full-time student in the Human Services program at the Downtown Milwaukee campus needed to change his field. He considered MATC because of its “reputation, cost, convenience, and diversity.” A Pell grant is paying all of his expenses and he even got a refund. Jay said, “I would feel uncomfortable without the diversity….I feel at home here.”
Douglas Koput, 49, is in the Electronic Technology program at the Downtown Milwaukee campus. He was laid off from his job and needed additional skills. Convenience of the college made his decision to attend here, and also received help from a Pell grant. He was nervous at first and started with just two classes, and after getting an A in both, he had the confidence to continue. His advice to prospective boomers, “Start out slow to be sure.”
Having her job move out of the country and becoming a dislocated worker, “Mary,” 53, receives full tuition through a program with unemployment. She is in the Medical Administrative Specialist program at the West Allis campus and attends full time. She finds the professors “great” and does not feel intimidated by the younger students. Her advice, “Don’t be afraid, you are never too old to learn something.”
Underpaid and underappreciated in his current job, A.D. Owens, 49, wanted something better. He is attending full time in the Teacher Education program downtown. “MATC had the program I wanted,” said Owens. He was “tired of just having a job,” he wanted “a career.” A Pell grant helps pay his tuition, and he is very proud to be on the Dean’s List. After the initial insecurities, he was confident in his abilities and wants other boomers to know that, “This is the time to go. Make the decision and come to MATC.”
There is probably a boomer in one or more of your classes – encourage them, learn from them, give a smile to let them know that this is their college too.
March 11, 2013
From postcrescent.com: “Paul Freiberg: We need all sorts of workers” – Several years ago, after my car skidded into a ditch during a snowstorm, I called the auto club for roadside assistance. After a short wait, a mechanic drove out in a wrecker. He knew his trade and he pulled my car from the side of the road.
I reminded myself never to take people for granted. I also reminded myself that not everyone needs to go to college. A four-year college degree wouldn’t necessarily provide the skills to that young man who pulled my car from the ditch.
We often read about the importance of a college degree. We read about the skills gap — the relative scarcity of experienced workers despite a relatively high unemployment rate. There’s little doubt that we need employees with the requisite skills and education for the competitive arena.
However, we should think about what are appropriate goals for people. We live in a diverse economy and need workers with the appropriate experience to service their respective clients. Some of those skills are best learned in college; some skills are taught elsewhere.
For instance, we need workers who have the ability to solve problems with their customers, the demanding consumer. For others, a two-year technical degree would be beneficial and indeed preferable to accommodate the requirements of local businesses and trades. For some people, working one’s way up the organization makes sense. We should never forget that everyone who works contributes to the economy.
The trick is to match the skills with the job. We need baristas who can multitask during the morning rush. We need wait staff, probably one of the more demanding jobs, to serve our food in a pleasant manner. These are the valued workers who serve me coffee and food as I travel throughout the Fox Valley.
We need retail workers who understand the merchandise and help us make good decisions. We appreciate those who can tell us what style tie goes with what color shirt. We need advice from the home improvement workers and recommendations from the associates at the book store. In the same manner, we rely on those who provide other advice, such as where the fish are biting and what bait to use. Some of us may need help on what type of wine goes with a Wisconsin brat.
Moreover, we need employees who understand how to repair the computers that operate modern equipment. We need auto mechanics who can troubleshoot and diagnose our automobiles and keep our families safe. We need truck drivers who can handle 40,000-pound loads on our crowded highways.
Again, we need the varied skills necessary for our diverse economy. As such, some workers will build their respective skills working their way up through the organization. Some people will be better off taking routes such as trade schools or two-year technical colleges. Not everyone needs to go to college and, let’s face the facts — we don’t have the capacity to accommodate everyone anyway.
Let’s also agree that the experience gained in these service jobs has provided many people with the foundation for other roles in their lives. The communication and interpersonal skills we learn while serving customers are invaluable as we progress through our respective organizations.
We depend on all of these employees such as restaurant staff, store associates, shuttle drivers and so on. Despite the occasional poor service, I see many of these employees work with urgency and pride.
In short, we’re dealing with paradox. We need employees with college educations, we need skilled workers with technical expertise and we need employees with the wherewithal to provide the necessary services, such as those individuals who serve burgers, wash cars and stock shelves.
These employees are important. Let’s not take anyone for granted.
March 8, 2013
From wsau.com: “Many transfer options available for college students in area” – Obtaining a college degree can be one of the biggest moments in someone’s life. Schools in our area make it easier than ever to start at one campus and end at a different one.
Many colleges and universities offer students the option to transfer courses from one school and then use them towards their completion of a degree at another school.
The reasons for doing so differ. For some, starting at a community college and moving on to a four year school can help them save money.
Other students might want to take a class at one school that isn’t available at another.
Many schools in our area offer a transfer option, including Northcentral Technical College and UW – Marathon County. The close-knit environment of these schools mean students sometimes only need to travel a few minutes up the road to get transfer credits.
“We’re very proud of our community relationships in this area,” says Suzi Mathias, Director of Transfer and Placement at NTC. “We have some very strong collaborations with other colleges and we work with them frequently.”
She says it’s common for students to decide ahead of time to start their degree at NTC and complete a four-year degree at another school. At NTC students can transfer credits to more than 35 institutions.
Transfer directors say the most important thing when helping a student decide where to gain credits is looking at their particular needs.
“I think it’s important for students to be able to move some credits around because plans change,” says Keith Montgomery, Dean and CEO at UW- Marathon County.
One option offered through the University of Wisconsin Colleges is the Guaranteed Transfer Program. You begin as a freshman at a UW campus and receive guaranteed admission to complete a four year degree at another school. You must complete a declaration form, as well as keep a minimum GPA of a 2.0 (2.8 for UW-Madison) as well as complete the number of credits required for junior status into the transfer school.
Visit uwc.edu for more information.
March 8, 2013
From news.wisc.edu: “Ed Talks Wisconsin an effort to start constructive dialog about public education” – Interested in public education and becoming more informed about the range of often contentious topics that are grabbing the headlines?
Ed Talks Wisconsin offers a unique opportunity to listen to diverse views and engage in debate and dialogue on issues from closing the achievement gap and the politics of school choice, to teachers unions, the transformation of higher education and more. The event, to be held on the UW-Madison campus March 12-22, is free and open to the public.
“This is a classic Wisconsin Idea sort of effort — using university resources and scholarship to inform public engagement on a big issue of public policy,” says Joel Rogers, a professor of law, political science, public affairs and sociology and director of the Center on Wisconsin Strategy, who is organizing the event. “Everybody should have the opportunity for a good education. That means making the public system work. This discussion is about what that requires today.”
Whether one is a student, parent, teacher, researcher or interested citizen, all are invited to join in the conversation.
“There are so many important conversations happening in and around Wisconsin regarding the future of public education, and Ed Talks Wisconsin represents an initial effort to try and pull them together into a cohesive dialogue,” says Sara Goldrick-Rab, an associate professor of educational policy studies and sociology who is helping organize the event.
Some of the Ed Talks Wisconsin highlights include:
- The March 12 kickoff event, “From K-12 to Technical College Degrees: Toward Stronger Connections and More Student Success.” The presentation will feature Morna Foy, the new president of the Wisconsin Technical College System, and be moderated by Julie Underwood, the dean of UW-Madison’s School of Education. It begins 7 p.m. in room 159 of the Education Building.
- The discussion March 13 centers on the hot-button topic of the achievement gap, and will feature a range of educational experts and key local stakeholders, including Madison Mayor Paul Soglin, James Howard, president of the Madison Metropolitan School District’s Board of Education, and Michael Johnson, chief executive officer of the Boys and Girls Club of Dane County. This event begins at 7 p.m., also at the Education Building.
- A presentation March 15 will focus on the rapid advancement in online learning opportunities and “The Coming Transformation of Higher Education.” Anya Kamenetz, the author of several books on the future of education and a senior writer at Fast Company magazine, where she writes the column “Life in Beta,” will take part in the conversation, as will UW Colleges and UW-Extension Chancellor Ray Cross, who is helping lead efforts to launch the UW System’s Flex Degree program. This talk begins at 7 p.m. at the Education Building.
