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New program provides added courses, helps working students, and those with families

Gateway Technical College students will soon be able to earn all of their General Studies credits during the weekend, providing a flexible option for those with families and jobs to obtain their degree and more quickly enter their career.

Gateway, beginning with the Spring 2013 semester, will increase the number of course sections students can enroll in from 4 p.m. Fridays through the end of the working day on Saturdays. During these times, students would have the opportunity to earn courses needed for the 21-credit General Studies credits required for an associate degree.

In the current 4 p.m. Friday to Saturday time frame, Gateway offers 11 General Studies courses and a total of 17 course sections for Fall 2012, which will increase to 15 courses and a total of 28 sections for Spring 2013.

College administrators created the new weekend format as a means to continue the college’s mission of providing flexible scheduling, giving students even more opportunities to earn their degree or diploma. Many of Gateway’s students work full-time jobs or have families to consider as they schedule their courses. Among other scenarios, this would allow the student to work fulltime, daytime hours during the week and still be able to take their General Studies courses Friday evening and Saturday.

In addition to meeting students where they are at, the weekend college format also provides students with the opportunity to earn 26 of the 30 credits needed in a 1-plus-3 General Studies transfer agreement with UW-Parkside. The courses can be applied toward a technical diploma and associate degree at Gateway or toward the general studies requirement at UW-Parkside.

Youth Options or many qualifying high school students can also begin their college career early, because the weekend college does not conflict with high school academic schedules. The weekend college also represents a more affordable option for many to earn their UW-Parkside general studies credits.

Life is Big. Be Prepared.