Learning and Work Experience Credit for College to Be Supported in Colorado

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This bill will help students striving to create a better life for themselves and their families. Following the 15-year old Almeda University model, Colorado lawmakers are finally ensuring that all university students In the state of Colorado will be eligible to apply their experience to academic credit.

A student that graduates with learning and work experience credit would likely be seen as a well-rounded candidate for employment

Learning and work experience credit for college helps students get a head start on their college credits for a degree. The cost of tuition is therefore more affordable since students get credit for their work experience. Students also graduate sooner. According to Richard Smith of Almeda University, House lawmakers in Colorado recently unanimously approved a measure to direct state supported colleges and universities to create a program in which students can get work and military experience turned into college credit.

Once put into law the bill will require the Commission on Higher Education to decide the criteria that will allow students to enroll into higher education schools and then be awarded academic credit for real world experience, on the job experience, military experience, community involvement, corporate training programs and other types of learning and work related situations.

The bill is being sponsored by state Representative Tom Massey, R-Poncha Springs and is co-sponsored by Representative Rhonda Fields, D-Aurora. The bill will now move to the state Senate and is expected to find the same support as it did in the House.

Rep. Massey said “By giving credit to students who have real world experience, we will help them save on costs and the amount of time it takes to earn a degree. This bill will help students striving to create a better life for themselves and their families.”

There are other organizations and institutions that already offer college credit for learning and work experience but some colleges and universities have been hesitant to accept such credit. There are programs such as Prior Learning Assessment programs that review a student’s past experiences and then award credit and there are online degree programs that award learning and work experience credit such as Almeda University.

A student that graduates with learning and work experience credit would likely be seen as a well-rounded candidate for employment. The job market is very competitive with the unemployment rate being so high. In both the United States and the UK there are a large number of college graduates that are unemployed and with a high tuition debt. In having learning and work experience a student would stand above other candidates that simply have academic experience and would have graduated faster with less debt.

Richard Smith, a spokesman for Almeda University, remarked, “Our students understand the need for a higher education degree and we are proud to recognize any learning and work experience they have had before choosing to pursue a degree. For those that have had several years working in a specific field their experience can be just as educational as sitting in a classroom and we are proud to be one of the early pioneers in recognizing that fact.”

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Richard Smith