Last Updated on April 1, 2015 by cassnetwork
With a new coordinator at work, Ivy Tech Community College Kokomo Region is accepting applications for the first group of students to enroll in its new Associate Accelerated Program (ASAP). ASAP provides select Ivy Tech students with the opportunity to earn an associate degree, traditionally a two-year program, in just 11 months.
Beth Chaney, an Ivy Tech alumna who has worked in various positions at Ivy Tech since 2009, has been named coordinator of the program. She is busy right now meeting with high school students and recruiting members for the Kokomo ASAP class of 2016.
“The ASAP program has been extremely successful in the nine Ivy Tech locations around Indiana where it has been implemented and we are excited to be bringing the ASAP program to the Kokomo area,” Chaney said. “It’s a tremendous opportunity for traditional-age, qualified, and motivated students to save a great deal of time and money and get a jump-start on their careers or further education.”
The Kokomo Region’s 2015-16 program will launch June 8 with a maximum of 24 students participating in the 11-month program. Priority deadline for enrollment is April 10, but students will be considered on an individual basis after that date if openings remain in the class.
“In ASAP, students are encouraged to think of school as a full-time job. They are given mentoring, guidance, and support during the program,” Chaney said. “Students will stay with the same group of peers, known as a cohort, throughout the year, allowing them to share successes and overcome challenges together – just as they would with their co-workers in future careers.
“Students leave having not only earned a degree, but with skills that are critical to their future success, like time management and teamwork,” she continued. “Graduates can take their associate degree right into the workforce or transfer their credits to a four-year college. With ASAP, that traditional four-year degree can be completed in three years.”
ASAP is open to students not older than 21 years of age, who have a family member or guardian who agrees to provide room and board for one year, and who have earned a minimum 2.5 grade point average in high school with a good attendance record. The program requires a full-time commitment with full days of class work Mondays through Thursdays and a day for special enrichment activities on Fridays.
Applications for the ASAP program are reviewed on a first-come, first-served basis. The process begins by filling out an Interest Form at ivytech.edu/ASAP . Students with questions also can contact Chaney directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or 765-459-0651, ext. 397.
Chaney noted tuition for the ASAP associate degree totals $7,569, compared with an average of $28,000 in tuition for a two-year degree from other Indiana colleges. And, she said, by living at home, the student and family save the cost of two years of room and board at a residential school. Fellowships of $2,500 are available to qualified students and additional support is available to students in the 21st Century Scholar program.
Data from Ivy Tech campuses already offering ASAP indicate that nearly 70 percent of the students complete the program in one year, as much as five times higher than the average on-time completion rates of students in traditional programs. Nearly 70 percent of ASAP graduates so far have transferred to a four-year college to continue their education and 100 percent of ASAP graduates have been accepted into one or more four-year transfer institutions.
Just over 30 herself, the new Kokomo Region ASAP coordinator brings youth, enthusiasm – and experience – to the role.
Chaney’s post-high school educational journey began at Ivy Tech, where she earned a technical certificate in dental assisting in 2005 and entered that field. With patient loads dwindling in 2009 as the recession deepened, she returned to Ivy Tech to complete the associate degree she had started in 2001. She completed her Associate of Arts degree in General Studies in May 2011 and transferred her credits to Indiana University Kokomo where she completed her bachelor’s degree in the fall of 2012.
Starting as a switchboard operator when she returned to Ivy Tech in 2009, she has served the College in a variety of capacities since then, including Corporate College and Event Center support staff member, assistant to the dean of Nursing and associate director of Financial Aid before taking on the ASAP role.
“I am excited to be working with these young students with the opportunity to give them the mentoring and positive encouragement needed to reach their goals,” Chaney said. “This accelerated program may lead many students to a future they didn’t think possible. The money saved by getting an associate degree in just 11 months may open the door to continued education that had been an unattainable dream.”
SOURCE: News release from Ivy Tech Community College Kokomo Region