- On March 18, a panel will examine the “Politics of School Choice in New Orleans and Milwaukee.” Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is proposing an expansion of the school choice program, which uses public funding to allow students to attend private or religious schools. Two authors with new books on school choice (Sarah Carr and Barbara Miner) will participate in an event moderated by UW-Madison’s Gloria Ladson-Billings, the Kellner Family Chair in Urban Education and a professor of curriculum and instruction, and educational policy studies. This event will take place at 7 p.m. in the Varsity 3 room of Union South.
The final two days of Ed Talks Wisconsin, March 21-22, are also part of the UW-Madison Department of Educational Policy Studies’ annual conference. This year’s 10th annual event is titled “A Nation at Risk? Reflections on the Past and Future of U.S. Public Education.”
“A Nation at Risk” is a report that was released in 1983, jump-starting decades of often critical talk directed at public schools. The report was a driving force behind a series of reforms, including the Bush administration’s 2002 No Child Left Behind law that pressured schools to improve students’ test scores or face increasingly harsh sanctions. These events, all in room 159 of the Education Building, also are free and open to the public.
To view the full schedule of events and for additional information, visit the Ed Talks Wisconsin website.
Ed Talks Wisconsin is being organized by: UW-Madison’s School of Education, Department of Educational Policy Studies, Center on Wisconsin Strategy (COWS) and Wisconsin Center for the Advancement of Postsecondary Education; the Madison Mayor’s Office; the Teaching Assistants Association; United Council of UW Students; the Wisconsin University Union; and Wisconsin Union Directorate.
February 25, 2013
From waow.com: “Financial aid event helps families plan for college” – WAUSAU - Applying for financial aid can be a challenging task. That’s why organizers hold the “College Goal Wisconsin” event across the state to help people navigate online forms.
One of the free sessions was held at North Central Technical College Saturday.
Tom and Tammy Kirsch of Edgar are sending their first child, Tyler, to college in the fall.
“He’s a good student, gets good grades,” said Tom Kirsch.
They’re hoping to get some financial aid to help pay for his education.
“We have been planning since they were quite small but unfortunately, the pot has not grown as much as we would have liked it to grow,” Kirsch said.
At NTC, volunteers helped people learn more about the Free Application for Student Aid, also known as the FAFSA and complete the online form.
“Financial aid includes the low interest rate student loans, grants, college work study and then scholarships based on financial need,” said “College Goal Wisconsin” chair Sharon Hunter.
She added that filling out the online form correctly is crucial.
“So they can find out what their expected contribution is toward college so they can find out if college is really affordable or not,” she said.
Although the form has gotten easier to navigate in recent years, organizers said many people who are filling it out for the first time have questions.
Hunter said the process requires, “very basic information about the student and parent and then income information which comes right off your tax return.”
The Kirsch’s told Newsline 9 the free event helped them feel more confident about the process.
“Any financial aid, scholarship money will help tremendously,” said Tom Kirsch.
The U.S. Department of Education provides more than $150 billion dollars each year to help students pay for higher education.
February 12, 2013
From bizjournals.com: “WTCS announces new program for nurses” – Registered nurses with a two-year degree from a Wisconsin technical college can now fully apply those credits toward a bachelor degree, according to a release.
The agreement originated with Milwaukee Area Technical College (MATC) and Cardinal Stritch University, but the replicable approach was immediately made available to nursing graduates of all 16 Wisconsin technical colleges.
The one-day-per week program, part of the university’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing Completion program, is designed for registered nurses looking for enhanced career opportunities, promotions and management positions.
Cardinal Stritch, with its main campus in the Milwaukee area and campuses throughout Wisconsin and Minnesota, designed the program specifically for working registered nurses. It is accredited through the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.
February 11, 2013
From jsonline.com: “University, college funding would be tied to job-readiness efforts” – Madison - To respond to global competition and an aging workforce, Gov. Scott Walker wants to invest nearly $100 million to build a faster system to track jobs data, tie technical school and university funding to filling high-demand professions and require nearly 76,000 people to train for work to collect food stamps.
The sweeping proposals – some of the biggest in worker training in more than a decade – would expand the Medical College of Wisconsin to Green Bay and Wausau and draw in millions of dollars in added federal money toward the goal of equipping the workforce for needed jobs as welders, nurses, accountants, machine operators and rural doctors.
The measures encompass big parts of the Republican governor’s 2013-’15 budget being introduced on Feb. 20, as well as separate legislation to be introduced on Monday.
Many of the proposals will likely find bipartisan support in the Legislature, while others will likely be greeted with dissatisfaction from Democrats pushing for bigger investments from the governor to backfill the cuts he has made in the current budget to the state’s technical colleges and universities.
One potentially contentious plank – and one with big implications for Milwaukee – is Walker’s proposal to require able-bodied adults without dependent children to train or search for work to receive benefits under the state FoodShare program. Providing the training will cost the state $17 million a year and won’t save money directly on the federally funded food benefits.
But in an interview, Walker said he believes the recipients will gain confidence and move into the workforce and off other costly state benefits.
“I want to provide a hand up, not a permanent handout, and I think the idea here is it’s not enough to just say, ‘You should go find a job.’ We’re willing to put our money where our mouth is and say we’ll train you,” Walker said.
The scope of the proposed changes is ambitious, reaching from 4-year-old kindergarten through university study and into training in the workplace. The measure draws on reports by Competitive Wisconsin, former Bucyrus International executive Tim Sullivan and Walker’s Read to Lead Task Force.
More investments in education will likely come in the budget, but likely not be enough to placate Democrats. They’ve stewed about Walker’s higher-education cuts in the current budget, which included some $300 million over two years to the University of Wisconsin System alone.
“Governor Walker made the biggest cuts to education and worker training in our state’s history,” said budget committee member Sen. Jennifer Shilling (D-La Crosse). “It has widened our skills gap and resulted in waiting lists (at technical colleges) of up to three years in some high-demand professions.”
Walker made the UW cuts – as well as ones to local governments and school districts – just after approving a measure that all but eliminated collective bargaining for public workers and required them to pay more for their pensions and health care.
He argued Friday that those savings and the added flexibility offset the cuts, and that to him his proposed spending in the next budget amounts to new money.
The FoodShare proposal would not affect the elderly, disabled or those with minor children. It would limit able-bodied recipients’ benefits to three months over any three-year period unless they are working or doing at least 20 hours per week of job training or searches.
The state will attract federal matching funds for the training costs for a total of $33 million over two years.
The proposal will face skepticism from advocates such as Sherrie Tussler, executive director of Hunger Task Force in Milwaukee. Tussler remembers previous state requirements as creating more jobs for social workers than it did for FoodShare recipients, who she said were taught just basic skills.
“There’s this huge bureaucracy to get people to do the work and make sure they’ve done it. It ends up costing more to mandate the work than the good you get. . . . You’re trying to take away people’s food to get them to get a job,” she said.
Currently, the training element to the program is voluntary, and Tussler said she has struggled to get state funding for a proposal to pay FoodShare participants $10 an hour to work at a farm growing vegetables for the needy. That’s because of tight federal restrictions, she said.
The governor is also proposing linking current state funding to technical schools with their performance at placing their more than 78,000 students in the right jobs.
Starting in 2014, Walker wants 10% of the general state aid to technical colleges to be awarded based on job placement and how well the schools do at catering to fields that are in high demand.
That percentage would ramp up in future years, until all state funds would be allocated on a performance basis, starting in 2020.
The technical colleges would see a $5 million boost in general state aid, bringing it to $88.5 million a year. That’s a 5.9% boost in its current funding, but does not come close to replacing all the money Walker cut from technical colleges in 2011.
That year, funding for technical schools dropped by 30%, from $119.3 million to $83.5 million.
The $88.5 million Walker will propose for technical colleges accounts for just a sliver of overall funding for those schools, which also receive property taxes, tuition and federal aid.
For state universities, Walker is proposing awarding $20 million for programs that help the economy, develop a skilled workforce and make higher education more affordable.
He also plans to give $2 million to the UW System to start up its flexible degree program – about two-thirds of the $3 million the system had requested.
