In the United States during 2018, around eight million adults over the age of 25 were enrolled in college, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. The number is projected to grow in the next few years.
The University of Louisiana System has prepared for this increase of older college students with its introduction of Compete LA, an initiative designed to help adults get degrees. ULM is offering 12 programs through ULM Online as part of Compete LA.
The degrees included will help students get careers in business, education, healthcare and the public sector.
UL System president Jim Henderson said he believes Louisiana needs to educate the people working in the state and that includes adults and adults interested in returning to college.
“For Louisiana to be competitive in the economy of the future, we have to develop a more educated workforce,” Henderson said. “Compete LA is designed to cut through the red tape of returning to school and provide supports at every step of the student’s educational journey.”
For some returning college students, lack of money led to them putting their degrees on hold. Regions Bank recognizes that these adults may be struggling financially and wished to help.
To promote participation in Compete LA at ULM, Regions Bank created a scholarship for students in these circumstances. Twenty students will receive $1,000 to help pay for enrollment in one of ULM Online’s business programs.
“Regions is committed to making a strategic and positive difference in the community we serve,” said Kevin Smith, a Regions Bank representative. “Supporting Compete LA offers a direct and meaningful way to do just that. We have a proud history of partnership with ULM. As we invest $20,000 in scholarship funding this year, our hope is to connect more students and adult learners with opportunities to succeed.”
Katie Dawson, the director of ULM Online, said the 12 degree programs provided by her school will be bachelor’s degrees including general studies, health studies, elementary education, psychology, criminal justice, history, business administration, risk management, insurance management, marketing and political science.
ULM Online will also provide an associate’s degree in general studies for Compete LA.