Learning Online – a blessing for busy adults

Offering degrees on line via WPC ADPIn March 2014, the WPC Adult Degree Program began offering an online-learning option for our busy adult students. If you have access to the internet, you could earn a college degree from Warner Pacific College. Currently, we offer five degree options including an associates, three bachelors, and one masters.

While online-learning can be a blessing for busy adults who want to pursue or finish their degree, going back to school in any form can be daunting.

Recently, Jess Scherman, a higher education blogger who writes on behalf of The College of St. Scholastica, asked questions of education experts concerning online learning. She interviewed Dr. Lori Jass, Associate Vice President for the Adult Degree Program at Warner Pacific, as part of that experts panel. Below is an excerpt of Jess’s blog and a link to the entire article “Everything adult learners need to know to navigate the online classroom.”

Bachelor’s degrees are becoming the new norm in today’s job market, so you’re definitely not alone in considering going back to school to earn one. Not to mention, the number of working adults out there who are looking to change careers is increasing, and a college degree is a great way to put yourself on a new path.

But let’s put all of that aside for a moment. The reality is that going back to school—especially to pursue an online degree—after a lengthy absence from the classroom can be daunting, intimidating, and overwhelming.

The online classroom environment is simply one of several formats colleges and universities are offering to make higher education more accessible to students from all backgrounds. Institutions offer traditional on-campus programs, hybrid programs that mix on-campus and online classes, fully online programs, and even accelerated degree paths that offer night and weekend courses. The important part is determining what format is best for you.  

“Learning online is a great option for people who do not have a predictable schedule, who travel a lot or who simply love to learn!” says Lori K. Jass, associate vice president at Warner Pacific College. “Being successful in an online environment requires some ability to be a self-starter and the ability to communicate in writing.”

Read Jess’s entire blog…

Flourish at ADP: Rebecca’s Story

Becky Black, Warner Pacific Adult Degree Program alumniWhen I decided to go back to school I had a family and a full time job, so I needed a specialized program that would fit my lifestyle; that’s when I discovered the Warner Pacific Adult Degree Program (ADP). I believe that all of us should be lifelong learners, and since I was working in the education field, I felt I needed to exemplify that by earning my degree.

I am the Founder and Executive Director of Oregon Outreach, Inc., a non-profit organization that provides education programs to youth who have not been successful in traditional school settings. Oregon Outreach provides individualized instruction, small class sizes, comprehensive supportive services, and high academic standards. Our support services are offered to help students stabilize their lives so that education can become a reality. In 1994 our first student graduated. Since that time over 360 students have earned their high school diploma through our programs.

I love seeing our students graduate from an accredited high school! I also get so excited to work with young people who are often the first in their family to earn a high school diploma. It can be difficult to find staff who understand the challenges that our students face. To be effective in alternative education, you must be committed to working with the population we serve. As an ADP student, I received a lot of encouragement for the work that I was already doing with Oregon Outreach, Inc. I also learned that in a true educational institution, differences of opinions are respected, a lesson I still value today.

ADP-anniv-image-logoRebecca Black
Founder and Executive Director, Oregon Outreach, Inc.
Bachelor of Business Administration ‘97

Flourish at ADP: Jim’s Story

Jim Band Photo ADP Alum 2014I don’t care how good you are at anything, if you’re not good with people, you won’t be successful. Earning my degree in Human Development through the Warner Pacific Adult Degree Program (ADP) gave me a better understanding of what makes people tick and an understanding that we all come from different places with different fears, needs, and motivations. As the Chief of Police in Oregon City, these skills are vital to my work each and every day.

I found out about ADP through a co-worker who had attended Warner Pacific and had a great experience. Practically speaking, graduating from college opened the door for me to apply for a promotion to a position that required a degree. This has equated to more responsibility and an increased income. In terms of how it applies to my job, I have been better prepared to deal with all of the challenges that go with being a police chief. My degree was in human development and I think it has made a significant difference in how I read, communicate with, and handle people.

As the head of Oregon City’s police department, my main job is to steer the agency according to the vision and ideals of our community. There are a lot of things that make this job rewarding. I like fixing things that people believe will never be fixed, and I also like finding new solutions; the creative process of problem-solving. The most challenging part of my work is trying to maintain a healthy balance. It’s hard to focus on doing fewer things well, rather than trying to change everything that you think needs to be fixed. Sometimes it feels like there are so many ideas and so little time.

Even though my job involves working with a wide variety of people, oddly enough it was the ADP group projects that I really disliked during my time as a student. However, it was those interactions that ended up teaching me the most. I remember working with people of every type from all walks of life. At the time, it was difficult to complete some of these projects while negotiating all of our differences. But, that is what problem-solving really is; getting a group of people to function and complete work in spite of their differences. Learning in this way forced me out of my comfort zone and taught me to look past each of our differences and encouraged me to utilize our individual strengths. I learned how to stop focusing why we thought so differently and instead, recognize it as an advantage.

ADP-anniv-image-logoJim Band
Chief of Police, Oregon City
B.S. in Human Development ‘04

Flourish at ADP: Sherrena’s Story

ADP-Alum-story-2014-Sherrena-Torrence-a-2012-gradEarning my degree through the Warner Pacific Adult Degree Program (ADP) really boosted my self-confidence. I had always wanted to return to school and earn my degree and after 20+ years, I accomplished that goal.

I had previously attended North Portland Bible College, and when I was thinking about going back to school I was encouraged by Earnestine Cellestine, their Vice President of Academic Affairs, to check out the Adult Degree Program at Warner Pacific. My life was already full with parenting, working full-time, and serving at my church, so I was attracted to the once a week schedule that ADP provided.

