February 22, 2011

SIUC exploring degree program in Springfield

by Christi Mathis

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- A series of public presentations in Springfield in March will help Southern Illinois University Carbondale and its workforce education and development department gauge public interest in a program that would allow completion of an SIUC degree via weekend and online courses in Springfield.

Workforce education and development (WED) already offers an online/weekend degree completion program at the Carbondale campus and through offsite military base locations. Department officials are considering expanding to offer the program in the Springfield area in conjunction with the Center for Workforce Development at Lincoln Land Community College.

Through this program, those who are currently working on or already have an associate degree or those who are returning to college can obtain a Bachelor of Science degree in workforce education and development by attending classes locally on weekends and through online classes. This allows people to retain their current employment and responsibilities while completing their education. The assessment of transfer credit is on an individual basis and on prior relevant work experience.

A series of presentations will offer details about the program and how it could benefit participants. Faculty and advisers from the WED department at SIUC will be on hand to discuss the program and answer questions following the informational presentations. Those attending can also win prizes in special drawings.

Each of the presentations will take place at the Center for Workforce Development, 2450 Foundation Drive, Suite 100, on the campus of Lincoln Land Community College in Springfield.

The schedule for the informational presentations is:

• Wednesday, March 2: 5-6 p.m. and 7-8 p.m.

• Thursday, March 3: 8-9 a.m., noon-1 p.m., 5-6 p.m. and 7-8 p.m.

• Friday, March 4: 11 a.m.-noon, 1-2 p.m., 5-6 p.m. and 7-8 p.m.

• Saturday, March 5: 9-10 a.m., 11 a.m.-noon.

Information gathered during these sessions will help determine if the WED online/weekend degree completion program will be available for residents of Springfield and the surrounding area in the future. Those unable to attend the informational presentations can offer their input via an online survey at http://wed.siu.edu/.

For more information about the workforce education and development department at SIUC, look online at http://wed.siu.edu/ or, contact Marie Vicher at 618/201-4851 or by e-mail at mvicher@siu.edu.