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SOU offers an accelerated degree program

(KTVL/ Kimberly Kolliner)

ASHLAND, Ore.- To stand out in a competitive workforce, Southern Oregon University has created the Innovation and Leadership degree for working professionals who weren't able to finish their Bachelor's degree.

Moneeka Settlas, the Innovation and Leadership degree program coordinator, says graduates who complete the program and receive an accelerated degree don't have to worry about meeting the application prerequisites anymore.

"The first line [in the application] was 'bachelor’s degree required' and she wrote to me 'I was so excited to be able to say yes! I have that,'" Settlas said of one of her students.

Employers like Pixel Productions Inc. owner Chris London says having that degree may be crucial.

"At the surface level, education is very important when making a hiring decision," London said.

For people like Kendra Smith, who had to stop schooling and get an associate’s degree to care for her son, this program is exactly what she needed. Smith is now an Account Executive at News10.

"Getting to finish my Bachelor's in less than two years and continue to have a full time job - it was an opportunity I couldn't pass up," Smith said.

Smith also says that she made her decision to go back to school and get her degree to better her opportunities.

"I knew that I wanted to have a great job and I wanted to lead in whatever I do and just be better than average," Smith said.

The program includes 16 courses, each done within five week increments.

Students only meet once a week in the evening for four hours making it convenient for individuals with a full-time job.

For more information or to enroll, click here.

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