UMUC was well represented at the 100th Annual Conference of the University Professional and Continuing Education Association (UPCEA ) conference held March 30 to April 1, 2015 in Washington, DC. The theme for the conference was Access, Innovation and Engagement: A Century of Reinventing Higher Education.
Presenters at the conference included UMUC Vice Provosts Kara van Dam and Aric Krause on Transforming Student Learning: Program Design, Open Resources and a New Role for Faculty and Sarah Dufendach, Vice President for Federal Government Relations, who participated on a panel Policy 101: An Introduction to Institutional Advocacy.
Provost Marie Cini, who was also program co-chair for the conference, was recognized for Excellence in Advancing Student Success, and UMUC graduate student Gita Seleh was the recipient of its Outstanding Continuing Education Student Award. Read more.
Along with my colleague Pershail Young, Associate Vice President for Degree Audit, we shared our experiences managing the One Step Away grant-funded project offered through the Maryland Higher Education Commission.
Our presentation Pathway to Degree Completion: A Systematic to Assisting Near Degree Completers described our experiences with the One Step Away initiative to support a statewide goal that 55% of adult Marylanders will hold an associate or bachelor’s degree by 2025. The grant provides Maryland institutions with seed monies to identify, contact, re-enroll, and graduate near-completers — students who have earned 75% or more credits toward a degree, or may have enough credits for a degree, but have stopped-out or dropped-out for 12 months or longer without obtaining a degree.
Pershail and I described the process we went through to identify and reach out to this population of UMUC students during the 2014-2015 grant period and shared some early results. So far 30 grants have been awarded, and of the over 200 students who enrolled after being contacted 45% either graduated in December 2014 or are expected to May 2015. Congratulations to all our graduates!