The program is meant to allow people already in the workforce to get degrees in programs such as nursing, information systems or medical imaging more quickly by getting credits for knowledge they already have, whether they learned it on a job site or through online courses.
Walker’s budget would also require the university and technical college systems to establish a core set of 30 college credits that can be transferred between all public institutions in the state.
Private colleges would have a chance to opt into that system.
In a provision that could rankle GOP lawmakers, Walker wants to allow the UW-Madison chancellor to determine the pay plan for employees without going through the Legislature.
Similarly, the UW Board of Regents would be able to set pay for other campuses without getting sign-off from lawmakers – flexibility that UW System President Kevin Reilly said was essential to closing a pay gap with salaries at other institutions.
“Over time, if we can’t give our people hope we’ll be able to close that 18 percentage point gap, people who are mobile and attractive to other universities will leave,” Reilly said. “The biggest threat to students of the future is that they will not be taught by the best and brightest.”
Walker’s budget would also seek to increase the number of doctors and dentists in Wisconsin, particularly in rural areas.
- Provide $7.4 million in bonding so the Medical College of Wisconsin could establish campuses in the Green Bay and Wausau areas. In addition, the college would receive $1.75 million over two years to add 12 more family medicine residents.
- Give $3 million over two years to the UW School of Medicine so it can expand training for doctors who will serve rural areas and inner cities.
- Provide $4 million for rural hospitals so they can receive national accreditation and take on medical residents, along with $1 million in grants to hospitals so they can take more doctors in training.
- Give $520,000 to the Marquette Dental School so it can expand.
- Provide $5 million to the Wisconsin Health Information Organization, which is meant to make health care costs more transparent and make people wiser health care consumers.
Education, other items
Walker’s budget would also expand testing in schools so by the 11th grade teachers can identify and better prepare students who are ready for college or a career when they graduate.
The testing would cost $11.5 million over two years and would be covered by the state. The proposal would also screen the reading readiness of students in 4-year-old kindergarten and first grade in the fall of 2013. The following year, screening would also be used for second-graders. The plan would cost $2.8 million over two years.
Starting in sixth grade, students could develop an academic and career plan, under Walker’s budget. The plan would be updated throughout a student’s school career so he or she can graduate from high school with a job plan. Schools would receive about $1.1 million starting in the fall of 2014.
The second set of Walker’s proposed workforce changes will be stand-alone legislation that will be introduced on Monday, said Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester). He said he hoped to pass the measure by the end of March.
That bill would cost $20 million over two years and would:
- Spend $15 million over two years in grants to organizations that train workers.
- The competitive grants would go to technical colleges, local workforce boards and regional economic development organizations working in partnership with state businesses, which could provide matching funds.
- Create a four-person state Office of Skills Development to coordinate the scattered worker-training systems of the state and adapt them to the needs of employers.
- Spend roughly $5 million to develop a system to better track the state’s labor market by some time in 2014.
If successful, it would more quickly deliver to students, guidance counselors and businesses data from the state’s unemployment system that currently takes six months to become public.
The system would link jobless workers to openings they are qualified to fill and provide students and guidance counselors with better information about career opportunities. If successful in getting the unemployed back to work even a week sooner, the system could save the state tens of millions of dollars.
Walker, who has struggled to meet his pledge to create 250,000 private-sector jobs in his first term, said the system wasn’t an attempt to gloss over the current figures, just deliver the same data more quickly.
January 16, 2013
From kenoshanews.com: “Dual enrollment program makes students eligible for aid” – Gateway Technical College students now have the opportunity not only to kick start earning a bachelor’s degree at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside, they can reduce their total tuition cost while revving up their financial aid.
That’s been made possible by a new dual-enrollment plan Gateway and Parkside worked out late in the fall and which became effective Jan. 1.
Under the partnership, Gateway students now may choose to enroll in what’s called the “1-Plus-3 General Studies Certificate Program” and complete 30 credit hours of general education requirements, while simultaneously being admitted into Parkside.
While a 1-Plus-3 agreement has been in place for a number of years between the schools, until now it did not include dual enrollment, which officials said is significant — not only for the students, but for the institutions as well.
“One of the things that I’m excited about is this is sort of the next step in our relationship with Parkside,” John Thibodeau, Gateway assistant provost, said. “We were giving a (1-Plus-3) certificate before, but we were unable to provide students financial aid.”
He said for a Gateway student to earn financial aid previously, the Wisconsin Technical College System required students to be enrolled in degree-awarding program. The structure of the former 1-Plus-3 program wasn’t of sufficient duration for Gateway students to meet the requirement.
“Now, with dual enrollment, because they’re then admitted into Parkside and Gateway simultaneously, they’re able to get financial aid through Parkside because Parkside is able to admit them and offer them financial aid. At a 4-year college, when you’re admitted, you become eligible for financial aid upon admission. But, at a two-year tech college, you have to be in a specific degree or diploma program to become financial aid eligible,” Thibodeau said.
Added Thibodeau: “From the practical everyday point of view of students, that’s important because they want to know how they’re going to be able to pay for college.
Since the 1990s, the schools have honored what’s known as a “2-Plus-2” articulation, or transfer, agreement. It allows Gateway students to earn two years of transfer credits at Gateway before enrolling at Parkside to earn their remaining credits toward a bachelor degree, based on the remainder amounting to about two years matriculation at Parkside.
However, the new 1-Plus-1 program provides students greater flexibility in pursuing Parkside degrees, DeAnn Possehl, Parkside associate vice chancellor for enrollment management, explained.
“This is for general education requirements. The 2-plus-2 is program specific. So, it doesn’t apply to all the programs. That’s the substantial difference,” Possehl said
The schools began working on dual enrollment for 1-Plus-3 nine months ago when it came up during periodic conversations the campuses have about improving communication and transfer-related issues between them, as well as how they can smooth the experience for students, according to Possehl.
“This was just an outcome of that. We’re always looking for pathways to help our students succeed,” Possehl said. “From our point of view, I think the value is it provides an alternative, particularly for us, for a student who isn’t ready yet to start a four-year program maybe financially or academically or in just in their life.”
Another significant element of the agreement is the clarity it provides for students planning to continue toward earning a bachelor degree because the program spells out the proper general education requirements that will correctly transfer to Parkside, keeping students on track for timely graduation. “It addresses a number of issues and ensures they are on a very clear path with transferable courses. This is about students and really addressing their needs,” Possehl said.
January 11, 2013
From thenorthwestern.com: “More women pursuing non-traditional degrees at UWO, FVTC” – As one of the 10 female welding students in a program with 124 males, Amber Kraemer can tell you a thing or two about perseverance.
She initially pursued a degree from Fox Valley Technical College in the field, which increasingly relies in robotics, programming and mathematics, because of its positive career prospects and what she sees as an appealing marriage of science and art.
“It’s intimidating (stepping into a male dominated field), but it also gives me something to prove that I can do it,” Kraemer, 32, said. “It’s motivation to do better, and most of the time I can probably weld better than the men anyway.”
Today, there are more women like Kramer than ever crossing traditional gender lines and pursuing science, technology, engineering and math-related degrees.
More than 1,000 women, or roughly one in 15 female students at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh and FVTC combined, were pursuing STEM-related degrees during the 2011-12 school year, data provided by the institutions shows. That’s a 56 percent increase from four years earlier. Total female enrollment during that time grew 23 percent.
University and college officials credit the growing interest in STEM studies to outreach efforts aimed at high school and middle school girls as well as state and national attention on those career fields.
“Women are more likely to think about science if their parents encourage them and their high school teachers encourage them. That will get them to sign up for a class their freshman year (of college),” said Jennifer Mihalick, a UWO chemistry professor and director of Women in Science, a UW System-wide program aimed at attracting and retaining female science students.
High school programs, such as the Wave Robotics club, which builds robots for state and national competitions, also go a long way to bring girls through the door of a STEM-based classroom, Mihalick said.
At FVTC, instructors have been bringing their students into area high schools to meet with teens for career exploration sessions. They also run a girls-only summer camp called Girl Tech, said Anne Haberkorn, dean of information technology, a corner of the technical college that has seen particularly high growth in female enrollment.
