Now Is the Perfect Time For Education and Career Advancement
For many, the arrival of summer means sun, sand, surf and longer days — yet it can also mean education, career advancement and increased opportunities.
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With a number of New Hampshire’s colleges and universities offering innovative, flexible options, the coming months can provide resourceful residents with a chance to start down the path of personal improvement.
Southern New Hampshire University: New College of Engineering, Technology and Aeronautics Provides New Opportunities
Starting this fall, Southern New Hampshire University students will have the opportunity to pursue a range of new programs, including aeronautical engineering, aviation management, electrical and computer engineering, air traffic management and mechanical engineering, through the school’s new College of Engineering, Technology, and Aeronautics (CETA).
SNHU President Paul LeBlanc says the new programs will help prepare students for in-demand engineering careers and will help increase access to STEM programs who might not believe an engineering degree is within reach.
Engineering jobs continue to be in high demand in both New Hampshire and across the United States. Currently, there are more than 1,180 open engineering positions in New Hampshire. LeBlanc said only 502 New Hampshire students graduated with a bachelor’s degree in engineering in 2014-2015.
“It is our hope that the new programs will help better serve these underrepresented populations in the engineering field and help our local economy by producing well-prepared graduates for the in-demand jobs of our time,” he said.
Construction for a new state-of-the-art building is currently being planned. The new facility is expected to open by 2019. While the building is under construction, the school will convert warehouse space on campus into fully equipped labs and classrooms. James Smith, former United States ambassador to Saudi Arabia and a graduate of the United States Air Force Academy will lead the new College. Smith will guide the transition of Daniel Webster College’s programs to SNHU, lead the college in building its academic programs, and continue to develop strategy for future STEM programs. Gaynelle Swann will also join SNHU this May as the Associate Dean of Academics for CETA.
The University of New Hampshire at Manchester: The Hub of Biotech Growth
A new $80 million government grant awarded this past year is spurring major advances for the region, the university and its students – specifically those studying biotechnology.
The Department of Defense awarded the grant to the Advanced Regenerative Manufacturing Institute (ARMI) Inc., led by Dean Kamen’s DEKA Research & Development Corp., Dartmouth-Hitchcock and the University of New Hampshire. ARMI will focus on improving the availability, reproducibility, accessibility and standardization of manufacturing materials, technologies and processes to create tissue and organ products.
Here’s why the university is already benefitting from the grant: UNH has spent several years building its biotechnology program, said Mike Decelle, dean of UNH Manchester. Some 25 percent of students enrolled at the Manchester campus are studying biology or biotechnology, he said. And since the announcement of the ARMI program, UNH has seen a 300 percent increase in applications to the biotech program.
Additionally, the University is working on a high-tech curriculum to support and feed graduates into ARMI, which will be located at 400 Commercial St., in the same Millyard as UNH Manchester.
The result: students can potentially come to UNH Manchester as an undergraduate and then intern at the institute or work at the companies that start to come to Manchester because they want to be associated with the institute.
Also, ARMI has named Decelle as its Chief Workforce Officer (CWO).
“Dean Decelle’s intellect, enthusiasm and commitment have been instrumental to shaping our education and workforce efforts thus far, and we feel confident that formalizing his role will bolster our momentum in this area,” Kamen said.
New Hampshire Community Colleges: The Place to Start for Students Seeking an Affordable Pathway
Community colleges offer an affordable education for those entering the workforce directly as well as for students transferring to a four-year institution. In recent years, the state’s community colleges have made transferring even easier through the Dual Admission partnership with the University System of New Hampshire.
Through Dual NH, students can enroll at one of seven schools in the Community College System of New Hampshire and at the same time be admitted into the state’s university system. The plan creates an affordable pathway for students and families.
First, students complete an associate degree at the community college, with its convenient locations and lower tuition. They can then transition to one of the University System of New Hampshire’s institutions to complete a bachelor’s degree. Along the way, students will receive special academic advising to help plan courses to meet program requirements and ensure they remain on track for a smooth transition.
In addition to Dual NH, transfer pathways exist from the community colleges for many specific majors and can meet a variety of student needs.