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.

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