By Steven Krolak
(NEW ALBANY, Ind.)–IU Southeast, the Harrison County Economic Development Corporation (HCEDC) and the Harrison County Community Foundation (HCCF) have finalized an agreement to provide IU Southeast credited courses at the Harrison County Lifelong Learning Center in Corydon, Ind.
The courses will allow many students of Harrison County—including nearly 700 Harrison County residents currently enrolled at IU Southeast—to further their coursework toward IU Southeast academic degrees without leaving their home county.
Two courses, Speech 121 (public speaking) and Psychology 102, will begin during the week of Aug. 22. Each class meets once weekly, in the evening. Both will be taught by IU Southeast faculty. Students will receive full credit.
To support students interested in the courses, the HCEDC is offering $350 per course for students currently employed full-time or part-time in Harrison county, including those who work in the county but do not reside there.
“Increasing educational attainment levels leads to more productive employees for our businesses and higher paying jobs,” said Tom Fields, HCEDC director of communications and business expansion. “It also makes Harrison County more attractive for companies seeking to locate in an area with a skilled workforce.”
For its part, the HCCF is offering $200 per course to high school graduates aged 18 and over who complete a course offered at the Harrison County Lifelong Learning Center, and an additional $200 if they complete the course with a GPA of 2.8 or higher. To be eligible, students must also have resided in Harrison County for at least two years. Students 25 and over must register with Education Matters of Southern Indiana, a regional initiative to boost educational attainment among adults with some post-secondary education but no degree.
“These classes at Lifelong Learning are an extension of the Foundation and Education Matters Southern Indiana effort to increase the educational attainment in the region,” said Steve Gilliland, President and CEO of the HCCF. “We hope by reducing travel time and costs, more of our residents will be encouraged to further their education.”
The Foundation already awards a $20,000 scholarship at each of the four Harrison County high schools to a student planning to attend IU Southeast.
In both cases, support is provided in the form of a rebate, disbursed upon successful completion of the course. Students will enroll at IU Southeast and provide registration documentation to the supporting organizations to be considered for the reimbursement.
Both the HCEDC and HCCF are members of the Harrison County College Success Coalition, a network of local organizations interested in increasing college access and success for young people in Harrison County, and a chapter of the statewide umbrella group.
The courses are viewed as a first step in providing additional IU Southeast programming at the remote location in Harrison County.
“IU Southeast is ‘our university’ in Harrison County,” said Darrell Voelker, HCEDC executive director. “Our residents have been attending classes on campus for many years and we have been partners with the university on many projects in the past. Now, this great partnership grows stronger with classes offered locally that make it more convenient for Harrison County people to have the opportunity to further their education.”
The new offerings are part of a growing slate of partnerships in the region that enable students to attend selected classes at the Mid-America Science Park in Scottsburg, Ind. and at Ivy Tech Community College in Madison. Ind.
“It has been a pleasure to work with the Harrison County Foundation and the Harrison County Economic Development Corporation to help provide educational opportunities to the citizens of this region,” said IU Southeast Chancellor Dr. Ray Wallace. “They get it: Residents who attain higher educational preparation tend to stay in their locality and therefore make it an even more resilient one.”
An Open House will be held on Tues., July 19 from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the Harrison County Lifelong Learning Center, 101 Hwy 62 W., Suite 104, in Corydon. To learn more about the event and IU Southeast courses offered in Harrison County, or to register, please contact Nicole McKendrick in the IU Southeast Office of Admissions at 812-941-2188 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo of the first Indiana State Capitol building in Corydon, Ind., a Harrison County landmark, courtesy of O’Bannon Publishing.