The number of women pursuing IT degrees at FVTC spiked 47 percent between the 2008-09 and 2010-11 school years, enrollment data shows. The key to recruiting girls has been breaking down stereotypes surrounding certain disciplines and showing girls a different side to science and technology.
“We (girls) view IT and other STEM fields differently. It’s not about gadgets for us but helping people and helping them accomplish their goals. That’s something girls and women seem to relate to,” Haberkorn said.
Newly emerging fields with heavy emphasis on design, such as mobile app development, also seem to appeal more to women. Women made up 42 percent of the students studying Web development and design at FVTC in 2011-12 compared to 21 percent four years earlier.
Kelsey Paltzer, 20, a junior chemistry major at UWO, said too many girls never give the sciences a chance because of a perception they need to be at the top of their class to participate.
“I feel like all too many females put themselves down. In high school, you think of chemistry as a hard subject or harder than the usual fields girls go into…. But, if you put effort into it, it’s actually very interesting,” Paltzer said.
Mihalick said a large part of her Women in Science program aims to make girls feel more comfortable with science regardless of their skill level. Those same efforts, she said, will also help all students.
“It’s been found that things professors can change in their classrooms to make women feel more comfortable, feel more valued and belonging, will also help everyone else in the classroom,” Mihalick said.
November 20, 2012
From wausaudailyherald.com: “Medical College of Wisconsin to start campus in Wausau” – Local education and medical leaders are pleased that months of hard work recruiting paid off with this morning’s announcement that the Medical College of Wisconsin will have a campus in Wausau.
The private, Milwaukee-based college announced in January that it was seeking sites for new campuses to raise the school’s profile statewide and find new clinical partners to help educate future generations of doctors and nurses. The college selected central Wisconsin and Green Bay in June and plans to open the campuses in 2015.
The college’s board of trustees met Friday to vote on exact locations for the campus, but the board’s decision was not announced until today. Marshfield, Stevens Point and Wausau were considered the three top locations for central Wisconsin.
“As a major provider of health care services in Wisconsin, we recognize the importance of this effort by the Medical College of Wisconsin to establish a medical education program in this part of the state, said Michael Kryda, Vice President of Medical Affairs for Ministry Health Care. “This program will compliment the already long-established medical education programs within our system as we continue to address the need for additional physicians in the many communities we serve across the state.”
The medical college will begin negotiations to locate classrooms and offices at the Liberty Mutual Insurance building, 2000 Westwood Drive, in Wausau. About 20 Medical College of Wisconsin students and school officials in October toured Wausau and made stops at Liberty Mutual and Northcentral Technical College in Wausau.
Wausau was considered a good possible location based on the close proximity of Aspirus Wausau Hospital, Ministry Saint Clare’s Hospital in Weston and branches of Marshfield Clinic. The estimated cost to develop medical education programs in both regions is approximately $11 to $12 million per region.
A community venture
The medical college campus will work in partnership with many local medical facilities and higher education institutions in central Wisconsin.
The medical college will partner with the University of Wisconsin Marathon County, which will provide student services and support, and NTC that will have space for a medical student learning laboratories and clinical simulation center.
Lori Weyers, the president of Northcentral Technical College, said medical college officials were impressed the school’s Center for Health Sciences, where students get hands-on training and education. The school already has a simulation center, and a $250,000 grant NTC received last year for the Wisconsin Technical College System will allow NTC to expand the facility.
“Our students will have a unique opportunity to be in an accelerated learning environment, working with Medical College (of Wisconsin) students, and interns,” Weyers said.
Aspirus, Ministry Health Care, and Marshfield Clinic all will play a critical role with the campus, providing physicians who will serve as faculty members and allow students to receive clinical education at those facilities.
Science faculty members for the college campus will be identified from the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point, University of Wisconsin Marathon County, University of Wisconsin – Marshfield/Wood County, and Northcentral Technical College.
The medical college also wants UWSP, UWMC, NTC, UW-Marshfield/Wood County and Northcentral Technical College to develop pipeline programs to prepare undergraduate students for medical school.
“MCW is developing community advisory boards in both Central Wisconsin and Green Bay to assist with the development and implementation of the local medical education programs,” Joseph E. Kerschner, MCW’s dean of the medical school and executive vice president, said in a news release. “The community advisory boards also will advise me in the selection of a community campus dean in both regions.”
Eliminating a shortfall
A 2011 report by the Wisconsin Hospital Association revealed that Wisconsin faces an estimated shortfall of 2,000 physicians by 2030. The hope is that the new medical college campuses will bring new physicians to central Wisconsin to train and stay in the area.
Duane Erwin, the CEO at Aspirus, said 150 people have graduated from the Aspirus family residency program that started in 1978 in partnership with the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and 87 residents practice in Wisconsin with 44 people still in the immediate region.
“Having students trained in the region helpsmake sure those physicians stay in the area to provide the care we need to provide,” Erwin said.
One of the Wisconsin Hospital Association’s recommendations in its report last year on the creation of new medical campuses to allow more students to be trained in medical fields. Dr. Charles Shabino, a senior medical adviser with the hospital association, called the new medical college campuses “a significant step forward” toward reducing the state’s looming physician shortage.
October 23, 2012
From jsonline.com: “Vincent High School launches urban ag program” – Shamika Suggs said she never used to like science.
But now, the 16-year-old Milwaukee student aspires to become a veterinarian.
“In regular science, we’re reading out of a book, writing notes,” Suggs said. “Now, we’re doing science ourselves – actual experiments.”
Suggs is a member of the inaugural class of a new urban agricultural sciences program at Harold S. Vincent High School – the largest school program of its kind in Wisconsin, and the only one in Milwaukee.
Agriculture programs are making a comeback in Wisconsin schools as educators tap into such expanding career fields as renewable energy. In the past three years, eight school districts have added agricultural science programs with a licensed teacher and their own Future Farmers of America charters, according to Jeff Hicken, agriculture and natural resources education consultant for the Department of Public Instruction.
Vincent’s program features aspects of the growing urban farming movement, including outdoor beehives, greenhouses and an aquaponics room.
“If there’s one thing I want people to take away, it’s that it’s not cows and sows and plows,” said Kyle Slick, Vincent’s new agricultural sciences teacher. The program has 216 students in its first year and will offer courses in introduction to urban agriculture, biotechnology, biofuels, veterinary science, landscape design and urban gardening.
“What I want my students to do is to have postsecondary aspirations,” Slick said. “By the time they’re seniors, I want them to have ideas of specific ideas of what careers they want and how to get to those careers.”
Vincent, set on a 90-acre plot of land on Milwaukee’s northwest side, was built in the 1970s with a focus on agriculture. Slick, a first-year teacher, is the first agricultural instructor Milwaukee Public Schools has hired in more than three decades to help get Vincent back to its roots with a modern focus.
Slick said he hopes to expand the program by adding one discipline each year to its lineup of mini-enterprises – plants, food science, animal production.
“We want this to be the focus of the school – the agricultural high school of Milwaukee,” Slick said.
Community support is nurturing the Vincent program. Urban farming pioneers Growing Power and Sweet Water Organics are partners in the program, and city funding helped get it off the ground. Mayor Tom Barrett and representatives of FaB Milwaukee, a regional network for the food and beverage industry, spoke at the program’s open house last week.
Barrett connected the program at Vincent to a city initiative to convert foreclosed lots into garden plots for urban farming.
“If we can find a way as a community to scale this up and make it financially feasible, we’ve hit a grand slam,” Barrett said.
Other partners, including Milwaukee Area Technical College, the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, University of Wisconsin-Madison and University of Wisconsin-River Falls, aim to streamline the transition from high school to college for agricultural sciences students at Vincent by offering more programs directly linked to the disciplines students are learning.
“Our goal is to button this up so we have a food chain from Vincent to MATC to UWM,” MATC President Michael Burke said. “We want to create pathways to local universities, like UWM’s school of public health.”
Hicken, of the DPI, said the growth of ag programs around the state is market driven. In addition to new programs in Wisconsin schools, Hicken said, 40 existing programs have expanded.
“A lot of what has been driving this lately is the job markets out there,” Hicken said.
