NCI recruiting efforts to focus on Patrick; new degree programs outlined

 

State Sen. Bill Stanley

With plans to focus recruiting efforts in Patrick County, the New College Institute in Martinsville is working to live up to its mantra: “Stay close. Go far,” according to State Sen. Bill Stanley.

“We are going to actively recruit in Patrick County to make sure we’re maximizing and attracting potential students,” said Stanley, R-Moneta.

NCI offers access to bachelor’s degree completion programs, master’s degrees, teacher endorsement programs, teacher recertification courses and more through partnerships with colleges and universities.

Elected chairman of the New College board in December, Stanley said Patrick County is considered one of NCI’s service areas, along with other areas in the region. He added NCI representatives will be more visible in Patrick, participating in career fairs held at the Patrick County High School as well as visiting with counselors, principals and teachers “to make sure NCI’s programs are put in front of those students.”

Additionally, Stanley said NCI will pursue students enrolled in or who have completed associate degree programs in community colleges, in an effort to both attract them to NCI as well as encourage continuing education.

One of the features most attractive is NCI’s ability to basically tailor classes to student needs, Stanley said, and noted adults will find that particularly appealing because class schedules can be built around work, family and other commitments, “even if they have a full schedule,” he said.

NCI also is working with the Online Virginia Network, which partners with traditional universities to help Virginians earn degrees, Stanley said.

Several new programs recently were announced, Stanley said of programs that focus on the fields of engineering and advanced manufacturing; cyber security and technology.

Many of the new offerings are due to an expanded partnership with James Madison University (JMU).

Stanley hailed the agreement “historic … What we’ve been working on has come to fruition.”

Under the new partnership, students can complete the first two years of their bachelor’s degree at a community college, like Patrick Henry Community College, and then finish the third and fourth years of the program through JMU courses offered locally at NCI.

NCI’s website states specific degree programs include a Bachelor in Integrated Science and Technology, and a Bachelor of Individualized Study degree with a concentration in advanced manufacturing.

In addition, the partnership with JMU also includes non-credit trainings in cyber security, advanced manufacturing, and engineering; and a boot camp for educators. It covers the basics of cyber defense; graduate certificates in cyber intelligence, and professional development in a variety of healthcare fields, according to Stanley and the website.

Other JMU Educational Leadership certificate programs are already being offered at NCI, according to the website.

NCI also partners with Longwood University to offer educational and development opportunities for those who want to go into social work or the education field, Stanley said of the various degree/certificate programs in pre-k through middle school and school librarianship.

A Bachelor of Science in Nursing also is available through NCI’s partnership with University of Virginia. The STAR Telehealth program provides instruction and certification for using advanced technologies for virtual healthcare.

In addition to college-level degree and certification programs, NCI offers experiential learning opportunities, summer camps, non-credit lecture series, financial aid resource events, and other community programs to promote access to education throughout the region.

To enroll in classes, or for more information, call (276) 403-5610.

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