There are 24 hours left for public commenting on all Concept Proposals for the reTHINK PSU: Flexible Degrees RFP. Proposals submitted by your colleagues include a Bachelors in Urban and Public Affairs, a Minor in Sustainability, a Degree in Sociology and a Certificate in Collaborative Governance.
You can view and comment on all Concept Proposals by visiting http://flexibledegrees.pdx.edu/. The faculty submitting proposals, the team at the Office of Academic Innovation and the Academic Leadership Team will find feedback your feedback valuable as the proposals are further developed and strengthened.
What is a Flexible degree?
Flexible degrees can be fully online or hybrid degrees (with 75% or more online) that make effective use of technology to offer high quality and affordable education for students who have attended some college without receiving college credentials, or graduate students who seek new opportunities.
Why Flexible Degrees?
A recent analysis by the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, Jobs and Education Requirements through 2020 estimates Oregon will need to fill about 694,000 vacancies resulting from job creation, worker retirements and other factors. Of these job vacancies, 480,000 will require postsecondary education and nearly half of these vacancies will require bachelors and advanced degrees. Only 214,000 are expected to be filled by high school graduates or dropouts.
One excellent place to begin looking for these additional graduates is in the ranks of Oregon residents who have completed some college without earning a degree. In 2011, nearly 567,000 Oregon residents fit into this category—representing more than 27.12% of the state’s adult population. If only a small portion of this group could be supported in attaining a bachelor or advanced degree, it would go a long way to helping Oregon to meet workforce needs and reach its 40-40-20 goals.
Degree attainment gaps among racial and ethnic group in Oregon are significant (41.54% of whites vs. 15.8% Hispanic, 25-64 age group). Thus, an important aspect of PSU’s student success strategy is ensuring that students of color, low-income, first generation and working adults have access to and are successful in PSU’s Flexible Degree programs.
Are Flexible Degrees part of reTHINK PSU?
Yes. reTHINK PSU is a campus-wide effort to deliver an education that serves more students with better outcomes, while containing costs through curricular innovation, community engagement and effective use of technology. Flexible degrees are a way for PSU to meet the needs for some students. reTHINK PSU projects follow a well-designed reTHINK roadmap for developing solutions for challenges facing PSU.
We look forward to your comments.