About 354,000 jobs in Wisconsin – 10% of the workforce – come from its $59 billion-dollar agriculture industry, according to a study by the University of Wisconsin Extension.
Paul Larsen, chair of the Wisconsin Agricultural Education and Workforce Development Council, has taught agricultural education at Freedom High School for the past 26 years. His classroom helped serve as a model for the recent developments at Vincent – a step in the right direction, according to Larsen.
“We try to get students aware and excited about these careers in agriculture, because we’re going to need them very soon,” he said.
October 17, 2012
From marshfieldnewsherald.com: “Medical college officials to visit Point on Thursday” – Representatives from the Medical College of Wisconsin will be in Stevens Point on Thursday to view the community as the possible site for a new campus.
Stevens Point Mayor Andrew Halverson said the representatives will be visiting the campuses of Mid-State Technical College and the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, and do a general tour of the community.
“We’re looking forward to having the opportunity to having them tour our community. We feel like we bring exactly to the table what this college is looking for,” Halverson said.
In June, the medical college announced plans to locate a satellite college in Green Bay and another in central Wisconsin. Stevens Point, along with Wausau, Mosinee and Marshfield, is among the possible locations being considered in the region.
The college will announce its choice for the new campus in November. About 15 students are expected to be part of the first class at each of the two new campuses when they open in 2015, and would expand to 25 students by the second year.
The city announced Sept. 10 its bid for a campus, the main part of which was offering the current Mid-State building on Sims Avenue as the location. The building will be vacated after the college moves downtown as part of the city’s redevelopment project for the former CenterPoint MarketPlace.
The city is demolishing part of the mall and will move MSTC into the former J.C. Penney wing of the mall. The college would be offered about 8,000 square feet of the MSTC building initially, but that could be expanded to as much as 30,000 square feet.
“The Mid-State location is a great plus because it’s already been used as a teaching center,” Halverson said. “We are also the only community with a four-year comprehensive university, which will allow those new students to have a comfort level here.”
October 17, 2012
From madison.com: “Two from Madison College earn national recognition” – Madison College President Bettsey Barhorst and chemistry instructor Holly Walter Kerby each earned national recognition from the Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT).
Barhorst was named the national Chief Executive of the Year, while Kerby was recognized as Faculty Member of the Year, according to an ACCT news release announcing the association’s 2012 award winners that was emailed to the Cap Times on Tuesday. Barhorst and Kerby were actually recognized on Friday in Boston during the ACCT’s annual awards gala.
Barhorst beat out four other finalists for an award that’s designed to recognize outstanding contributions made by community college chief executive officers. Barhorst, who has worked in higher education for four decades and served as president of Madison College since November 2004, helped the institution pass a $134 million referendum in 2010 that has led to a building boom for the college.
Kerby, who has worked full-time at the college since 1990, is the creator and director of Fusion Science Theater, a group that trains educators to use storytelling and theater to teach kids science concepts.
According to the ACCT website, the group “is a non-profit educational organization of governing boards, representing more than 6,500 elected and appointed trustees who govern over 1,200 community, technical and junior colleges in the United States and beyond.”
October 1, 2012
From postcrescent.com: “Technical college, UW-Fox make case for two-year degrees” – Because of the current bleak job market for four-year graduates, school officials at Fox Valley Technical College and University of Wisconsin-Fox Valley are hoping more Wisconsinites see the power of two-year or technical college degrees.
Employees at both schools think that by increasing their visibility at the high school level and changing attitudes about post-secondary education will increase the number of students who explore their programming — something that could gain them well-paying jobs more quickly, said Patti Jorgensen, vice president of students and community development at FVTC.
Fox Valley Technical College will open its doors to Fox Cities residents Tuesday for its annual open house — an event the school relies on to draw in potential students, said FVTC spokesman Chris Jossart.
The school could see as many as 2,000 people during the open house, Jossart said.
A recent Georgetown University study discovered that 29 million U.S. jobs don’t require a bachelor’s degree — most required a two-year associate’s degree or post-secondary certificate.
Forty percent of those jobs paid more than $50,000 a year, according to the report by the university’s Center on Education and the Workforce and Civic Enterprises departments.
Parents and teachers often point students in the direction of four-year college and forget other options simply because that was their only post-secondary experience, Jorgenson said.
“I think kids hear about college, and associate it with the four-year schools,” said Joe Lamers, counselor at Appleton East High School. “As they get older, we try to give them all options … I know that I tell kids all the time that it’s their decision. No one should be telling them what to do — technical or two-year colleges can be a great option. They’re cheaper, quicker, have high placement rates — we always mention the positives.”
FVTC hosts large meetings with teachers from local districts to show off the school’s educational pathways, and often sends representatives to public schools so students can hear about what job options become available after studying at the technical college.
Gina Fisher of Waupaca is a parent who’s tried both four-year and technical colleges.
After attending the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh for two years and working to support herself, Fisher said she felt incredibly “burnt-out.” She decided to get an associate’s degree in accounting instead and graduated from FVTC.
That’s how she knew that, after discussing career interests with her sons, FVTC would be the best option. Both of her sons are homeschooled, and Fisher said taking a class or two at FVTC was an easy way to transition into college.
“My older son wanted to go into physical therapy, and the tech is a lot more hands-on,” Fisher said. “I really like the tech school for that reason … It’s a cheaper option, and he can go on to (University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh) later to finish up his bachelor’s degree.”
Fisher said she thought more parents and students would choose the technical college option if they knew the financial benefits.
“I just don’t think people are well informed about their options for college,” she said. “I know I wasn’t, and I really don’t remember getting much advice when I was in high school.”
George Wojcik’s daughter Valarie enrolled in FVTC after working on a motorcycle in a Hortonville High School class. She graduated from the school’s welding program, and later enrolled in the welding engineering program at Ferris University in Michigan and graduated with a bachelor’s degree. After some convincing, the school accepted all of her credits from FVTC, Wojcik said.
“She was far ahead of the game,” Wojcik said. “She had a lot of hands-on experience, and her teachers were very impressed.”
Both Wojcik and Fisher are part of a parent panel that will speak Tuesday night during FVTC’s open house.
UW-Fox tries to work with students and parents to understand the application and enrollment process, which often can be muddled and confusing, said Martin Rudd, dean of UW-Fox. The school holds parent nights and open houses throughout the academic year.
UW-Fox also reaches out to teachers in local districts to discuss what skills students need when applying to the school or other colleges in the state.
“Not only do we have a lot of programs with high schools, but we’re constantly developing new relationships with schools,” Rudd said.
Unlike many technical colleges, UW-Fox often thinks of itself as a “step toward a baccalaureate degree,” Rudd said. The school’s associate’s degrees transfer easily to other colleges in the state, and the school has set up programs like “Madison Connections” UW-Madison and their Guaranteed Transfer program that can ease the transition and get more general classes out of the way, Rudd said.
Like FVTC, UW-Fox offers some dual enrollment programming for high school students, and the UW system plans to greatly expand the program in the future, Rudd said. The school also is trying to connect with students in local charter schools, who may not have as much familiarity with UW-Fox.
“There’s no one-size-fits-all method for recruiting students,” Rudd said.
UW-Fox will hold its next open house at 6 p.m. Oct. 23.
Jorgenson said she hopes the increased attention from public schools will help students discover interesting career paths earlier.
“We’re talking with our K-12 partners, saying ‘Hey, we need our students to have more information about technical colleges,’” Jorgenson said. “A large percentage of students may say they’re headed to four-year colleges, but in our experience they aren’t. There’s still a large percentage of students who aren’t doing much after high school.”
In the Fox Cities region, 23 percent of FVTC students begin classes directly after high school. Forty-six percent arrive roughly two years after graduating, Jorgenson said.
“They’re doing something for two years that’s probably not particularly productive, and then they’re circling back to us,” Jorgenson said.
September 26, 2012
From lacrossetribune.com: “Jennifer Shilling: Wisconsin must narrow its ‘skills gap’ – As Wisconsin continues to struggle with the effects of the worst economic recession since the Great Depression, employers are still having a difficult time finding workers with the necessary skills to fill vacant positions.
