The new University College will serve adult students pursuing individualized degrees and first-year students exploring the variety of majors The University of Toledo has to offer.
The creation of University College, which was approved April 18 by the UT Board of Trustees, is a merger of the College of Adult and Lifelong Learning and YouCollege with UT Online.
“Serving students is the mission of all colleges at The University of Toledo and by organizing University College in this way, we will enhance how we can serve adult learners and students who are undecided about their areas of study,” UT President Sharon L. Gaber said.
Dr. Barbara Kopp Miller, associate provost for online education and director of the Center for Successful Aging, will serve as dean of University College, which will be in place July 1.
“University College provides access and support to students to ensure they are successful in meeting their goal of a college degree,” Kopp Miller said. “We will provide a supportive temporary home for students who are still exploring the many majors that we offer at UT, and our goal is to successfully get them into their permanent home. And adult learners balancing work, family and other obligations will find the services they need in University College.”
The about 700 students in the College of Adult and Lifelong Learning and the about 1,700 students in YouCollege will be enrolled in the new University of College.
The College of Adult and Lifelong Learning was created in 2010 as an evolution of a previous University College to focus services for adult students. Through a program called prior learning assessment, UT offers adult learners the ability to earn college credit for life experiences using portfolios, standardized testing and industry certification to determine college credit. The college’s degree programs include individualized studies, professional studies and liberal studies.
Since 2013, YouCollege has served students in the Department of Exploratory Studies who are undecided about their majors or working on requirements to get into the program of their choice.
University College’s academic units will be organized into a Department of Interdisciplinary Studies and Special Programs, and a Department of Exploratory Studies.
Dr. Dennis Lettman, who serves as dean of the College of Adult and Lifelong Learning, is retiring at the end of the academic year after 27 years of service to UT. Julie Fischer-Kinney, who serves as interim dean of YouCollege, will continue in her role as assistant provost for student success and retention leading the University’s success coaching program, which will be organized in a Center for Success Coaching.
The University offers more than 500 online courses through UT Online, which also will be part of University College. UT Online includes the departments of Learning and Academic Technology, Instructional Design and Development, Faculty Services and Help Desk, and Compliance and Assessment.
UT’s military affairs, testing and workforce development services also will be offered through the college.
“University College truly serves the entire University through the services that it provides,” Kopp Miller said.
Kopp Miller joined the Medical College of Ohio in 1991 and has held a number of faculty appointments and administrative roles at UT. With a scholarly expertise in the area of gerontology, she teaches in the Department of Public Health and Preventative Medicine.
She received her bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in psychology from Bowling Green State University.