Owens offers classes at The Source, public librariesWritten by Duane Ramsey | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Owens Community College is expanding access to higher education by offering on-site academic classes at The Source Downtown and at several Toledo-Lucas County Public Library branches. Fall semester classes officially begin Sept. 4 at The Source and started Aug. 20 at the library locations.
Owens opened a new Learning Center at The Source, Lucas County’s one-stop employment center located at Monroe and 14th streets. The center includes five classrooms, two computer labs and offices for advising, registration and support services.
“Owens is committed to providing students with access to enriched learning opportunities,” said Christa Adams, president of Owens Community College.
“The Source mirrors Owens’ educational mission of serving the surrounding communities through quality academic programs and services. This new initiative is an investment in meeting the education and training needs of Northwest Ohio’s citizens and preparing them for career opportunities in today’s competitive work force.”
The Source will provide opportunities for citizens to connect education and training to employment. Students can take advantage of the employment services while attending classes, said Leigh Guerra, a quality assurance manager at The Source.
“Lucas County is excited to partner with Owens Community College to bring more educational opportunities to downtown Toledo at The Source,” said Lucas County Commissioner Tina Skeldon Wozniak.
Commissioners Pete Gerken and Ben Konop also support the academic classes being offered at The Source to bring more people Downtown and to prepare job seekers with additional educational opportunities to prepare them for employment. .
More than 250 students were registered for classes offered by Owens at The Source, some of which are filled for the fall semester. Those classes include college courses in astronomy, health science, mathematics, public speaking and English classes in composition, college reading and writing.
Additional courses that are directly related to 130 career paths include business professionalism, business law and contemporary business, economics, office administration, information technology, being a supervisor and skilled trades.
“We have a very diverse group of students,” said Lita Graham, an enrollment service representative for Owens at The Source. “Most adult learners are nontraditional students that have included some homeless people and prison releases.”
One student, Kimberly Murphy of Toledo, saw the signs about Owens programs at The Source on TARTA buses and called to inquire about the classes offered there. Murphy received her GED in 2006 and is considering a career in general hygiene.
The Owens location at The Source was an advantage for Murphy who depends on public transportation. Murphy met with Graham at The Source and registered as a full-time student for the fall semester. Graham also helped her to apply for financial aid.
“The colleges around here do a great job of outreach in the community,” Graham said.
Also beginning this fall, Owens is offering its first-ever on-site academic courses at several branches of the Toledo-Lucas County Public Library. Owens students will be able to pursue any of the more than 160 e-learning courses at branch libraries in academic areas such as accounting, art, business, English, psychology and speech among others.
The e-learning courses include astronomy, composition, introduction to literature, world civilization, modern college mathematics, introduction to college algebra and trigonometry, general and life span psychology, as well as climate and weather.
The Owens academic courses are available to residents at library branches in Oregon, Holland, Maumee, Sylvania, Waterville, and the Heatherdowns, Mott, Reynolds Corners, Sanger and South branches in Toledo. The fall semester classes began Aug. 20.
“This partnership allows students to take college classes in their own neighborhoods,” said Clyde Scoles, director of the Toledo-Lucas County Public Library. “The libraries will benefit from increased attendance and Owens serving its mission by extending its outreach to more students. It’s a win-win situation.”
Within the past year, Owens established a partnership with Toledo Public Schools and offered its first-ever college courses at the new Rogers High School in Toledo.
Owens also announced the creation of three new fine and performing arts certificate programs that begin this fall semester. The certificate programs in music business technology, commercial photography and interior design are part of the college’s academic curriculum.