USFSM's new continuing education program launched last semester.

USF Sarasota-Manatee debuts program for working and corporate professionals

By: Rich Shopes

Posted: February 06, 2017

SARASOTA, Fla. (Feb. 06, 2017) USF Sarasota-Manatee is reaching out to the community’s business, education and non-profit sectors through a series of continuing education courses for working professionals and adult learners.

The courses, which debuted last semester, are designed to meet the professional development needs of learners in a variety of professions, including those seeking to satisfy certificate and licensing requirements.

“One of our goals is to expand access to quality higher education to the communities within our service area,” said Dr. Sandra Stone, regional chancellor for USF Sarasota-Manatee. “By adding an Office of Professional and Continuing Education, we are opening the door to a market of people who want to better themselves or their careers by continuing their education, but who may not necessarily want to pursue a degree.”

Organized by the USFSM’s Office of Professional and Continuing Education (PACE), the courses feature both online classes and opportunities for our community partners and faculty to offer face-to-face events and conferences.

To date, more than 20 courses are being offered ranging from the field of education, such as “Intro to Online Teaching,” to fundraising, “Fundraising for Non-Profit Organizations,” to business and leadership, “Leading and Managing Change.” Most cost only $79. Some are free.

“The courses, programs and events are meant to draw a wide audience of professionals interested in pursuing educational goals that advance their careers of choice,” said Dr. Dina Ciotola, director of PACE.

Dr. Stone introduced the program in order to offer continuing education credits to the area’s growing corporate and professional community. In addition to personal development, the courses and certificates offer continuing education credits toward a number of professional goals.

“We also hope to attract adult learners who wish to explore and expand their knowledge in areas of interest,” Dr. Ciotola said.

In addition to the many business and non-profit courses, PACE is working with the Florida Center for PAInT (Partnerships for Arts-Integrated Teaching) to offer professional development courses for school district teachers seeking to bring an arts-integrated focus to their curricula.

To register for a PACE course, offer an event or workshop, or for more information, visit usfsm.edu/pace/about-pace, or contact Dr. Ciotola at pace@sar.usf.edu.

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