Workforce development professionals refer to this as the “skills gap.” Narrowing that gap and ensuring that Wisconsin’s workforce has the necessary skills to meet the needs of current and emerging industries needs to be a priority as we continue to pursue efforts to get our economy moving again.
On Sept. 19, Sen. Jessica King and I convened a hearing about job training and workforce development to learn about the skills gap and discuss ways the Legislature can be a more effective partner in addressing Wisconsin’s workforce training needs.
This hearing was an opportunity for elected officials and stakeholders to have an open dialogue about important workforce development issues confronting Wisconsin, including the skills gap. We heard from the state Department of Workforce Development, as well as representatives from technical colleges, businesses, and the construction trades who are engaged in public-private partnerships that provide training in high demand occupations.
Two main themes emerged from that hearing:
- Wisconsin’s technical colleges, businesses, construction trades and other community partners are engaged in many successful local and regional worker training initiatives throughout the state, and we need to find a way to build on these success stories on a statewide level.
- Adequate resources are needed, including both public and private sector investments, to move workers through the educational pipeline and get them ready to enter the workforce with the proper skills in a timely manner.
The 2011-13 state budget, which I voted against, cut funding for the Wisconsin Technical College System by 30 percent, which put state funding assistance for our technical colleges at a level not seen since the 1980s. Consequently, technical colleges reported almost 12,000 students on waiting lists for high-demand programs throughout the state in June.
It doesn’t take a workforce development expert to make the connection between the significant funding cut for our technical colleges and the growing skills gap dilemma facing our state.
With the next legislative session scheduled to begin in about three months, now is the time to consider our options, have a bipartisan discussion and come up with proposals to tackle our state’s top priorities: preparing Wisconsin’s workforce to meet the needs of employers and growing our state’s economy.
As a member of the Governor’s Council on College and Workforce Readiness, I attend regular meetings focused on creating a bipartisan package of job creation and workforce development recommendations for Gov. Scott Walker and the Legislature to consider during the upcoming legislative session and state budget process. I’m hopeful that the work of this council will lead to more bipartisan cooperation in addressing our state’s educational and workforce development needs.
I have confidence that Wisconsin can meet the needs of employers and employees in current and emerging industries, and I also appreciate the limited resources with which we have to work. By including all stakeholders, continuing to have an open dialogue and learning about successful workforce training efforts in high demand occupational fields, we can better understand how to direct our resources to develop and foster a successful statewide workforce development strategy.
September 24, 2012
From jsonline.com: “State can be a model for creating skilled workers” — By Tom Still –An expert in invention and entrepreneurship who has forgotten more about both than most people know recently used this line in a room of economic development professionals: “Increasingly, there is no room in America for the unskilled.”
Before the politically correct among us rise up in solidarity for the right to remain unskilled, let’s do something refreshingly honest and concede he’s right.
The current job market certainly suggests so, given the stubborn national unemployment rate three years after the official end of the recession. And so have credible studies on the future of the American workforce, such as the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics forecast and state-specific reports from the Georgetown University Center on the Economy and the Workforce.
Between 2008 and 2018, Georgetown researchers predicted, the need for workers with some kind of postsecondary training or education will grow by 139,000 jobs in Wisconsin. Jobs for high-school graduates and dropouts will grow by 52,000 jobs. By 2018, 61% of all jobs in Wisconsin will require some postsecondary training.
Meeting the need for skilled workers – from people with the right training for today’s high-tech manufacturing to people with advanced college degrees – has been addressed by three recent reports in Wisconsin. That kind of consensus around the size of the problem should mean solutions are achievable, even in a divided political era.
Unveiled a month ago was “The Road Ahead: Restoring Wisconsin’s Workforce Development.” Otherwise known as the Sullivan report, it was a volunteer effort headed by Tim Sullivan, the former Bucyrus International executive who was appointed by Gov. Scott Walker in February to take a hard look at state workforce gaps.
The report stressed that demographics alone are threatening the state’s long-term economic health. The number of senior citizens living in the state will nearly double between 2010 and 2040 (from 777,000 to 1.54 million), the report said, and its working-age population will grow by a miserly 0.4% (from 3.57 million to 3.58 million).
“Baby boomers are also aging out of the workforce, leaving gaps that cannot be met by our current projected population, or the education system in which they develop working skills,” it read.
The Sullivan report’s conclusions ranged from finding ways to encourage immigration of high-skilled, hard-to-find workers to better coordination of state workforce programs to establishing academic and career plans for all students.
Another recent report stressed the importance of science, technology, engineering and math education. “Wisconsin STEM: Navigators to the future” was produced by a group led by Bryan Albrecht, president of Gateway Technical College. Gateway has a successful history of meeting employer needs for skilled labor.
That report noted that so-called STEM occupations are predicted to grow by 17% from 2008 to 2018 and that STEM workers command higher wages, earning 26% more than their non-STEM counterparts. Over the past 10 years, growth in STEM jobs in the United States was three times the rate of non-STEM jobs. Workers with STEM skills are also more likely to keep a job, contribute to a local economy and drive innovation, the report noted.
“STEM education is an imperative to secure our state’s viability in a competitive global economy,” said S. Mark Tyler, president of OEM Fabricators and a contributor to the report.
It established five markers to chart success: Eliminate barriers that prevent learners from exploring STEM careers; emphasize acquiring STEM knowledge and skills for all learners; increase public-private partnerships with a focus on STEM skills; establish a statewide awareness campaign for STEM careers; and invest in development for educators so they can better integrate STEM throughout the curriculum.
Also weighing in is the Department of Public Instruction, which recently issued its Agenda 2017 report. Among its recommendations are increasing Wisconsin’s graduation rate, doubling college and career readiness rates, and increasing the percentage of students scoring proficient in third-grade reading and eighth-grade mathematics.
One specific DPI recommendation: Expand high-school programs for “dual enrollment.” Those are programs that allow high school students to earn college credits and specific career skills through industry certifications and youth apprenticeships.
Indeed, there is precious little room in America for the unskilled. With the help of those who are committed to understanding the problem, perhaps Wisconsin can become a model for giving the unskilled hope and pathways to more rewarding, productive lives.
September 7, 2012
From madison.com: “Campus Connection: UW-Madison, Madison College to pilot test e-textbooks” – UW-Madison, Madison College and more than two dozen other institutions of higher education are taking part in a pilot project to evaluate digital learning materials as an alternative to the more traditional — but costly and bulky — textbooks students have relied on for as long as most can remember.
“By working as part of a community like this where numerous other institutions are involved, this gives us more leverage with the publishers than if we were working alone on examining e-texts,” says Bruce Maas, UW-Madison’s vice provost for information technology. “This project will help us better evaluate the perspectives of the faculty and students who use these digital materials, as opposed to simply listening to what the publishers think is best.”
The initiative also will allow schools to study e-textbooks’ impact on student learning. In addition, it will examine potential cost savings to students and give institutions a better feel for what additional technology support might be needed as the shift continues from print to digital.
“There is so much going on with technology and higher ed, that sometimes the tendency is to just jump on the next bandwagon without a whole lot of thought,” says Turina Bakken, Madison College’s associate vice president for learner success. “So we want to make sure we are looking at this potential innovation very closely and are asking all the right questions along the way. We know for our students here at Madison College, probably more so than anybody else on this list of participating schools, that one size just doesn’t fit all -– from a textbook perspective or a learning style perspective or a financial perspective.”
This project — which is being launched as a partnership between not-for-profits EDUCAUSE and Internet2, and companies McGraw-Hill Education and Courseload — is similar to one UW-Madison and five other large universities took part in during the 2012 spring semester, when these institutions joined forces to bulk purchase e-textbooks for some students in selected courses.
That initial effort, in large part, was driven by the desire to examine ways to curb skyrocketing textbook costs. According to UW-Madison’s most recent Data Digest, students spent an average of $1,140 on books and supplies during the 2011-12 academic year — up from $680 a decade ago.
“The cost issue is certainly an interest of ours and of other intuitions involved in these pilots,” says Brian Rust, the communications director for UW-Madison’s division of information technology. “I doubt we would find it satisfying if we find out that these e-texts cost the same amount of money as a printed text — even if the e-text offers supplementary tools. We’re not against publishers making money but we need to figure out some kind of happy medium whereby students find it appealing to move toward e-texts.”
