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Expanded online programs appeal to alums seeking graduate degrees

In today’s competitive job market, working professionals need to continually learn about new technologies and update their skills. Online learning at RIT is helping alumni do that.

The university is offering an increasing number of graduate degree programs online including applied statistics, cross-disciplinary professional studies, environmental, health and safety management, health systems administration, imaging science, information technology, microelectronics manufacturing engineering, print media, software development and management.

Besides degree programs, those with bachelor’s-degrees also have the option of seeking an advanced certificate. “This credential is becoming more popular in business and industry, as it offers the opportunity to take a subset of courses that develop a specific skill set and get an advanced credential at the same time,” says Diane Ellison, director of graduate enrollment services. “Another benefit is that these certificates can be applied to related master’s degree at RIT.”

Advanced certificate programs available online include: integrated health systems, health systems finance, human resource development, service leadership and innovation, statistical quality, and technical information design.

“People tend to be surprised at the breadth of our online graduate offerings,” says Ellison. “In addtion to flexiblity and quality programs, RIT alums benefit from continuing their education at RIT as the application fee is waived, and we offer a streamlined admission process,”

Comments from students have been highly positive. Doug Caruso ’71 (printing management) says a master’s degree has been a lifelong personal goal, but business and family responsibilities made returning to campus impossible.

“When I received the information announcing the RIT online master’s program in print media, it took me all of two minutes to accept the challenge,” says Caruso. “Not having been in a college classroom for over 30 years, I was initially apprehensive about my ability to complete the program. Although the courses have been comprehensive in content and require a good deal of time and effort, I’ve happily concluded that the ability to learn is not a function of age!”

Matthew Hanson ’95 (imaging and photographic technology) last year became one of the first two graduates of the online master’s degree program in imaging science.

“I was looking to go back to school, and learned about the online program from the RIT Web site,” says Hanson, who works for for Photon Research Associates (PRA) in Newton, Mass. “The program was great,” he says. “I’m very glad that I did it.”

For more information about these programs, visit the Web site at www.rit.edu/~625www/events.html, or call the Office of Graduate Enrollment Services at 585-475-7284.