The flexible and customizable degree program, with six-week classes,
allows students to shape their bachelor's degree and earn a
certificate in a high-demand area (business fundamentals, leadership,
applied data analytics, project management or intercultural competence
and communication). Students also can choose to enroll in a
certificate program only.
For Daggett, the program checked all her boxes. She enrolled in the
Applied Data Analytics certificate program and
worked with GVSU staff members to transfer credits from her bachelor's
degree in English from the State University of New York, Oswego.
"I liked that the second class in the program was offered for
free and I could start almost immediately. I'm now three classes in
and will finish rest next year; the faculty have been great," she said.
Simone Jonaitis, executive director of Adult and Continuing Studies,
said Daggett represents a good example of how the appeal of LEADS is
attracting students not only in Michigan but throughout the country.
"The program is the right format to serve adult learners. They
are able to walk away with a certificate or degree and have a tangible
skill to apply to their jobs or even boost their careers,"
Jonaitis said. "We're offering Grand Valley's foundation in
liberal arts integrated with opportunities to develop and explore new skills."
Daggett said she is learning how to build databases and dashboards,
tasks her director said will help her advance at her company. Together
they are creating a plan for Daggett to sit in on meetings with
departments she might not normally work with, to listen and learn
about upcoming projects.
"I'm talking to people I work with about my classes, it's
applicable and real-world experience," she said. "At the
same time, I'm updating my LinkedIn profile and my skills on the
session of LEADS classes will begin on August 29, a second
session for the fall semester will begin October 12.