A lot of what I learned during my time at ADP helped prepare me for the career I’m in today. Working in learning teams allowed me to experience various cultures, personalities, and viewpoints, that were different from my own. I learned how to think outside of my own belief system.

One thing that stands out in my memory was a simple, yet profound moment in one of my classes with Mr. Bill (Professor Bill Dobrenen). During our cultural studies course, he held an ink pen up to the globe to demonstrate where we are and how much more there is to experience and explore in this vast world. As a visual learner, this sparked so much interest and curiosity in me! I was eager to learn about how others lived and experienced the world; I wanted to know how I, as an American, could glean information from the cultures around me.

Working at ROSE CDC, I provide support and resources for the families and individuals who live in our affordable housing. This includes conducting afterschool programs, walking groups for seniors, garden projects, and much more. I also recently started my own business as a trainer in the early childhood education field, which is allowing me to share my passion for supporting families and those who work with children to create positive environments and experiences that will help them thrive.

What I learned in that course with Mr. Bill has helped me tremendously as I’m working to support families at ROSE CDC. The families who live in our housing are very diverse, from Somalia, Haiti, Russia, Ukraine, Mexico, and China. They have varied religious backgrounds, cultural experiences, traditions, customs, and most speak English as a second language. I learn from them each day and I am more open-minded due to the education I received through ADP.

ADP-anniv-image-logoSherrena Torrence
Resident Assets Coordinator for ROSE Community Development Corp., and owner of Next Level Ministries, LLC
B.S. in Human Development ‘12

Synergis Education Announces Partnership With WPC

Synergis Education is pleased to announce it has signed a partnership agreement with Warner Pacific College to provide comprehensive operations, marketing, and academic support services to the college’s Adult Degree Program (ADP). Warner Pacific College took an innovative approach to adult higher education when it began offering unique accelerated degree programs through its ADP division in 1989.

“Synergis is on the leading edge in delivering services to colleges like Warner Pacific,” said Warner Pacific College’s President, Dr. Andrea P. Cook. “Their progressive approach to employing technology across the student’s experience, innovative marketing strategies, and commitment to the implementation of new modalities will firmly support our educational mission and facilitate the enrollment of adult learners who will flourish in our academic programs.”

Warner Pacific College currently has a total enrollment of more than 1,400 students, almost two-thirds of whom are adult learners completing undergraduate and graduate programs at campuses throughout Oregon. Warner Pacific has been accredited by The Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities since 1961.

“Warner Pacific College has a long and distinguished history of serving its community and is the institution of choice for the 21st Century Student,” said Norm Allgood, CEO of Synergis Education. “Synergis Education is privileged to be affiliated with such a well-positioned institution, and is excited to join the College in further expanding educational opportunities and enhancing the experiences of its adult and graduate students.”

About Synergis

Synergis is a premium, full-service provider of educational services designed for college and university leaders who are not satisfied with the status quo. It assists its partner institutions in gaining regional prominence, enrollment growth, and overall sustainability through continual improvement and best practices. Synergis is unique among education services providers in that it is positioned to work with the entire adult higher education market, remaining agnostic as to the delivery method (online, face-to-face, blended, etc.).

WPC Adds Sixth Campus

Warner Pacific College Adds Sixth Campus through Partnership with Westside Christian High School

Tigard CampusThe Adult Degree Program continues to grow with the addition of their sixth Portland-area campus, located at 8200 SW Pfaffle Street in Tigard. This new location, created in partnership with Westside Christian High School, is conveniently located at the intersection of Hwy 217 and Hwy 99.

The Tigard site will enable the Adult Degree Program (ADP) at Warner Pacific College to better serve adult learners across the west side, combining a uniquely flexible model for degree completion with class schedules and campus locations designed to complement the busy lives of working professionals. Through the College’s ADP, students can earn degrees with majors and minors in business, accounting, healthcare administration, human development, management, education, and organizational development. ADP classes at the Tigard location are enrolling now and will begin in the fall.

In tandem with Westside Christian High School (WCHS), this new location on “The Hill,” will become a center for innovation in Christian education throughout the Portland-metro area. This partnership will make it possible for WCHS to offer unique educational opportunities to their high school students.

Through this strategic partnership, Westside will significantly expand the Westside Jump Year Program, a concurrent credit program. Within the next four years Westside plans to offer the equivalent of one year’s worth of college course work for college credit provided by WPC.

“We see this as a huge advantage for our students and their families,” said Andy Sears, Westside Christian High School President. “This program will allow students who are looking to get a jump start on college to do so, increasing the possibility they will finish college. If they take full advantage of the program, they could complete their undergraduate studies up to a year early and save tens of thousands of dollars. For some students it might also mean they can opt to double major or pick up a minor and still get done in four years. Others might use it as a way to accelerate their undergraduate studies and begin a master’s degree sooner.”

The two Christian schools are also exploring expanded course offerings that would be open to both WCHS and Warner Pacific students.

“All of us at Warner Pacific are so excited to be able to expand our services through the west side campus,” said Dr. Andrea P. Cook, President of the College. “We are fully committed to making higher education accessible to all students, and this partnership with Westside is a significant step in living out our mission.”

To learn more about earning your degree at the Tigard location, contact an Enrollment Advisor at 503.517.1550.

Founded in 1981, Westside Christian High School aspires to be an extraordinary college prep high school in the greater Portland area with the heart and soul of Christ. Westside staff members help students discover their passions and purposes while equipping them to excel academically. Servant leadership training is integrated throughout the curriculum to provide students with the opportunity to discover ways to share their gifts in tangible ways with others. Families interested in learning more about Westside Christian High School or desiring to view architectural renderings of the new site are invited to contact Admissions Director, Brett Meyers at 503.697.4711 or visit www.wchsonline.org.