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Columbia College to launch more than 20 academic programs in the fall

A stack of books is to the left of the frame.
Kimberly Farmer
Columbia College will add more academic programs.

Columbia College will offer more than 20 new academic programs starting this fall in their School of Public Service, School of Arts and Sciences and Robert W. Plaster School of Business.

More than 5,500 students took online only courses at Columbia College in the 2021-22 academic year, reflecting the boom in online education in the past several years.

Dixie Williams, Columbia College’s vice president of enrollment management and marketing, said the new programs focus on the need of the community.

“These are probably a little more geared to, at this point, our non-traditionally aged students or our adult students that we serve across the country,” Williams said.

Sandra Hamar is the dean for the School of Public Service at Columbia College. She said the college has historically focused on traditional campus students.

“While we never will look away from that, we also might need to understand that we have a variety of students that are working full time in the day, they're taking classes online,” Hamar said. “And their needs need to be thought about as well.”

The pandemic “accelerated the availability of online learning in higher education starting in 2020,” according to Forbes. 52.7% of Missouri postsecondary students were enrolled in some if not all online courses in the fall of 2021, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.

Several new programs will be offered exclusively online. They include several degree levels, ranging from certificates to master’s degrees.

Columbia College will start tracking the success of these programs in the fall.

Abby Lee is a student at the University of Missouri studying journalism and women’s and gender studies. She has interned with mxdwn Music and The Missouri Review.
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