The test run that’s taking place this fall will give students in selected courses free access to digital learning material selected by faculty. The program involves the use of McGraw Hill e-texts (PDF format) and Courseload, which is an e-reader software that is viewable on any device — including smartphones, tablets and computers — that uses HTML 5. However, UW-Madison officials note that smartphones may not afford the best reading experience due to small screen sizes. For those who prefer traditional print, students may print portions of their e-text or can order a print-on-demand version of the e-text at no charge.
At UW-Madison, some 800 students taking four classes — Human Development 321, Circuit Analysis 230, Philosophy 211 and Marketing Management 300 — will be given free access to e-texts for those specific courses. Similarly, about 600 students taking 15 classes at Madison College will have that same opportunity. Officials at UW-Madison and Madison College said their institutions are each paying $20,000 to participate in, and help subsidize, this pilot project.
UW-Milwaukee is the only other UW System institution taking part in the pilot program, while Madison College is the only two-year institution involved with the national project.
“Textbook costs are a huge burden for students, and in some instances it becomes a real barrier to an education,” says Andrea Deau, Madison College’s academic technology services director. “We’ve done some preliminary analysis and found that e-texts usually cost about 25 to 40 percent less. With some very rough numbers crunching we found that in some of our programs if you took the total cost of textbooks across the degree and you put those into e-text format you could actually subsidize the cost of a laptop and still save the student money. So that’s great. But then we need to make sure e-texts don’t offer an inferior academic experience or add to the digital divide” for students who don’t have easy access to computers, the Internet and other technologies.
The initial pilot program that UW-Madison took part in during the spring 2012 semester produced mixed results. A report released last month that examines this initiative indicates students reported liking the portability of e-texts and the fact that they would likely cost less than traditional textbooks. Conversely, some reported problems with the readability of the texts and that they were difficult to navigate.
In addition, the report notes that most faculty didn’t make use of the available enhanced e-text features, such as providing links to additional learning materials, sharing notes and tracking students’ questions and answers about various topics. Because of this, the report states that “students saw little benefit from the e-text platform’s capability of promoting collaboration with other students or with the professor.”
Rust says one of the main reasons the university decided to continue with this pilot project for at least one more semester is to get a better feel for the potential value some of these enhanced e-text features can provide to students and faculty.
“We like being a part of the process of figuring out what works and what doesn’t, and having a voice in all this,” says Rust. “So we want to take a closer look at how this platform can be used.”
September 5, 2012
From marketwatch.com: “Great Lakes Awards Grants to 14 Wisconsin Programs Improving College Completion” – Great Lakes Higher Education Guaranty Corporation (Great Lakes) announced today that it has awarded $1.8 million in grants to 14 programs helping Wisconsin college students from disadvantaged backgrounds complete their degree, diploma, or certificate. Each recipient program will receive funding for services designed to strengthen the connection between these students and their campus or community, thereby improving persistence from semester-to-semester and year-to-year.
Studies show that students lacking socioeconomic or educational advantages — including students of color, those from low-income backgrounds, and those who are first in their families to attend college — are the most likely to leave college before completion. Not only do these students miss out on the benefits of postsecondary education, they are more likely to face higher unemployment rates and earn less income over their lifetime than peers who complete. In addition, students who drop out of college often leave with student loans to repay, but no credential with higher corresponding earnings to meet the costs of monthly payments.
Programs funded by Great Lakes’ Wisconsin Postsecondary Persistence Program Grants have developed specific strategies to address the unique challenges that their participating students face. Specialized services may include proactive advising, tutoring, mentoring, career exploration assistance, and placement in structured learning communities. The goal of each program is to increase their participants’ re-enrollment rates compared to those of similarly situated peers. Program outcomes will be used to identify what works best in increasing persistence and, ultimately, college completion to inform Great Lakes’ future funding decisions.
“We are pleased to partner with Wisconsin colleges, universities, and community-based organizations in their efforts to provide targeted services designed to help disadvantaged students finish their postsecondary education,” said Richard D. George, Great Lakes’ President and Chief Executive Officer. “The results-focused approaches these programs use can become models for programs elsewhere, and can help ensure that more students are able to reach their full potential.”
Wisconsin Postsecondary Persistence Program Grants have been awarded through Great Lakes’ philanthropic Community Investments program to the following recipients:
Alverno College, Milwaukee Promise Scholars Based on a successful pilot that featured a proactive advising model, this program has been awarded $151,425 to increase participation from 131 students to 250 first-generation students.
Carroll University, Waukesha Project 2016 Students in this program, 40 incoming freshmen from low-income backgrounds, will meet weekly with an advisor, attend five workshops designed to connect them to on-campus resources, and receive academic help, thanks to this $62,527 grant.
College Possible, Milwaukee College Program College Possible uses a technology-based coaching model, making use of social media, social networking, and texting to connect participating students to campus resources, to each other, and to potential employers. More than 1,300 students from Wisconsin who are attending colleges across the country will benefit from this $255,904 grant.
Madison Area Technical College Mentoring Minority Male Scholars Program (3MSP) Through this program, 40 students of color will benefit from meeting monthly with a faculty or staff mentor, as well as being part of a strong learning community. A grant of $75,608 has been awarded to expand this program to female students.
Milwaukee Area Technical College Student Support Retention Pathway (SSRP) This program supports students who have been conditionally admitted, which means their standardized test scores do not meet the minimum requirements. Through the help of a $208,407 grant, 300 of these students will be paired with another student in the program, will receive tutoring, and will be required to attend workshops on topics such as study skills and test taking.
Mount Mary College, Milwaukee Promise Plus A $214,000 grant for this program, designed to address the non-academic challenges of staying in college, will expand services to 60 students. These students will be mentored by older students in the program using online and offline methods.
St. Norbert College, De Pere Students Taking Academic Responsibility (STAR) This program provides services to assist 35 first-year students of color in adjusting to their new environment and overcoming challenges they may face. Thanks to this $61,606 grant, students will be able to participate in weekly meals, study hours, and meetings throughout the year.
United Community Center, Milwaukee Abriendo Puertas This community-based program serves Latino undergraduates from low-income backgrounds attending Milwaukee-area universities. A $155,260 grant will help 150 students identify a career path and provide them with financial counseling, professional networking, and mentoring in partnership with the Hispanic Professionals of Greater Milwaukee.
University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire Blugold Beginnings Learning Community for Underrepresented Students A $148,108 grant will provide 40 students with placement in a peer group that attends classes together and has weekly meetings with a peer mentor and bi-weekly meetings with a faculty or staff coach.
University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire Commanding English This program was created for students who show great potential, despite lower grade point averages and standardized test scores. The 22 participating students have been granted admission to UW-Eau Claire contingent upon participation in this one-year program. Students take skill-building classes and general education courses together as a learning community. A grant of $40,665 has been awarded to this program.
University of Wisconsin – Marathon County Student Support Services (SSS) Through this program, 165 students with lower grade point averages or standardized test scores will meet weekly with a learning strategy specialist, explore majors, and learn about ways to fund their education. Most of the key staff in this program, which has been awarded a $67,055 grant, are first-generation college students themselves.
University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee Life Impact Program This $146,322 grant will help to serve 40 parent-students from disadvantaged backgrounds. Students in this program, which provides services throughout their time at UW-Milwaukee, will be required to attend workshops and will have access to a team of life coaches, as well as a resource center.
University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh Student Support Services (SSS)
This $169,420 grant will help to expand the program to serve 150 additional students. These students will receive advising and peer support, and be part of small learning groups led by an experienced program student.
University of Wisconsin – Parkside Project Success A $51,272 grant will help this structured learning community provide career course and assessment help, placement in a reading and composition course, and tutoring to 50 students through a team of students, instructors, peer coaches, and advisors.
For more information on Great Lakes’ Wisconsin Postsecondary Persistence Program Grants and other Community Investments initiatives, visit mygreatlakes.org/community or contact Amy Kerwin at firstname.lastname@example.org or (608) 246-1785.
