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Chancellor's FYI, April 2007.
Black rule for design purposes only.

New degree program is huge
winner for New North region,
tech-college transfers

Springtime greetings from Green Bay’s University of Wisconsin!
    I write this only a few days after returning from a memorable fan experience in Hartford, Connecticut (photo, right), where our women’s basketball team did us all so proud in the NCAA tournament. (More on this topic, and another — which involves a potential opportunity for Cyndie and me — later in this column.)
    When I returned from Hartford, it was just in time to see history also being made on the academic side of our University. On March 21, the Faculty Senate overwhelmingly approved the groundbreaking Bachelor of Applied Studies (BAS) degree program.
    This innovative program, which we hope to have in place for the fall semester, will make a baccalaureate degree from UW-Green Bay much more accessible for the thousands of Northeastern Wisconsin residents with technical college degrees.
    BAS students will be able to transfer associate degrees from technical colleges into UW-Green Bay as blocks of 60 credits. They then will complete 60 additional credits that satisfy UW-Green Bay general education requirements. This type of degree often is referred to as an “inverted” degree because it emphasizes the technical major in the first two years and the broader liberal education in the second two.
    We still need the approval of the UW System Board of Regents, but I am confident this program is just the type of initiative the Regents envision for increasing the number of Wisconsin citizens with bachelor’s degrees and for growing the state’s economy. When the Regents visited UW-Green Bay a year ago, a number of them participated in a news conference to announce that UW-Green Bay and UW-Oshkosh would receive state funds to help develop BAS degrees.

Black rule for design purposes only.

  Photo: Bruce Shepard getting his face painted.

I often have been accused of wearing my heart on my sleeve for the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, but until my recent trip to Hartford I had not yet worn a Phoenix emblem on my face. Thanks to pep band member Jaimie Henschel, I joined the crowd with just the right look for an NCAA tournament game. (Photo by University Communication intern Matthew Becker.)

    It’s hard to argue with the need for this new program. Our region has more than 150,000 residents with some postsecondary education, and the region’s four technical colleges have produced more than 10,000 associate degree graduates in the last five years alone. However, Northeastern Wisconsin lags behind the state and nation in the percentage of four-year college graduates. Many of you are familiar with the alarming fact that if Northeastern Wisconsin were a state, it would rank 49th in the number of citizens with bachelor’s degrees.
   The greatest demand for the new degree program likely will come from working adults who have been in the workforce for a number of years. Many of these individuals have looked to us in the past hoping to continue their education. Discouraged by our inability to give them credit for previous coursework, many have instead turned to the region’s private colleges to complete their degrees.

Black rule for design purposes only.

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