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UWRF, CVTC Obtain Federal Grant To Teach Via Internet

OCT. 23, 2006--A $2.5 million grant has been awarded to UW-River Falls and Chippewa Valley Technical College to expand online learning.

"Stronger Together: An Educational Partnership for the Changing Economy," was one of only five joint grants awarded by the Title III program of the U.S. Department of Education in the current year. Title III awards funds for developing academic programs to meet regional workforce needs.

Chancellor Don Betz hailed the award, the third such provided to the UWRF in the past 15 years. "This highly competitive award will provide much needed resources for developing alternative delivery methods for courses and programs. The five-year award will support faculty and staff training, support systems for students and program development," Betz said. "Importantly, this is a true collaborative effort with CVTC, and the synergy that continues to develop between our two institutions will serve the increasing educational interests of the people of west-central Wisconsin."

CVTC President Bill Ihlenfeldt noted that the grant strengthens the region's economic vitality through the expansion of online courses. "Technical and university education offer Wisconsin's St. Croix Valley the means to gain competitiveness in a highly competitive era," said Ihlenfeldt. "The concentration of higher education in western Wisconsin is a great advantage to our local economies. This grant will help build a larger and more educated workforce and that is clearly needed."

The program will be offered in the two campuses' shared service areas of Polk, Pierce, St. Croix, Dunn, Pepin, Chippewa and Eau Claire counties in Wisconsin, and Washington County in Minnesota. CVTC and UWRF combined currently educate more than 15,000 traditional and adult learners.

Through 2011 CVTC and UWRF will:

·Train faculty in delivering courses via web-based education, instructional television and compact learning.
·Develop and offer courses using the same methods.
·Achieve student retention for alternative delivery programs equal to the retention on campus, by providing online and evening access to services, advising and counseling.
·Together explore new bachelor's degree programs providing ease of credit transfer.

Katrina Larsen, UWRF outreach director and Title III project director, said the collaborative effort responds to rapid growth in western Wisconsin. "To thrive, UWRF and CVTC must increase programs aimed at working adults through nontraditional means of delivery: online instruction, combinations of online and face-to-face, interactive TV, webcasts and flexible scheduling," she said. "'Stronger Together' will ... complement each institution's strengths."


Last updated: Thursday, 22-Apr-2010 16:07:41 Central Daylight Time


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