Older Students Opting for On-Campus Experience

When Kevin Johnson decided to go back to school after sitting on an associate degree for more than 20 years, he couldn’t imagine signing up for one of those leading-edge, work-at-home online degree programs.

“I just didn’t see as much value in that,” said Johnson, a downtown Tampa business manager. “I could sit there and take online courses all day, but I felt like I would just be going through the motions. You don’t feel as involved.”

Instead, Johnson, 41, enrolled in Eckerd College’s Program for Experienced Learners, a degree path designed to fit the lifestyle and learning preferences of the group categorized as “adult learners” who now make up 40 percent of the college population.

Credits from his Pennsylvania degree were accepted by Eckerd. Leaning on his real-world experience, he tested out of six classes. And earlier this month, he finished his coursework, with his business management degree pending.

“I took a lot of electives, explored things I had never done before,” he said. “In that way, it certainly exceeded my expectations.” <Read more.>

Via Jerome R. Stockfisch, Tampa Tribune in Community College Week.