Details for NORTH IOWA AREA COMMUNITY COLLEGE - Ad from 2020-06-28
paid adVertiseMent GraduatinG seniors rethink colleGe plans Sponsored by North Iowa Community College The COVID-19 pandemic has turned the lives of this year’s high school graduates upside down. They’ve not only missed out on milestones such as prom and traditional graduation ceremonies, but are also being forced to rethink their college plans. according to Widener. These hybrid classes will include in-person instruction, online learning, and independent study. Students who don’t feel comfortable yet with face-to-face interaction have a wide range of online-only courses to choose from when registering for fall classes, according to Widener. An April study by Niche, a firm specializing in college research, found that: • 57% of high school seniors are reconsidering their college choice. • 38% are considering attending a college closer to home. • 89% are more concerned about being able to afford college than before the pandemic. “We are having a lot of students re-evaluating what they will do in the fall,” said Anne Boyer, an enrollment advisor in the admissions office at North Iowa Area Community College. “I think everyone is kind of waiting to see how schools are going to handle the health crisis, student life and opportunities for learning.” controlling college expenses Some young people who were planning to attend a four-year college or university are re-considering their options, according to Boyer. In-person classroom capacities will be limited to 50 percent while maintaining 6-foot social distancing guidelines at all times. However, NIACC is prepared to move hybrid classes to an onlineonly format if needed, according to Widener. “NIACC is working closely with Public Health and has developed processes to respond to local health emergencies within 12 hours,” she said. student life and activities Boyer said NIACC officials are “working toward online student engagement that allows the students to have that real college experience even though it is different.” This spring during the pandemic, students played virtual trivia games over Zoom, she noted. Bridgett Golman, vice president of student development at NIACC, said college officials are developing two separate plans for clubs and activities for the fall semester. They are looking at NIACC as a place to complete their first two years of college “at a fraction of the cost” of what they would pay at a four-year school, she said. One plan would limit engagement strictly to the virtual world, while the other would give students a choice between face-to-face interaction while following social distancing guidelines and onlineonly options. Once they receive their associate degree from NIACC, they can go “virtually anywhere” to complete the credits they need for a bachelor’s degree, according to Boyer. NIACC officials will evaluate the state of affairs with COVID-19 in August before deciding between the two plans, according to Golman. transferring credits Graduating faster NIACC has agreements that guarantee transfer and admissions to colleges like Iowa, Iowa State, the University of Northern Iowa, as well as others throughout the state and across the country, according to Widener. NIACC also has many affordable career programs that allow students to go directly into the workforce in two years or less, Boyer said. The college has 32 programs that are part of Future Ready Iowa that helps students with tuition costs for courses that prepare them for high-demand careers such as health care. Around 320 NIACC students are taking advantage of this program, according to Boyer. online classes and on-campus options NIACC was one of the first colleges in Iowa to offer virtual/ online classes, according to Charlene Widener, vice president of academic affairs and student learning. With more than 25 years of experience in offering virtual courses and programs, the college was well prepared to move classes online when the pandemic hit during the spring term “and keep students on track without delaying their educational progress,” she said. Traditional face-to-face courses will follow a hybrid model this fall to mitigate health risks, “Our students can choose from dozens of programs in their area of interest, and can graduate with an associate’s degree that features the same classes and credits they would take in their first two years at another school,” she said. accepting applications Admission is still open for the fall semester and there is no cost to apply. Call the Admissions office at 641-422-4245 to speak with an advisor or apply online at www.niacc.edu/apply. Most programs still have availability but popular programs do tend to fill up so the sooner you apply, the better.