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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 17, 2003
CONTACT: Faith Jackson
Office of University Relations
(908) 737-NEWS

Kean University Launches Weekend College

UNION, N.J. — On Saturday, January 25, at 9 a.m., Kean University’s College of Education will introduce its first series of weekend-course offerings with an orientation for enrolled students.

For the spring 2003 semester, the new Weekend College offers a total of 22 undergraduate-, graduate- and certification-program courses. Each class meets one day a week, usually Saturday, for two-and-a-half to three-hour sessions. Subject areas include special education, early childhood, physical education, communication sciences, educational leadership and educational technology.

Kean has expanded its schedule to accommodate the University’s burgeoning student population. Over the past few years, undergraduate enrollment has increased by 19 percent, while the total of students pursuing graduate studies has risen by 33 percent. This year, new developments at the College of Education are bringing in still more students. "With the funding from two sizeable grants, we’re implementing teacher-education programs to train professionals to work in areas of shortage, such as special education and early childhood," said Dr. Ana Maria Schuhmann, dean of the College of Education. "Many students who enter these programs work full-time, so we had to think of creative ways to serve the influx of new students."

While the College of Education is the first on Kean’s campus to establish a comprehensive weekend schedule, other colleges and departments will soon follow suit. Since the National Center for Educational Statistics projects a 20-percent enrollment increase in degree-granting institutions across the U.S. by 2011, the University has made the development of a Weekend College top priority. "Weekend courses will become an increasingly important part of our scheduled program and course offerings," said Dr. Frank J. Esposito, interim president of Kean University. "We’ve established a task force, chaired by Dr. Mark Lender, dean of the Nathan Weiss College of Graduate Studies, to promote the implementation guidelines of our Weekend College, which will provide greater scheduling flexibility for students, as well as improve space utilization for the University."