FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                        February 28, 2007

NORTHWESTERN TO PARTICIPATE IN STATEWIDE PROGRAM
TO HELP ADULTS RETURN TO COLLEGE FOR DEGREE COMPLETION

            Northwestern Oklahoma State University will take part in a new statewide program to help Oklahomans and other adults return to college to complete their bachelor’s degrees.

            “ReachHigher: Oklahoma’s Degree Completion Program” was approved by the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education to begin in March and will involve nine public universities across the state.

            In addition to Northwestern, schools that will offer degrees include Northeastern State University, Cameron University, East Central University, Langston University, Rogers State University, Southeastern Oklahoma State University, Southwestern Oklahoma State University and the University of Central Oklahoma.

            The program was developed to help working adults with at least two years of college complete their degrees on a flexible schedule with affordable costs and, when finished, to have a bachelor of science degree in organizational leadership.

            This will help students reach their goals, get a better job or earn more income. In addition, the program will help businesses meet their employment needs.

            Classes will last eight weeks per course and the majority of the course assignments will be conducted online with periodic meetings on-campus or through Interactive Television (ITV). Students can enroll in the program five times throughout the year. The approximate cost for each hour of credit will be $138; book costs will vary by course.

            Tuition fees may vary in the future once institutions determine actual expenses for administering and delivering the program. Financial aid will be available for students who qualify and the Financial Aid Office at Northwestern or other home institution can assist students in applying. Some employers also may provide tuition reimbursement.

            The curriculum will include courses in leadership and personal development skills, communications, data analysis and interpretation, fiscal management and ethics. The program of study concludes with a capstone course that integrates concepts and theories covered in other classes. A professional internship with an organization, firm, government agency or not-for-profit entity within the selected area of focus will be optional.

            Admission requirements include having completed a minimum of 72 hours of college credit, be at least 21 years old, have been out of college for at least one year and have a minimum 2.0 grade point average.

            Some students may be able to earn college credit through prior learning assessment that will examine their work, training and life experiences. Common methods of assessment include standardized or departmental examination, training and certification evaluation, interviews, demonstrations and portfolio review.

            Application for the program should be made online at www.reachhigheroklahoma.org.

            The first course to be taught at Northwestern will be “Foundations of Organizational Leadership and Personal Development” taught by Dr. Kathy Harris, chair of the Business, E-Commerce and Agriculture Department and professor of business and E-commerce.

            The course will begin Wednesday, March 7, and have four ITV meetings through May 2. There will be three online, open-book tests; three discussion boards and a four-to-six page research paper with oral presentation.

            “Foundations of Organizational Leadership” is designed to prepare students to complete their degrees. Components to be covered include principles of adult learning, resources for success, personal wellness/stress, time management techniques, study and test-taking skills and basic computer skills for working in an online environment.

            For more information about the course, interested persons should contact Harris at (580) 213-3109 or by e-mail at kharris@nwosu.edu.

            General information about the ReachHigher Program, including complete admission requirements, can be found on the Internet at www.reachhigheroklahoma.org.

-NW-

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Northwestern Oklahoma State University
Steve Valencia, Director
Office of University Relations
709 Oklahoma Blvd., Alva, OK 73717
Phone: (580) 327-8478  Fax: (580) 327-8660

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