From sheboygandaily.com: “Wisconsin to join the Complete College America Alliance of States” – MADISON — Today, the Governor’s College and Workforce Readiness Council (CWRC) made the recommendation to join the Complete College America (CCA) Alliance of States.
The CCA is a national non-for-profit, focused on increasing the number of certificate and degree holders in the nation. States joining CCA’s alliance pledge to significantly increase the number of students successfully completing college and to close attainment gaps for traditionally underrepresented populations. Currently, almost 30 states have joined CCA’s alliance.
CWRC representatives include leaders of the University of Wisconsin (UW) System, the Wisconsin Technical College System (WTCS), Wisconsin Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (WAICU), the Department of Public Instruction (DPI), the Department of Workforce Development, and the Department Health Services, as well as private industry representatives and members of the state legislature. Council members unanimously recommended joining the coalition to embark on common data reporting and initiatives that can help improve Wisconsin’s effort to boost the number of postsecondary certificates and degrees.
“It’s important to consider new ways to improve job placement among college graduates,” said Governor Scott Walker. “Wisconsin’s membership in Complete College America will strengthen our workforce by better enabling our colleges and universities to prepare our students for the jobs of the future.”
“We believe that joining CCA can help us achieve the goal of the ‘more Graduates for Wisconsin’ initiative of graduating an additional 80,000 degree-holders beyond our current trajectory by 2025,” said UW System President Kevin P. Reilly. “In the process, we can demonstrate once again our strong commitment to transparency and accountability, and help our external stakeholders learn more about our successes in this area.”
“Joining Complete College America is a step towards complete and transparent information for Wisconsin,” added CWRC chair Tim Sullivan. “We need to be able to compare ourselves to other states to improve our strengths and address our challenges.”
“Participating in Complete College America provides Wisconsin’s technical colleges another opportunity to assess our student success efforts and communicate those efforts to state and national policymakers,” said Wisconsin Technical College System President Dan Clancy. “Improving retention and credential attainment for all learners is a WTCS priority. We look forward to learning about and implementing innovative best practices from around the country as part of CCA,” added Clancy.
“Although the 23 colleges and universities in WAICU are all private, nonprofit organizations, they all share in the goal of increasing educational attainment in Wisconsin and look forward to working in partnership with the UW and the WTCS as well as CCA to move Wisconsin forward,” Rolf Wegenke said.
August 1, 2012
From chippewa.com: “CVTC launches College for Working Adults” – EAU CLAIRE — Chippewa Valley Technical College (CVTC) has launched the College for Working Adults, a convenient program that offers associate degrees and certifications on a flexible format for adults looking to advance their skills.
Classes begin in August, with informational sessions Thursday, Aug. 9, at CVTC’s Chippewa Falls, Menomonie and River Falls campuses.
CVTC will be offering associate degrees in Business Management, Human Resource Management, Liberal Arts and Marketing Management. Certification programs include Leadership/Supervision and Professional Selling.
Most classes are eight weeks long and held from 6 to 8:55 p.m. at CVTC campuses in Chippewa Falls, Menomonie and River Falls.
“We know that the majority of new jobs will require some postsecondary education, and in looking at our population base, only one-third have an associate degree or higher,” said Margaret Dickens, director of Planning, Research & Grants for CVTC. “This initiative will provide courses the working adult can take in the evening without quitting their job,” she added. “The value will be more employment opportunities and a highly trained workforce for our regional employers.”
The information sessions to be held on Aug. 9 begin at 6 p.m. at the Chippewa Falls, Menomonie and River Falls campuses. Attendees will learn more about the College, meet with academic advisors, learn about financial aid and may apply for a program and register for classes.
Reports indicate Wisconsin is facing a “workforce paradox,” in which there is a 7 percent unemployment rate, yet there are many job openings available for those who qualify.
In the 11-county CVTC district, about 200,000 adults have not obtained an associate or higher degree. Of that number, about 100,000 have a high school diploma with no college; 61,676 have some college experience; and 30,000 do not have a high school diploma.
The goal is also to provide occupational training programs to those looking to enhance and enrich occupational skills that may or may not be related to their current occupations.
For more information, visit www.cvtc.edu/adults. Registration for the information sessions may be made by calling 715-738-3841 for the Chippewa Falls campus; 715-233-5341 for the Menomonie campus; and 715-426-8241 for the River Falls campus.
From morainepark.edu: “Dual enrollment provides Moraine Park students with learning advantage” – When Jasmyn Clough graduated from Beaver Dam High School in 2008, she had completed enough transcripted credit courses to count as two classes in Moraine Park Technical College’s Business Management program. While an accident kept Clough from enrolling at Moraine Park directly out of high school, in 2010, she was able to hit the ground running with two college classes under her belt.
Clough, who graduates this December, isn’t stopping with her Business Management associate of applied science degree. Instead, she is taking advantage of the transfer agreements set in place by Moraine Park and will be entering Cardinal Stritch University at junior status as a Business Management student in the spring of 2013. She’s on a track that will allow her to obtain a Bachelor’s degree in two years.
Clough is a perfect example of how transcripted credits, or dual enrollment, creates an economically savvy, time-saving path to success. “I’m a first-generation college student and am making my family proud by obtaining a Moraine Park associated of applied science degree then continuing my education,” Clough said. “I’m always looking one step ahead and the transfer agreement with Cardinal Stritch is helping me continue this pattern.”
Transcripted credit/dual enrollment has been offered at Moraine Park for almost 20 years. Transcripted credit courses are Moraine Park courses taught in the high school using technical college curriculum, grading policies and textbooks. In addition to Moraine Park, these credits are transferable to all colleges within the Wisconsin Technical College System.
The numbers line up and high school students are saving money through this seamless dual enrollment transition. In 2010-11, high school students in Moraine Park’s district earned over $1.2 million worth of college credits – 4,183 took transcripted credits with a total of 9,871 credits completed. There are 216 transcripted credit agreements with public schools in Moraine Park’s district.
“I encourage high school students to inquire about dual enrolled options with their counselors,” said Moraine Park president Sheila Ruhland. “If you are seeking avenues for cost savings and time shortened programs as you enter college, enrolling in these classes as a high school student is an excellent first choice!”
Taking it to the next step of transferring from a two-year to four-year degree, Moraine Park has a full-time Academic Support and Transfer Specialist who works to secure agreements and support students as they transition from Moraine Park to a bachelor’s degree path. In 2011-12, more than 150 Moraine Park students were guided through the transfer process.
“The college currently has agreements with 36 four-year institutions, said Karla Donahue, Moraine Park academic support and transfer specialist” From those 36 colleges and universities, students can choose from 111 different specific program pathways.
At Cardinal Stritch, for example, 15 different degree options exist for Moraine Park students to choose from when they decide on the transferring option. Every spring, Moraine Park holds a Transfer Fair when representatives from the 36 colleges with transfer agreements in place come to offer information and chat with Moraine Park students interested in transferring. Attending the Transfer Fair is how Clough became interested in attending Cardinal Stritch.
Diane Sexton had the idea of lifelong learning in mind when she enrolled in the accounting program at Moraine Park. A solid associate of applied science foundation at Moraine Park, combined with an easy transition to Ottawa University, based out of Milwaukee, allowed Sexton to continue learning. She eventually obtained a bachelor’s degree in accounting and business administration, and a master’s degree in business administration, also from Ottawa.
Students who complete their associate of applied science degree through Moraine Park can apply up to 80 credits toward an Ottawa University bachelor’s degree. Online and face-to-face programs are available to students in areas including business administration, health care management and accounting.
“The transition from Moraine Park to Ottawa University was extremely easy,” said Sexton. “My instructors at Moraine Park provided me with a very strong education in accounting which set me up for success at Ottawa. Moraine Park got me back into the swing of going to school, and Ottawa allowed me to continue learning by accepting all of my credits from Moraine Park, allowing me to achieve my bachelor’s degree quickly.”
Dual Enrollment/transcripted credits, and transfer agreements continue to play a role in Moraine Park’s offering of flexible and convenient degree options. For more information on dual enrollment at Moraine Park, visit morainepark.edu/transfer.