Pilot program waives out-of-state tuition for Kenai River Campus students

Around Campus

Posted: Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Kenai Peninsula College’s Kenai River Campus will launch a one-year pilot program that will allow non-residents to attend college while paying resident tuition rates. The program will be in effect for the 2007 summer and fall semesters and the 2008 spring semester.

This program will benefit people who have just moved to the area, international visitors and foreign exchange students. The college and the surrounding communities will benefit from the increased diversity that students from other parts of the country and the world bring on-campus. Non-resident tuition rates have, in the past, made educational opportunities out of reach for many exchange students who have come to the area through programs like the Rotary Foreign Exchange. Students who decide to stay in the area can now continue with their education without the additional burden of non-resident tuition.

According to Diane Taylor, Learning Center coordinator and KPC’s representative on UAA’s Diversity Action Council, this program will lend itself to fostering a sense of inclusiveness on campus and in the community.

“Now all foreign students, regardless of wealth, will have access to the educational opportunities here,” said Taylor. “Many times these students decide to attend the college full-time.”

Promotions announced

KPC director Gary Turner recently gave the campus notice that Celia Anderson, Dr. Christine Gehrett and Dr. Shelley Theno have been promoted to associate professor status and been granted the distinction of tenure.

In the field of education, tenure generally refers to having a formal, secure appointment until retirement, after working on a temporary or provisional basis.

Anderson directs the art program at KRC, Gehrett heads up the elementary education department and Theno leads the psychology program.

“These are significant milestones and we should be very proud of them and their accomplishments,” Turner said.

Arts education class added

A new, one-credit community education course, Presenting Art Lessons in K-12, has been developed and will be launched this coming fall semester. The class is designed to be of value to teachers who want to integrate art education into their classrooms, or parent classroom-volunteers or home-school parents interested in helping bring arts to their child’s education and to students interesting in pursing art education as a career.

The course was written by Celia Anderson, KPC’s art program director. Anderson said, “The demise of the summer Arts Institute, several years ago, left a vacuum in arts education accessible to the community. Since then, I have been looking for a way to train students and teachers to deliver authentic art to kids. It has been proven that arts-rich environments produce children that are more literate, better creative and critical thinkers who get better test scores.”

The new course introduces the basic “discipline-based arts education” framework for presenting art lessons and shows participants how to work with art materials, prepare them for the classroom, lesson planning, and how to integrate art into core curriculum. The course will culminate with a service learning component where each student presents an art lesson in a school classroom. Anderson says that the course is perfect for classroom teachers interested in re-certification credits.

The new course is still in the UAA curriculum finalization stage and will not be listed on the KPC Web site “short version” fall 2007 schedule until a course number has been assigned. Anderson says, “Tell everyone to watch for it on the Web and register early before it fills up. The course will be taught by Kenai Peninsula Borough School District Art Specialist, Debbie Harris and will be offered over a 5-week period.”

Student values distance delivered class experience

Harley Semaken has just finished up his first year at KRC, coming from the larger University of Alaska Fairbanks campus. His general impressions of KRC have been favorable, especially the “small classes and friendly atmosphere.”

Semaken took his first Elluminate Live, or ELive, course this semester over the internet, in “real time,” meeting with his classmates and instructor in cyberspace. The class, Reporting and Writing News, was taught by Janice High, KRC English and journalism professor.

Semaken said this about his experience, “Throughout the semester the JPC 201 class met through the Elluminate Live software via the Internet. It was a great course that required a lot of discipline to learn the essence of writing news. I learned a lot about writing articles for publication as well as learning what it was like going through the editing process. Toward the end of the semester, I took what I had learned and sought out an interview with a well-respected elder and Chief of the Apache Indian Jicarilla Tribe, here on the peninsula as a visiting pastor at Alaska Christian College. I took photographs, took notes on the sermon he delivered and then conducted an interview. I utilized the tools learned in the classroom and took them on assignment! It was a great success and learning experience.”

This column is provided by Suzie Kendrick, community relations coordinator at Kenai Peninsula College.

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